We don't get many international Ducati legends up here in the Great White North - in fact, I can't remember the last time I saw one of the great names from Ducati's history at a track up here. But this August Paul Smart will be a special guest at the 30th Anniversary Vintage Road Racing Association (VRRA) Festival at Mosport International Raceway.
It's a great opportunity to meet the man and see him cut some laps on an old Duc at one of Canada's greatest circuits, so if you have a hole in your calendar on August 13, 14 or 15th you should consider making the scene.
Paul will be doing some demo laps on a modern Paul Smart Replica (of course), Don Gosen's Tim Spiegleberg-tuned, championship-winning early 90's 900Ss and remarkably - my 1987 853 F1. That is if I've successfully traced the cause of a hi-speed misfire that plagued the machine this past weekend. I think it's a switch I made just before the May DOCC event to a smaller float needle jet. The Mikuni Pro-series flat slides were puking fuel right after the TT Symposium and after chasing down the usual issues, I discovered that ethanol had destroyed the o-rings fitted to the jets. I had a new pair of 1.6's kicking around and rather than swapping the o-rings, I took the lazy route and just swapped out the 2.0s. If it ain't the jets, I'm baffled (no pun intended) - cause everything else that could be causing it is new.
The other issue that kept me busy at Mosport last Sunday was the switch from Pirelli slicks to Bridgestones. I left the pits with my standard 29/28 cold morning air pressures and it felt like either Mosport surface had horribly deteriorated over the past few months or someone sneaked into my shop and cranked up all my suspension settings while I wasn't looking. I kept letting air out of the tires all day and ended up with a 27/26 cold set-up, but the bike still didn't have the old plushness. Sticky buns, though...
A quick call to Ripp Racing today today confirmed that I should have been running 29/27 HOT. Tire technology marches on and us old guys on old bikes keep struggling to stay with it.. Who'd have figured?
Back to Paul Smart at Mosport..
If you don't know who Paul Smart is and why he's such a vital piece of Ducati's history, there's a great bio HERE. Kudos to Kevin Fletcher for putting the guest appearance together. Mark your calendars and come see the man who put Ducati twins on the performance map.
The "853 F1" is based on a 1988 Ducati 750 F1. loudbike is a state of mind, a weblog about fast, loud Italian motorcycles and an internet store offering more vintage Ducati parts than you can shake a stick at.