MCN Retro

Rid­ing the Faster Wasp

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Contents -


Roland Sands called on his child­hood fas­ci­na­tion with Kenny Roberts and his fire­breath­ing TZ750 to create this Faster Wasp, us­ing Yamaha’s snarling 900cc triple en­gine.

Yamaha turned to the fa­mous Cal­i­for­nian bike builder to create a retro-stlyed ma­chine based on the al­ready-pop­u­lar MT-09. His brief was pretty open and the re­sult is sim­ply stun­ning. It looks great and goes just as well.

Pulling gen­tly away, the first im­pres­sion is one of poise, power and noise. The Two Brothers ex­haust sys­tem growls de­li­ciously at ev­ery slight twist of the throt­tle.

The Roberts in­flu­ence is clear – not least from the yel­low and black speed­block paintshceme – but there are other things go­ing on here too. Sands, an EX-AMA 250cc road racer (and win­ner), be­stows a nim­ble­ness and will­ing­ness that he en­joyed so much when rac­ing and road rid­ing on a TZ250. It’s like he’s mixed the han­dling of a 250 with the gump­tion of the TZ750 four-cylin­der two-stroke screamer.

Be­yond the en­gine and chas­sis is a metic­u­lously de­liv­ered rolling work of art. Mud­guards, num­ber plate, tank, in­let ducts, ra­di­a­tor cov­ers and the duck tail seat unit are all made from alu­minium.

It is an ex­er­cise in seam­less craft­man­ship. No bub­ble, no wrin­kle, no rub mark, no mat­ter how small, has man­aged to set­tle on the slen­der body of the Wasp. This is not a mere DIY cre­ation that is only im­pres­sive at a dis­tance, when viewed through squinted eyes, but some­thing that gets bet­ter and bet­ter the closer you get.

Sands said: “The triple pack­age is re­ally light­weight and per­forms well. It’s not a race bike but it brings that level of race per­for­mance into a con­sumer­friendly bike, which is great be­cause it brings the fun fac­tor. I’m re­ally happy with the end re­sult.”

Be­spoke rearsets, wheels & chain guard A snarling triple mo­tor and top-notch parts make this one fast mo­tor­cy­cle The Faster Wasp takes styling cues from Roberts’ TZ750 Stylish tail unit built by Sands

Roland Sands was in­spired by Roberts

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