Yamaha YZF-R3 is perfect if you’re ready for the step up to a mid-range bike that’s fast enough for commutes

THE one thing that separates bikers from car drivers (aside from us permanently looking like we live outdoors), is that bikers can’t just jump straight on the fastest thing going.

Financial factors aside, horrendous license restraints aside and insurance barriers ignored for a moment, to ride a big bike properly, you need some experience.

Yamaha YZF-R3
Yamaha YZF-R3 is perfect if you’re ready for the step up to a mid-range bike that’s fast enough for commutes

We all had that annoying wealthy mate at school, you know the one. As soon as he turned 17 his dad bought him a big flash car that everyone wanted a ride in. Bikes aren’t like that.

Even after a lifetime of riding, your average 40-year-old is barely capable of making the most of a 1,000cc sports bike.

In short, if you don’t know how to ride properly, bad things happen. That’s where bikes like the Yamaha YZF-R3 come in.

When it comes to sports bikes, there’s an accepted form of progression from small learner bikes to the big fast scary stuff and the R3 occupies the middle ground really well.

Yamaha YZF-R3
Yamaha YZF-R3 is plenty fast-enough for around town commuting

Once you’ve figured out gear selection, position in the road and how to make the most of your 125 learner bike, you take it to the shop and swap it for the next size up.

The R3 is the one to go for, quality suspension, lively performance from the simple motor and all the swagger of the bigger R6 and R1 mean you’ll look the part while you continue to learn your trade.

All the while still on your A2 licence.

It’s plenty fast enough for round-town commuting, will sit at motorway speeds all day and is just about capable of bagging the odd track day here and there as well. Perfect.

We rode on track and round Valencia in Spain and the R3 was faultless. The updates for 2019 might not be earth shattering, but the previous generation bike was already a little belter.

Look up the R3 if you’re currently on a 125, trust us when we say this is the perfect bike to progress up the experience ladder.

If you’re nervous about making the move to a 600cc machine then consider this machine as well.

In the right hands, it’ll deliver thrills usually reserved for faster and more expensive bikes. The Yamaha YZF-R3 costs £5,299 and is available from dealers now.

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