Kevin Schwantz Tests Suzuki XRH-1 MotoGP Bike at COTA, While Randy De Puniet Matches Pace of Open Bikes

Suzuki’s MotoGP test team took advantage of the presence of the MotoGP paddock at Austin to plan a test directly after the Grand Prix of the Americas. Under the watchful eye of team manager Davide Brivio, the team planned to have test rider Randy De Puniet put in three days of testing at a circuit, as the team had not yet tested the Suzuki XRH-1 at COTA, in a bid to gather more data ahead of their return to the series in 2015. Unfortunately for Suzuki, very heavy hail and thunderstorms made testing extremely difficult on Monday, leaving the track very dirty and much slower than it had been for Sunday’s race.

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 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.

2014 Kawasaki Z1000 Debuting at EICMA

10/01/2013 @ 2:44 pm, by Jensen Beeler11 COMMENTS

2014 Kawasaki Z1000 Debuting at EICMA 2014 kawasaki z1000 teaser 635x423

With the KTM Super Duke 1290 R debuting today, and BMW Motorrad set to show its BMW S1000RR-based streetfighter in a couple weeks, we get news that Kawasaki will be upping its game in the street-naked category as well — debuting an all new 2014 Kawasaki Z1000 at the 2013 EICMA show in Milan, Italy.

Teasing the bike for the past few weeks, this is the first news confirming the date and model in question from Kawasaki. Big Green isn’t talking specs at this point in time, but instead is using the Japanese word sugomi — “the intense aura or energy given off by a person or object of greatness and felt by the viewer” – to pitch the new Z1000.

With the liter-bike streetfighter segment pushing 165+ hp on new models, it will be interesting if Kawasaki’s “emotion and feel” pitch works on buyers. In our opinions, anything over 150hp just silly on a street bike, but street-naked owners are victim to the same spec-sheet racing forces that drive the the superbike market’s quest for more peak horsepower.

We assume the new Kawasaki Z1000 won’t quite have the same jaw-dropping horsepower figures that are found on the 2014 Aprilia Tuono V4 R, 2014 KTM Super Duke R, or 2014 BMW S1000R, but Kawasaki could really bring a potent package with a budget price tag to fruition here, which could really get the attention of riders who commute during the week and canyon carve on the weekend. We’re certainly excited.

Source: Kawasaki



  1. Anvil says:

    Oh, no.

    That silhouette looks mutant.

    I’m worried.

  2. meatspin says:

    yeah, I dont get these new tank lines. I see a similar silhouette on the new 1290 KTM as well. It reminds me of a cats arched back.

  3. “the intense aura or energy given off by a person or object of greatness and felt by the viewer”

    That’s an interesting translation. Certainly not one with which I’m familiar. 凄み typically translates to mean “intimidating” or “having appalling force”. Curious. Either way, though, sugomi seems applicable. :)

  4. Nick N says:

    Slow bikes are more fun to ride fast, even on the track. This, the 1290 duke, I don’t get it. Why buy these, to compensate for erectile dysfunction? On what public road can you use 150+ HP? On what track will those speeds be fun on a naked bike? The industry moves upward and onward, but not forward.

  5. paulus - thailand says:

    “In our opinions, anything over 150hp just silly on a street bike”

    Manufacturers continue to miss the point. Torque is the important number on a naked and/or street bike.
    They should be chasing torque.
    Big torque… starting as low down the range as possible :)

    B-King – 96.5 ft lbs of torque@ 7000 – rides like a pussy cat from tick over, if you want to.
    Z1 (current) – 81 ft lbs @ 7800 – less go, at higher revs
    Tuono V4 – 82.2 ft-lb 9.500 rpm – high and impractical road revs

  6. Anvil says:

    Yeah, I know a lot of people are getting all hot and bothered over the KTM, but I don’t really get it. The law of diminishing returns applies here.

    I don’t really see the use of a 1300cc, 150+rwhp street bike, especially a naked bike. I downsized to a middleweight years ago because I just have no use for all that power on the street where I live. It was starting to get very frustrating and boring. Middleweights are even overkill.

    I think you can also overdo torque. I also don’t need or want a bike that will break the rear wheel loose at the slightest provocation. Give me a bike with a good balance between torque and revs and I’m happy. Just make it light and make it handle like a scalpel. That’s where the real fun is.

  7. Too fast says:

    Menuda copia del lanzamiento de la Superduke 1290…la foto en la oscuridad, el video derrapando…qué poco originales…

  8. MikeD says:


    I’m going to wait for the whole picture before i “roast it” . . . lol.

    So far it looks like a magnificent candidate for the “hot seat”.

    Dang thing looks already like it has some form of tumor growing full steam.

    Reminds of this this togheter with the SD1290R:

    I bet it’ll have tons of plastics for what it should really wear. (-_-)’

  9. Phil K says:

    Whats with all the poo pooing Of big hp and performance. I’m lovin it. Add in all the electronics and this Power level works Great. I’m coming off a cbr1100xx and I felt like it needed more power. I say bring it on. People said the same thing When Bikes cracked 100hp then 125hp. Blah Blah Blah. Now those bikes are considered under powered. You Sound like a bunch of little girls.

  10. MikeD says:

    @Phil K.

    Pay no mind to it. They (the HP shunning tribe) , just like each of us, have a right to voice their opinions. Read on with lots of salt. I find it funny because if anyone really spent some time looking around would realize there’s plenty of modern “under powered” good looking motorcycles to choose from . . . with more on the way, I HOPE.

    Good thing there’s always that ZX-14, Hayabusa, K1300S, VMAX 1700 or C14 to fix your HP fix.

  11. Ross W says:

    I would love to get a few more ponies out of the current (2010+) ZR1000. However, the biggest up-grade a bike like that would benefit from is a taller 6th gear. The few times I’ve stretched the legs on my 2010, I wished for a little taller 6th. 100mph is a lot funner when your not at 10k rpm!