I’ve always liked Ducati’s SportClassic GT 1000. Of all the retro bikes, it has the most contemporary performance—and also a rarity factor. (Unfortunately, it’s going to become even more rare, because the model was discontinued last year.) Okay, the air-cooled 992cc engine is a little old school and there’s a slightly awkward gap between the back wheel and the seat unit, but there are lots of people who love the GT 1000—and ex-rocker Steve Jones is one of them. And despite it being a well-sorted machine straight out of the box, Steve has taken his SportClassic up a notch. A new exhaust and brake discs were fitted by Pro Italia, who also powder-coated the frame. MotoCorsa in Portland powdered the engine and wheels, and installed custom Öhlins shocks, GP Suspension fork cartridge kits and a Nemesis programmable ECU. They also replaced the clocks with a tiny digital job. The lovely polished tank, fenders and sidepanels were created by Evan Wilcox, and Duane Ballard crafted a new leather seat. Steve’s GT 1000 is now a real hybrid, with traditional looks but 21st century performance. Just the thing for carving up the canyons around LA. (And if this doesn’t whet your whistle, check out his Hypermotard custom.)
Images by Johnny Fisher; thanks to the Hellfire Canyon Club.