Kings of Cornering: Part One

King of kings

That butt-clenching feeling of entering a corner way, way too quickly is the stuff of night terrors.

Frantic trail braking, eyes on stalks, breath held, teeth clenched and buttocks gritted, It's not a comfortable place to be but maybe you're just riding the wrong bike?

Cagiva's uber-expensive 125 Mito may have dipped beneath your bike choice radar but, as street bikes go, nothing will out-corner this highly strung little stroker. The £4,000 SP 525 doesn't have the luxury of engine braking but with only 129kgs to contend with, corner entry-speeds are the Mito's reason d'etre.

The Mito serves up front end overkill with 40mm USD Marzocchi and a 320mm disc gripped by a four-piston caliper. One finger braking is all you need (to complement the one finger on the clutch lever at all times).

Even if you're used to bikes with four or five times the power, the Mito is still a blast to ride on the road. You've got to be fit and supple enough to be able to get into a full race crouch but ride it like you're in the frantic process of stealing it and it's a real and very fast challenge.

Corners where you'd normally brake and back shift can be taken flat-knacker with your face pressed into the clocks, your toes on the tips of the pegs and the throttle cable stretched like a guitar string.

It's the same on a track day. With beautifully matched tyre profiles and pin-sharp steering, a derestricted Mito will hold its own on a fast, flowing track like Donington or Brands Indy as long as the rider can use its devastating corner entry and mid-corner speed to good effect. 

I tell you, the Mito will make you a better rider...

Read Kings of Cornering: Part 2