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 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.

Team SuperMartxé VIP by Paris Hilton Launches – Further Down the Downward Spiral?

12/20/2010 @ 3:25 pm, by Jensen Beeler21 COMMENTS

Team SuperMartxé VIP by Paris Hilton Launches   Further Down the Downward Spiral? Paris Hilton 125GP motorcycle race team launch 14

Unveiled this weekend in Madrid, Paris Hilton was on-hand in her pink, blue, and white skin tight set of leathers to help promote her latest business endeavor (her words, not ours): Team SuperMartxé VIP by Paris Hilton. While we generally hate everything about Paris Hilton, and even try to avoid staying in Hilton hotels just for good measure, we do have to say one thing: this weekend’s launch of the SuperMartxé VIP by Paris Hilton Team is arguably the largest team launch in history of GP racing (in one of the worst economic climates ever for the sport)…and that includes the upcoming Wrooom launch of Valentino Rossi and Ducati Corse.

Tweeting throughout the weekend about the launch and her business endeavors with SuperMartxé VIP, Hilton reached the hearts and minds of over 3.1 million Twitter followers with her 140 characters or less messages.  That reach in readership easily eclipses the entire GP grid’s combined follower count, where even MotoGP’s official Twitter account boasts only 46,000 or so followers (for reference: social media savvy rider, and current MotoGP World Champion Jorge Lorenzo tops the GP twitter list with 89,000 Twitter followers).

Of course Twitter is just one media outlet, but the star power of Hilton and her borderline personality helped lure media coverage from the largest traditional publications in both print and online form. The LA Times, NY Times, Huffington Post, & Sports Illustrated all covered the Team SuperMartxé VIP by Paris Hilton launch, and even the always classy FOX News got in on the action, lobbing a few shots at Hilton along the way.

While Rossi and Ducati will get their fair share of coverage at the upcoming Wrooom event in January, the Italian-duo, perhaps one of the longest rumored and wanted partnerships in modern GP racing, will only garner at best a tenth of the buzz compared to this weekend. Let’s keep things in perspective too, this is a 125 GP race team, the same series that competes against late night weight loss infomercials for TV ratings on SPEEDTV, and not MotoGP, the media darling of motorcycle racing. Consider that, and the allure of mainstream celebrity endorsements becomes enticing.

Throw in some scantily clad photos of Hilton busting (pun intended) out of her zippered leathers, and it really becomes a moot point as to whether or not you even know what SuperMartxé VIP sells to teenagers in Spain, as those photos will be all over the motorcycle message boards in the next few dats (wait, they already are) with comments like “that’s hot” accompanied with emoticons and images that say “I’d hit it”.

While there’s no doubt that Paris Hilton’s involvement in GP racing and with the SuperMartxé VIP squad has helped thrust the team and sport into a larger audience’s attention span, the problem with “sex sells” marketing schemes once again rears its ugly head when it comes down to ROI. A marketing technique generally reserve for the lazy or desperate, putting a pin-up girl next to a product is the go-to technique for hocking wares in the motorcycle industry. Something that’s lost on this industry, and admittedly in even our nation’s top business school, is the fact people (read: men) rarely remember the product in the ad when a pretty girl is next to. For example, we’ve never seen someone look at a Fast Dates Calendar, and then say “man I’ve gotta buy that Yamaha.”

Deliberately left out of this article’s contents, +5 bonus points to any reader who now knows the names of SuperMartxé VIP’s two riders or Team Managers (no points awarded if you already knew the line-up from the former-BQR Team or are one of the 14 people in the United States that actually follows 125GP). At best viewers worldwide will be able to spot easily the pink livery during a race, and associate that color with something to do with Paris Hilton…and if we’re really lucky they might remember the headline sponsor SuperMartxé VIP (we wouldn’t hold our breath on this one outside of the Spanish markets).

But it’s the Hollywood socialite that’s the big winner this weekend, getting the clock to her 15 minutes of fame reset, Paris Hilton has managed to engage and entire market vertical that normally wouldn’t give her the time of day, and infect it with her personal brand, pushing her buzz meter and sponsorhip endorsement value ever higher. Getting the short-end of the stick, we doubt 125GP ratings will go up even a tick when the season kicks off for the last time in March.

Yes, we just got bamboozled by one of the dumbest people in Hollywood. Damn.

Comment:

  1. Matt K says:

    Congrats to her for making the sport bigger.

  2. Other Sean says:

    “While Rossi and Ducati will get their fair share of coverage at the upcoming Wrooom event in January, the Italian-duo, perhaps one of the longest rumored and wanted partnerships in modern GP racing, will only garner at best a tenth of the buzz compared to this weekend.”

    And how did we arrive at that scientific percentage?

    This seems laughably expounded upon. Let me give you the short version: washed up media whore, passed her prime, attempts to hang on to fame and fortune through endorsement of a minor league fringe sport team.

  3. kevin says:

    She looks better as she gets older.

    Don’t hate the playa, hate the game!!

  4. Billy B.Tso says:

    famous for sex tapes, now spruking a gp team, wow brilliant marketing campaign to give credibility and strength to the gp team…they could’ve at least picked a better looking girl…if i was to pick, maybe lets say a pretty supermodel who somehow is loosely involved/or likes the sport via some even weak link, just a thought when trying to use this form of advertising…
    seriously all that buzz will not create long term interest, as Paris’ main twitter/public interest audience is definitely not the GP target market…the team fade to the background after the first few races…and then they’ll want nothing to do with Paris when her next scandle happens.
    and by the way, paris is not hot, but i would still hit it…in fact i would prefer her sister…because she’s less sk@nk than paris…

  5. wayne says:

    Riders will be Sergio Gadea and Maverick Viñales and the team will be run by Raul Romero, Ricard Jove and Rozano Brazzi. But the point, as already indicated, is this: did ANY of us know those people prior to this story breaking? No we didn’t. So I guess her influence is powerful and far-reaching, even for those of us who go out of out way to avoid anything and everything she’s ever done.

  6. AlexOnTwoWheels says:

    I must say my initial reaction to hearing this story last week was to run full speed at a thirteenth story pane of glass… But as I think about it more, it’s actually a pretty great thing for our sport. As the post states, this sperm dumpster has a twitter following of over 3 million, and they’re all people that didn’t even know the sport existed. Not that any of them will ever get into it, but just by association this should raise the eyebrows of other big name sponsors that may not otherwise consider supporting the sport.

    Either that, or she just put a turd stain on one of the last years of the 2-strokes.

    Better than tobacco sponsors…. I’d rather have an STD than cancer.

  7. Damo says:

    I am happy when any media coverage gets thrown towards the great motor-sport that is GP racing. The mass-media usually only jumps in when someone gets killed or some other tragedy strikes.

    I just feel bad for the blokes who have to ride these pink atrocities. Hopefully they don’t have to wear matching leathers…

  8. Mickey says:

    As a perfect example of the writers point of view the HP has 111 comments, this article 9.

    But if you take some time to read those comments most are not very flattering. And if you troll deep enough you’ll find this little bit.
    http://youknowyoucare.com/?p=2239
    Which links here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1wK1qfMHFS0&feature=player_embedded
    This is the Team SuperMartxé VIP luanch party somewhere in Madrid later that night.
    I wonder if the young riders were allowed to attend?

    Now for more social commentary:
    Paris what happened to you? You used to be this waifish little thing running around behaving badly with Britney, and now you’re ass is bigger than the male dancers on that stage. I say stick with cocaine, and lay off the refer. The late night munchies are not helping you advance your career

  9. gnmac says:

    So if they win a race or two, do the riders get to hit it???? :) :) :)

  10. Steve says:

    They painted the expansion chambers tan and sculpted the tip like a helmet but the idea had to be scraped when Perris chipped her front teeth on it. Too bad.

  11. spanner says:

    Paris actually looks kinda good in these shots! Nice tight suit!
    And yes Kevin you are correct when you say that she is looking better as she gets older!

  12. Jim says:

    I keep trying to redeem my Hilton Honors points for a night with Paris and the proposal keeps getting rejected.

  13. Isis says:

    @ Jim: On your next proposal you need to ask for a night IN Paris. She’ll show up at your door the very next day. You’re just doing it wrong.

  14. Mike J says:

    “I just feel bad for the blokes who have to ride these pink atrocities. Hopefully they don’t have to wear matching leathers…”

    I hope they do..! With big fake breasts inside!

    BTW… “I’d hit it”.

  15. Dodgy says:

    Many GP teams operate out of Italy, this one must be in Paris…
    Can’t wait to see the onboard camera footage

  16. Dave says:

    I doubt the riders or mechanics that will have jobs because of the sponsorship will mind that Paris is sponsoring the team or that the bike is pink.
    Good riders are out in the cold left and right in this economy and if this chick wants to step up and throw some money (and bedazzeling) at a team that’s great.

    Although, it would have been really cool if she sponsored an AMA team. Has Zemke found a ride yet?

  17. Balzaak says:

    bets on which team has the massive herpes outbreak in 2011?

  18. smith says:

    Paris Hilton, I like with you, especially your body, your breasts look sexy to me.

  19. Craig says:

    So thus far no mention of Michael Jordan–certainly one of, if not the greatest player in NBA history–and his two Suzukis in AMA. Is Paris Hilton as famous in Europe as MJ is in the United States? AMA is not GP–I get it–but celeb involvement doesn’t mean more people will pay attention.

  20. Steve says:

    Balzaak…That was funny as hell. God that was funny, I’m still laughing. Good One!