Man & his bike

SHARE   |   Tuesday, 14 March 2017   |   By B Double
Man & his bike

Noble Katse has wanted to be a biker since he was a little boy. When other boys made wire cars to play with, he made wire cars and motorbikes. His parents could not afford to buy him a motorbike, but his passion for motorbikes made him go to Cottonfields to watch off-road motorbike racing. Cottonfields was an off-road race course in Gaborone in the 1980s. It was located where the present-day CBD is. Initially, Noble was attracted to off-road motorbikes but then, as he grew up, he realized that there were road bikes, and found road biking to be more exciting than off-road biking. He used to marvel at the blue Honda Goldwings ridden by the Khama brothers in the 1980s. Noble’s first motorbike was a Kawasaki Ninja 250R, which he bought in 2008. The Ninja 250R was a supersport bike. He sold it a year later and upgraded to a Honda CBR 600RA. Noble then felt that he needed an extra bike for cruising, so he bought an 800 cc Suzuki Boulevard. He also bought a BMW K1300S, so he had 3 bikes. Noble eventually sold the Suzuki Boulevard as it turned out to be too slow for him. He also gave away the Honda CBR600RA to his nephew in Johannesburg.

Currently, Noble rides the BMW K1300S. “I like the riding position on the K1300S,” he says. “It is a more upright position than on a superbike. It is more comfortable over long distances. I also like the fact that it has a long range fuel-wise; I can travel long distances without having to refuel. The bike provides lots of information on the status of the machine on the fly such as tyre pressure, outside temperature, status of safety functions etc. I am also able to adjust the suspension on the fly. It is a powerful bike with amazing take-off and incredible top end speed. The weight of the bike makes it cut through cross winds with ease and I always feel very safe on the K1300S as it is imposing as well.” Noble is the President of Three Chiefs Motorcycle Club, with whom he does breakfast runs. He also does solo rides. “I have been as far as Jo’burg and Francistown,” he informs me. His next long trip will be to Ghanzi. Interestingly, Noble’s passion for riding has passed on to his 8-year-old son. His son rides off-road. His younger sister and his nephew are also bikers.

Noble says that he dreams of owning a Honda Goldwing when he is 60. His dream ride is a long distance ride with his son when, he is old enough. “That’s in about ten years!” he says. As is very evident, the biking subculture is growing in leaps and bounds, with young and middle aged adults investing in the subculture. “It is important that we live up to a positive image so that we earn the respect that is due to us,” feels Noble. “Bikers must belong to clubs in order that they have access to forums where they share knowledge about bikes and biking. Bikers must also show great sense of discipline in order to be recognized as equals with drivers”. Noble would like to see the Annual Toy Run, a charity biker event, growing to become an international event. Katse works for the Botswana Communications Regulatory Authority where he leads the Business Development Team in charge of ICT licensing and market development.