First ride: '04 Yamaha R1

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Yamaha has launched the 2004 YZF-R1 in Australia and MCN road tester Michael Neeves was there to get the first ride.

But while riding the bike in the perfect Australian weather is one thing, we wanted to know what it's like to ride the R1 on our wet and crumbling British roads. So chief road tester Trevor Franklin took it out for a spin.

"It's completely different to the previous R1," said Franklin. "Both in the way it handles and the way it steers. The new bike has lost its vague front end and the detached sensation between the front and rear wheels. It feels so much more together now."

"It simply rolls in to the corners and, believe it or not, despite having more power than the old version the new bike is much easier to use. But it still retains its exciting nature."

"Its three other competitors could well end up with a bloody nose in our superbike group test on March 3"

You can read the full report from the Australian test and get a complete account of Trevor Franklin's UK road test in this week's edition of MCN, out Wednesday February 18.

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff