Reier Motors builds one bad Ducati flat tracker…
The Ducati Monster has been called the bike that saved the Bologna factory from extinction. The bike was the vision of designer Miguel Galluzzi, who was actually working at Honda Europe, surrounded by magazines full of superbikes stripped of their bodywork to show off their engine and chassis, when an idea came to him:
“One day I saw a Ducati 851 photo and immediately began a sketch over the top. It was simple, just a tank and a seat. I knew we would never do it at Honda, so I put the idea away. It’s funny, the first sketch of the Monster was done on Honda time.” —Motorcyclist
Fast forward several years and Galluzzi had gone to work for Cagiva, then owners of Ducati, where his boss was Massimo Bordi. His very first week, Galluzzi showed his new boss the sketch:
“He only said, ‘Sure, sure, some day.’ I knew that we had bigger projects. But every time I would see him, I would show him the sketch. I was like a hammer, pounding and pounding.” —Motorcyclist
Then Bordi saw a black-and-white poster of Marlon Brando from The Wild One:
“Bordi…was taken aback by the poster and wanted a bike created that was simple, powerful and evoked the true freedom of just riding.” —Timeless 2 Wheels
Galluzzi seized the opportunity; the Monster was the perfect machine, combining the simplicity and low saddle height of an old-school roadster with a superbike-style trellis frame and running gear. A legend was born, one which pulled Ducati out of their financial crisis and served as sales backbone for years to come.
Over the years, Monster has been not just a reliable seller for Ducati, but it’s proved itself as an eminently versatile machine. We’ve seen M900’s built into cafe racers, scramblers, desert sleds, and flat trackers like the one you see here.
This “Flat Track Monster” is the work of Christian Reier of Austria’s Reier Motors, who grew up competing in both motocross and road racing, giving him a great deal of experience in bike geometry, setup, and handling — invaluable knowledge when heavily modifying factory machines. He built this 2001 Monster 900 i.e. for himself:
“I built the bike primarily for me, as I am a huge Ducati fan and love to race flat track. Right now it’s a nice showcase bike for my company.”
He shaped the tank and tail out of the aluminum, modeling the rear section on that of the mighty Ducati Panigale. It’s topped with a seat sewn with extra grooves to keep his bum planted when roaring out of corners.
The swingarm has been modified to fit the 19-inch wheels with Dunlop flat-track tires, and Christian built the exhaust manifolds, heat guard, number plates, and much more in-house. Below, we get the full story on this Monster flat tracker straight from the man himself.
Ducati M900 Flat Tracker: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
Since my childhood I’ve been enthusiastic about motorcycles. In my youth, I raced motocross as well as on the race track, which allowed me to gain a lot of experience when it comes to the handling of various motorcycles.
Later I rebuilt motorcycles for myself. In 2016 I’ve started my own motorcycle workshop and rebuild various motorcycles for my customers.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the donor bike?
Ducati Monster 900 i.E., 2001.
• Why was this bike built? (Customer project, company promotion, personal, etc.)
I built the bike primarily for me, as I am a huge Ducati fan and love to race flat track. Right now it’s a nice showcase bike for my company.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
The tail is similar to the Panigale, other small details are taken from racing.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
The 19’’ rims were anodized in blue in combination with Dunlop DT3 tires and a hub from Husqvarna. The fork itself was modified with blue nitrified dip tubes. I have manufactured the fork guards in-house myself from aluminum and had them painted.
The top triple clamp and handlebar brackets are milled from aluminum. The handlebar is a Pro Taper Flat Track model, and as a clutch pump, I installed a Brembo RCS.
I have fabricated the combination of gas tank and rear section from aluminum, with the rear based on the Ducati Panigale. The seat is made by a local upholsterer from Salzburg. I have had it sewn with extra grooves, so that one does not slip backwards when accelerating.
I rebuilt the rear frame and battery mount and rewired the electrics, removing everything you don’t need for flat track racing.
I built the exhaust manifolds myself; the rear mufflers are from Termignoni. I really wanted to install a dual exhaust on the left side, which was a bit tricky, because the routing of the exhaust pipe meant I had to put the footpeg pretty far out. Thankfully, this doesn’t matter when riding flat track, since the left foot is on the footpeg only on the straights.
The swingarm is adapted to fit the 19″ wheel. In the rear, there’s a Brembo caliper that’s been moved down and connected to the engine with a strut. A full-floating brake disc is also installed. The rear brake system was also a bit more complicated to install. Since the swingarm moves, the caliper bracket has to be movable as well, but at the same time connected stably to the engine.
The number plates and exhaust guard were also built built in-house. The red anodized washers and brake line connectors add colorful accents.
The handlebar mounts are set far back to make the bike more stable on the straights, when drifting this combination — wide handlebars, far back, high handlebar mounts — makes for a good riding feel.
The open clutch cover does not stay on when riding.
• Does the bike have a nickname?
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride this bike?
It has never been ridden on the race track!
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
I am proud of the whole bike, because there are so many details I have built by myself, like the combination of gas tank and rear section, and the exhaust guard.
Follow the Builder
Pictures: Jean-Sebastien Philippe