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Matt
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2002 Ducati 998RS

Ridden by Ducati Austin Team’s Pascal Picotte in the AMA Superbike 2002 season. I acquired this bike a few years ago and recently wrapped up the restoration.

Special thanks to @tom.i of Fuel Race Parts (UK) for his technical and emotional support, without which I wouldn’t have had the courage to take this project on nor the ability to finish it. Tom stopped me from running away from this bike initially and spent countless hours supporting me throughout the restoration.

Engine rebuild by Mark Sutton at @Ducshop (Georgia, USA). Mark was an AMA team member with Ferracci in the 90’s and later with HMC. As part of the HMC team in 2002 that was also racing the 998RS (as a competitor to the Ducati Austin team), Mark has firsthand experience with this specific bike/engine.

Paint by Jason LeCavalier at @Artistimo Customs (Wisconsin, USA). This included fairings, wheels and carbon fiber restoration for the unpainted parts. Jason’s work is on a completely different level. Being almost exclusively focused on motorcycles, and being a genuine fan of motorcycles and Ducati’s in particular, Jason’s experience is extensive and his results are impeccable.

Wheel restoration and prep for painting by Steve Turner at Turner’s Powder Coating Services (UK).

Decal development and printing by K-Graphics (UK) and Premier Graphics (Michigan, USA). Scaling from photos is an extremely tedious and iterative task in order to achieve accuracy with the design, dimensions and colors. The expertise and patience from both of these organizations were key in achieving great results.

Various new-old-stock parts from Kevin Duch at Forza-Moto (France).

And many thanks to:

Terry Gregoricka (Ducati Austin team owner) for taking the time to meet with me, share stories and offer up some amazing parts from the 2002 season that he still had. Lance Baker (Ducati Austin 2002 crew chief) for taking the time to share stories about the 2002 season history as well as the history of the bike. Owen Coles (Ducati Austin 2002 engine builder) for taking the time to offer his memories about the 2002 season.​

Brian J Nelson for supplying hundreds of amazing digital photos that served as a fantastic reference for this restoration. Credit to Brian for the 2002 race photos, posted with his permission.​
@Sherpa23F who owned the bike before me and added to my understanding of its history, including documentation of the sale by the team after the 2002 season.​
@jgautney for fielding countless questions and supplying reference photos and information from his 2002 998RS.​
Peter Altmann for supplying a number of difficult to find parts, including taking the time to track down some parts that he didn’t already have. And Christian Geldhauser for supplying the ever-elusive 6th driven gear.​
As time allows, I'll add additional pictures and information about the bike, the team and the 2002 season.

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My wrists and neck hurt just looking at it….
But it is killer…. Nice job 👍🏻
 

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To say Job well done is the understatement of the decade. Is she going to be a rider or a museum piece?
 
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‘05 749R, ‘89 851/926, 749R/999RS project
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Oh man....that right there is about as good as it gets, obviously the right bike in the right hands.
Really nice post too, in giving credit where it’s due, thanks so much for sharing.
 

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Matt
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
OVERVIEW
This 2002 Ducati 998RS was one of two bikes delivered new to the Austin/Bleu Bayou Ducati Racing team in April 2002 and saw its first track time with rider Pascal Picotte at the third round of the 2002 AMA Superbike season at Sears Point Raceway in Sonoma, California. The bike was raced by Picotte for the balance of the 2002 season and then in November 2002 it was used in a testing session with Anthony Gobert (the team’s rider for 2003) as the team’s new 2003 bikes hadn’t arrived yet. In May 2003 the engine was lightly refreshed by Owen Coles, he was the engine builder for the Ducati Austin team. On May 3, 2003 the team sold the bike with engine number RS02032 at the Infineon Raceway round of the 2003 AMA season to a new owner in California. On November 24, 2003 the bike was sold to a new owner in Colorado. The bike was used for a number of track days and after spinning a rod bearing at the crankshaft end, the bike was partially torn down in approximately 2006 and then sat for many years. I learned of the bike in December, 2016 and acquired the bike on February 7, 2017.
 
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Matt
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
To say Job well done is the understatement of the decade. Is she going to be a rider or a museum piece?
Certainly not a rider as that evokes the idea of riding it often and flailing on it without hesitation. There were so few of these bikes, so there's a practical aspect of attempting to operate a bike for which spares are impossible to find. The restoration took nearly four years and not because there was four years worth of work, but because there was a lot of time spent searching for parts (proper parts, that is). So, I do indeed aspire to ride it now that the restoration is complete and perhaps that will look more like some lunchtime parade laps. There's a fair amount of questions to be asked of the electronics in being able to successfully fire it up and run it again all these years later. From a tires perspective, I fortunately was able to get a set of 17" wheels (used by the team during the 2002 season) from the former team owner so I'm not confined to having to operate it with the 420 mm/16.5" wheels & tires.
 
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Thank you for this! I really enjoyed reading through this thread. I am also using Artistimo and echo your thoughts on how awesome he is. One of my long term goals is to pick up a pristine 996 SPS and restore it to this level of quality.
 
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Holy Crap is that nice! I appreciate the fact you extended thanks to those in your restoration orbit and your bike rebuild is really special because it represents a golden era for Ducati. Please do us a favor and report if and when you decide to "take it around the block". It would be really special to also report if you can't help yourself and open the throttle up just one time. I'll bet it sounds like a beast. Definitely a screen saver candidate.
 
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Stunner
 

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Matt
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
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Matt
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
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