Jewel-Like Racer: 1964 Ducati 250 F3 Race Bike for Sale

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike R Side Low

Small bikes are big business these days, especially when the words “Ducati” and “race bike” are involved, and this little Ducati 250 F3 might be at the top of the heap. While Ducati’s improbable victory at Imola cemented their big v-twin in everyone’s mind as the bike to have and gave them credibility in the eyes of the American market with their insatiable hunger for moar powah, much of their racing and street history is built around bikes like this single cylinder machine.

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike Dash

In fact, the first bike to feature their signature spring-less Desmo system was a single cylinder bike. Which makes sense, since the primary advantage of the system would have been most pronounced in the 1950’s, during the era when “hairpin” valve springs were still prevalent in motorcycle engines and metallurgy of the time reduced spring performance at the screaming revs that gave race winning power on track.

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike R Side Engine

These days, single-cylinder racing is generally a budget endeavor, a stepping-stone for newer racers to show their stuff on a relatively level playing field that allows their skill and ruthlessness to shine. But racing singles from this era are anything but budget, regardless of the spec sheet: the racing 250 shared virtually no parts with the street version. Bikes like the F3 had their own frames, engines, suspensions, and brakes with basically no parts interchangeability with roadgoing models.

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike R Side Tank Detail

From the original eBay listing: 1964 Ducati 250cc F3 Corsa for Sale

I AM INTERESTED IN TRADING OFF THIS DUCATI FOR A 1972 OR LATER HARLEY DAVIDSON  XR750TT OR OTHER INTERESTING RACE OR CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE OR VINTAGE FORMULA CAR!

Very rare one of only a few true F3 250cc that Ducati produced. Professionally restored and documented by Altinier Motorsports Treviso Italy. This is a beautiful motorcycle that would make an excellent addition to any garage or collection.

Well known sportbike manufacturer Ducati has always been deeply immersed in motorcycle roadracing, and its premier engineer, Fabio Taglioni, was a talented designer of fast motorcycles. In the 1950’s, Ing. Taglioni developed an overhead cam lightweight with desmodromic valves that became the bike to beat in international lightweight racing. Later versions of this bike came with double overhead cams. Many of the world’s top rider rode a Ducati lightweight at some point in their careers.
Walter Villa was one of the most famous GP racers of the Sixties and Seventies. Winning four GP titles in the 250 and 350 classes in 1974, 1975 and 1976. It is believed that this 250 is his personal mount, based on an inspection by his brother. Both the engine and frame have significant differences from other motorcycles built by Ducati.

NOTE: THIS IS NOT A BUILT UP 175cc!!

Located in Southern California.

NOTE! This motorcycle is selling on a BILL OF SALE ONLY! There are no titles on factory race motorcycles!

These are extremely rare, with very few 250’s being built. According to a previous auction of this bike through Bonhams, there may have been as few as five or six ever built. There are so many cool details on Ducatis of this period: that little cut out in the bottom of the tank for the carburetor bellmouth and the little clips that hold on what I suspect is an inspection cover on the left-hand side of the engine case. Any owners want to chime in and tell me what’s hiding behind that?

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike Carb

While it’s still possible to find sporty Ducati singles on a reasonable budget if you’re looking to participate in events like the Moto Giro, this probably isn’t one you’d consider: a previous auction of this very bike in 2012 netted $81,000… With plenty of time left on the auction and bidding only up to around $12,000 I’d expect we have a long way to go yet!

-tad

1964 Ducati 250 Race Bike L Side

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3 Responses

  1. Jess says:

    What a little jewel! Definately industrial art! Who are the three gentlemen in the pictures? Walter Villa? Ing. Taglioni? Glen Bator?

  2. DKB says:

    The left side case seems to be a regular production cover, complete with a [plugged] hole for the kickstarter. Underneath is generator/magneto and clutch. The little “Ducati” cover over the clutch comes off and, IIRC, there’s an adjustment for the clutch actuation underneath. This has extra hoses running from the crankcase to the head (like racing desmos) but the head itself seems like the regular SOHC configuration of the production 250. I’d like to see this bike in person. (I think the 3 people in the photo are its present owners)

  3. tad says:

    Thanks for chiming in! I’m more “breadth” than “depth” of knowledge, so I’m happy to get some input from folks who know better.