In order to monetize the actual hype around the motorcycle to the last cent, clever PR people working for manufacturers came up with the idea of custom battles. We all heard of Harley Davidson’s Battle of the Kings, Ducati’s Custom Rumble or last but not least the Yamaha Yardbuild program. These competitions are an interesting idea but by now, some of them make most of us yawn a little. Nevertheless, one has to admit that the vast majority of the bikes emerging from such battles are top-notch.
The bike named Charlotte from this article is the product of one of Moto Guzzi’s own 'Lord of the Bikes' competition and the proof of the pudding. Moto Guzzi dealers from all over the world compete against each other in order to take home a brand new V9 at the end of the competition. Customized to a Flat Tracker, this Griso clinched the victory for the workshop behind it, namely Café Racer Napoli, in the third round of the battle.
Café Racer Napoli knew from the beginning they wanted to turn the Griso into a Flat Tracker. Not the most obvious path to walk if you consider the bulk as well as the weight of 222 kilograms. But only because no one did it before doesn’t necessarily mean it can’t be done! So they started by stripping 52! kilograms off of the bike in order to achieve a hefty power to weight-ratio with 170 kilograms, 1200 cc and 110 hp. This should be enough to raise some dust on an oval.
But said weight reduction is not the only impressive fact of this build; the extension of the swing arm in order to fit a 19" wheel is no less interesting. One might say that a swing arm extension is no rocket science anymore, but considering said swing arm is a mono tube and the fact that it houses the drive shaft makes it a little more than a five-finger exercise. The stock upside down fork didn’t match the sought-after look so it was swapped for a telescopic fork. Higher Flat Track bars are mounted and a handmade tail, combined with the original gas tank, guarantees a lightweight appearance. In typical Flat Track manner, no brakes are mounted in the front.
The bike was built by 5 people at Café Racer Napoli in 150 hours and with a mere 3000€. No one knows if Charlotte will bring victory to the Italian workshop since the battle is still in process.
You can follow the Lord of the Bikes competition HERE.