Attack Racing builds a 178-rear-wheel-horsepower YZF1000 street bike. We tape over the lights, stick on some numbers, take it Formula USA racing and finish top 10.
W hen Attack Racing's Richard Stanboli rolled his tuning, street-legal YZF750R chassis /FZR1000 engine hybrid out of the back of his box van, we were impressed before he even fired up the engine. From its striking, Yamaha factory worksracer-inspired paint scheme (designed and applied by Cycle Graphics, 818/764-1608) to the distinctive shapes if its AirTech carbon-fiber bodywork, the Attack machine was unlike anything we'd ever seen. We stood speechless. 

"Yeah," Stanboli said nonchalantly, "it turned out looking pretty decent." 

When Pee Wee Black fired Attack's purple-and-white pointy-tailed missile through LACR's timing lights in 9/75 seconds and 148.9 mph - and that's before the tap on the nitrous bottle was opened - we were shocked. 

"Huh," said the understated Stanboli, "not bad." 

With nitrous flowing through its veins, the times dropped to 9.67 seconds and the horsepower indicating terminal speed leaped to 156.7 mph. Evidently adding another 44 horsepower to a short, wheelie-prone roadrace chassis might not get you there much quicker, but it will have you traveling a lot faster when you arrive. Due to the engine's high state of tune, Stanboli chose to go with the most conservative nitrous jetting Nitrous Oxide Systems offers. We agree with his decision; our trembling associate editor wasn't able to use the nitrous until third gear, and even then, it lofted the front wheel. 

Inside the engine, the list of changes is extensive; 1040cc Wiseco pistons (reshaped, lightened and ceramic-and molycoated by Attack), Carillo rods, Megacycle intake cam, Yamaha race-kit exhaust cam, RD valve springs, 41mm Keihin carbs (fed via AirTech's pressurized airbox). Additionally, Attack installs bronze allow valve seat for better heat dissipation, then ceramic-coats the combustion chambers and valve faces on Attack's lightweight, oversize intake-and exhaust-valves to further control heat. The stock Yamaha crank is lightened and race-prepared to last thousands of miles in street conditions though its life expectancy in race conditions is perhaps two or three hours. The cylinder head is given Attack's Stage 2 porting on the intake side and is Stage-4 -welded and CNC-machined with D-shaped ports on the exhaust side. An Attach mechanical clutch-conversion kit operates a Barnett Kevlar CNC-machined clutch kit. Final touches include lightening the wrist pins and modifying the water pump for reduced drag and the oil pump for reduced volume and pressure. 

To duplicate the engine, Attack charges $8,700 in parts and labor not counting the stock FZR1000 engine.

The chassis mods include AirTech carbon-fiber bodywork and fuel tank plus Indigo Sports titanium swingarm pivot-bolt and front axle, Kevlar brake lines and Poggipolini aluminum and titanium fasteners. Add to that the trick Attack works-style rearset footpegs and lightweight brackets (and other bits we don't have room to list) and you total $36,000 plus a stock YZF750R and FZR1000 engine for the complete bike. But, then again, no one says you have to buy all the parts.

We tried to put all the dollars signs out of our mind as we fired up the big Yamaha and pulled out on the Willow Springs roadrace course. The YZF's stout chassis remains stable as bedrock, running through bumpy turn eight with the rider's knee skimming the ground at over 140 mph. Steering is pinpoint precision, and the suspension action of the premium hlins units is quite supple with minimal stiction.

The Attack bike's tight, compact riding position contrasts the brutish engine with its high reciprocating mass that keeps it from flicking as quickly as the same bike would with a 750 Superbike engine installed. Roll the throttle open in any gear, (remember, you don't whack the throttle on 176 ponies) and a mighty wave of torque forcefully shoves you forward in controlled violence. This is no quick-spinning 750 Superbike, it's a much more deliberate, heavy-handed push that builds with speed.

Though Stanboli built the machine to be street legal, complete with headlamp, taillight, starter and charging system, we decided to spare society at large and test it on the track. Within a handful of laps, we were comfortably clicking off times that would have us running in the lead pack at a WSMC Formula One club race. Which begged the question: Say Richard, could we talk you into bringing it out to the NASB/F-USA races? Stanboli went for it, and with our senior editor in the saddle, the machine logged impressive 10th- and ninth-pace finishes in the F-USA's two-race format against some of the fastest racers and race bikes ever seen at Willow. We qualified with a 1:25.0 lap time and ran as quick as 1:23.9 in the race, but didn't have the time find a chassis/suspension setup that would allow us to match it consistently. Stanboli and Holst were hoping for much better, but Richard summed it up well: "Not bad for a street bike, I guess."

He always is one for understatement.

To keep the powerful engine running cool, Attack made its own two-piece, four-quart radiator (that's roughly twice the capacity of the stock rad) but the project took a full week of work , and Stanboli says, "would cost a fortune to duplicate." The Race Tech -revalved gold tube 46mm Ohlins fork is held by Attack's own adjustable triple clamps. With a light two-finger pull at the AP master-cylinder's lever, the Brembo Goldline four-piston calipers and 320mm-rotors serve up all the deceleration that the Dunlop-shod 3.75 x 17-inch Marchesini wheel can handle. Note the compact PIAA headlamp jutting out of the instrument cluster. 

Attack Racing, P.O. Box 3185, Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670

Magazine: Sport Rider
Issue : August 1996