Spaggiari Ducati Scuderia Corse 750 Desmo Evolution of a Racer
Posted by Scot Wilson on
After the Domi Racer Ducati 750 ss was sold to a dealer on the East Coast, it was time to focus on my Team or "Scuderia", Spaggiari inspired 750 bevel drive racer. I had a "donor" narrow frame and wire wheel set from a 900 ss and "donor" 74 Sport "springer head" engine. The Imola fuel tank came from Germany and the Imola high pipes came from "Das Partsinator" who claimed that they were factory items. May or may not be, however, I do like how much lean angle I can get with the high pipes. Also, since it keeps my knees slightly outboard and like outriggers, my knees are already there to steady the bike through the turns when the small contact patch of the tires want to "let go". Vintage spec rubber seems so narrow in comparison with today's wide Superbike tires and especially since rules allowed me the use of slicks on the Ducati 748 rs.
Needless to say, getting two bikes ready for the track was a phenomenal amount of work and honestly, race results would indicate how successful or not I had been in my preparation.
Regardless, using this Spaggiari inspired racer and the Ducati 748 rs was some of the most fun that I have had at the track. There is something primordial about the sound of the Bevel Drive engine using high compression pistons, 112 octane race fuel and coming through completely "open" Imola exhaust. Shame that most of my photos (no videos) are of the bikes at rest as I was a solo effort at the track and the sounds of these "beasts" at the track are like no other sound from a machine. A shame. At the track, I was the rider, transport driver, "replacement" mechanic, but not photographer. Too many hats to wear.
Yet this time in my life offered me the opportunity to follow my passion and my dreams of racing even though I was just a "respectable" amateur racer. Looking closely at the Bevel Racer, you can see the large rear sprocket as most US tracks seem to me to be "point and shoot" tracks or "hard on the gas", then immediately "hard on the brakes", repeat! Still a great deal of good times!
Time to upgrade the 750 Racer. It seems that I am never satisfied with leaving things alone. However, it was time to get back to "upgrading" the Spaggiari Ducati Scuderia Corse 750. Back in the day when Ducati Bevel Drive "Round Case" bits were a little more plentiful, I got the opportunity to pick up a 1973 Sport engine and had it built up with Desmo heads. The black covers remain Black as the Ochre "Orangey Yellow" and Black of the early Bevel Drive Sports is such a striking color scheme. Additionally, I also sourced a box section swingarm that seems to make a real difference with regard to stability with today's more "sticky" rubber.
With the new 750 Sport engine came the Desmo heads but also a larger billet oil pump from Ducati Kamna to circulate the oil better and added is an oil cooler to keep the oil temperatures cooler. This is especially important as I now live in the desert and heat is always an issue. However, these beautiful bikes were designed and manufactured in Italy where heat on the road and on the track is all part of their environment.
This Spaggiari Ducati Scuderia Corse 750 Racer is without question my favorite bike. In my opinion, it is beautiful, purposeful, and so distinctly Italian. Again, in my opinion, there is something so striking about the color scheme of the Yellow (Ochre) and Black. However, more importantly, the sound of this machine at the track takes one back to the time when Bevel Drive Ducati's were a potent force at the racetrack. In this way, I feel connected with the history of Il Maestro Spaggiari's team when Franco Uncini and Paul Smart were racing for the team.
Please forgive the modern calipers on the bike as it has been now taken back to original on this last rebuild. As I only seem to have time for the occasional track day, more powerful brakes seemed to make sense so that I did not end up driving my treasure into the "kitty litter" at the track and doing significant damage to her.
I am also a fan of the NCR team, their history of racing successes as the satellite race effort for the Ducati factory back in the day and of course, Wile E Coyote. I love the logo and thanks to Simon Tappin for the images. I hope that you will stay tuned as I complete hopefully, the final upgrade to the Spaggiari Ducati Scuderia Corse 750 racer. If you are interested, the belly pan for a Buell has been customized to fit the narrow profile of Dr. T's 90 degree "L" Twin masterpiece. Your thoughts and comments are always welcome.