Welcome to 1000PS TV! We’re in the Shao-lin Temple Europe in Otterberg. M(onk): Otterberg it is. Otterberg, it’s near Kaiserslautern. It’s great, I never have been here. But when I heard that a 35th generation Shao-lin Master built himself a Ducati Monster S4RS for the track, I had to come. Sifu! Nice to meet you, Zonko. Great! Sifu only means “Master, but I’ll call you Master because you trully are. I believe the relationship is always pupil and master, right? M: Sifu only means “teacher/father” and when I have pupils they call me Sifu as the idea goes towards family traditions. Meaning, the father has sons to which he has responsibilities and obligations but the sons do as well towards the father. So, it’s quite familial organized. Thus Sifu has established itself in the Shao-lin. Sifu only means “teacher” or “father”. Z(onko): I understand. I’m really impressed of your athleticism. And I’m also reliefed that it’s not just by birth, but you trained since you were 4 yo. It’s the sam with bikes, you need to train. Now you’ve done it a tremendous time and became a great kung fu fighter… Well, fighter might be the wrong word as you’re very pacifistic. But the kung fu lessons are very painful and exhausting? M: Kung Fu, if you translate it, means “hard work”. And if you attended a full week here, you’ll know why it is “hard work”. The idea is we say “nothing comes from nothing”. Meaning if something shall beccome really good, talent alone isn’t enough. We have the motto “if something needs to get good, we need to invest work”. Even if f.E. there are children out there that have talent for something, if it isn’t trained, it won’t become very successful. So you won’t avoid hard work at our school. Z: I believe that there isn’t an exception to this. If you want to achieve something you’ll need to work hard for it. Now, with riding bikes I know my stuff. Kung fu, I can watch and think every movement hospitalises me. That’s just how it looks to me. Riding motorcycles I am really good at, I have learned it. But I also know you won’t achieve it in a single day, you’ll need to practice all the movements times over. But what’s a big advantage is if you built a perfect bike. Like this Monster S4RS. I testrode it just now. Unbelievable how well it rides on country roads! Sensational! But I still wonder why a 35th generation Shao-lin master pursues such a hobby? I think you completely reconstructed the bike?! M: Well, there are some persons without their help I wouldn’t have made it. But basically it’s true that the machine was completely deconstructed. And then was built together again. As we say: “If something needs to get good, you’ll need time” And I tend to change things a little. Even with the body. I observe how II’m doing today and then exercise towards being more capable or healthier tomorrow. It was the same with the Monster when I got it 4 years ago. See what could be done that winter, how I can improve it. And well, for many it looks just like a standard bike. But there is tremendous amount of work in it. And the details – you might noticed the harness – this was done by Jogo. I’d like to mention him because he helped my a lot. Z: Who? M: Jogo from Augsburg. He did a tremendous job. Or Marcel – also known as “flatbed truck”- also helped me with a part. Basically at our temple it’s all about to get happy. Get happy with what you have. Now I recently saw your review of the Yamaha XJR 1300. And I said to myself: “Ok such a nice review about the Monster would be very pleasant as well” That’s why I wrote to you. I wanted to give inspiration to more folks with the bike. And also the message that a lot of people are part of the bike – even though it’s “my” monster you rode today. I’m just happy that it works so well. Not just for me… If you say – you got the experience – if you say it works very well, I’m happy about it. Z: The bike rode sensationally. I thought it great! Of course there are more radical bikes out there. With ingenious race electronics. And with more power and lighter as well. All accomplished already. But the philosophy of buddhism or shoa-lin is always the middle way, isn’t it? We are in the upper half, but it’s still the middle. M: Yes. We talk in our philosophy of reaching the middle way. Middle way means being in balance. Surely there are bikes with more electronics and power. But what I liked or what the idea was is making the most of what I already had as base. And learn to handle the bike with it’s power. I don’t ride slow, but also not too fast. And I still believe I won’t reach the bikes limit in this life. Z: Well, it’s like this – and I thought about it when I looked at the bike: The side stand is abraded, the foot brake lever is abraded. And when I rode the bike on the road I though: “Holy shit, he really pushed the bike down!” I thought that you’d have a more body or health oriented philosophy. But obviously you’ll let it rip on race tracks. M: A big… One of the main principles we try to apply in practice is to live here and now. “Here and now” also means to not be afraid if you are on the race track. Fear is a result of past experiences or future possibilites. Possibilites that haven’t happen as you sit on the bike. I think if you sit on the bike and you are afraid, you’ll lack the mind capabilites that you need to concentrate on what is needed on the track, what is happening. And then, I don’t know how, but you’ll achieve such lean angles. Not willingly! But if it works it works. So if I ride on the race track – it’s the same with our kung fu practice, achieving the “void”, the “here and now”. If we practice we practice, all worries stay outside. Fears and problems stay out of the training. It’s the same on the race track, I try to concentrate on what is important. Get a feel for the bike, for the grip that is present. And when there is much grip… then some is possible. It’s a lot of fun. Z: Well, Sifu. I’m really excited about the ride. And also about you and the temple. I haven’t expected it to be like this. Great! But what I have to mention – I know this model. There is a lot of tuning involved. Shall we ask what’s still stock? No, we talk about the tuning. You did a lot. M: Tuning, I could send you the list. It’s a lot. The base is still the same but in details everything has changed. Up to the last screw. Almost everything was changed at least once. At first it was only a little optics but then I thought optics aren’t that important. Let’s do performance, so either less weight or same weight with more stability. The chassis was completely adjusted, the fork bridge was specially made. The cable harness… I’d like to read different forums and to learn from the experineces of others to avoid the same mistakes. There are some specialities with the S4RS and the Duc forum or Monster Café has some experts that know a lot. I’m really happy about this opportunity where owners and ex-owners can exchange their experiences. And the small community for just about one bike. It’s the exact same manner as we – in Germany and entire Europe there are a lot of Shao-lin temples now. And what connects us is the passion for the martial art. What Shao-lin represents or teaches hasn’t changed in the entire existence or the last 1500 years for the worse. But still it’s taught by humans. And like in any organisation there are… politics. And to be honest, I don’t want to interfere. Everybody has it’s opinion, some state it more loudly. Some are restraint. And when others shout, I tinker. Z: Sifu, what you now mentioned, the differences between one temple here and another one there, I really don’t care. I know it’s always made up by humans, there might be some vanities. Sadly with such a great philosophy as well. But, I have been inside and watched the lessons. And as a normal person I can come and book some classes – of course not riding classes. What kind of classes do you offer? M: If you want to f.E. – well, predominantly we are a buddhist temple. And inside of this daily lessons are taught. F.E. Kung Fu or Tai Chi or Qi Gong. Of which are all asian movement arts that aim for improvement in the body’s performance or keeping it healthy. And for folks who are interested we have the “temporary temple”. “Temporary temple” involves a stay from Monday till Saturday. You’ll sleep and train here, attend the normal temple schedule with us and gain insight on our lifes and philosophy. This is possible either from Monday till Saturday. Or if you can’t attend on weeks, we have a weekend offer from Friday till Sunday. You’ll surely gain infos there as well. Z: You’ll find it in the web. WWW… Can you tell us the address? M: WWW.SLTE.EU Shao-Lin TEmple. EUrope. Z: Perfect. Sifu, it was a really great day to me. A tremendous experince, a true extension. Thank you very much. I think it’s done this way, right?! All the best for you and the temple! And the staggering Monster! M: Super Zonko, happy you came! Bye!