As I crack the throttle open, in second gear, on the Bira circuit in Pattaya, the rear Bridgestone tires protests gently. I shift up to third gear, ride toward the flat-out, revving hard and high I hook fourth, then fifth to go of the throttle as a approach the pit-lane on the Suzuki Hayabusa for a quick stop to do a bit fine tuning on the suspension setup.
After a few minutes I'm back on the tarmac and revving the engine to near redline and fly through the gears until I gently shift the gearbox in sixth, and after a few daunting corners the speedo blitzes past 273km/h before approaching another bend. Deep breath, keep it pinned, and a big shove on the right bar pitches it in.
The Suzuki Hayabusa revs rise as the changing tire diameter artificially lowers the gearing, the track drops away and I'm now on the other-side of the track trying to pull everything out of the 1350cc Suzuki engine. The limiter cuts in, speedo nudging 299km/h, the magic 300km/h is apparently is for me not possible on the Bira Circuit in Pattaya. This is Bira Circuit: the track where our own Moto2 rider Ratthapark Wilairot was doing his laps when he was growing up. Now I'm trying to set a personal speed record on this track. The Bira Circuit is actual a bit small for the Hayabusa. Actually, it feels slightly odd, according to Suzuki the Hayabusa isn't really meant to go on track.
Today we're using a 2009 Suzuki Hayabusa GSX1300R, which is actually powered by a 1349cc powerplant, for the looks you wouldn't know the difference between the older 1299cc and new 1349cc at a glance. If you didn't like the first generation of the Hayabusa, there's little on the latest model to change your mind. Evolutions of the old shape differentiate it, mainly the tail unit and more aggressive front.