1997 ex-Borja Elf SwissAuto V4 two-stroke Racer
With Phil Aynsley
Has there ever been a bike that has raced under so many names? The ELF Swissauto project was first shown in late 1995. The 108º V4 2-stroke featured a three bearing crankshaft and produced 180/185hp in original form and 192hp at 12,500rpm by 1997.
The motor weighed in at 37kg with the dual radiator cooling system using a belt-driven water pump. Both ‘screamer’ and ‘big bang’ layouts were used, with a balance shaft being employed in both versions by the end of ’96.
The ROC frame enabled multiple engine positions, thereby providing for changes of the centre of gravity. Weight without fuel was 129kg, while top speed was 310km/h.
Adrian Bosshard and Juan Borja were the team riders for 1996 (although Chris Walker and Marty Craggill also had rides), with Borja scoring eighth in the British GP and finishing 14th in the championship.
For 1997 Borja was joined by Jürgen Fuchs who scored the team’s best result of the year, a sixth place, at Rio.
ELF finished their sponsorship at the end of ’97 with the bike then being known as the MuZ for ’98 and then the Muz Weber in ’99.
While the ’98 season wasn’t particularly successful, the ’99 season saw six top ten placings, two pole positions and two lap records. The main riders were Jurgen van den Goorbergh and Luca Cadalora.
While the Muz team didn’t compete past 1999, the bikes themselves were raced again under the Pulse banner in 2001. However not having had any development since ’99 they were not competitive and the underfunded team folded before the season was through.
The bike I photographed is an 1997 ex-Borja machine.