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.

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.

Jeremy Burgess Will Not Be Valentino Rossi’s Crew Chief for the 2014 MotoGP Season

11/07/2013 @ 9:55 am, by Jensen Beeler27 COMMENTS

Jeremy Burgess Will Not Be Valentino Rossis Crew Chief for the 2014 MotoGP Season valentino rossi jeremy burgess motogp announcement scott jones 635x423

Announced at the pre-event press conference today at the Valencian GP, Valentino Rossi dropped the bombshell that he would not be having Jeremy Burgess as his crew chief for the 2014 MotoGP season. Rossi reportedly told Yamaha Racing about his decision last week, with Burgess himself learning of the news just before the press conference.

The announcement is a huge move for the nine-time World Champion, as Burgess and his team of mechanics have been an integral part to Rossi’s racing success. However, one has to wonder if Rossi’s current troubles braking on the Yamaha YZR-M1 , and his horrible two years chasing setups at Ducati Corse didn’t play a factor in his ultimate decision.

“Next year, Jerry will not be my chief mechanic. It was a very difficult decision for me because I have a great history with him, he is not just my chief mechanic but part of a family, my father of racing, but I decide for next year I need to change something for try to find new motivation and have a new boost for improve my level and speed,” said Rossi during the press conference.

No word yet on who will replace Burgess as Rossi’ crew chief. More on this as we get it from Valencia.

Photo: © 2013 Scott Jones / Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

Comment:

  1. buellracerx says:

    holy. crap. what a breakup…

  2. H.L. says:

    Good move. Maybe a year or two too late though. Lorenzo’s team will play with set up an get it right, just the way Lorenzo wants it the day of the race in warm ups it seems like every race.

  3. Bemer2six says:

    Yeah like that’s really going to help .

  4. DAMN says:

    think its good like this. jeremy and rossi 30 years. and didnt jb said he didnt want to go back to yamaha? so after a year of trying its time to leave. both got amazing results!!!!

  5. David says:

    Now if Rossi will just fire and replace himself with a younger/sharper person, the transformation will be complete.

    Excellent career JB! <>

  6. Looter says:

    Thats a gamble on Vale’s part I think. Where to now for Burgess? Retirement? Maybe he can wishfully, slot in with Stoner on a third RCV to make ’14 exciting.

  7. Gutterslob says:

    I’m not sure if Rossi was misquoted, or whether he himself just worded it poorly. But I don’t think it’s a breakup/split between the two. Burgess had long hinted at retirement, citing his desire to be close to family. His wife was diagnosed with cancer 2 or 3 years ago, I believe. This “split” is just a bi-product of that. At least that’s what I’m assuming.

  8. Far Canal says:

    It’s tough to watch someone like Rossi in his final years in the game (as a rider anyhow). I personally think he never recovered from Marco Simoncelli’s death but maybe with a new team, he might salvage something. I also tend to agree with @Gutterslob – this has been a long time comming.

  9. SBPilot says:

    JB has wanted to retire, I’m sure he’s not as hungry as before, Vale needs full commitment from his cheif mech. I think it’s a mutual departure. The biggest question is who will Vale get to replace JB.

    If only he could poach Cristian Gabbarini from HRC somehow…

  10. PD says:

    Sad for Burgess, as he wanted to continue for ’14 per Rossi, but it was high time. Burgess and crew started falling behind the best of the competition in ’06 and never really caught up. Even in ’08 and ’09, Rossi won in spite of slow set-ups, only getting the bike rideable at warm-up on so many occasions, always behind competitors in getting the bike dialed in. Don’t know if this will enable Rossi to get any closer next season; nonetheless, it was time to take the risk of a change. Besides, judging by his quotes, Burgess had already concluded that Rossi was no longer competitive for the title, and, whether Burgess was right or wrong about that in the end, if he feels that the title is unattainable, he’s not going to be shooting for it (will lack the motivation, inspiration, the energy that belief in the possibility, the expectation of the utmost performance, would engender). Rossi, if he’s going to get to where he wants to get to, needs his crew to expect to get to that level as much as he does.

    One thing about Rossi that is evident is that he is very loyal to those with whom he goes back a long ways who remain likewise loyal to him. In that sense, this break-up with Burgess is a bit of a surprise and a bit sad. Nonetheless, again, it was necessary IF Rossi is to make it back to challenging for the title, as he clearly wants to be.

  11. PD says:

    @SBPilot: Yes, Gabbarini would be IDEAL. He and the Forcada/Zeelenberg combination are unmatched at the moment (and have been for a number of years). However, Nakamoto has been quoted as saying that Gabbarini was “untouchable,” that HRC would never lose him… But it WOULD be great if Gabbarini and Rossi could get together…

  12. Wolf says:

    HRC would “never” lose him?….. hmmm… possibly. But, never say “never”.
    Especially with the lovely united family they have their in the HRC camp ;-)

  13. TexusTim says:

    in the press confrence it looked like rossi may have someone lined up but cant say yet…maybe he is bring the ducati squad in….lol?

  14. mikaelkn says:

    Re: Gabbarini

    Isn’t he currently over at Marques’ garage? With Marques’ recent request to bring his old Moto2 crew over (see the power struggle within the Repsol team) – this would be a good time to defect.

  15. PD says:

    Last I heard, Gabbarini is NOT directly a part of Marquez’ team. He was promoted to a sort of supervisory engineer type role for HRC’s overall MotoGP effort, when Marquez and Santi Hernandez came in. Whether he’s enjoying being not as directly involved with a rider or not, I don’t know. One thing for certain is that he is very highly regarded by HRC brass.

    It’d be great if he is missing working directly with a rider, and would find possibly working with Rossi an attractive prospect. However, given that he has spent so much time with Stoner when he considered Rossi an arch-enemy, I don’t know if he would be interested in working with Rossi, period, even if he were to desire a more involved role than his current HRC role.

  16. paulus says:

    Blame the team… or the parts…. or the frame…. or the many other things.
    There is no loyalty with a potential pay-check that size. 1 more year in the seat pays millions of Euros.
    Understandable.

  17. SBPilot says:

    Gabbarini is a Technical Supervisor now, he’s on neither side of the garage. Yes it would be ideal for him to join Rossi as he is the most qualified being Stoners ex-crew chief. It’s a waste for him to be in a non-crew chief role.

    The other plus which I think is not to be overlooked is that he is Italian, so Rossi and him can understand each other to the exact precise with no info lost/misunderstood in translation. Not to mention the rest of Rossi’s crew is Italian save Alex Briggs.

  18. Dc4go says:

    Burgess does look burnt out, stressed out of his mind and not enjoying himself anymore. Great career mind may be somewhere though. I may be wrong but maybe Rossi current riding style doesn’t suit the M1 like it used too. Rossi looks to brake real late and hard as appose to Lorenzo high fast flowing 250 like riding style. Rossi needs to jump on a Honda.

  19. Westward says:

    Gabbarini would be a very interesting.

    All season long, Rossi’s machine does not seem to be able to hang with the top three. However, when he is in close combat battling for fourth, he seems to always be victorious.

    Plus, once the tyres have a little wear on them, he seems to match the pace of the top three… Now, if only the bike can be set right before the race starts….

  20. andrewinuk says:

    The seeds were possibly sown by JB with this article…

    http://www.twowheelsblog.com/tag/jeremy+burgess

    “In a long interview that was published in Spanish newspaper Marca, Valentino Rossi’s legendary crewchief Jeremy Burgess was asked if Rossi still has a chance of winning the world title and he said, “It would be a wonderful dream, and a small miracle… “Valentino has already won seven titles in the premier class, and the chances of that re-occuring is shrinking. We must accept it …”

    “When you’re young you have certain characteristics like courage and the need to take risks that slowly disappears when you become older. At a certain point you need to feel more at ease, more relaxed and in sports even that 1% makes the difference.” ”

    I have now changed my view that VR’s decision was should have been done differently.

    Apologies to readers of both A&R and Motomatters for double post.

  21. Chaz Michael Michaels says:

    Seems like a desperate move for to go faster.

    How many 4th place finishes will be needed for to realize it’s time to retire?

  22. TexusTim says:

    well to take the words out of his mouth ” this blindsided me for sure” but then he kinda explained the never winning comment and you could tell even the discussion of it irated rossi…maybe he felt that was not a loyal thing to say. but I think it was every personal to them both and it is sad to see them not end it on the team together. now we have to wonder who gets picked of someones team to fill the void with burgess departure

  23. vman2957 says:

    14 years is a long time. We will one day be probably having the same convo about Marquez if Marquez is lucky enough. The only difference is Marquez has yet to have the success and the disappointment of Rossi, and ONLY time will tell if he EVER be that good. To the people who say Rossi has “lost it” I can only shake my head. Yeah is he having trouble finding the extra umph that he needs to get to the top 3 guys, for sure, is he blaming Burgess ? I don’t think so. At this stage of his Career if he has what it takes to win or contend for a championship he has to make moves. At Motegi he pushed it on the brakes and went past what he probably knew the bike or maybe himself was capable of, and that’s what a racer who wins does and he did it twice. If the mental shift of changing up his team is necessary than I say go for it. To say Rossi who has been dicing it at the highest levels for as long as he has is “hard to watch” well the world needs commentators , I guess…

  24. mak lampir says:

    unacceptable..rossi will never win again without burgess..i believe that..jorge should take burgess to his camp..he’s the most experienced man on M1

  25. Vale girl says:

    Mak lampir you say Rossi will never win again without JB? He hasn’t won with JB for yrs now. He’s doing what ever he can to get back on the podium on a regular basis, wouldn’t you do anything you could?

  26. Ltg says:

    When Rossi left yamaha it was already obvious that burgess’s time had passed. Lorenzo always had better set ups. Then the debacle of ducati, where im sure burgess’s big mouth convinced rossi it was simple issue to make it competative. Eventually, they were copying Hayden’s settings because burgess clearly was lost. And all through this were little comments that suggested burgess didnt think rossi had the speed any longer.

    It is a surprise it took this long. When your employee questions your ability, when his loose tongue causes you headaches, when he is continually out