Since being on my L's when these bikes were launched I have lusted after them. I wanted one - it was the perfect bike for me. It made sense on so many levels - not a litre bike, so you get to use the clutch and gears. Handles like a 600, but bigger and torqueyer than an i4 Jap supersport. Different to the run-of-the-mill, but without the overbearing 'character' issues that the exotics are infamous for, not to mention the pricetag. I had never read a bad review, or even a luke-warm one. Everyone who had experienced it raved about it, both pro riders/journos and normal punters. There was a rash of netriders buying them, while I posted light-hearted but heartfelt jealousies at every "My New Ride" thread. It just seemed to tick all the boxes. Speaking of pricetag - that was always going to be the stumbling block. I'm not someone who often has large amounts of disposable income. My last bike, a 2000 K1 GSXR750, cost me all of $6500, and that took a while to save up for. Then it happened - the stars aligned. I did my tax late last year, got a bigger than expected refund, and managed to sell the old Zook. That gave me enough dosh to look seriously at very late model sports bikes. Then the end of a three year relationship meant I had a green light to actually spend it on said late model bike, rather than in the 'future fund' destined for diamond rings and mortgages. My shortlist was pretty simple - supersports and superbikes from the big four, another 750 which I loved, and the little Brittish wildcard. My first test ride of a 2008 Jet Black Daytona was pure fantasy. I felt guilty for wasting the guys time. The asking price was $2,500 more than I had, and I had very little prospect of making up the difference. Goddam it was nice though. It was spotless, shiny, tastefully and sensibly modified with plenty of scope for more, the chassis felt tight and the motor was mind-blowing - power to blow my poor old lumbering 750 away, and it came on with a rush I couldn't believe. It felt terrifyingly twitchy compared to my old barge, but that's one thing I was specifically looking for in an upgrade. I still couldn't afford it, so I kept looking. I looked at an 06 GSXR600 - which felt great. I just seem to fit Suzukis really well. The motor didn't have the kick of the Daytona, but it was nice and smooth and spun up really easily. Even on a tight little beach-side test run it was easy to get screaming. It was a bit rough around the edges, but the price was right. It made a good fall-back. It took all of 30 seconds on a CBR1000RR for me to decide that I didn't want a litre bike. There was nothing wrong with it, it just seemed that the levers on the left side were redundant. They worked, but I'd never use them. I want to ride a bike because I like RIDING them. Clutch, gears, the whole bit. Since Daytonas were now entrenched at the top of my wish list, I went to see another one. This one had me really excited. It was still too pricey, but it was the black and gold SE that made me drool when it was released. The owner had also blinged it out some more, with a CF and gold can, CF panels, gold levers... It looked fantastic, though not quite as mint as the first one. Unfortunately the test ride was disappointing - it felt the same turning, but the motor just didn't have the punch, that kick that had so excited me. The discussion with the owner made me more convinced that this particular example would be more of a headache than a pleasure. So I was stuck with one I wanted but couldn't afford, one I would settle for, one that was just wrong, and one that looked great but had every suspicious nerve in my body tingling. Then, of course, the aforementioned celestial bodies decided to tempt me. My girlfriend of three years and I decided that we wanted different things, and I got thrown a couple of financial lifelines I didn't expect. The end result: I am now the proud owner of a Jet Black 2008 model Triumph Daytona 675: These are obviously Trauts pics - I collect the bike on Sunday. 14000km Factory slip-on and tune loaded Techspec tank grips Fender eliminator and LED rear indicators Dark double-bubble screen 1050 quick-action throttle tube Speed bleeders on all the (stock) braided brake lines Newish Pirellis To come: Crash protection Alarm Replacement rear shock linkage Rear seat cowl LED front indicators Pazzo/CRG/ASV levers CF goodies HIDs Powdercoat/Anodise everything not black And of course, lots lots more kilometers.