Additional photos of this 1982 Ducati 750 TT1 are available here for your perusal.
Ducati’s TT1 was a 748cc race bike based on the Pantah-derived TT2, a bike that dominated in competition and won multiple world championships. Different sources make different claims, but depending on who you ask somewhere between 50 and 60 TT1 racers were built, and Ducati would eventually go on to release the TT1-derived road-going F1 750. Today, the TT1 is one of the most desirable and collectible Ducati’s ever made, largely thanks to its rarity and looks.
Powering the TT1 was a 748cc version of Ducati’s Desmo Pantah engine that utilized toothed belts to drive the overhead cams instead of the bevel-drive engine’s tower-shaft arrangement. Tucked behind the TT1’s bodywork was a front-mounted oil-cooler which received airflow via holes in the front fairing. Eventually, this platform would evolve into the air/oil-cooled L-twin that serves as the marque’s trademark engine for decades. Another factor that led to the TT1’s elite status was its incredible performance – upon its release, the TT1 managed to have successful results in endurance competitions, the American Battle of the Twins series, and was used to win an Italian F1 championship.
Wrapped around the L-twin was a Taglioni-designed engineering masterpiece of a trellis frame built by Verlicchi. In addition to the bored and stroked TT2 engine, the TT1 also boasted a Verlicchi swingarm that was widened to accommodate a wider rear wheel, a move that also required an offset countershaft sprocket in order to clear the new larger rubber.
The trick frame combined with top-shelf suspenders and a 16” and 18” wheel combo added up to an incredibly sharp handling machine. It was also pretty powerful for its day, making a cool 94 hp at 10,000rpm.
This example (VIN: WA78110903) is a true TT1 that is offered up by Michael Woolaway, the Design Director of Deus Ex Machina’s US location in Venice, California. It was built in the 80s with ample period-correct upgrades.
The engine features a Falcon crank, Pistal pistons, V2 camshafts, Millennium Technologies nickel cylinder plating, new oversized valves, Carrillo rods. Woolie just had Stage 4 heads done by JPrecision, and says that the motor is now top-notch. It was set up with a starter motor and charging system.
Top-notch was the goal, as Michael was planning on campaigning it at this year’s Isle of Man TT. As you’ve probably heard, the event was just canceled due to COVID-19 and Woolie now has other priorities.
This TT1 still has the original cosmetics from when it was built back in the 80s, which is why you’ll see a couple small star cracks in the bodywork. The seller decided not to address it to maintain originality as the bike is otherwise in excellent cosmetic shape.
The engine originally came with unstamped Ducati cases, however the builder was able to stamp the cases and get the bike registered. That’s right, this incredible race bike is actually street legal on a New Jersey title!
Per Woolie, “I basically took the bike apart, did all the motor work, and put it back together. I decided not to redo the frame or bodywork as this is the original patina, and it looks very good. This bike never saw the track or much use.”