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 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.

This Is Pretty Much What the Monster 800 Will Look Like

With the advent of the Ducati Monster 1200, it was only a matter of time before Ducati’s middleweight liquid-cooled “Monster 800″ would be spotted, and unsurprisingly the machines have a great deal in common. The one big difference seems to be that the 821cc Monster gets a double-sided swingarm, which has become Ducati’s new way of differentiating between its big and medium displacement models of the same machine, see entry for Ducati 899 Panigale. With the spied Ducati Monster 800 looking ready for primetime, and a pre-fall launch isn’t out of the question. Giving us an excellent glimpse into what the Ducati Monster 800 would look like, Luca Bar has again used his Photoshop skills to render up images of the still unreleased “baby” Monster.

Photos of the Mugen Shinden Ni sans Fairings

Given the competitive nature of the electric racing realm, its rare to see the big high-power bikes without their fairings, as teams are reluctant to reveal their secret sauce. Debuting the Mugen Shinden San this past weekend in Tokyo though, Team Mugen did just that, giving us a glimpse into the inner workings of the team’s 2013 race bike, the Mugen Shinden Ni. You don’t have to be an electron-head to get excited by these photos, as any race bike with a carbon fiber frame and swingarm is pretty drool-worthy, though the Shinden Ni’s carbon fiber battery enclosure does hide a great deal of the electric superbike’s geek factor. While the sheer size of the battery bike is impressive, it was expected when the Shinden was first announced.

Mugen Shinden San (神電 参) Electric Superbike Revealed

Mugen’s third purpose-built electric superbike for the Isle of Man TT, the Mugen Shinden San, has been revealed in Japan. Campaigning two machines for this year’s TT Zero race, Mugen has John McGuiness and Bruce Anstey at the helm of its “Shinden San” bikes, as the duo looks for a one-two finish in this year’s race. With MotoCzysz not racing at the Isle of Man this year, Mugen is a hot favorite to take the top podium spots, as well as crack the 110 mph barrier for electrics on the historic Snaefell Mountain Course (Mugen is targeting a 115 mph lap). An evolution on the company’s previous designs, the Shinden San fits 134hp — 10hp more than last year, thanks to a new smaller three-phase brushless motor provided by Mission Motors — into its 529lbs bulk.

Trackside Tuesday: The Winning Personality of Jack Miller

Chatting with a couple of NASCAR fans recently, I was reminded that any competition is boring if you don’t care who wins. But if you do care, then even cars driving around in circles can be very compelling entertainment. Those NASCAR fans really cared about how their favorite drivers finished, and not only how they finished in the latest race, but what and how those drivers were doing off the track as well. Those fans had been captured by the personalities of those drivers. One of the things NASCAR does well is sell personalities. All major sports-related businesses do this to some extent, but some organizations do it better than others.

Living the Dream – A Photographer’s Story: Qatar

Imagine if just for once you didn’t have to stick to your usual nine-to-five job. Instead you were able to do the one job you’ve always wanted to do, but any number of things (it’s usually money) have stood in the way. This is exactly the situation I found myself in six months ago when the company I had worked at, for the last 14 years, decided to close, making everyone redundant. This decision did not come as a surprise; in fact, I had been hanging around for the last few years hoping that it would happen, as I had a plan. Fast-forward six months and I have just finished photographing the opening round of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship in Qatar. The plan is starting to unfold.

Hell Freezes Over as the KTM 690 Duke Comes to the USA

12/07/2012 @ 2:21 pm, by Jensen Beeler39 COMMENTS

Hell Freezes Over as the KTM 690 Duke Comes to the USA 2013 KTM 690 Duke USA Canada 635x481

The following news from KTM USA today might shock you, but the KTM 690 Duke is headed to America’s favorite democracy in 2013. That’s right, the previously available everywhere but here model is coming to North America (both the US and Canada), much to the surprise of A&R…and just about everyone else. KTM isn’t talking dollars yet, though it says that the KTM 690 Duke will be competitively priced in its North American markets.

Assuming the US model is the same as the European version, we can expect that 90% of the bike is completely brand new from the previous iteration of the 690. Accordingly, at the heart of the 2013 KTM 690 Duke is a 690cc LC4 single-cylinder thumper that puts out a crushing 67hp and 51 lbs•ft of torque, while the whole motorcycle package weighs only 330 lbs (without fuel) at the curb.

Further refining the LC4 single-cylidner motor, KTM has created a new cylinder head, and added a dual-ignition system & ride-by-wire throttle for the 690 Duke. Anti-lock brakes have also been added to the 2012 KTM 690 Duke, as the Austrian company has tapped Bosch to use the Bosch 9M+ ABS package.

Lastly, braking power comes from a Brembo radially-mounted caliper with a single 320mm brake disc, while suspension is handle by KTM subsidiary WP, and consists of fully-adjustable 43mm front forks, and a fully-adjustable rear shock.

At this moment, it doesn’t look like the recently unveiled KTM 690 Duke R is headed our way. One miracle at a time people.

Photos the 2012 European-Spec KTM 690 Duke:

Source: KTM USA


  1. tyler says:

    kick ass KTM. bring it on!

  2. David says:

    If only I didn’t just buy an S1000RR, well there’s always the “wife’s” bike… Well see.

  3. “That’s right, the previously only in Europe model is coming to North America”

    The 690 (and the rest of the Duke range) has been available in Japan. Saw a 690 the other day, in fact, at the local Ducati shop. It had an Akrapovic can on it and looked pretty gnarly. Bet it’s a fun scoot!

  4. Alex says:

    Shit, just when I thought I wanted a 390 Duke.

  5. mxs says:

    Pleasantly shocked.

  6. mxs says:

    Price is next … the last time they sold it here (Canada) the price just didn’t make sense, hence the flop.

  7. Mikeg81 says:


  8. sburns2421 says:

    Ugly as sin and probably going to be overpriced for what it is.

    They will probably sell a handful nationwide and regret ever wasting their time bringing it here.

    Americans want the biggest and fastest they can afford, or a cheap small bike if starting out, or something that looks cool. This thing is none of those.

  9. MikeD says:

    AWESOME, WAY TO GO KTM. While im NOT a single cylinder “lover” i would gladly own one of these (if i had the $$$ + parking space) . I bet the MSRP is going to be a bit on the side of ridiculous it being a KTM.

    One heck of a hooligan’s ride and an urban/city dicing commuter.
    All that been said…im really happy for the folks that were drooling all over this one but couldn’t buy one…till now…To them, here’s your Holyday’s present. Enjoy. LOL.

    As for the (subjective) looks comments:

    (Flame Proof Suit ON). I happen to think it is one of the cleanest, most uncluttered looking designs you can buy out there, togheter with the 1190 machines (im a fan of the funky Origami styling)…(Drooling).

  10. meatspin says:

    i hope they price it around $7500

  11. Tony says:

    I wish I could figure out how to make your pictures actually fit my screen. They’re always waaaay bigger and it won’t scroll from left to right, only up and down.

  12. Working on that…

    In the meantime, right click “open image in new window/tab,” or something like that.

  13. 2013 KTM 690 Duke – Coming to the USA (And Canada Too)! – #motorcycle

  14. justadude says:

    @MikeD I agree, I think the bike looks great and I am also a fan of the 1190. Too bad there’s no dealerships in my neck of the woods.

  15. Tony says:

    I’m an idiot. I don’t know why I never thought about that. Besides that, I’d love to have one of these.

  16. Trevor says:

    I’ve got one already, it’s called an aprilia Shiver.

  17. BBQdog says:

    Congratulations to all riders over there :-)

  18. Brian says:

    SOOOO happy to hear this! I had a 690SM before and it’s still the only bike I regret selling. Once we ‘Mericans realize that 180+hp superbikes are terrible on the road and these light, torquey, playful bikes are far more fun and comfortable we’ll all be better off.
    Gonna start saving my pennies now cause I imagine this will cost around 10.5-11k.

  19. jackie says:

    It looked really nice in the flesh. MSRP was $8,999.00.

  20. Damo says:

    $8,999.oo is waaaaaay too much for what you get. I hope that isn’t what it ends up being. I think $7500 would be a sweat spot for it.

    The Street Triple is only $8,899.00 and does everything arguably better and has much better service intervals.

    A shame too, because this is such a cool little bike.

  21. MikeD says:


    Although i must say that comparing the Trumpet to this SUMO is a bit like the rethorical saying “apples to oranges”…even tho their displacement bracket seems to be pretty even all else is so different from one to the other.

    I think is a great bike but not a $9K bike…if Jackie happens to be on the money.

  22. 2013 Triumph Street Triple MSRP: $9,399

    That’s a $500 increase over the 2012 model.

  23. mxs says:

    I sat on it yesterday. It feels unbelievably light. the swingarm looks interesting and it actually does have a seat you could use for hours without complaining.

    In Canada …. MSRP 10K, for that you get NON adjustable suspension fron and rear, ABS with radial brembo front brake. The bike did have a sticky note on it saying Euro spec, so whatever that means.

    Considering that they used to sell the last Duke 690 here for 11.5, the new price is probably just the result of savings for the suspension. Bike is fully manufactured and built in Austria, so no saving from the Baja operations in India on this bike.

    I am asking myself is this better for me than 2013 Trumph STR which comes at the same price of 10K. For 11K, Triumph offers fully decked out R …… In my opinion it will be difficult for KTM again, because the bike is 1K too expensive. It’s more one dimensional than STR (meaning any longer trips are out of question), STR will do it all.

    It will be a perfect second bike for people who can afford it and live with KTM parts support.

  24. jackie says:

    Sadly, $8,999.00 was what they printed in their little brochures, passed out at the Long Beach cycle show.

    It looked to be built the business, but it was bolted down to KTM’s stand, so you couldn’t really sit on it to see if it felt right.

    Best I can say, it looked better in the flesh than any picture I’ve seen. I bet it’ll sell a few.

    Me, I want to see the “R” version, but we wont, or plunk a fairing on it and make my day…which I hope they might.

  25. Paul McMenamin says:

    Bolted to stand or not, at Long Beach I sat on it. I’m 6’1″, 200 lbs and it felt excellent — not cramped. Noticeably less forward pitch than a Ducati Monster, and more leg room. Bar height seemed just about right — slightly more aggressive than a Dual-sport but very little load on wrists compared to a monster. KTM got the seat right — not too small, not too big. Not too soft, not too hard. Holds you in place but doesn’t pitch you forward into tank. The seat is good — much more comfortable than stock seat on my VFR800 with a better cover fabric.

    Overall I liked the bike — a lot. I think, for almost any street riding other than extended cruising, this would be a great bike to own. Extremely high quality paint, metal finish and casting quality. If I could afford $9K I’d be all over this. Is that a lot? Consider what a custom from Mule Motors would cost ($15K), and that’s probably the only thing this light with this quality of suspension with a “normal” riding position. But with our declining $US Dollar, I think the guys who want this kind of machine will opt for a used DRZ 400 SuperMoto instead for way under $4000.00.

    Still, I’m glad KTM built this and I hope other manufacturers take notice. This thing looks like it could deliver serious fun. IMHO they shouldn’t call it the KTM “Duke”. Call it the KTM Canyon. I think this is near-perfect in the role of solo canyon carver. It is, without question, one of the best looking street bikes KTM has ever made.

  26. Damo says:


    The US dollar maybe still be dropping against the pound, but it has been rapidly gaining on the Euro and is just about dead even and slightly edging out the CDN dollar.

    I agree that the bike is brilliant. Same power output as a last generation SV650, but weighs a ton less. This would be an amazing all around machine. Hell I would have one as I am just starting to get sick of riding full race liter bikes on the streets these days.

    The only issue for me is KTM has a great dealer network up here in New England….if you are a dirt rider. Most KTM dealers up here flat out refuse to carry and/or order a street model for you. The ones that do have very dodgy service capability as they are not used to wrenching on RC*’s and Super Dukes.

    I would love to have a 390 of a 690, but I doubt I will ever see one up here.

  27. TheOtherMikeD says:

    According to Motorcycle Daily: “The U.S. MSRP of the 2013 KTM 690 Duke is $8,999″

  28. TheOtherMikeD says:

    Opps, didn’t see the price listed in the comments already.

  29. Howard says:

    STOKED!!! After my tricked KTM 690SM was stolen in August I wanted this bike but it wasnt available. I was almost ready to buy a Ducati 848 Street Fighter. After sitting on the Street Fighter it was very uncomfortable by comparison. I will be getting the new Duke! That 690SM was a pure blast to ride. So fun, quick, light, and flickable. I will be happy to get back on one.


    Where do I send the check?

  30. Howard says:

    For comparison I got the KTM 690SM for $8,500 out the door in 2007.

  31. Damo says:

    I guess being that this is only $200 more than a Ducati Monster 696 isn’t too bad.

  32. Oh, yum. According to CMG, the beast will go to Canada, too!

  33. MikeD says:

    Damo says:
    “I guess being that this is only $200 more than a Ducati Monster 696 isn’t too bad.”


  34. According to CMG who says according to us? Someone didn’t read the whole article. Busted!

  35. @Jensen: “According to CMG who says according to us? Someone didn’t read the whole article. Busted!”

    You know it’s been one of those weeks when you read both sites and miss one’s reference to Canada and the other’s reference to the other site. ROTFL!

  36. jackie says:

    Came across this site while looking for more info…some nice photos

  37. Rusty says:

    Take my money KTM!

    I just want to do terrible terrible things on this bike.

  38. On Dukes in general, I’m starting to really like what I see. I passed a KTM shop the other day and a 125 Duke was out front. It was the first time I can recall ever looking at such a displacement bike and thinking, “WANT!” It totally looked the business!

  39. Michael says:

    You can only ask for a quote, KTM is not giving it up for cheap and in that we will never get access to them for cheap, they could send droves of the new 390 and 200 over here for really cheap but they will not.