Coming to 5 months...


Hi all,

Stumbled across this site in a quest to find some good information about my newly accquired machine, and to say the least, I'm glad I did.
I am an Aussie bloke working away in Singapore and well, i thought I'd give my 0.02c worth.

Singapore (for those of you who are not sure) is a small island on the southern tip of Malaysia 60km wide by 50 km tall, so there isnt much of a chance to get out and go for a ride. Unless of course you have plenty of room on your passport and are able to cross the bridge into Malaysia where there are endless expanses of open highways.

I came out here in 1992, and decided in 1995 to go and get my bike license. The system here is one of a kind. Its a three step system whereby the bike license is divided into 3 sections. <200cc, <400cc, then open class. To get a 200cc license, you have to endure about 5 months of theoretical and practical sessions, followed by a traffic police test which most first timers are doomed to fail. Usuall on your second chance, you'll pass.

A year later you are allowed to go for your 400cc license, whereby you have to go through the same amount of hardship, although they look at your skill more than anything else. DOesnt take as long though. The following year you are allowed to go for you open class, where you are expected to be able to handle a 750cc bike around the test circuit, drop it, pick it up, E brake, narrow plank course, bumpy course, figure 8 course etc etc.

All in all I really dont have any complaints. It took me two years to get my 400cc license, and three years later to get my open class. I started off on a Yamaha TZR 125cc. I am 5'10", 160lbs, so it was kind of small for me. I really could not wait to move up a step. After passing my 400cc, I bought a Honda CBR400 Fireblade, which i owned for a couple of years, following which i sold it to pay a small fortune for a car (they are not cheap in Singapore). The car was scrapped (Singapore law says you have to scrap your car after 10 years old) so i bought myself a Ducati Monster 400cc. A fun bike but I guess you have to be a Ducati lover to really appreciate it. I found i wasnt.

So i though OK, time to move up another step so I went out and did the course all over again, passing without much of a problem. So here i was with a fully fledged license and a 400cc bike. I looked at Hondas, Yamahas, Triumphs, BMW etc etc but was always kken on the Busa as i had seen a few of them on the road here. I went back to the shop where i bought the Duke and there it was, a gleaming Busa, low mileage, well kept, no accident, Yosh pipe, braided brake hoses, a nice reg number, and on a closer look, my name on the seat (or at least thats what i imagined). Took about an hour to decide that it was the bike that i always wanted, a quick chat with the shop owner and it was mine.

So 5 months later i can proudly say that i still have chicken strips on the tyres, although they are slowly disappearing. It is a bike to be respected. No doubt about that. To me its a bike that the rider has to take time to learn the responses and be able to feel the bike. I cant go far in Singapore before there is a traffic light clearly in my view, something which is a real pain.

So until i have the time to go up to Malaysia its something i just have to bear with. Anyway, in my opinion, no point rushing things, is there??

Comments appreciated.......
Man that sucks to have to go through all of that to ride a bike. I guess it isn't all bad but I can't say that I would be riding on the street if we had to do it. Injoy the Busa you earned it. And if I didn't say it before Welcome to the board.
Welcome to the Board! I very much enjoyed the post,.
Some think it would be a good idea to have a license test here. But we have something better, it is called Insurance and it is a RIP, ever notice, your either old or rich to have a fast bike?
Just my banter,, somebody has to say it !
I wish it was that strict in the US...either no squids or squids that deserve to be squids cause they earned it
Well,.....Welcome to the Board!!!

Very well written post, you will probably wince occasionally at the diction, grammar, and spelling of us Americans on this board.  (did I spell diction right?)

You are probably more skilled at riding in traffic than anyone on this board.  But now having a 'Busa, you probably take up as much room as a car in Singapore.  I imagine that when you're riding it, people who are just starting out on the 200cc bikes must look at you, obviously with an open class license, on a 1300cc motorcycle, and just envy you.  Not only are you in the open class, you have THE motorcycle.

One word of advice, when you do finally get a chance to get over to Malaysia, be careful.  The acceleration of the 'Busa is enormous.  Sorry, ENORMOUS!  Nothing you have ridden before is even close.  So when you do grab a handful of the throttle, have a good grip on the handlebars and squeeze the tank with your knees.  You may have to get another passport with more room on it for more trips to Malaysia.
Once again, make sure you have enough room before you open it up. You'll be at the end of that straightaway before you know it.
Great post........I was just thinking yesterday that I no longer am fascinated by the Busa..........don't know why really, but that post made me realize something.......I really like that bike.

5 years to ride a Busa...Man that's torture...Hey Mike what about that country???
Welcome. I guess it was worth the wait. You need to ship that thing over here for a few weeks and open her up.
All I have to say is Welcome and Enjoy. No words can express the way I feel about what you went through to acquire licensing. That SUCKS major.

Wow glad I was only visiting Singapore when i was there. But nevertheless you are rtiding now..Welcome to the boards
...Hey Mike what about that country???  


Brennanop....what do you mean? I have lots to say about the country, not sure if there is enough space on the site....
I was replying last night until my pc decided to go to sleep, so here goes...

* its not all that bad really. I guess that the three teired system allows for steady growth especially for squids. I think its designed more to weed out the people that really want to ride bigger bikes, rather than the ones that are happy to sit at 400cc or less. There are just too many people over in this region that really shouldnt be on bikes at all, especially the slipper or thong riders. you know the flip flops you wear on your feet?? protection is another thing - its hot here and to wear a jacket with some armour is like instant weight loss. I am certainly not guilty of this, but a lot of riders here ride around in shorts, t shirt and flip flop, on all sizes of bikes. I dont understand at all.

* i'm 32 years old, and my insurance (first party fully comprehensive) cost me S$1000, which is roughly equivalent to US$600. cheap isnt it?

* Envy...well we were all guilty of that at some stage but yeah, i do stick out a bit on the road here. There are plenty of expats working here, but not many on the road on bikes. And yeah, the Busa does shine like a bright light in the midst of much smaller 110cc bikes which are more prevalent here. But thats the whole point of owning one....isnt it??

*Malaysia....something to look forward to, but i will definitely go up with a group. There are a couple of reputable groups here in Singapore, and I have no qualms about letting them know how inexperienced i am on the Busa. Usually they will meet a few time before the trip and try to pair everyone up so that we all get the benefit out of the trip. Must say i'm talking from what i have heard, not experienced, so i may have a different story to tell when i get back. There are plenty of open straights on Malaysia, a good chance for me to turn the throttle.... advice taken. I wont let go. Promise.

* Ship the bike to the US?? May be leaving Singapore this year as i have been here for 11 years (came out here when i was a 21 year old...). And i will probably ship the bike back to why dont you ship your bike to Australia
? In all seriousness..I am looking forward to going back to Asutralia and travelling to my fave spots on the Busa. Something that i have missed doing over the past years and i'm sure it will be something that i will enjoy, especially on the bike..

Damn those Corbin seats are nice. Lucky they dont send out to Singapore or I'd be a poorer person today.
Brennanop....what do you mean? I have lots to say about the country, not sure if there is enough space on the site....
Oh, sorry, I'm not saying anything bad about your country, the "joke" is, we have a member who isn't satisifed with the way things are going here in the US, so he's leaving. So, with the story about taking all that time to get an open class license, we thought Mike would like to go there...and start all over again.
Brennanop....unless he's planning on a long term stay...i wouldnt recommend it. I cant wait to get out of here and back to Australia where normality is an every day need to be sorry mate, i feel the same after 11 years in this place.....time to move!!!