Ducati & Aprilia – two two-wheeled monsters

I have always been fascinated with sportbikes but honestly have never had any idea about them…until I met Dale and Shea.

I just always liked the look and idea of a sports bike but have never taken the time or mustered up enough courage to learn how to ride a crotch rocket.  I guess I really don’t know if I’ll have enough control to not do something stupid on the bike and kill myself.

Dale and Shea, who I met in grad school, are avid auto enthusiasts as well as motorcycle lovers.  Dale piqued my interest when he told me about his newly purchased Ducati and I figured it was time to find out more about their bikes.  You’d be hard pressed to find something more exciting than Dale’s Ducati and Shea’s Aprilia both of which cost them less than $15,000 to purchase.

Even if you have no idea about bikes (like myself) or have no interest in them, it’s hard not to appreciate Dale’s Ducati and Shea’s beautiful Aprilia.

Below are their two-wheeled monsters.  0-60 mph in less than 3 seconds.

Ducati and Aprilia

One thing (out of many things) I had no idea before Dale informed me is the concept of a “naked” bike.  You’ll notice the missing side paneling on the Aprilia.  “Naked” bikes go back to the era of “cafe racers” where riders would go on their bikes from one coffee shop to another – this was a phenomenon in Europe where the entire goal was to get from one coffee shop to another as fast as possible.

The Ducati

Dale thought it was a scam when he bought his Ducati 1098.  He only ended up paying $10,000 for the bike that should have cost him much more – because the guy was so desperate to sell the bike, Dale came out ahead.

The 1098 has more horsepower per pound than say a 1000 hp Bugatti Veyron and in terms of sheer quickness and speed, I imagine few things are more thrilling than a Ducati sports bike.

Dale's Ducati

Ducati bikes have a distinct exhaust noise where you can hear the clanking of the clutch plate.  The first time I heard it I thought something was wrong!  But, Dale’s dog knows exactly what it is.  Dale is proud of his dog who is now able to recognize a Ducati from the bike’s exhaust note!  His dog is definitely a keeper.


The Aprilia

Shea’s Aprilia is the first time I ever came across the brand.  Apparently it’s a highly respected Italian motorcycle brand and is well known in the motorcycle racing community.


Even though the Aprilia features more of an upright seating position, its performance rivals that of the Ducati 1098.  Shea mentioned that the more upright position actually causes more pressure on the chest at higher speeds so it’s probably a tougher bike to ride.

Dale and Shea on their bikes

Shea’s bike has a lot more electronics and more “techy” stuff than Dale’s bike.  I guess you could say it’s a mix between a cafe racer and track bike?

As you can tell by now, if you’re looking for any sort of informed view on these amazing machines, then the last person you should be listening to is me.  This is just my attempt to express my appreciation for my buddies’ awesome sportbikes.  Makes me wish I had one!

If Dale’s Ducati is like a Ferrari, then Shea’s bike is well…there’s really no car that it can be compared to.  I suppose then this is what the bike is like in Shea’s words: “Dale’s is designed to lay that power down on the track. My bike is designed to do hooligan shit on the way to the coffee shop”.   That just about sums it up!

Dale and Shea will their bikes

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