Photos from 250+ Feet up COTA’s Petrolsaurus Rex

Standing 251 feet above Turns 16, 17, & 18, the COTA observation tower provides a bird’s eye view of just about every tun on the circuit, if you can stomach its subtle sway in the wind and clear-glass floor at the precipice. Officially called by COTA as the “Observation Tower” – it really needs a better name for casual conversation. We’ve heard COTA Cobra used a few times with some lovely alliteration, but the structure has always struck us as less snake-like, and more like a big dinosaur — we’re going to use the name “Petrolsaurus Rex” until I hear something better, or COTA sends me a cease and desist order. I climbed to the top of Petrolsaurus Rex (read: took the elevator) during the MotoGP Warm-Up session, and snapped a few photos in the process. Enjoy!

MV Agusta F3 800 Ago Now Officially Debuts

We already announced the bike last November, and brought you a bevy of hi-res images of the special edition machine. Although now that we think of it, MV Agusta never released anything on this Giacomo Agostini tribute motorcycle — better late than never, right? Back at the EICMA show launch, where the MV Agusta F3 800 Ago was first shown to the public (and Agostini himself), the Varese brand promised us two additional motorcycle launches in early 2014. MV Agsuta made good on half that promise with the Dragster 800 model, hopefully this Ago special edition isn’t the other half of that statement, and MV Agusta still has something waiting in the wings. That being said, the Tricolore & Gold paint scheme is gorgeous, and looks even better in person.

Isle of Man TT Gets TV Deal for Australia & USA

Want to watch the Isle of Man TT from the comfort of your non-British TV, but haven’t been able to in the past? A new TV from the Isle of Man’s Department of Economic Development will do just that. Inking a new TV contract with North One TV, the Isle of Man TT will be televised in the American, Australian, and of course British markets, making it easier than ever to watch the iconic road race. With a five-year contract with the Velocity Channel in the US, the American cable channel will show seven one-hour race shows. Each segment will air within 24hrs of each race, and be tailored for the American market.

Castiglioni Denies Fiat Buyout of MV Agusta Is in the Works

After reporting 22% growth in Q1 2014, Giovanni Castiglioni had some closing words about the rumors that Fiat could acquire MV Agusta — a popular rumor that has been swirling around in the press the last two months. Denying outright that MV Agusta had, or was in, talks with the Fiat-Chrysler group about an acquisition (some reports linked even MV Agusta to being bought by Fiat-owned Ferrari), Castiglioni said the Italian company solely was focused on building growth, and building motorcycles. “Moreover, I’d like to take this opportunity to deny rumours circulated by the media over the last few days concerning supposed negotiations vis-à-vis the sale of a share of MV Agusta to the Fiat-Chrysler Group,” said Giovanni Castiglioni, the President and CEO of MV Agusta.

A 2WD Hybrid-Electric Motorcycle for the US Military?

In the coming years, US special forces may be riding a tw0-wheel drive, hybrid-electric, multi-fuel motorcycle co-developed by BRD Motorcycles and Logos Technologies. Helping make this project possible is a Small Business Innovation Research grant from DARPA. The goal is to make a single-track vehicle for US expeditionary and special forces that will be nearly silent in operation, yet also capable of traveling long distances. Details on the proposed machine are light, of course, but it sounds like the 2WD dirt bike will be based off the BRD RedShift MX (shown above), and use an electric drivetrain, as well as a multi-fuel internal combustion engine to achieve its goals.

Colin Edwards Will Retire from Racing after 2014 Season

Announcing his decision during the pre-event press conference for the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, Colin Edwards told the assembled press that 2014 would be the Texan’s last season racing a motorcycle. Citing a lack of improvement on his performance in pre-season testing and at the Qatar GP, Edwards decision perhaps answers the lingering question in the paddock of when the American rider would hang-up his spurs after an illustrious career in AMA, WSBK and MotoGP. Talking about his inability to come to terms with the Forward Yamaha, which Aleix Espargaro was able to take to the front of the pack in Qatar, Edwards was at a loss when it came to understanding the Open Class machine and his lack of results.

MSF Updates Its Basic RiderCourse Curriculum

It is no surprise that statistics from the NHTSA show that motorcycle accidents and injuries are on the rise. According to the 2012 Motor Vehicle Crash report published by the NHTSA, motorcycle fatalities for that year rose to 4,957, up seven percent from 2011, while injuries increased 15% to 93,000. While the NHTSA statistics are misleading because the motorcycle category includes mopeds, scooters, three-wheelers, pocket bikes, mini bikes, and off-road vehicles, new riders need every advantage they can afford. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation has taken notice of these statistics and has revised the curriculum for its Basic RiderCourse to include a new Basic eCourse, which students will take prior to in-person instruction.

Yamaha Trademarks “R1S” & “R1M” at USPTO – “YZF-R1M” Trademarked Abroad – But Why?

Are new Yamaha YZF-R1 models coming down the pipe? That’s the question being asked after trademark filings in the US and abroad tipped off Yamaha Motor’s intention to use “R1S”, “R1M”, and “YZF-R1M” for motorcycle, scooter, and three-wheeled purposes. The filings are being taken as hints towards a possible multiple trim levels of the Yamaha YZF-R1 superbike, with the “S” and “M” designations being different spec machines than the current base model. The “S” nomenclature is a popular one in the two and four-wheeled world, though “M” would certainly be a novel designation, outside of say…BMW.

Bell & COTA Create Texas-Themed Limited-Edition Helmet

Continuing its theme of making limited-edition helmets for premier-class US rounds, Bell Helmets has teamed up with the Circuit of the Americas and Chris Wood, of Airtrix, to create a Texas-themed Bell Star Carbon helmet, just in time for COTA’s MotoGP race next weekend. Available only until April 13th, the Bell/COTA helmet features a red, white, and blue flag motif on the front, with both the American and State of Texas flags visible, which then wrap around the rear to merge with a hardwood design, reminiscent of the floorboards in a Western saloon. The helmet is also crowned with a Longhorn cattle skull, which adds to the Texan motif. The specially designed helmet also features a horseshoe, the COTA logo, and the 2014 Red Bull MotoGP of The Americas logo.

Aprilia Mounting a Return to MotoGP in 2016

Towards the end of the 800cc era, MotoGP looked to be in dire condition. Grids were dwindling, factories were reducing their participation, and teams were in difficult financial straits indeed. By the end of 2011, there were just 17 full time entries, Suzuki was down to a single rider, and were about to pull out entirely for 2012. How different the situation looks today. In a recent interview with the official MotoGP.com website, Aprilia Corse’s new boss Romano Albesiano gave a brief outline of their plans. The Italian factory will continue to work with the IODA Racing team for 2014 to collect data on the electronics and tires, which they will use as input on an entirely new project being worked on for 2016.

2013 Ducati Hypermotard – Makes More Tickets than Bieber

11/12/2012 @ 9:04 am, by Jensen Beeler14 COMMENTS

2013 Ducati Hypermotard   Makes More Tickets than Bieber 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 01 635x475

We have patiently been awaiting the arrival of the liquid-cooled Ducati Hypermotard for some time now, and today, a day before the EICMA show, is the day that we get to see what Ducati has been cooking. Simply called the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard, the 821cc Testastretta 11° DS v-twin machine is anything but a casual update to Bologna’s maxi-motard.

More than just a reworked Superbike 848 mill, the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard boasts a longer stroke than the 848cc machines, with a much smaller bore. The result is a motorcycle with 110hp at its peak, but with 65.8 lbs•ft of torque at 7,750 rpm. At 436.5 lbs wet and ready to go, the new Ducati Hypermotard on its spec sheet sounds like a rocket out of the corners…assuming you can keep that front wheel down on terra firma.

Available in two trim levels, the base 2013 Ducati Hypermotard comes with Kayaba 43mm USD forks that have 6.7″ of travel, while the Sachs rear shock has preload & rebound adjustments only with 5.9″ of travel. Meanwhile, the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP features fully adjustable 50mm Marzocchi forks with 7.3″ of travel, and an Öhlins rear shock with 6.9″ of travel.

Both Hypermotards have Brembo monobloc M4-32 brakes, ride-by-wire throttle control, three riding modes (Race, Sport, & Wet), along with the Ducati Safety Package, which includes ABS brakes and Ducati Traction Control (DTC). The Hypermotard SP however comes with forged Marchesini wheels, a radial master cylinder, aluminum handlebars, and various carbon fiber pieces…and oh, a drop-dead sexy paint scheme.

Pricing on the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard is set at $11,995, while the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP will fetch a $14,695 price tag. For those who have been doing the math, the 800cc Italian street bike market just got very interesting.

2013 Ducati Hypermotard   Makes More Tickets than Bieber 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP 02 635x475

2013 Ducati Hypermotard   Makes More Tickets than Bieber 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 02 635x475

2013 Ducati Hypermotard   Makes More Tickets than Bieber 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP 01 635x475

Source: Ducati

Comment:

  1. Jobie says:

    Time to change my underwear….. Shit just got real!!

  2. loki says:

    That pipe… just… no! What was wrong with the underseat double can?!? That used to be *so* sexy. An those Panigale wheels look so much out of place on a Hypermotard…

  3. Damo says:

    Folks, you are looking at my next bike, been waiting for this to get announced. I am going to grab the 2014 in case the first year ducati bug hits.

    Seriously perfect bike for me.

  4. marcos says:

    the double under seat exhaust was a sea anchor. the hot setup was ALWAYS the single sided full Termi system. weighted 25lbs *lighter* than stock and sounded like a mini-gun and came with ECU. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXDRcFyU_PM&list=UUPZtrKtW8cnSPsEVsIYkKiQ&index=10&feature=plcp

  5. Damo says:

    @Marcos

    100% agreement, they were able to mitigate the added weight of water cooling by changing the exhaust layout.

  6. Bellini says:

    Holy mother… absolutely gorgeous!

  7. TC says:

    If only I have longer legs to be able to reach the ground, I’d be all over this hyper.

  8. Jason says:

    dear santa…..

  9. kenny says:

    Does anyone else feel the that this engine will be the death of the air cooled demsodue?? Love the new bike but I think all of us will be a little sad if this is true…

  10. ML says:

    I really wish I had longer legs =(

  11. arkangel says:

    makes me feel like I wanna be 21 again .. this is so perfect for that free wheeling lifestyle .. hanging at the beach

    I’d love it in Ducati stealth black

    ? wonder why the longer stroke ?

    ps @ML – wear platformed shoes ..

  12. rods says:

    Liquid cooled, more fuel capacity…

    Better than ever!

  13. Enntense says:

    Great looking bike but say goodbye to the massive 5kRPM torque peak, which was one of the defining characteristics of a hyper being a hyper. Kind of a bummer to see the air cooled twins killed by emissions. But I guess that’s progress.

  14. JJ says:

    Any ideas on mpg?

    Why no hyperenduro?

    The beak is more bareable than the multistrada :)