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.

AMA Resolves Scheduling Conflict with its Mid-Ohio Round and the Laguna Seca World Superbike Round

12/17/2013 @ 3:32 pm, by Jensen Beeler9 COMMENTS

AMA Resolves Scheduling Conflict with its Mid Ohio Round and the Laguna Seca World Superbike Round calendar 635x476

There are days where we truly wonder about the future of AMA Pro Road Racing. Like the rest of the motorcycle industry, America’s premier motorcycle racing series was devastated by the recession and tough economy; that is factor external to the series, and no one could fault AMA Racing for facing some challenges because of it.

However beyond the tough economy, the national-level series has perpetrated so many unforced errors upon itself that when it comes to its management, you sometimes have to wonder if there is anyone awake at the switch.

Take the latest gaffe from AMA Pro Racing: the scheduling of the Mid-Ohio round during the World Superbike weekend at Laguna Seca. We can only imagine the surprise of riders, teams, and sponsors when they realized that the recently announced Mid-Ohio round was in full-conflict with World Superbike’s stop at Laguna Seca, a round that the AMA has typically been the support class of.

AMA Pro Racing has traditionally run as a support class for the WSBK weekend, as World Supersport is too expensive to bring to California, and AMA Pro Racing’s position at Laguna Seca is an almost forgone conclusion for riders, teams, sponsors, and fans. But even that most basic assumption proved to be too much this year.

For the past few months, AMA Pro Racing has been doling out each round this holiday season, one-by-one, in separate announcements, as if revealing the schedule via some sort of motorcycle racing advent calendar. During the same time, the World Superbike Championship released its provisional calendar, with Laguna Seca overlapping the weekend with AMA’s Mid-Ohio round.

Thankfully despite promoting and already selling tickets for both events, Mid-Ohio has been able to swap the dates for its AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days (now being held July 11th-13th) and Buckeye Superbike Weekend events (now 19th-20th), creating an opportunity for AMA Pro Racing to run at both Laguna Seca and Mid-Ohio.

There is no word yet that AMA Pro Racing will seize the opportunity to race at Laguna Seca, though the most basic of assumptions would suggest that is the logical reason behind Mid-Ohio’s event swap. Even AMA Pro Racing can’t screw this up, right?

Source: AMA


  1. TexusTim says:

    well you have to know I am not a fan of the managment..ever since DMG bought AMA it has been one fiasco after another..this is what happens when you get non cagers,brothers,cousins and houswives running the show….I have not been interested in this series since 2010 when they thought running Mladdin off was a good choice but giving Spies a pass for the same minor infraction that really only meant those two switching wins.. like when they thought a motorcycle pace bike was a good idea. when you have guys like Bill Syfan yelling at the the Hayden brother on national Tv at laguna seca you have serious problems..it was mr syfan that instigated the suzuki crankshaft fiasco in a vain attempt to give spies a leg up…what a f___n joke

  2. Slangbuster says:

    AMA who? Yaahhhn…… If Johnny Rock Page hangs around long enough, maybe he”ll be the star of the show. How many times can the AMA shoot themselves in the foot and still have a foot left ? Pathetic bunch of fools. Well, at least they’re consistent.

  3. Chris Blair says:

    You are giving them WAYYYY to much credit Jensen. If the proverbial pooch can get screwed in this case you can bet the powers that be at the AMA will be lined up to do the screwing.

  4. proudAmerican says:

    I will not be surprised if AMA Racing fails to actually materialize in 2014.

    National Guard was just the first major sponsor to pull the plug. I’m guessing there will be many more to follow in the coming weeks/months.

  5. jkedsnake says:

    I was really hoping not to get the same ol same ol at the sbk round this year, again…
    Well at least I wont be shelling out for the flag room this coming year.

  6. “as World Supersport is too expensive to bring to California”

    Philip Island, Moscow, South Africa, Sepang can manage this, but the USA can’t? Several of these will run WSB, WSS and national championship races on the same circuit, same weekend, but the USA can’t? What’s the matter with y’all?

  7. Steve says:

    The AMA is DEAD…. worthless..

    who would have thought that the previous AMA management that basically looted the members dues was so much better than the ASS*OLE running the show now… yeah… the guy that sold AMA PRo Racing…the only thing of value,,,, to the freakin NASCAR people….

    No thanks….

    American Racing used to be all the rage…. All the top Euro riders would race at Daytona…. now…. about 10 people show up to watch the fiasco they call Daytona….

    sad ….

  8. TexusTim says:

    correction to my post..I meant to say “cagers” and “Hayden Brothers”..sorry bout that.

  9. Joe McGovern says:

    I used to travel and hit at least 6 AMA rounds a year. For the last 4+ years I’ve hit……….zero rounds a year. It used to be fun and titilating. It is so lame and boring that I won’t drive the 20 minutes to the Barber round in my home town. Lame ass.

    The best thing I ever did was cancel my AMA membership after they had to admit that they had done Roger Edmondson wrong and were going to pay him multi millions and fund it by hiking up the annual membership dues.

    Now it’s just comical to watch the “AMA” at work. Thank God I do it from a far distance.