After spotting it parked up in Maranello, Mansell was given this Ducati 906 Paso. The bike could now be yours
1992 Formula 1 world champion Nigel Mansell made the headlines at the Autosport International Show this year for almost setting fire to himself and Billy Monger with a magic trick, but in 2019 his name will be in large as a motorcycle gifted to him by Ferrari heads to auction.
The Ducati Paso 750 was introduced in 1986, with the ‘Paso’ name in honour of Italian motorcycle racer Renzo Pasolini, who had died in a racing accident 13 years prior. Three years later a Paso 906 model was made, which has a six-speed gearbox, a 904cc engine capable of 88bhp and a 140mph top speed. The four-stroke two-cylinder engine was water-cooled, a sight unseen on motorcycles at the time. It bridged a gap between traditional Ducati bikes and the need for the manufacturer to change its style to rival the Japanese and not fall foul to emission controls.
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It marked a change in the company’s philosophy, having predominantly made air-cooled two-valve Desmo bikes for a long time, but hardcore Ducati fans didn’t immediately warm to the Paso 906. The bike did make a good impression on a certain Nigel Mansell though, who spotted one in the corner of the Scuderia Ferrari factory in Maranello while serving as its Formula One pilot.
The fully integrated bodywork, finished in traditional Fire Engine Red, was the work of craftsman Massimo Tamburini, and was what attracted Mansell to the bike. He’d previously played the trick of cooing over a Ferrari Testarossa in a car park on a previous visit, with one then being delivered to his home, and ‘another time, I admired a Ducati motorbike which was parked at the factory, and three weeks later an identical bike arrived at my home’.
On October 8 1991 it was registered to his name in the Isle of Man as CMN 101F. It has since changed to A6 DUC, which occurred after it was exported to England. A file accompanying the sale, organised by Silverstone Auctions, includes the Treasury Export Certificate confirming Mansell’s ownership, the V5, old MoTs, receipts and literature that relates to the bike, including a copy of a page from Mansell’s autobiography. Mansell signed the tail-cover of the bike before passing it on, and it has covered 22,000km since being delivered new to the Englishman. With an MoT in place before it hits the blocks, it means you can hit the road almost straight away.