My First Bad Day Riding: Any Thoughts? Staff
by Staff
I bought a Ducati ST2 here in Geneva, Switzerland a year ago April. It had 25,000 kilometers on it, and I've added my first 7,000 over the past year. I bought it from the Ducati dealer with a 3 month warranty then had a big service at 30,000. Until recently it has run perfectly. This is my first bike, I'm 35, and I've ridden off and on for a few years. I know next to nothing about what makes them go. As I live in an apartment with no garage and park it outside, I'm not much of a DIY type as the hassle-factor is too high. Nowhere to put things, etc.

My wife left today for a business trip and the sun sets late (late May 2006). I figured it would be my first four-hour ride of the season. I took some wonderful canyon and valley roads in the direction of Lyon, riding 40-80mph mostly in 2nd and 3rd with some relaxed 4th gear riding on the straights.

After about an hour and a half, and for the first time ever, it sort of . . . sputtered. I was in third and needed some grunt down at about 3,000rpm and it sort of skipped a few beats. Then it happened again a little later after some spirited twisties through a valley. I didn't like this.

Finally, as I came to a stop sign in second, then down to first, it stalled! I pushed into a parking place. The dash lights came on but the starter made a staccato clicking noise. I found some teenage riders nearby who all passed me a while back and I assumed (rightly) they knew more than me (though 15 years older, I still probably have a longer life expectancy as I'm less inclined to become a hood ornament, but I digress . . .) and they gave me a push-start in 3rd.

On the way home it sounded awkward. It was intermittently underpowered and I lived in fear of a stall at lights. Sometimes it regressed to the bike I knew and loved and all felt smooth but other times it as was as though the rpms were running higher than the back wheel (if this makes any sense).

What happened? Is this common? Thanks for your experience and insights. I'm curious to know. I'll go to the garage soon.
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