The Ducati 851 is a motorcycle that needs no introduction to anyone who was following the Superbike World Championship when it first launched back in the late 1980s.
The outgoing Ducati 750 F1 had reached a development bottleneck, largely due to the fact that it had two-valve heads and air-cooling – the Ducati 851 would introduce liquid-cooling and new 4-valve heads developed by Massimo Bordi with input from Cosworth.
The Harley-Davidson XR1200X
The Harley-Davidson XR1200X was the high-end version of the short-lived XR1200 series by the Milwaukee-based motorcycle manufacturer. That “X” suffixed to the name denoted Showa Big Piston Forks and twin full-floating Nissin front brake rotors up front with Showa shocks (with piggyback nitrogen-charged reservoirs) in the rear – the most modern suspension and brakes ever fitted to a production Harley-Davidson road bike.
When it was released the XR1200X seemingly surprised many motorcycle journalists with its handling and braking ability compared with other Harleys, and many of the media bikes came back with worn down footpegs and near-empty gas tanks.