Back in the late 1980’s I was still a bit green behind the ears as it pertained to anything automotive. I knew I loved motorcycles, cars and anything mechanized, but up until that point I’d never had any real experience with any of them. Then I hit college and everything began to change. You see college, as everyone knows, is a time to get your vehicular groove on. You go out and buy a piece of shit car to get you from point A to point B and then sit back and thank the Gods of internal combustion that you actually have a way to get around. I however went the two-wheeled route as I was always infatuated with motorcycles. My first bike was a 1986 Kawasaki Ninja 250. It was a little pipsqueak of a bike, but it was great to learn on and it solidified the fact that up on two wheels was the right place for me to be. Unfortunately that bike met its demise when a buddy of mine stacked it into a water tower (no joke). He then paid me cash which paved the way for my first real motorcycle, a 1990 Ducati 750 sport.
Now back then Ducati was not the uber brand it is today, as it was still considered to be more of an exotic than say a Honda or a Kawasaki. The 750 Sport was also a very rare bike, as only about 300 of them made it into the United States. Technology wise it was a bit archaic as it utilized Ducati’s old Pantah derived air-cooled V-twin. But hell, I didn’t care, because to me that sucker made the best sound in all of motorcycling. Compared to the Japanese bikes of the day, my old 750 was downright slow, but flat out speed was not what the 750 Sport was all about. It was about the thrill of motorcycling, the joy of the open road and the feeling you got when that big V-twin woke up the neighbors at 6 am on a Sunday morning.
I kept that 750 Sport for about 3 years and in that time I put about 10,000 miles on it. Looking back on it now I miss that little bike and find myself occasionally scanning the classifieds for one. Would I buy another one? Hell… I don’t know, as I think the best part of that bike was the memories that it gave me, memories that I don’t think I’d ever be able to duplicate. Either way though that old Duc will always have a place in my heart as it was the first true piece of Italian machinery that I had ever owned.