We took the 370hp SuperBusa for a high-speed shakedown on an airfield – in the rain!
With 370hp of supercharged power, you can't fully test the TTS SuperBusa's capabilities on the road (not if you want to keep your licence, anyway!) So we headed to our local airfield to give the bike a proper shakedown session.
At just over a kilometre, Turweston Aerodrome has a relatively short runway, so top speed runs were out. But, it did give us the opportunity to play with the SuperBusa's launch and anti-lift functions ahead of our planned trip to the drag strip the following day.
We wanted to subject the bike to some hard launches and also see how it behaved at high speed, and under heavy braking.
With morning temperatures of around 11-degrees and a damp surface from some light rain, conditions were far from optimal, but TTS' Richard Albans was in no mood to go home!
Having measured out a quarter-mile and marked it with some cones, Richard set out on some sighting runs to get a feel for the braking zones and asses how much grip was available. Surprisingly, there was a fair amount of grip with the stock road tyres and he felt comfortable to try some harder runs.
After a couple of slow starts, he got into the groove and was setting consistent quarters in the tens. Even with launch control and the anti-lift function, getting off the line with 370hp on a cold damp surface was always going to be a challenge. And then it started to rain.
Undeterred, Richard carried on and was impressed with the amount of grip available. By the time SuperBusa designer, Kar Lee, had arrived, the rain had subsided, but the surface was very wet. Not one to be put off easily, he set our for a few runs and came back with a huge grin on his face!
At the end of the morning, and with over 20 hard runs under its belt, the SuperBusa had proved itself reliable and taken everything we'd thrown at it. We'd got some valuable data from the Draggy and a much better idea of how best to utilise the Hayabusa's electronics to help us get the most out of the supercharger package.
We "only" managed a top speed of 160mph, but any faster would've risked us ending up in the field. We'll save the V-max stuff for the next test at one of the UK's longest airfields in a few weeks' time.
Next stop Santa Pod to see what times we can get on a proper drag strip!
Click HERE to discover more about SuperBusa
Watch the video of our test day!