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.

Living the Dream – A Photographer’s Story: Qatar

Imagine if just for once you didn’t have to stick to your usual nine-to-five job. Instead you were able to do the one job you’ve always wanted to do, but any number of things (it’s usually money) have stood in the way. This is exactly the situation I found myself in six months ago when the company I had worked at, for the last 14 years, decided to close, making everyone redundant. This decision did not come as a surprise; in fact, I had been hanging around for the last few years hoping that it would happen, as I had a plan. Fast-forward six months and I have just finished photographing the opening round of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship in Qatar. The plan is starting to unfold.

Dakar Rally – Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile

01/10/2013 @ 3:46 pm, by Jensen Beeler3 COMMENTS

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Olivier Pain Yamaha Dakar Rally 635x423

It has been four stages since we checked in with the 2013 Dakar Rally, and a bit has happened since Cyril Despres’s eight-minute gaffe in the rally race’s second stage. Reclaiming the lead the very next day, Despres seemed back on his form, and ready to blow away the competition — Stage Four would say otherwise however.

Shaking up the leader board, it was Yamaha’s Olivier Pain who finished the fourth day of racing roughly three minutes ahead of his teammate David Casteu and KTM’s Cyril Despres, respectively. The fifth and sixth stages had the competitors leave Peru, and make their first crossing into Chile (the 2013 Dakar will leave Chile for Argentina tomorrow during Stage Seven and then re-enter Chile at Stage Twelve through to the finish).

The change of locale proved advantageous for Despres, who gained timed on the Yamahas in front of him, and finally overtook Casteu on today’s Stage Six. Frenchman Olivier Pain remained in the lead through today though, with a 2:22 lead over Despres, and nearly five minutes over Casteu, who is running in danger of being caught by KTM’s Chaleco Lopez and Ruben Faria.

There are two more days of racing in Chile, before the riders will have their one and only rest day, which serves as the halfway mark for the Dakar Rally. Commence onward for full standings and some photos of the top competitors.

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Dakar Rally Cyril Despres 635x422

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile David Casteu Yamaha Dakar Rally 635x423

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Dakar Rally Ruben Faria 02 635x422

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Dakar Rally Ruben Faria 635x423

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Dakar Rally Francisco Lopez 635x422

Dakar Rally   Stage 6: Yamaha Leads KTM into Chile Dakar Rally Yamaha Pit 635x423

Overall Motorcycle Standings of the 2013 Dakar Rally after Stage Six:

Pos. Name Country Bike Time Diff. Penalty
1 PAIN FRA YAMAHA 15:35:23 - -
2 DESPRES FRA KTM 15:37:45 0:02:22 -
3 CASTEU FRA YAMAHA 15:40:11 0:04:48 -
4 LOPEZ CHL KTM 15:41:29 0:06:06 -
5 FARIA PRT KTM 15:43:58 0:08:35 -
6 PRZYGONSKI POL KTM 15:54:38 0:19:15 0:05:00
7 SVITKO SVK KTM 15:57:31 0:22:08 -
8 ISRAEL ESQUERRE CHL HONDA 16:00:01 0:24:38 0:12:00
9 RODRIGUES PRT HONDA 16:00:46 0:25:23 -
10 BOTTURI ITA HUSQVARNA 16:02:25 0:27:02 0:15:00
11 GOUËT CHL HONDA 16:03:07 0:27:44 -
12 CASELLI USA KTM 16:04:32 0:29:09 -
13 PIZZOLITO ARG HONDA 16:05:12 0:29:49 -
14 PEDRERO ESP KTM 16:09:18 0:33:55 -
15 JAKES SVK KTM 16:10:07 0:34:44 -
16 VAN NIEKERK ZAF KTM 16:10:45 0:35:22 -
17 FAGGOTTER AUS YAMAHA 16:13:28 0:38:05 -
18 VILADOMS ESP HUSQVARNA 16:18:47 0:43:24 -
19 CURTIS ZAF KTM 16:20:53 0:45:30 -
20 ULLEVALSETER NOR KTM 16:22:41 0:47:18 -
21 VERHOEVEN NLD YAMAHA 16:25:21 0:49:58 -
22 GRABHAM AUS KTM 16:43:12 1:07:49 -
23 KNUIMAN NLD KTM 16:49:25 1:14:02 -
24 RODRÍGUEZ ARG HONDA 16:54:15 1:18:52 -
25 METGE FRA YAMAHA 17:01:25 1:26:02 -
26 CZACHOR POL KTM 17:03:52 1:28:29 -
27 GONÇALVES PRT HUSQVARNA 17:04:37 1:29:14 0:15:00
28 DE AZEVEDO BRA KTM 17:15:23 1:40:00 -
29 PROHENS CHL HONDA 17:20:57 1:45:34 -
30 STRANGE AUS HONDA 17:23:46 1:48:23 -
31 RIOS PER KTM 17:24:43 1:49:20 -
32 WATT GBR KTM 17:27:02 1:51:39 -
33 SANZ ESP GAS – GAS 17:32:28 1:57:05 -
34 GUASCH ESP GAS – GAS 17:32:46 1:57:23 -
35 SOUVIGNET FRA YAMAHA 17:32:47 1:57:24 -
36 FORMAN GBR KTM 17:34:13 1:58:50 -
37 DUCLOS FRA SHERCO 17:44:43 2:09:20 0:15:00
38 LIEFHEBBER NLD KTM 17:45:48 2:10:25 -
39 REEVE ZMB KTM 18:04:51 2:29:28 -
40 SMITH CHL KTM 18:13:55 2:38:32 -
41 VAN GERVEN NLD KTM 18:27:21 2:51:58 -
42 CARDONA VAGNONI VEN YAMAHA 18:29:45 2:54:22 -
43 PATRAO PRT SUZUKI 18:39:08 3:03:45 0:15:00
44 SALVATIERRA BOL HONDA 18:51:22 3:15:59 -
45 PABISKA CZE YAMAHA 18:56:41 3:21:18 -
46 PROHENS CHL HONDA 19:01:09 3:25:46 -
47 GUINDANI FRA YAMAHA 19:05:00 3:29:37 0:15:00
48 BARREDA BORT ESP HUSQVARNA 19:14:55 3:39:32 0:15:00
49 SMITH AUS HONDA 19:15:27 3:40:04 0:15:00
50 ARREDONDO GTM KTM 19:19:43 3:44:20 -
51 VAN PELT NLD HONDA 19:22:35 3:47:12 0:10:00
52 WALDSCHMIDT NAM KTM 19:24:12 3:48:49 -
53 DESPONTIN BEL KTM 19:24:26 3:49:03 -
54 BERGLUND SWE HUSABERG 19:31:37 3:56:14 1:43:00
55 POSKITT GBR KTM 19:34:07 3:58:44 -
56 VILLARRUBIA ESP YAMAHA 19:34:16 3:58:53 -
57 MARTENS NLD KTM 19:43:57 4:08:34 -
58 CARILLON FRA KTM 19:49:06 4:13:43 -
59 DEMELCHORI ARG KAWASAKI 19:54:12 4:18:49 -
60 PAYEN FRA YAMAHA 20:02:22 4:26:59 -
61 GABARI MAR YAMAHA 20:03:52 4:28:29 -
62 BORRELL GONZALEZ ESP KTM 20:05:01 4:29:38 -
63 GADIOUX FRA HONDA 20:06:57 4:31:34 -
64 BEAULÉ CAN KTM 20:20:52 4:45:29 0:30:00
65 VAN GINKEL NLD KTM 20:21:49 4:46:26 -
66 REINIKE CHL KTM 20:27:09 4:51:46 -
67 VALERO ESP YAMAHA 20:31:05 4:55:42 -
68 BOURGIN FRA KTM 20:33:04 4:57:41 -
69 SAGHMEISTER SRB KTM 20:33:31 4:58:08 -
70 CABRERA CHL KAWASAKI 20:38:20 5:02:57 0:10:00
71 PAVEY AUS HUSQVARNA 20:42:48 5:07:25 -
72 DABROWSKI POL KTM 20:45:00 5:09:37 -
73 ILLANES CHL YAMAHA 20:46:33 5:11:10 0:02:00
74 CAVELIUS FRA YAMAHA 20:52:32 5:17:09 -
75 WEST GBR SHERCO 20:55:11 5:19:48 -
76 CROQUELOIS FRA YAMAHA 20:57:17 5:21:54 0:03:00
77 CAMPBELL USA HONDA 20:58:41 5:23:18 -
78 CUMMINGS ZAF HONDA 21:00:37 5:25:14 -
79 VERHOESTRAETE BEL SHERCO 21:01:33 5:26:10 -
80 AGUILAR SLV KTM 21:04:54 5:29:31 -
81 BOLLERO ARG KTM 21:05:24 5:30:01 -
82 PICCO ITA YAMAHA 21:06:13 5:30:50 -
83 PASCUAL ARG JINCHENG 21:07:28 5:32:05 -
84 ERASO ANGLADE VEN YAMAHA 21:22:42 5:47:19 -
85 ORTIZ ARG YAMAHA 21:27:57 5:52:34 -
86 ZANOTTI ITA TM 21:32:07 5:56:44 -
87 BUSQUETS ESP HUSQVARNA 21:37:37 6:02:14 -
88 SERRA RIPOLL ESP YAMAHA 21:38:56 6:03:33 -
89 HIRIGOYEN FRA KTM 21:43:52 6:08:29 -
90 LUCCHESE ITA TM 21:45:35 6:10:12 -
91 MENARD FRA YAMAHA 21:48:06 6:12:43 -
92 VAN GEEL NLD KTM 21:48:28 6:13:05 0:02:00
93 ZUMARAN CHL YAMAHA 21:53:30 6:18:07 0:08:00
94 SNIJDERS NLD HONDA 21:57:27 6:22:04 -
95 VELLUTINO PER KTM 22:13:21 6:37:58 -
96 BOYER FRA HONDA 22:15:51 6:40:28 -
97 MOREAU FRA KTM 22:19:08 6:43:45 -
98 ZAHN DEU KTM 22:24:36 6:49:13 -
99 BOUNDS GBR KTM 22:24:59 6:49:36 -
100 BELÁUSTEGUI ARG YAMAHA 22:37:02 7:01:39 -
101 KREIDL AUT KTM 22:44:59 7:09:36 -
102 COTTET CHE KTM 22:53:25 7:18:02 -
103 BASSI ARG YAMAHA 22:59:54 7:24:31 0:20:00
104 MORENO KRISTIANSEN COL KTM 23:10:28 7:35:05 -
105 PYTHOUD CHE KTM 23:14:06 7:38:43 -
106 MUTELET FRA YAMAHA 23:15:32 7:40:09 0:20:00
107 MAURI ITA YAMAHA 23:59:57 8:24:34 0:07:00
108 PUERTAS HERRERA ESP GAS GAS 24:11:28 8:36:05 -
109 AMENGUAL ARG YAMAHA 24:15:59 8:40:36 -
110 NAPODANO ITA HONDA 24:36:25 9:01:02 -
111 MASSADOR FRA HONDA 24:42:39 9:07:16 0:20:00
112 RAMPOLLA ITA HONDA 24:50:16 9:14:53 -
113 FARRES GUELL ESP HONDA 24:55:19 9:19:56 1:15:00
114 NAMCHIN MNG YAMAHA 25:06:10 9:30:47 0:20:00
115 BARRON PER KTM 25:16:57 9:41:34 -
116 ALAN ARG YAMAHA 25:47:14 10:11:51 -
117 MARTÍNEZ ESP KAWASAKI 25:49:45 10:14:22 -
118 DE GROOT NLD YAMAHA 25:50:17 10:14:54 -
119 HUIGEVOORT NLD KTM 26:06:17 10:30:54 -
120 VAN HEERTUM NLD KTM 26:08:06 10:32:43 -
121 NIJEN TWILHAAR NLD KTM 26:49:39 11:14:16 0:40:00
122 SARMIENTO COL HONDA 27:02:12 11:26:49 -
123 QUERALES MALAVE VEN YAMAHA 27:26:46 11:51:23 0:05:00
124 SALDARRIAGA COL KTM 27:33:24 11:58:01 -
125 WEI CHN JINCHENG 27:33:33 11:58:10 -
126 HEILENKOTTER CHL SHERCO 27:41:33 12:06:10 -
127 SANTOS ARG HONDA 27:51:53 12:16:30 -
128 CAREVIC CHL KTM 28:12:37 12:37:14 0:42:00
129 PALANTE BEL HONDA 28:16:06 12:40:43 -
130 ORTIZ CHL HONDA 28:16:35 12:41:12 0:08:00
131 LAZARD URY YAMAHA 28:26:50 12:51:27 1:00:00
132 ECHEVERRI MEJIA COL YAMAHA 28:39:04 13:03:41 1:45:00
133 PETRONE ARG YAMAHA 29:43:04 14:07:41 -
134 SCHELLEKENS NLD KTM 29:57:51 14:22:28 -
135 GARDULSKI CHL YAMAHA 30:52:22 15:16:59 0:20:00
136 THIERRY FRA YAMAHA 30:52:38 15:17:15 -
137 CHICHIZOLA PER KTM 31:34:17 15:58:54 1:20:00
138 MUNSTERS NLD HUSQVARNA 31:46:15 16:10:52 0:20:00
139 TORO COL YAMAHA 32:32:33 16:57:10 1:01:00
140 MCKENDRICK CHL YAMAHA 32:43:29 17:08:06 0:40:00
141 BELAUSTEGUI ARG KTM 46:28:52 30:53:29 6:20:00

Source: Dakar Rally; Photos: © 2013 Maragni M. / KTM Images – All Rights Reserved; & Yamaha Racing

Comment:

  1. Damo says:

    DESPRES, is a machine. I noticed after that 8 minute drop that sneaky SOB is creeping back through the standings.

  2. ngads says:

    @ Damo

    agreed… he is just saving his energy. He will make the push in the later stages to seal his victory

  3. In the highlights I saw one rider going too fast over some seriously rock strewn terrain, he got crossed up and took an anvil sized boulder dead on with his front wheel sending him flying, nasty.

    It reminded me of that familiar scenario for many riders, when you see an obstacle, and the thought runs through your mind ‘ whatever you do don’t hit that’, and then as if some irresistible force is pulling you and your bike towards it, or perhaps the power of your mind’s own suggestion, which draws you into a series of actions that leads, seemingly inevitably, to that crash. And as you’re laying there on the ground, regaining your cognitive functions and composure, you see it all in your mind again on instant replay… shit!

    I suppose it’s about being on the edge of control, and pushing it just a little too far. ‘A man’s got to know his limitations.’ :)