‘PB’s Project Fireblade is a gobsmacker. I’d forgotten how nuts we’d gone’
STUNNING. THE agility, speed, noise and response are all simply incredible. Nothing that has gone before can match the sensation I got when riding it for the first time. Surprisingly, I’m not waffling on about the Ducati Panigale V4 again; I’ve left that to Rutter and Johnny. The stars finally aligned this month for it to get a date at Donington to find its place on our league table of production bikes. Hype, fluffy road tests and even playing at the TT are all well and good, but it was overdue a direct comparison with its rivals. It’s done – have a read on p16. Project Fireblade is my gobsmacker of the month: with plenty of other distractions, I’d forgotten how nuts we’d gone with the build. I’ve only done some shakedown miles to see what’s what and get a fresh MoT, but the merits of a road-legal sportsbike that weighs less than a carbon-framed BMW HP4 are pretty obvious from the off. It’s so light it’d fail post-race scrutineering in WSB... even with headlights and a numberplate. Talking of projects, be sure to pore over Mark Boxer’s 1998 R1 special on p59. The effort it took to get the guts of a 2018 model working in a bike that’s a full two decades older is equally impressive, and we’re proud to bring it to you as another great reader special in the pages of PB.
Project Blade finally hits the road. It’s a bit naughty...