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.

MotoGP: BT Sport Gets UK Broadcast Rights for 2014-2018

05/09/2013 @ 9:39 am, by David Emmett12 COMMENTS

MotoGP: BT Sport Gets UK Broadcast Rights for 2014 2018 radio telescope moon mercury venus 635x439

Dorna Sports issued the following press release on the acquisition of the broadcast rights for MotoGP in the United Kingdom for the next five years. More information and full commentary will be released soon, but there are a few key details which are already known.

Firstly, for details on how to receive BT Sport, see the BT Sport website. Secondly, although the commentary team is as yet unknown, the names of Julian Ryder and Keith Huewen are circulating, though this could of course be wishful thinking.

Thirdly, it seems almost certain that British Eurosport will no longer provided delayed broadcast of the MotoGP races, as that deal was tied up with the BBC contract. After the jump is the press release from Dorna:

BT Sport to bring MotoGP™ to British audiences from 2014

Dorna Sports announces today an agreement with BT Sport for the exclusive broadcast rights to the FIM MotoGP™ World Championship, starting from the 2014 season, to be shown across all its platforms in the UK and Ireland.

The five-year agreement will see MotoGP as premium programming in the thrilling line up of top sports on the new BT Sport channels. Motorcycle racing’s premier Championship will be part of this exciting new venture and will join other headline properties such as the Barclays Premier League and Aviva Premiership Rugby.

MotoGP fans won’t miss a minute of the action as race weekends will be covered in full starting from the free practices on the Friday and including full coverage of Moto2™ and Moto3™ as well as the elite category MotoGP.

Coverage will be hosted on-site with additional studio coverage from BT Sport’s state of the art facilities at the Olympic Park in Stratford, East London.

BT Sport will create an exciting second screen experience, giving fans the ability to see races from the riders’ perspective and with more interactive features showing off the most technologically advanced bikes.

This will give the UK audience a whole new MotoGP viewing experience, immersing them in every aspect of the Championship.

The MotoGP line up will be further enhanced by additional motorcycle-related programming in between Grand Prix weekends.

BT Vision and YouView viewers will be able to catch up on any live action they miss as BT Sport will make the programming available on demand, on television and on digital.

BT Sport will be heading into the world of MotoGP at full throttle, with extensive promotion across all media outlets including outdoor advertising, newspapers and magazines, as well as cross-promotion during its flagship football and rugby coverage.

Manel Arroyo, Dorna Sports, Managing Director, commented: “We’re proud that MotoGP will be part of such a huge and exciting project as BT Sport. I’m sure that BT Sport will provide the in-depth coverage that MotoGP deserves and in turn MotoGP will provide the sporting drama and excitement to help launch BT Sport as a major player in the TV market. Our new partnership comes at the perfect time, with British riders flourishing in the Championship and we look forward to our British fans being able to follow every single minute of the action.”

Simon Green, Head of BT Sport, said: “The agreement with MotoGP is really exciting. We want BT Sport to offer a wide range of sports that appeal to many different audiences and MotoGP is a thrilling sport with a massive and committed fan base in the UK and Ireland. We believe existing fans will be thrilled with our comprehensive coverage and how we intend to develop the Moto GP brand and think we can also help the sport win many new fans.”

Source: Dorna Sports; Photo: © 2010 Graeme L. White & Glen Cozens / James Cook University - All Rights Reserved

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

Comment:

  1. article dan says:

    Well I wont be watching next year then. Well done dorna, how could they think that would bring a bigger audience it must just be about the money. Ho hum cal crutchlow probably wont get a decent ride anyway. .

  2. article dan says:

    Cough suzuki cough

  3. BBQdog says:

    This is VERY bad news for all those European viewers who watched MotoGP via the BBC Red Button channels and ordinary BBC channels or British EuroSport.

  4. Westward says:

    Eurosport has the best commentary. Ideal lineup would be Toby Moody, Julian Ryder, and Neil Spalding commentating, and Matt Roberts and Azi Farni on the tarmac and in the paddock reporting…

    Why can’t someone in charge see this as obvious…?

    Channel at this point would be irrelevant…

  5. article dan says:

    Yes I agree with all of that although I would replace julian with james haydon lol.
    I prefer to watch on eurosport but they’ve not got anyone in the paddock or on the grid talking to riders as azi and matt do.. end of an era for me been watching for years :(

  6. phil says:

    I can see this backfiring on Bt with a very low audience figures.

  7. Carl Dodds says:

    What a totally dumb decision by Dorna – The Uk audience with BT Vision is TINY compared to the current arrangements. This will have consequences for team & rider sponsors and UK motorcycle and related product sales. A very sad day for an already depressed UK industry.

  8. smiler says:

    Well I wont be watching next year then. Well done dorna, how could they think that would bring a bigger audience it must just be about the money. Ho hum cal crutchlow probably wont get a decent ride anyway

    quite agree.

  9. SixtySpeedTwin says:

    Rubbish decision. I currently watch the build up on bbc the watch on sky.
    I don’t have the band witdth to stream where I am, do I guess I’m screwed!

  10. Eric says:

    Because of the overwhelming number of competitors in the MotoGP class they are trying to reduce that by limiting the exposure for sponsors. The less viewers MotoGP has, the less sponsors are interested. That should do the trick.

    Oh wait…

  11. Jim Morrison says:

    BT Sport – who are they? I’ve never heard of them and I can’t imagine I’m alone. An unbelievable decision by Dorna. I’ve been watching MotoGP since long before it was called MotoGP and I think the BBC coverage is superb but sad to say I won’t be trawling the web to find BT Sport so after all these years no more MotoGP for me. At least I saw Valentino’s golden years.
    I must echo also the thought of other commentators re sponsorship. If I was a sponsor looking for coverage
    I’d be running a mile from BT Sport.

  12. Paul says:

    Just as brittish riders start getting rides and some results in all motogp classes this happens to kill the sport off in the uk. I dont understand why, but I wont be watching the sport I have loved for the last 15 years. Its very sad news. Dont dorna care about the fans? I go and watch the live race in the uk every year but that will stop to. I hope there are protests at silverstone over this.