Getting into motorcycles, aged 43

My Biking experience is fairly new. At the tender age of 43 after just passing my DAS test I bought a 650 Bandit (new) and have at the time of writing this done just 211 miles.

My previous biking history stems back to when I was around 14 upon joining a school motorcycle club. Trial sidecar. I learnt to ride on an old Francis Barnet and those school memories are the only ones I enjoy.

A few years later I had a few spins on road legal bikes although my legality was questionable but an XT500 was just power based fun and the GPZ550 was pure brown trousers and that was it until some weeks back when I passed my test.

I have probably come into biking for all the wrong reasons the main one being that commuting into London for work is costing me around £240 per month by car and that is fuel alone.

Being that I work nights I am unable to take a train, so I reckoned the cost of biking would be wiser. The minefield of kit was bad enough let alone choosing the bike.

If money was no object then it would have been either a custom Harley or a world wide machine eater like the BMW enduro style. Alas money was and remains an issue so I plumped for my second choice of motorcycle the Bandit.

I wanted the Triumph street triple but as no dealer was offering 0% I had to settle for the black beauty now parked in my back garden. I'm still a bag of nerves on the machine and it will take some time for me to get used to its power.

So apologies in advance to other bikers out there if they see me pootling along at slow speeds. Yes I am that numpty who bought all the high visibility gear and shiny white skid lid.

As my 20 yr old boy says "you look a right twat" (aahhh parental love) and I think to myself twat maybe but safe to a point. So after a gap of well over 20 years I am now officialy a motorcycle licence holder and have my 1st bike.

Perhaps the dream of an MV Agusta or Harley lays in a lottery win but until then the Bandit and my wobbly nerves will have to do. See you out there guys and gals and just give me a wide berth until the wobbles go.

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John Finningham

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By John Finningham