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Dunlop 207-GP Race Tires ($400)


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This tire-wear chart is taken from my log-book and covers every 
tire I've had since 1995.  The reason why the tire-wear differs
so much depends on how much I decide to "bald them out"... 


In any case, hands down the best tires I've had were the so- called Michelin Pilot Race Qualifier (says "Soft" on its side). For instance, after spirited canyon riding, those tires often looked like coming off the race-track -- nicely melted. Michelin have now replaced those "Qualifiers" with a series they call Pilot Race S2. The "S" stands for Soft and is part of the so-called Race Pilot 2-series; H2, M2, S2, (Hard, Medium, Soft).

Although not as sticky as the Michelin's Pilot Qualifiers, the original Dunlop 207-GP (race) were also very good tires, (and those lasted a lot longer than the Michelin Qualifiers..).

Rear Tire wear:    
'95 Sep.25  --  '96 Jan.04   3345 miles  Rear  Metzler MEZ-1 Race 
'96 Jan.04  --  '97 Sep.27   8000 miles  Rear  Metzler MEZ-1 Street 
'97 Sep.27  --  '97 May.22   6600 miles  Rear  Metzler MEZ-1 Race 
'97 May.22  --  '97 Jul.16   3970 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'97 Jul.16  --  '97 Sep.03   2590 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'97 Sep.03  --  '97 Oct.31   2390 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'97 Oct.31  --  '98 Feb.20   2090 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Feb.20  --  '98 Apr.10   1410 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Apr.10  --  '98 Aug.29   4160 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207ZR Street 
'98 Aug.29  --  '98 Dec.18   3190 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Dec.18  --  '99 May.19   2270 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'99 May.19  --  '99 Dec.16   3420 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'99 Dec.16  --  '00 May.16   2000 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP 
'00 May.16  --  '00 Oct.07   2640 miles  Rear  Michelin Pilot Race Qualifier
'00 Oct.07  --  '01 Mar.23   2020 miles  Rear  Michelin Pilot Race Qualifier 
'01 Mar.23  --  '01 Jun.01    830 miles  Rear  Michelin Pilot Race Qualifier
'01 Jun.01  --  '01 Sep.22   3430 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP Star
'01 Sep.22  --  '01 Dec.15   2370 miles  Rear  Metzler Rennsport Race
'01 Dec.15  --  '02 Mar.27   1750 miles  Rear  Dunlop-208GP
'02 Mar.27  --  '02 May.01   1200 miles  Rear  Pirrelli SuperCorsa Race
'03 Jun.04  --  '03 Jul.30   1500 miles  Rear  Pirrelli SuperCorsa Race
'03 Jul.30  --  '03 Nov.21   2250 miles  Rear  Pirrelli SuperCorsa Race
'03 Nov.21  --  '04 Mar.13   1300 miles  Rear  Pirrelli SuperCorsa Race
'04 Mar.13  --  '04 Apr.27   2010 miles  Rear  Dunlop-208GP
'04 Apr.27  --  '04 May.30   1110 miles  Rear  Dunlop-207GP (160-size)
'04 May.30  --  '04 Jul.27   1310 miles  Rear  Pirrelli SuperCorsa Race
'04 Jul.27  --                           Rear  Dunlop-208GP


Front Tire wear:      
'95 Sep.25  --  '96 Sep.27  11340 miles  Front Metzler MEZ-1 Street 
'96 Sep.27  --  '97 May.22   6600 miles  Front Metzler MEZ-1 Race 
'97 May.22  --  '97 Aug.15   5600 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'97 Aug.15  --  '98 Jan.08   4420 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Jan.08  --  '98 Apr.17   2380 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Apr.17  --  '98 Aug.29   4100 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'98 Aug.29  --  '99 Mar.06   4000 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'99 Mar.06  --  '99 Oct.07   3850 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'99 Oct.07  --  '00 Apr.05   2380 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'00 Apr.05  --  '00 Oct.07   3370 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP 
'00 Oct.07  --  '01 Jun.01   2850 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP Star 
'01 Jun.01  --  '01 Sep.22   3430 miles  Front Dunlop-207GP Star
'01 Sep.22  --  '01 Dec.15   2370 miles  Front Michelin Pilot Race Qualifier
'01 Dec.15  --  '02 Mar.27   1750 miles  Front Dunlop-208GP
'02 Mar.27  --  '02 May.01   1200 miles  Front Metzler Rennsport Race
'03 Jun.04  --  '03 Jun.23   1900 miles  Front Metzler Rennsport Race
'03 Jun.23  --  '04 Mar.13   3150 miles  Front Dunlop-208GP
'04 Mar.13  --  '04 Apr.27   2010 miles  Front Dunlop-208GP
'04 Apr.27  --  '04 Jul.29   2440 miles  Front Dunlop-208GP
'04 Jul.29  --                           Front Dunlop-208GP
 
 
My dad once asked me what my bike's fuel consumption was --- trying to determine whether a Ducati is a "good bike" or not. When telling him that I got 27 miles per gallon at the race-track (0.9 liter/10km), and about 40 miles per gallon on the freeway (0.6 liter/10km).. he sneezed at me, saying that a Ducati was just an expensive toy for someone who refuses to grow up. But then, when telling him that the gas-cost was just a minor expense to run my Ducati -- that, in fact, the tire-cost per mile was four times the expense of gas, then I could tell from his face expression that my inheritance was about to be annulled, (of course my brother just sat there with his grin). However, as most of you might know, the last few years the tire technology has swiftly dev- eloped and, needless to say, has become something very different from the time when my dad rode his Norton ("during the war".. or whenever). Anyway, next to Michelin's so-called Qualifier tires, the Dunlop 207GP (race compound) have been the best tires I've ever mounted on a bike. I'm perhaps the poorest Ducati owner in California (actually second to Pete Karpius) but even so I rather look for stickiness and slide predictability rather than durability -- tire-wear isn't as much of an issue compared to traction issues. Of course, I would not mind super-sticky tires which would last forever, but that seems to be a double negation in itself.

Anyhow, if you are interested in a comparison between the Dunlop 207GP and Metzlers MEZ-1 Race (which I initially hailed), below is something I wrote a few years back after being through my fifth set of D-207's:

Admittedly my experience is limited to only a few tire types on my Ducati 900ss, but with those few I've had a fairly extensive experi- ence. During my first three years (30.000 miles 40,000 km) I ran exclusively the Metzlers MEZ1 race compound until 15 months ago when I switched over to the Dunlop D207GP (race compound). I've now gone thru six rear D-207GP and five fronts (altogether 18.000 miles). The rear last about 2.500 miles, which usually includes at least one track day. To save some money I decided to try a D207-ZR (street comp.), but only for the rear. Since I'd like to keep my "setup" as long as possible in order to get really used to it, I'm hesitant to change tire type, so I sort of regret this move.. even if those resemble very much the MEZ1 I had before, althought not as sticky. In fact it was kind of scary to go from the D207GP to the D207Street -- rear-slides has become a more frequent matter. One thing to remember is that the GP's ought to warm up before reaching their prime potential, (more so than regular street compounds). They take even longer to get warmed up than the MEZ1 Race, and are less predictable than the Metzlers. But there is no question whether the D207GPs are superior when it comes to traction (when warm, that is). However, Metzlers are more sturdy than the D207GP's, but the downside is that the MEZ1's need more "work" to flip fast over side to side on winding roads (or at a track like Sears Point) but then again; they last longer than the D-207GP. However, I suspect the D-207 Street will last much longer than any tire I've ever had. It's only its name those D-207 Street compound has in common with the D-207GP, i.e., it's a different tire all together -- which makes me wonder if I'll ever go for another D-207 Street. So why didn't I stay with the Metzlers? Well, I like the D-207GP since they make the bike feel lighter (due to its pointed tire-profile) and the traction is just superb.. even if it is somehow unpredictable. The difference in predictability is evident, for instance, under hard engine braking into a corner (trail braking).. as the MEZ1 skids in a more controlled sweeping fashion while the D-207 rather does rapid swooping "jumps." Maybe they'll behave differently on other bikes, who knows..? When riding in the wet I usually dog it, so I can't tell which tire is a preferred rain-tire.