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 Superbike Daytona Results

03/07/2009 @ 11:51 am, by Jensen BeelerComments Off

AMA Superbike Daytona Results mladin ama superbike daytona 2009 560x363

AMA Superbike kicked off this weekend to substantially less fanfare than WSBK did last week. AMA Superbike has become the bastard-child of road-racing for a variety of reason. One, Mat Mladin has already been forecasted to win all the races this year now that Ben Spies has moved on to World Superbikes. Two, the bikes being raced aren’t really superbikes. Three, AMA Superbike has been boring for the past 5 years or so. While we do not attempt to make excuses, or even argue these valid criticisms of AMA Superbike, you’d be wrong if you thought the first race of the AMA season was boring.  It’s true that Mladin took over on the 7th lap and  won by over a second but the actual racing was a lot more entertaining than that.

 

Mladin, Corona Honda’s Neil Hodgson and  Foremost Ducati’s Larry Pegram all led in the early stages of the race and Mladin’s teammate Tommy Hayden overcame a poor start that he attributed to an unfamiliar starting procedure to join a lead pack that saw numerous overtaking manuevers behind the leader.

Mladin’s grasp on the top step on the podium was in peril until he employed a backmarker to gain a bit of breathing room very late in the contest. Mat Mladin celebrated his 73rd AMA Superbike victory and also captured the coveted pole position in the new Superpole procedure, taking his 56th career pole. 

Hodgson pipped Hayden at the line in a thrilling finish for second place by .001 second when Hayden lost speed after being balked in the chicane on the last lap. Tommy Hayden qualified right behind Mladin. 

Pegram dropped back to a distant but comfortable fourth when an electrical problem forced him to switch off his 1098′s traction control. The team’s newest team member, Blake Young, started the season strong by carding an impressive fifth-place finish in his first AMA Superbike race with his new team.

 

Results from AMA Superbike at Daytona:

Pos.NumberRiderBikeTime
17Mathew MladinSuzuki GSX-R100015 Laps
2100Neil HodgsonHonda CBR1000RR+1.026
322Tommy HaydenSuzuki GSX-R1000+1.026
472Larry PegramDucati 1098R+10.115
579Blake YoungSuzuki GSX-R1000+16.007
62Benjamin BostromYamaha YZF-R1+16.212
723Aaron YatesSuzuki GSX-R1000+16.362
84Joshua HayesYamaha YZF-R1+28.356
98Michael LavertySuzuki GSX-R1000+28.432
1054Geoff MaySuzuki GSX-R1000+31.582
1119Jeff WoodSuzuki GSX-R1000+47.200
1296Aaron GobertHonda CBR1000RR+57.269
13121Hawk MazzottaSuzuki GSX-R1000+58.856
1418Chris UlrichSuzuki GSX-R1000+58.949
1591Jeffrey TigertHonda CBR1000RR+58.968
1661Scott JensenSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:07.584
1729Barrett LongDucati 1098R+1:07.620
1841Scott GreenwoodSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:07.941
1912Shane NarbonneSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:08.045
2027Mark CrozierYamaha YZF-R1+1:11.554
216Brett McCormickSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:17.905
22616Brad HendryDucati 1098R+1:19.438
2338Dean MizdalSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:33.792
2448Reno KarimianSuzuki GSX-R1000+1:33.942
2511Shawn HigbeeBuell 1125CR14 Laps
26269Johnny Rock PageYamaha YZF-R1+17.135
2758Josh GrahamYamaha YZF-R1+27.725
2855David LoikitsSuzuki GSX-R1000+41.848
29270Davie StoneHonda CBR1000RR13 Laps
3025David AnthonySuzuki GSX-R10008 Laps
3144Taylor KnappSuzuki GSX-R10004 Laps
3259Jake HoldenHonda CBR1000RR3 Laps
3321Ryan EllebySuzuki GSX-R10002 Laps

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