XXX: Randy de Puniet’s 2006 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR

08/24/2012 @ 3:05 pm, by Jensen Beeler12 COMMENTS

Since we started Monday off with an ultra hi-res gallery of Valentino Rossi’s 2006 Yamaha YZR-M1, we thought it would be a good bookend to the work-week to conclude with some more hi-res shots of another MotoGP race bike: Randy de Puniet’s 2006 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR. One of those bikes that never really shined in MotoGP, the ZX-RR scored only a modest number of podiums before Kawasaki finally bowed-out of MotoGP, mid-championship in 2008.

Leaving Marco Melandri holding the bag, the Kawasaki racing effort lived on in spirit as the Hayate Racing Team, where the team impressed many in the paddock with its results and limited resources. Absent completely from GP racing from 2009 to 2011, the closest we have to Team Green in the premier class now is the Avintia Blusens Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R powered CRT entry, which just took the honors of Top CRT in the Indianapolis GP.

Like Rossi’s 2006 Yamaha, RdP’s Kawasaki probably doesn’t hold the fondest memories for the Frenchman. His first ride in the premier-class, there is at least some irony in the very green rider (experience-wise) riding the Green Machine.

As Kawasaki has faded out of GP racing, and only exists in CRT form, De Puniet has come into his own as a rider, though through unfortunate circumstance has found his underrated riding skills relegated to Team Aspar’s Aprilia ART CRT — instead of factory-supported bike, like the ZX-RR seen here…which, if you haven’t already noticed, is actually a hyper-accurate scale model of the the real thing.

If you had to do a double-take after that last sentence, don’t feel bad — the attention to detail here is amazing. Constructed by Gennaro Zappa (see similar work at Racing Scale Models), the Tamiya-made set comes to life with some amazing paint-work that replicates the fatigue and use of the motorcycle. Faux-carbon fiber, bluing on the exhaust pips, and shading on the motor…Zappa must have the patience of Job.

While we enjoy the bike porn that comes from a true MotoGP bike with its fairings off, somehow the idea that the same effect is being replicated here, in 1:12 scale, makes it that much more drool-worthy. Enjoy the 40+ photos below in the gallery.



Source: Racing Cafe

  • I have a half-complete (actually, make that something more like 1/20th complete) Tamiya model of the LCR RC211V and Gennaro must have the patience of a saint! I might even get it finished this Winter…

    That is a piece of work though – phenomenal crafting skills!

  • MikeD

    Well……….excuuuuussse me for not been able to tell from the get go. LOL.

    Magnificent building skills. BOTH the Model Builder and the guy who putted it together. The amount of details is just mind-blowing.
    Man that thing is “nice-enough-to-stare-at-for-hours”.

    Interesting……………even tho the 4-into-1 config is the one been known for giving the most out of flat crank (screamer) engines they are not bothering to use it here but rather diameter increasing individual headers ? ! Do they know something we don’t ? I bet plenty.

    Danm shame they dropped out of MotoGP… but with all the shit slinging/drama/BS Regulations and constant rules changing that has become MotoGP i don’t blame them if they stay out 4ever.

  • John

    Where can I buy that model???! Or any other sportbike model kit, really?

    @MikeD My guess is that it is a big bang? My understanding is that GP had moved entirely to cross-planes and V’s years ago, and that nobody had really run screamers since the 2 stroke days.

  • @John not sure if Jensen allows links on the comments here, so I’ll just say search “Tamiya bike” on a well known auction site and that will give you an idea of what’s available. There’s plenty of model/hobby shops to choose from over here in the UK, not sure where you’re posting from.

    If I ever get my current model finished, a Mike Hailwood Ducati from the ’78 TT could well be my next…

  • MikeD


    I said Screamer because i recall the last version, Kawasaki themselves……….were refering to it as “The Screamer”…and were making a big deal also about the switch(about fricking time !) to Neumatic Valves…if memory serves my well.

    If im wrong…anyone….feel free to correct my crooked facts…lol.

  • aaron

    The bike that will always remind me that Kawasaki has less ability to develop a racebike than the poor schmucks (Hayate) left holding the bag when the factory up and left. Far less embarrassing than the Honda/Brawn debacle in F1, though!

    I guess there’s always a slim chance that a silver, Audi badged Desmosedici could romp away with the title next year…

  • Oh I just love the tilt shift lens shots that make the bike look like a toy, with all the details blurred so I can’t make out anything. NOT!!!!

    To the photographer and editor: Jumping onto the latest fad does not make you hip or the subject more interesting, it just makes you another one of the sheep.

  • :-)

  • You can always tell who read the article, and who didn’t.

  • MikeD

    Talking like a mad man…Kawi shouldn’t bother crackin their collective heads when the time comes to redesign the new ZX-10R…just look back and slap street lights and a license holder on this thing and booya ! Instant new/old model with all the MotoGP looks/cred u ever wanted…w/o the rediculous price tag.

    BTW: I meant the GP bodywork over the current chasis/engine…let’s try to stay a bit real here…(^_^)

  • Singletrack

    I’m hugely impressed with the finished model. But I think I’m more impressed by the model makers. Imagine what it takes to make the metal moulds for those tiny parts.

    I’ve got a few Tamiya models I built 30 years ago that are still on display in my basement – Kenny Roberts on the YZR500 in full lean, Kawasaki Endurance Racer, Suzuki Katana, CR450 in flight, RD250 etc. Not nearly as nicely painted, but I like ’em.

    Now days I’m guessing you could load a CAD file into a 3-D printer and end up with the same thing ;) Not quite the same satisfaction in building it though…

  • Singletrack

    And speaking of Tamiya – they produced the BEST calendars. I still have some 1984,85 era GP racing calendars that are awesome. GP bikes and cars with fantastic photography and quality print reproduction. They still look great in my garage. (waiting for the days of the month to align again ;).