• Tony Dymock

Return of the Motorcycle: Sophia the Third

So for some context, the bike claim is now settled and Eva the BMW F800R is no more. We tell the kids she's at the farm with all the other good little motorcycles, but really, she was sold for scrap and is now a mere husk. Bless her soul.

Now you may recall, I had stated I would not be buying another European vehicle. After my Audi decided to become a gold-digging trash box, and my BMW spontaneously combusted, I thought my time in this cliche was done.

But no no no, my friends. There's something sultry about them. The allure is palpable. Let's use the metaphor of girlfriends. The German was the dependable girl who was lovely, had a beautiful soul, kept you happy, but something was wrong ... You don't know what, but it's just not there.

Now the Italian? She's the crazy, fiery, ball-breaking love that has you hooked from start to finish like a 36-hour bender at Revolver. By the end of it, you don't even know what the hell love is anymore. Oh, and you've only taken the bike out of the garage.

Before I reveal the new stead, here's a quick look at memory lane. I've had five bikes now, with the new one making it six. Three of those have been Ducatis. I am currently a true Ducatisti.

Sophia 1 - 1997 Ducati Monster 600 Dark

This was my learner approved baby. Bought off a beautiful bike collector who neglected her, Sophia 1 schooled me on carburettor engines. I had to replace the jets and needles three times in the years I owned her. In cold weather, she required an anti-freeze additive in the fuel system even to start. But I loved her. Loved her so much I dropped her doing a U-turn in the rain and gave her big steel fuel tank a nice ding in the side. Classy.

STATUS - Sold to a guy in NSW who flew down and rode her home. She was sitting pretty on 54,000km when she departed.

Sophia 2 - 2009 Ducati Monster 696+

Ahhh, my first real love. By love, I mean a non-LAMS bike with all the power and accoutrements expected for a person who measures their penis by the cubic millilitres of their two-wheeled steed. Not too big, not too small, but hella fun to ride.

Sophia 2 was purchased off a cop who lost his license, for doing 80 in a 40 zone. Even the good can do bad things on occasion. His loss, my gain. Fitted with Ducati Performance gear like a raised handlebar kit, new levers and mirrors, touring seat, and Termignoni exhaust, she was a bit of a steal.

She did cause me a lot of dramas too, though ... At one point the battery exploded and leaked acid all over the engine cover. And in the rain, she dumped on the road while crossing tram tracks (slippery devil snakes). Still, she was a ball to ride.

STATUS - Stolen out the front of my house in a five-hour window on a Saturday night. Never recovered.

Sophia 3 - 2015 Ducati Scrambler Icon

And finally, we reach the bike I've wanted for quite some time. Well, one of the bikes I've wanted for quite some time. I've admired the Scramblers because of the customisation options, and just how wild and ballsy they look. I was looking for a particular set of mods and had to look abroad.

This is the first time I've purchased a bike from interstate, sight unseen, from a person I met on the internet. This is the sort of stuff your parents warn you about. But alas, it all came up fine. Had it shipped down from Gold Coast to Melbourne and it arrived in perfect order.

The last owner had spent a small fortune on the bike. Rizoma gauge relocator with tapered handlebars, grips, mirrors, and levers. Full anodised Termi race exhaust. Mustang touring seat. Ridiculous amounts of cash. By the time I had it roadworthied, she was fitted with a new set of Pirelli Angel GT's to compliment the look.

Since I've only just received my new baby, I won't provide any ride commentary. But make no doubt, I'm enjoying her gentle rumble between my thighs on the daily 😜


Masterfully crafted in;

Prahran, Victoria, Australia

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