eRoadRacing’s Miller Motorsports Park Round Cancelled

08/08/2013 @ 5:00 pm, by Jensen Beeler11 COMMENTS

eRoadRacings Miller Motorsports Park Round Cancelled Team Icon Brammo Empulse RR Steve Atlas 09 635x431

It’s been a while since we reported on the eRoadRacing World Cup series, the love child merger of the TTXGP and FIM e-Power electric motorcycle racing series, and that is for good reason.

While Asphalt & Rubber is a big proponent of the electric motorcycle uprising, and there are a lot of interesting things developing in this space (be sure read to our ride reviews of BRD RedShift SM, Mission RS, and MotoCzysz E1pc) the racing side of the equation has been rather lackluster.

So, it doesn’t surprise to hear that the FIM has cancelled the eRoadRacing event at Miller Motorsports Park, which was supposed to happen August 31st & September 1st.

Instead, the North American part of the eRoadRacing series will consist of only two rounds: last month’s Red Bull US Grand Prix at Laguna Seca, and this month’s Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

With only Brammo being the only entry on the “prototype” side of things, and with the racing in the “superstock” class a bit *cough* underwhelming, the Laguna Seca round was a dud from a spectator’s point-of-view.

Considering that round’s previous success, there is serious concern for the upcoming Indianapolis round, and that yet again the Brammo Empulse RR race bikes will effectively be racing themselves.

With the MMP round without an FIM event to piggyback off of, and the expectation that there will be virtually zero media coverage of the event, the question isn’t why the race was cancelled, but instead why it was scheduled in the first place?

To be honest, closed-circuit electric motorcycle racing really hit its zenith at the 2011 Laguna Seca round, where Mission Motors won some hearts and minds with its nigh-supersport performance levels in the hands of Steve Rapp.

Also participating in that race was MotoCzysz, Lightning, Brammo, Zero*, and CRP Racing — basically the Who’s Who of the electric two-wheeled world at the time, which made for some intrigue, and even better racing for the otherwise devout petrol head crowd.

Fast-forward to 2013, and 2011 looks like an anomaly. Instead of the racing continuing to improve, it has arguably gotten worse, with the real developments being made elsewhere, namely by Mugen and MotoCzysz racing at the TT Zero event at the Isle of Man TT, and Lightning Motorcycles’ run this year at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb event.

A much as I like to rib on TTXGP, the now promoter of the eRoadRacing World Cup, the fault honestly resides with the lack of commitment from the teams, who for a variety of reasons, have been unable to commit to the regularly running in these closed circuit events. It’s a shame really.

Source: FIM

Comment:

  1. Ray says:

    Was that paint job designed by a 2 year old?

  2. Jake F. says:

    I really think they need to do something to amplify the sound of those bikes. They make some pretty cool noise if you’re close enough to hear it. Racing sounds are a big part of the spectator experience. Any electric racing series would do well to remember that.

  3. twoversion says:

    They could either change it to a one make series or run different types of course that are shorter and more technical, bunching riders up more often to battle it out.

  4. TexusTim says:

    it is a shame this isnt catching on right now…it will soon enough

  5. paulus says:

    There are only limited bucks to go around… the TT and Pikes Peak are more effective for global marketing.

  6. Campisi says:

    The problem with electric motorcycle racing at the moment is that Zero just doesn’t seem interested. Brammo wants a competitive challenge, and without Zero providing genuine factory support to anyone Brammo has found racing in this or that AMA series to be more useful. Privateer teams go where their dollar will net the biggest return on investment; without a dedicated series with strong factory participation to solidify its firmament, one-off events like Pike’s Peak and the Isle of Man provide a bigger stage while simultaneously lending focus to their engineering dossiers.

  7. db says:

    It should be said that in Pikes and IOM close racing isn’t as important as it is with wheel-to-wheel, it’s just about who sets the fastest time. In these formative times, the wide variety of the speed of competitors doesn’t make for exciting wheel-to-wheel racing from a spectator’s perspective. Even in 2011 the race wasn’t close enough to be exciting from a racing standpoint, but setting records is exciting and is something we should be able to count on from IOM and PP year after year.

  8. Anvil says:

    I agree with a lot of the comments here, particularly db, Campisi and paulus. But let’s address the elephant in the room: there’s no money in selling electic motorcycles, certainly not yet. Racing, no matter what type, is relatively expensive. It’s particularly hard to justify when the racing itself is pretty awful. The e-bike manufacturers are probably putting most of their effort in keeping the lights on or the venture capital flowing.

    You can certainly make the argument that racing should be pretty important to marketing and R&D, but it’s a tough argument to make when you’re sitting infront of a room full of increasingly anxious investors. It’s better they stick with the time-trial-type events until you get a proper field of serious competitors, if that ever happens. The clock’s ticking.

  9. Norm G. says:

    re: “I really think they need to do something to amplify the sound of those bikes.”

    well put jake sully… err jake F.

    correction, THIS is the elephant in the room as I’ve said from the very beginning. the SOUND…!!!

  10. ManLabMay says:

    Come on guys. Changing the sound is possibly the stupidest argument i have heard. It’s progress. Bringing noise levels down is what is going to save the sport. Even Laguna is under STRICT noise restrictions 90% of the year.

    After watching this event at Laguna this year though i could not believe how much of a circus it was. Firstly, who the hell is in charge of the race budget at Brammo? WOW! They seem to throw cash away. Rumor has it that the race bikes they had Bostrom and Turpin on are in excess of $100K each. All that just to beat a handful of privateer Zero’s. Then they spend a fortune on a bike to have some girl ride around mid pack on. One of the Brammo guys told me her bike cost between $35K and $40K. That’s a great investment to go out and beat some weekend warriors on slightly modified and uprated Zero’s.