‘Faster Wasp’ by Roland Sands

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Legendary custom builder, Roland Sands has joined Yamaha’s Yard Built project with this naughty little number – his fifth collaboration with the tuning fork firm. Although there’s no official mention, the ‘Faster Wasp’ is based on the MT-09 and decorated in the renowned Speed Block colours, paying homage to Kenny Roberts’ iconic TZ750.

The MT’s 850cc triple and aluminum frame remains, though that’s pretty much it. There’s a host of Roland Sands Designs components including a handcrafted fuel tank and rad covers, plus a medley of prototype bolt-ons from Clarity and RSD. Those golden rims of joy are RSD Morris forged aluminum.

Talking of gold, an Öhlins cartridge kit slots into the front forks and is supplemented with an Öhlins shock: a must-have set of mods for any MT-09, as the stock suspension isn’t up to much. Meanwhile, the soundtrack is provided by a Two Bros Racing headers and RSD can.

“I go way back with Yamaha,” said Roland Sands. “I used to race TZ250 race bikes and ride a lot of Yamaha dirt bikes off-road so I have a lot of history. When I see what the Yamaha brand has done and where they want to go I find it really inspiring. We’ve built quite a few bikes together already. The triple package is really lightweight and performs really well. It’s not a race bike but it brings that level of race performance into a consumer friendly bike, which is great because it brings the fun factor. For me, that’s a great platform to build a custom on, I feel a bike needs to be fun, so you can have a good time but have good performance as well. This Faster Sons concept we’ve worked together on, bringing my racing heritage together with Kenny Roberts, one of my heroes and smashing it together with the triple has made a fun project to work on and I’m really happy with the end result.” We’re happy with the end result too, Roland.

Given the lack of direct MT-09 mentioning, and the EICMA show in Milan next week, could we be seeing a revised model for 2016 coming soon? Or at least a production version of the Faster Wasp? The MT has proven über popular, providing ripsnorting mischief on a relative budget.


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