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 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.

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts

02/08/2013 @ 10:16 am, by Jensen Beeler7 COMMENTS

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factoy APRC WSBK 05 635x423

Fresh from Italy, we get our first glimpse of the 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK race bike in its new livery. While the uniforms may look the same, the men wearing them have changed to some extent, and in many ways so has the Italian brand’s racing strategy.

Building its previous team around Max Biaggi, the previous incarnation of Aprilia Racing catered to every whim of The Roman Emperor — read into that as you will. But now with Biaggi’s retirement from motorcycle racing, Aprilia is forced to replace tried-and-true talent with two up-and-coming stars.

Out from behind Max’s shadow, Eugene Laverty is expected to impress this year, having shown himself a formidable rider on the RSV4 Factory last season with his sixth-place Championship finish. Seventh in the Championship himself, Sylvain Guintoli will join the Irishmen, after coming off a tumultuous season with Liberty Racing. With three race wins and six podiums, Guintoli made a definite impression, especially when he was on the slower Ducati.

With both of Aprilia Racing’s WSBK riders starting to come into their own, the Italian brand is showing a lot of growth potential in the premier production-motorcycle racing series. Time will tell on the results, but we expect a bevy of podiums from the Aprilia riders this year, and maybe a win or two. Mas photos after the jump.

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factoy APRC WSBK 01 635x423

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factoy APRC WSBK 02 635x423

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factoy APRC WSBK 03 635x427

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factoy APRC WSBK 09 635x427

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Eugene Laverty 02 635x813

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Eugene Laverty 13 635x411

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Sylvain Guintoli 04 635x607

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Sylvain Guintoli Eugene Laverty 04 635x409

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Sylvain Guintoli Eugene Laverty 06 635x415

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK Race Bike Debuts 2013 Aprilia WSBK Sylvain Guintoli Eugene Laverty 10 635x986

EngineAprilia 4 longitudinal 65° V4 cylinder, 4-strokes, liquid cooling system, double overhead camshaft (DOHC), four valves per cylinder
Engine capacity999 cc
Maximum rpm15,500 rpm
Maximum power230 CV
Fuel systemVariable-height intake ducts controlled by engine control unit, electronic injection with 8 injectors and latest-generation Ride-by-Wire technology.
Compression ratio15:1
TransmissionSix speed cassette gearbox.
ClutchMultiplate wet clutch with slipper system.
Electronic managementAprilia Racing ECU managing ignition and injection, variable-height intake duct control, Ride by Wire system, traction control, anti-wheeling, turn-by-turn settings.
ChassisAdjustable, aluminium dual beam with pressed and cast sheet elements. Aluminium swingarm.
SuspensionFront: Öhlins TRSP 25 – Rear: Öhlins RSP 40
BrakesBrembo
Weight165 kg

2013 Aprilia RSV4 Factory WSBK-spec:

Eugene Laverty:

Sylvain Guintoli:

Team Aprilia Racing:

Source: Aprilia Racing

Comment:

  1. Gutterslob says:

    Still the best looking bike on the WSBK grid, along with Sykes’ ZX-10R. I prefer the Kwak’s aggresive lines/profile, but the RSV wins simply because it’s black. Black is best!!

  2. dc4go says:

    i may be bias here but the RSV4 is the Superbike king im my opinion… Beautiful bike i know the designer personal and every curve on the Rsv surves a purpose but at the same time it’s a BEAUTY!! great job and i hear alot of good things about it’s replacement (2014!!) going to be a PEACH too!! Going to look great next to my 2011 RSV track bike……

  3. Silas says:

    Guinters looks like he’s wearing his favourite set of PJs. Not sure those leathers are fitted correctly.

  4. BBQdog says:

    dc4go: I absolutly agree !

  5. Hugo says:

    finally I can start supporting Aprilia again!

  6. Clay says:

    What is with these guys putting fake headlight stickers on?