Purchased brand new from Victor Motorcycles in South Australia, Malcolm fell in love with the transcontinental Supersport motorcycle the second he laid his eyes on it saying, “We have family living in Sydney and I was planning to ride up to see them. I saw a 1400GTR at Victor Motorcycles in September 2007, they had a couple on display and I fell in love with them. Naturally I spoke to my wife and she said, “If you want it then buy it!” So I bought one a week before I was scheduled to travel to Sydney, with a little riding before the big trip so that I could have the first service done beforehand.”
"I just fell in love with the thing. It’s a beautiful looking bike. I hadn’t taken a lot of notice of the 1400GTR’s but this particular one stuck in my mind and it’s been a fantastic bike ever since I picked it up. It’s the ideal touring bike.”
The 78 year old developed a passion for motorcycles from a young age. “As a teenager we had motorcycles as it was all we could afford at the time. I started with a 250cc and graduated to a 1000cc four before my wife, study, family etc. took over so I gave it in until about twelve years ago when I picked it back up again.” said Malcolm.
Malcolm swears by the build quality and reliability of his trusty 1400GTR saying, “Basically the engine and transmission have never been touched outside of normal servicing! During Easter last year I was on my way to a FarRider’s event and realised that the front fork needed some slight attention. It was well over 250,000km by then. While the bike was in for repairs at Fineline Motorcycles the valves and cam chain were adjusted and they are the first mechanical adjustments. Other than that Victor Motorcycles, where it was purchased, have regularly serviced the bike and they have been excellent.
“In terms of modifications, there aren’t many at all. It’s had some cosmetic touch-ups, I’ve added heated grips, GPS mounts and a few other things but otherwise it’s stock standard.”
Malcolm’s captivation with long distance riding became more intense when he discovered the FarRiders group.
“David Jones, the founder of FarRiders was doing some promotional trips for Kawasaki to dealers etc. I had my 1400GTR beforehand and I came across his website as I was delving further into long distance riding. My first FarRide was in August 2008 which was the annual run to Border Village at the border of SA and WA. So that got me into the FarRiders and afterwards I got involved with a variety of their rides.”
Although modest, the South Australian is delighted to have been able to travel such vast distances saying, “There are plenty of FarRiders who have done a lot of km in the same amount of time but a lot of them keep changing their bikes so I’m not terribly unique but my bike does have a lot of km. What else do you do when you retire? I am Semi-retired so I occasionally do a bit of work and can often use that as an excuse to go for a ride as well.”
“Each of the 100,000km were really great but I’ve been waiting on it and hitting 300,000km felt very special,” Said Malcolm, reflecting on the moment he reached the magic 300,000km.
Malcolm’s toughest trip was 2000km in 24 hours, between Port Pirie in South Australia and Norseman in Western Australia, however he has ridden an astonishing four to five thousand kilometres in a single weekend. His 1400GTR has taken him to almost every corner of Australia including Northern QLD, Tasmania and WA.
“It’s not about speeding, it’s about planning and managing fatigue which is crucial. You spend more time planning than riding. In researching about fatigue, there are aspects to think of including diet, hydration, utilising power naps, signs to look out for when becoming fatigued and you need to act on those when they turn up which is vital,” Malcolm commented.
Malcom plans to keep on riding his Kawasaki 1400GTR and Kawasaki Motors Australia wish him all the best of luck with his long distance riding endeavours.