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For the last couple years I have been waiting with great anticipation on word of the new Triumph(2001/2002) Daytona. Rumors were floating that it might be a four cylinder, It might look like the T10, etc. Some info favorable and in the sprit of the triple and Triumph but some sounding like it would ruin its character, chasing the Japanese companies and their vision (revolution not evolution).

Now with the facts of the new Dayton reveled it sounded very promising but then the pictures started to arrive and I was very disappointed. I was one of the original T595 owners that had put their deposits down 6+ months before they were even available. And back then there was the same since of excitement (at least for Triumph fans) looking for bits and pieces of information of the then to be ground braking "Fireblade beating" 1996/7 Daytona. A small and optimistic group slowly formed sharing the latest info and rumors, now four years later is a very strong and vocal rider and E-mail group (thanks to some key persons and supporters).

At first When I saw the 2001/2 Daytona I was pissed that Triumph, after a great run these last few years had for the second time (TT600) played it too safe and screwed up excellent engineering with bland, copy cat styling. The TT600 is the best handling bike I had ever ridden, yet I couldn't get over the styling enough to own one. But that was OK for me as 4 cylinders are not my cup of tea, and I owned the Daytona and I wanted a worth while and worthy replacement for it.

The replacement Daytona was slow to come and I can't blame Triumph for that as it was a great bike and a sales success too. So in the mean time I bought a 2000.5 Aprilia Mille, Another great sportbike but it doesn't quite provide that ride quality my 1997 T595 gave me and not for $3000 more money.

This week the new Daytona photos arrive, First I'm disappointed and pissed off that Triumph bagged it again (did someone in Styling die?). I thought that, " What a shame Triumph will likely create their most impressive Sportbike yet, But I won't want to ride it". But as more photos started to roll in, photos that gave a better and truer image of how it really looks and maybe it was the staring it them for the last week straight, I'm actually starting to like the new look. I've taken all the new pictures and compare then directly to the T500 Daytonas at every angle on Photo Shop (helps for scale) and to the other bike new bike available and it becomes more favorable by the day.

This also made me think back to 1996, when the first spy then prototype photos came out of the T595, I knew I wanted one but it did not set off any inner fires and it still looked a bit dated compared to the then (and still now) style standard the 916 (996). and I remember the same gripes about the styling then as now. But it like the new Daytona started growing one me, but the kicker for me was when I saw it in person at the international bike show. In the flesh I was a site to behold. The next morning I placed my deposit, number 2 of the 14 allocated in my area, and after then delivery it was more then worth the wait.

The more I look, the more I see Triumph had addressed the issues I (we) and griped about on the 97-01 version, many of the things I would have or did changed. In addition to added the extra performance we all wanted (even if we didn't really need it). Yes, there are many features I would have retained. But many of these items will be changed by it owners. I will bet the singleside swingarm will bolt right on, or the many aftermarket companies will make one for it. I'll take the lighter twin arm set up, but I would have liked it to look a bit more impressive.

So one week later, I now see the new Daytona in a positive light but will hold final judgment until I see it and can touch it.

I'll just have to wait and see.....

William Ow
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