Though the TL-R was intended to be “the best potential Superbike winner,” it ended up overweight and overcomplicated. It weighed 434 lb dry — 40+ pounds more than the R1 of the time — and made less power. Besides that, high-speed instability in early models gave the bike a “widow-maker” reputation, and much of the bike was over-complicated, hiding the motor’s true potential.
Enter one of our favorite builders, Ezio Covelli of Magnum Opus Custom Bikes, who set out to rectify these issues. Ezio is one of those builders who leaves no stone unturned, and he approaches each build with a holistic mindset. Unlike many bikes, which are more like design exercises, he never neglects brake, suspension, and maintenance-related upgrades. The result here is “Alphamille,” a TL1000 cafe racer boasting a 23% improvement in power-to-weight ratio, along with a staggering wealth of other upgrades. Below, we get the full story from Ezio on the build.