Hi. I am a female who has been riding for just over a year. I started out on a Suzuki SV650S, and bought an 03 R6 in April. In the past year, I've put on over 21,000 miles, and I've loved every minute of it. I'm only about 5'5" and 115 pounds, but I'm with you on the "big bike" thing. I've been riding a CBR954 and and R1 on a regular basis (ridden a busa too), and I want more power than my 'little bike' has to offer. I'm winding the 'ole six' out in every gear. I agree, you don't have to use all that hp, but once you get used to it...there's no going back. Ride safe and have fun out there.