ContiSportAttack 4 and ContiTour: Explosive Mix
Pepo Rosell, who many of you will know from the drag racing bike La Guapísima, is one of the most recognized bike builders in Europe. His latest preparation has been baptized as GRÜNER BLITZ and is based on a spectacular BMW R 18. Once again, XTR Pepo has chosen Continental to fit his new work, but this time he has surprised us with an extreme combination: the ContiSportAttack 4 for the front tire and the ContiTour for the rear.
A few months ago, XTR Pepo took the GRÜNER BLITZ to the Motor Bike Expo in Verona (Italy), the most important international trade fair for custom bikes. There, after stealing all the attention of the attendees, he won the BEST OF SHOW. Today we have talked to him to tell us a little more about this spectacular bike.
Continental: How did the GRÜNER BLITZ come about?
Pepo: The GRÜNER BLITZ was born as a motorcycle to race in the Glemseck drag races in Germany. Last year we already raced this competition with LA GUAPISIMA (Ducati). But, really, the GRÜNER BLITZ was thought before this race, since at the beginning we considered the possibility of racing with a BMW R 18. I made a design of the bike, but finally the project did not go ahead and was left in a drawer. However, a few months ago I was given another opportunity and I did not miss it.
C: Tell us a bit about the preparation of this bike, what was the main goal?
P: Basically what I was looking for was to try to get it down in weight and make it a bit shorter in wheelbase. On the other hand, I also wanted to be able to mount a narrower tail and to keep a coherence with the line of the new tank. Therefore at the cycle level, the entire rear was cut and a new subframe was manufactured, some lateral reinforcements were developed for the chassis (equal to those that were mounted on the BMW racing in the 70s), we mounted a front end of a BMW NINE T and we passed the size of the front wheel to 17 inches. In addition we made posts and brackets for the rider’s footpegs delayed and mounted a shock absorber with remote control that YSS manufactured for us. With all this we have managed to reduce the weight by approximately 55 kg and shortened the wheelbase by 14 cm.
C: What else has been modified?
P: The engine was left as original, although we removed the plastic covers it had externally. We mounted a new oil radiator of larger size and racing capacity and made a new two-in-one exhaust with high megaphone outlet. We repositioned the throttle body by making new intake ducts and mounting high performance air filters.
At bodywork level, we made a new fuel tank taking as a starting point that of a Moto Guzzi V7. At the rear, I mounted a modified Yamaha Tz 350 GP tail from the 70s and at the front we made a spider and its supports to the steering head pipe. Finally, I added a racing fiberglass fairing from a Yamaha TRX 850 with a double drag-type headlight.
C: What was your inspiration?
P: As I did with LA GUAPÍSIMA, with this preparation I wanted to reflect the acceleration bikes of the 70s and 80s in terms of cycle part. In the bodywork, as I said before, I was looking for the aesthetics of an endurance bike.
C: You recently went with it to the Motor Bike Expo in Verona, how was the experience?
P: Very good, there was an attendance of about 160,000 visitors and the bike was very popular. The public thought they were looking at a racing Nine T until you told them to look at the engine, then they realized it was an R18! It was a bombshell because no one expected a “racing” R18. There were even people from the BMW factory who came to see the GRÜNER BLITZ and congratulate us. And to top it all off, we were awarded the BEST OF SHOW in the preparation contest organized by MOTOCICLISMO magazine (Italian), a total success!
C: Curious choice for the tires, why that combination?
P: The size we needed for the rear tire did not exist in the ContiSportAttack 4, so we decided to take a risk and mount a complete opposite, the Conti Tour.
C: The ContiSportAttack 4 are also the tires of La Guapísima, a motorcycle participating in the Glemseck 101, what can you tell us about them?
P: They are great, I am very happy with them as track, acceleration (with low pressures) and open road tires. They are really great and a very good choice.
C: You have been working with Continental for many years, what makes them different from other brands?
P: Apart from the quality they have, other reasons that make me stay with Continental are the people behind them. In addition to being great people, the Continental Moto team is really passionate about two wheels, and they have always believed in and supported my projects.
C: When and how did you start in the world of preparations?
P: I started very young, with 17 years old I was already touching my bikes, but professionally I started in 90. I am a biologist by profession and after practicing for a while and seeing that I could not continue my vocation, I switched to my other great passion… motorcycles, and since then!
C: What do you enjoy most about the process of creating a motorcycle?
P: Undoubtedly when you have finished and you see materialized an idea that you had in your head, that is priceless.
C: What can you tell us about future projects?
P: Well, I’m currently finishing two Ducatis for track (speed and endurance) and that’s as far as I can read.
If you want to see the GRÜNER BLITZ in more detail, here is a video of its creation and a spectacular gallery for you to enjoy each of its details.