What is the Motorcycle in Red Sparrow?

Red Sparrow Motorcycle

Red Sparrow stars Jennifer Lawrence as ballerina Dominika Egorova, who is recruited to “Sparrow School” — a Russian intelligence service where she’s trained in the arts of seduction, spycraft, and combat.

The film is based on the 2013 novel of the same name, written by former CIA operative Jason Matthews. The book plays on Soviet-era “sexpionage” and contemporary use of kompromat — “compromising material” used to blackmail government officials, politicians, or public figures. The book was reviewed favorably on the CIA’s own website, where it was praised for rich detail and accurate portrayal of surveillance techniques and tradecraft.

The movie version was filmed in Hungary, Slovakia and Austria. It was praised as both shocking and seductive, while some reviewers felt there was an overreliance on graphic violence and sex.

Red Sparrow Motorcycle

Red Sparrow Motorcycle
Photo: TTRNO

At one point in the film, there is a short motorcycle chase featuring a Ducati Hypermotard 939. The Ducati Hypermotard is a purpose-built supermotard motorcycle — aka supermoto. Most supermoto bikes are single-cylinder dirt bikes with 17-inch wheels, bigger brakes, and stiffer suspension designed for the tarmac, dirt, and jumps of the typical supermoto track. Extreme lean angles are often achieved on the tight turns of these courses, and supermoto riders are famous for “backing in” their bikes, sliding their tails wide under hard front braking to line up their machines for the corner.

Red Sparrow Motorcycle
Image: MaxAbout.com

The Ducati Hypermotard 939 is not the typical supermoto, as it has a 110-hp Testastretta 11° L-twin engine and weighs nearly 400 pounds dry — more than most traditional supermotards. This heavier-duty design allows the bike to indulge in curb-hopping and hooligan antics while still serving as a practical platform for cruising, commuting, and light touring.

Red Sparrow Motorcycle
Photo: Ducati

In 2008, a Hypermotard 1100S won the 1200 Pro Class Division of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, proving the machine’s racing prowess. That said, the supermoto championships in both Europe and North America are dominated by single-cylinder KTM, Husqvarna, and modified Japanese makes. Most of these series do not allow multi-cylinder bikes in competition, and the extra size and weight would be disadvantageous on the tight, twisting tracks and off-road sections.

Red Sparrow Motorcycle

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