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.

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.

Aprilia Caponord 1200 Spotted – Déjà Vu All Over Again

02/06/2012 @ 1:47 pm, by Jensen Beeler10 COMMENTS

Aprilia Caponord 1200 Spotted   Déjà Vu All Over Again 2013 Aprilia Caponord 1200 Motociclismo 1

Launched at Piaggio’s dealer meeting in Monte Carlo, the Aprilia Caponord 1200 (AKA the Aprilia Tuareg 1200) has shown its face to the public, and a recognizable face it is. Clearly based on the Dorsoduro 1200 platform, the new Caponord 1200 draws its design cues from the Aprilia RSV4, which like the punch-drunk frat boy that it is, has spread its seed into the likes of the RS4 50, RS4 125, and SRV850 maxi-scooter, making for a budding family of bikes that look suspiciously similar. Strong brand marketing across the model line, or incestuous ideas at the drawing board? You make the call.

Expected to be Aprilia’s answer to the Ducati Multistrada 1200, it is widely believed that Aprilia is using the Dorsoduro 1200 as a basis for the Caponord, and not the Dorsoduro 750. As such, the Caponord is likely to make 130hp and 84.8 lbs•ft of torque — substantially less than its Italian rival. With the maxi-motard Dorsoduro 1200 tipping the scales at 492 lbs at the curb, the Caponord 1200 could be upwards of 500 lbs unless Aprilia can put the adventure-tourer on an Italian fashion model diet.

Likely to debut as a 2013 model, the Aprilia Caponord 1200 will surely have anti-locking brakes (ABS), and there is even some chatter about an active suspension system, which would put the Capo on par with the likes of BMW and Ducati. Down on power and up on weight, we suspect that Aprilia will really differentiate the Caponord 1200 through the bike’s electronics, rather than its raw spec sheet stats. Already having the Aprilia Performance Ride Control (APRC) electronics package on the RSV4 and Tuono V4R, Aprilia would be wise to continue the trend of electronics being the new horsepower, and offer the Caponord with its industry-leading electronics system.

Source: Motociclismo.it & Moto.it

Comment:

  1. Austin Tiller says:

    I wonder if they are planning to race Pikes with Ducati.

  2. akatsuki says:

    They should really focus a bit more… This thing doesn’t look good, and not sure why you would get it over an MTS 1200? Ducati has more resources and it shows.

    Hopefully they will upgrade the RSV4 some more soon, since the 1199 and S1000RR look like it will be crushing it.

  3. Butch says:

    @akatsuki

    Whille I don’t disagree with most of your post, it’s certainly not because Ducati has more resources than Aprilia…which is wholly owned by Piaggio. Ducati has a fraction of the revenues of the Piaggio group.

  4. Carles says:

    It clearly shows how they ran out of money.

    No money = no big developments = part sharing = then marketing has to say “family look”

  5. wreckah says:

    it’s just plain ugly and fat. I’m so tired of seeing these GS-wannabe-beaters…they’re all overly complicated and heavy. They are the big SUV’s of the biking world: boring, safe, big, not fast enough, and for those that care: not frugal enough.

    I sat on the triumph adventurer 1200 a couple of weeks ago…that’s not a bike anymore, it’s a boat. The tank looks (and feels) like it holds 100 litres.

    nope, i don’t like it.

  6. JOBIE says:

    Shame, I expected more……ehhhhh.

  7. Smitch says:

    That’s one of my biggest gripes with Aprilia. If I had an RSV4, I’d be PISSED they made a friggin old man adventure bike that has the exact same face.

  8. Damo says:

    Dialing in as the #1 aprilia fanboy, I have to say this bike is kinda hideous. That being said I have not been a huge fan of aprilia litre bike efforts since they stopped using Rotax power plants.

    The RSV4 is a machine to be sure, but the service intervals and reliability is crippling. Ask anyone who bought a first year RSV4 how many recalls they had to deal with.

    Still in no hurry to get rid of my Mille though :)

  9. MikeD says:

    First thing FIRST: That is one UGLY B*&^, what’s the deal with the overkill “Ducati Diavel lower rear mud guard” ?

    Comes to mind something i read somewhere that went something like this…. ” Are the OEMs trying to RAISE THE UGLY BAR at any given chance that the oportunity pops up to see who makes the MOST HIDEOUS dual sport touring rig ? ”

    I guess there’s no 2 WAYS about big dual sport rigs…they “MUST” be fugly, fat, bloated out of proportions BEASTS…IMHO…and let’s not forget “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”…so…lol.

    That been said…i would still take a Tractor-Tenere over any of the “current” offers. (^_^)

  10. MikeD says:

    Something came back to me while reading on another board…The Dorsoduro 1200 got the stink eye when it came down to the MPG it was getting, it is said it is one THIRSTY BEAST…hope they improved upon that on this new application…or else. LOL.