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 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.

MV Agusta Dragster 800 Spotted in the Wild

01/27/2014 @ 8:52 am, by Jensen Beeler18 COMMENTS

MV Agusta Dragster 800 Spotted in the Wild mv dragster 800 spy photo motoblog 635x356

Although MV Agusta has already teased us with a video of the upcoming MV Agusta Dragster 800, the company’s Ducati Diavel rival has still been hard to glimpse.

We have seen a render of the completed bike, which was attached to the lurid rumor of a turbocharged engine (we are doubtful of that possibility), and a couple frames of video confirmed that design as being the final one.

Today though we get a proper look at the new Dragster, as it was caught at a gas station outside of Varese, Italy. Part Brutale, and part Rivale, it is hard to see how the Dragster will land in MV Agusta’s model lineup.

The seat height looks quite low, and there are interesting design cues, but does the Dragster distinguish itself enough from its brethren? Only time will tell.



  1. Harry says:

    A pointless motorbike. What aim MV?

  2. Ken C. says:

    Love it.

    I like the shorty tail, but that rear fender/license plate mount has to go.

    I don’t see how this will compete against the Diavel though. It’s not cruiser enough. Seems like it’s going to cannibalize Brutale sales, or vice versa.

  3. Kaw4Life says:

    Guess I am too old to get it, looks like a bug. I wish MV the best of luck.

  4. Agent55 says:

    I feel like MV has gotten “Mini Cooper-itis” with their new triple platform, just cranking out models they don’t need to and pretending each one is completely unique.

  5. Starmag says:

    Why bother with passenger accommodations at all, unless MV thinks we need to give rides to very brave five-year olds? I’m sure it’s a great bike but not too different from their other offerings.

  6. Marc F says:

    Not seeing the difference between this and the Brutale 800.

  7. RL says:

    I like how there is a gap above the rear tire so that when your unfortunate passenger slips off the tiny pillion their sensitive regions will trapped between the revolving tire and the swingarm until they ultimately fall off completely. Or perhaps it will have a modular tail like the BMW R nineT.

  8. Superlight says:

    I own an F3 and am irritated at this manufacturer’s obvious intent to create a model for every whim. What’s next – an MV trike? I know they need increased sales volume to be viable and adding new models helps acheive that aim, but it would probably help their cause even more by building up their worldwide dealer network. That and perfect each model they do create prior to its release. It’s great they will update the ECUs for free at the dealers, but shouldn’t all that have been done before the product hit the market, not after? Fewer products done right.

  9. Aaron Mezger says:

    A Brutale bobber? An answer to a question nobody asked. Except the one about inexpensive ways to boost your sales.

  10. Muffinpunch says:

    I think the bike looks great overall and I’m a huge fan of stubby tails. But that being said, I agree that this bike is not different enough to be called a new model and thus is a pointless addition to an already fairly weak lineup. Its little more than an accessory tail replacement for the Brutale 800, which looks plenty good as it is.

  11. haryudh4 says:

    Minor Fighter!

  12. dagoof says:

    Fugly as hell. I hate the shorty tail section. I can’t believe an Italian firm designed this. I would have suspected the French.

  13. Mitch says:

    At first I was like ‘no way’, but indeed those are passenger pegs.

    ‘MV Dragster: No Fatties’

  14. Wolf says:

    I love it.
    First bike to excite me in a lonnnnng time.
    Any comments to the contrary, please note that I really don’t give a sh#t.
    This is my opinion.
    Cheers all, and thanks for sharing.

  15. dagoof says:

    @ Wolf “Any comments to the contrary, please note that I really don’t give a sh#t.”

    Nor do we… Lighten up.

  16. k1200Rider says:

    I love the stubby tail, ofcourse the passenger pegs are pointless. BUt then again, take a look at any of the newer sportbikes, none of the them have a big enough enough seat that is pratical for a pillion rider. As of right now it is a toss between this and the bmw nineT for me!

  17. eg says:

    Love it…..only thing now is which is it: whatever this is or the rivale? I love the short tail!

  18. MikeD says:

    I find it SUPER IRONIC to call Dragster an 800 cc motorcycle.

    I knew it would never happen on my life time but i was quietly cheering for a 1600 cc V6 Brutale. Hey, we all can dream . . . right ? LOL.

    I bet VMAX, B-King, Hayabusa, ZX-14R, Diavel and MT01 owners are ROTFLMAO just at the thought.

    P.S: Why bother with passenger pegs when there’s basically no passenger seat ? Save us the Grams and clean up the tail section in one sweep.