Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom Heads To Pikes Peak

Woolie Builds 1098R “Beastie” for the epic race up the mountain.

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie”
Nothing but the essentials.Deus Ex Machina

Michael “Woolie” Woolaway is a master craftsman and also the design director for Deus Ex Machina. Last year, he also became an alumni of Pikes Peak competitors, finishing second in the exhibition class with an 11:40.742 run.

Racing a bike he'd built to the runner-up spot in the class wasn't enough for Woolie, so he's returning to the mountain this year to try again for the top spot. He's also bringing a new build, which sounds like an absolute monster.

Michael “Woolie” Woolaway tends to his Ducati Custom "Beastie."
Woolie tends to “Beastie” before the big race.Deus Ex Machina

Named "Beastie," the new machine is a hybrid of Ducati parts, including some from the bike that took him to second position in 2018. Last year's build was based on the Hyper SP, but that machine ended up causing Woolie quite a bit of a headache.

“After making it through the Pikes Peak race week last year and struggling with the bike we built, I asked Deus if they would be okay with me cranking out a new bike,” he explains. “As soon as they agreed I jumped on the job as it was all fresh in my head.”

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie” in front of garage door.
This is a Frankenstein bike built from pieces of different Ducatis.Deus Ex Machina

He carried over the front number plate, electronics, front wheel, and seat section, but went in a completely different direction for the engine. It’s got last year’s internals, but within sand-cast cases from a 1098R used in the 2007 World Superbike championship. He also completely changed the transmission, adding a Nova gearbox and revising gearing significantly. He brought first gear way up, as tall as second gear was last year, then created closer ratios for better acceleration.

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie”
Patiently waiting its turn.Deus Ex Machina

Mark Sutton, known for being one of the best tuners of 1098 engines in the US, tuned the mill to crank out nearly 200 hp.

Woolie ditched the SP frame and will use a frame from a Ducati Streetfighter that has a headtube from a 999. There’s also a much longer magnesium swingarm and shorter Öhlins TTX shock, two elements he feels will make the ride much more successful this year.

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie” with seat section and subframe.
The seat section comes from last year’s bike, but the subframe is all new.Deus Ex Machina

As if that weren’t enough, the subframe is a custom chrome-moly piece, as is the tank, which was fashioned to resemble Marc Márquez’s GP tank. It carries a little more than 3 gallons and is made from aluminum. All told, Beastie weighs 340 pounds, ready to ride.

Other important elements include an Öhlins fork, BST carbon-fiber wheels, Brembo brakes, and no rider aid electronics. Just man and machine tackling the mountain.

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie” riding on track.
Putting Beastie through its paces.Deus Ex Machina

It would be one thing to win at Pikes Peak at all, but to do so on a bike you created with the absence of electronic rider aids would be quite a feeling.

The race is set for June 30.

Deus Ex Machina Ducati Custom “Beastie” leaning into turn on track.
Will Beastie take the top step in the class this year?Deus Ex Machina