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.

“Ducati Scrambler” Trademarked at the USPTO

08/06/2013 @ 2:39 pm, by Jensen Beeler17 COMMENTS

Ducati Scrambler Trademarked at the USPTO Ducati Scrambler render 635x400

Last month, Asphalt & Rubber broke the news that Ducati was working on a scrambler-style machine, appropriately named the Ducati Scrambler.

The machine is said to be similar in design to the one Pierre Terblanche inked while he was with the Bologna Brand, though reports and sources have varied on what sort of motor the new model would use in its final form.

Whether it be water or liquid-cooled, single or twin-cylindered, the 2014 Ducati Scrambler cometh, and A&R has the trademark application to prove it.

Registering the name “Ducati Scrambler” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Ducati Motor Holding has tipped its hand regarding the new hipster machine.

A lengthy trademark, he most important provision in the granted trademark is probably the following: “IC 012. US 019 021 023 031 035 044. G & S: Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land.”

However, it worth noting that Ducati has filed for the trademark to be valid over a variety of goods, including clothing, precious metals, paper products, photography, and even games (Settlers of Scrambler, anyone?).

We likely won’t have to wait long to see the Scrambler in its final form, as the machine is expected to debut at the 2013 EICMA show in Milan, Italy. Stay tuned Ducatisti.

Source: USPTO; Photo: JVB-Moto


  1. Not Sure says:

    Hopefully it won’t have those garbage plastic gas tanks that swell from ethanol in our gas. Thanks US Govt for the shitty gas and thanks Ducati for the shitty gas tanks on most of your models!

  2. TRL says:

    But ethanol is good for our energy independence and the environment and without it the unicorns would die! I know because my government told me so!

  3. Smitchell says:

    Looks pretty, would need to be air cooled otherwise its not in the spirit of a scrambler. +1 on the gas tanks, it happened to me, was replaced for free to their credit, but with a smaller tank made of the same material, to their discredit.

  4. kww says:

    what a wonderful world it would be, if it was a supermono – even if it was 20 years late…

  5. Doctor Jelly says:

    20 years just might make it retro cool again. Thumpers are still trending up in popularity right meow, maybe they’ll become popular enough for Duc to jump on the bandwagon again…

  6. Woody says:

    They’ll just put their 11ooDS engine in a monster frame with a new tank and seat, high mount exhaust, increase ride height a couple inches and put dualsport tires on it and call it a day.

  7. Wayne says:

    “Ducati Scambler”…..???

  8. paulus says:

    It shows that race reps are in full decline.
    Ducati range is ever expanding.

  9. Uh OH says:

    What’s next, a Ducati Goldwing?

  10. Monus says:

    “The machine is said to be similar in design to the one Pierre Terblanche”

    I thought that design became Moto Morini’s Corsaro/Scrambler.

  11. Pietro says:

    Larry Johnson: Excuse me, are you saying meow?

  12. johnc says:

    “The machine is said to be similar in design to the one Pierre Terblanche inked while he was with the Bologna Brand, though reports and sources have varied on what sort of motor the new model would use in its final form.”

    absolute bullshit statement … i saw the scrambler pierre was designing just prior to leaving ducati, and it looked NOTHING like the pic in this article. the scrambler terblanche designed was feking awesome.

  13. John, I know that you know that the photo at the top of the article is not the bike in question.

  14. Gritboy says:

    The Moto Morini Scrambler ( was (from a visual standpoint) my favorite scrambler to date, but hopefully Ducati puts out a sweet one of their own.

  15. Tom says:

    People want to blame the government for ethanol as though agribusiness lobbyists had nothing to do with it. I know this is a motorcycle site, but people should really get a clue about how companies like Monsanto are able to write laws and get subsidies for things like corn that have impacts ranging from GMOs to illegals crossing the border.

    The real elite buy the government, and make no mistake that corporations love big government, while the little people revel in being pawns in a genuine game of thrones fighting over “D” and “R” as though those labels matter to those on K Street who run things for their owners anyway.

  16. TRL says:

    @ Tom

    C’mon now aren’t you being a little hard? Monsanto and ADM have nothing but the best intentions, their PBS commercials tell me so…nothing but benevolent overlords…

  17. ZootCadiilac says:

    Don’t expect to see this in 2014. That’s all I’m saying for now :) There are some very exciting new models to be announced in the distant future ;)