Ducati 1199: so light, powerful, stable, comfy and easy to ride with a cockpit full of tech stuff to keep you busy playing all day,” says Troy Bayliss. Because Sean decided to run into a lampost instead of go on the bike’s press launch in Abu Dhabi, here’s riding impressions from the retired SBK racer instead, as well as an onboard video of him lapping Yas Marina.

“Bike is great,” Tweeted Troy from the track this weekend. “It’s easy to praise what is the best though. Only one bad point: the speedo blanks above 300kmh (186mph).”

Is 186mph really possible on Yas Marina’s 0.7-mile back straight? The McLaren/Mercedes F1 team reports a top speed of 199mph there. MotoGP hasn’t yet visited the track. A stock production bike getting within 13mph of an F1 car’s top speed is pretty remarkable. All the more so because Troy says the 1199 is, “Still pulling hard” as it crosses 186mph.

More onboard, this time sans Troy.

“10kg less than an 1198 and 25bhp more,” continues Troy. “Everyone here seems very impressed, apart from the one guy that threw it at the barrier. Seems to bounce well though.”

“Also, the Panigale S has electronic fork and shock adjustment, traction control, ABS, Engine Brake Control, quick shifter. The electronically adjustable shock is cool.”

“Yas Marina is good, but missing undulation. Feels like you ride through a massive Lego city. Had to hold my toes in, plenty of angle. Been riding around with all rider aids off for two days. Crikey, that will shorten your life span.”

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