MV Agusta F3 800 Ago Now Officially Debuts

We already announced the bike last November, and brought you a bevy of hi-res images of the special edition machine. Although now that we think of it, MV Agusta never released anything on this Giacomo Agostini tribute motorcycle — better late than never, right? Back at the EICMA show launch, where the MV Agusta F3 800 Ago was first shown to the public (and Agostini himself), the Varese brand promised us two additional motorcycle launches in early 2014. MV Agsuta made good on half that promise with the Dragster 800 model, hopefully this Ago special edition isn’t the other half of that statement, and MV Agusta still has something waiting in the wings. That being said, the Tricolore & Gold paint scheme is gorgeous, and looks even better in person.

Isle of Man TT Gets TV Deal for Australia & USA

Want to watch the Isle of Man TT from the comfort of your non-British TV, but haven’t been able to in the past? A new TV from the Isle of Man’s Department of Economic Development will do just that. Inking a new TV contract with North One TV, the Isle of Man TT will be televised in the American, Australian, and of course British markets, making it easier than ever to watch the iconic road race. With a five-year contract with the Velocity Channel in the US, the American cable channel will show seven one-hour race shows. Each segment will air within 24hrs of each race, and be tailored for the American market.

Castiglioni Denies Fiat Buyout of MV Agusta Is in the Works

After reporting 22% growth in Q1 2014, Giovanni Castiglioni had some closing words about the rumors that Fiat could acquire MV Agusta — a popular rumor that has been swirling around in the press the last two months. Denying outright that MV Agusta had, or was in, talks with the Fiat-Chrysler group about an acquisition (some reports linked even MV Agusta to being bought by Fiat-owned Ferrari), Castiglioni said the Italian company solely was focused on building growth, and building motorcycles. “Moreover, I’d like to take this opportunity to deny rumours circulated by the media over the last few days concerning supposed negotiations vis-à-vis the sale of a share of MV Agusta to the Fiat-Chrysler Group,” said Giovanni Castiglioni, the President and CEO of MV Agusta.

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.

WSBK: Kawasaki Retains Tom Sykes for 2013 Season

08/28/2012 @ 11:36 am, by Jensen Beeler8 COMMENTS

WSBK: Kawasaki Retains Tom Sykes for 2013 Season Tom Sykes Kawasaki Monza 635x425

We are a bit late to this news, in internet terms at least (we’re WAAAY ahead in print terms, for whatever that is worth), but Kawasaki announced at the Moscow round that it has re-signed factory rider Tom Sykes to its 2013 World Superbike team. Eight podiums so far this season, including one race win and seven of pole-position starts, Tom Sykes has been delivering solids for Team Green this season.

So, it should come as no surprise then that Kawasaki wanted to lock-down the Brit for another season, with the Japanese manufacturer holding an option for two more years on top of next season’s contract. His third year with the Kawasaki squad, Sykes is also third in the Championship standings, just 41 points behind series leader Marco Melandri.

“It has been fantastic to make a commitment quite early in the season,” commented Sykes. “It’s great to be on the good end of the silly season because that is a weight off my shoulders and I think I have proved my worth this year. Last year did not reflect my potential, I do not feel, but this year I was able to demonstrate what I believe I can do. Obviously Kawasaki has done an absolutely fantastic job, an outstanding amount of work and put in so much effort. Everybody can see what we have done this year. I have a fantastic bunch of guys working with me, all my guys in the garage.”

“It is a good team effort, well managed, very professional and I could not ask for any more. That is another reason why I really pushed to stay with Kawasaki. It is a factory team with direct input from KHI, so there are lots of pros for me deciding to stay. This is my third year with Kawasaki and we have had so much bad luck that, despite still being third in the points, we could even have been a couple of places higher at this stage.”

“It is my goal to be World Superbike Champion and I feel we can achieve that sooner or later,” continued Sykes. “We have done so much hard work this year I would not want to miss out on the benefits of all that next year. For sure we can be stronger and we are learning all the time, so we have not seen the full potential of the bike and myself yet.”

“Working directly with the factory I have 100% faith in the technicians back in Japan. When I have been there a couple of times they have been very welcoming and supportive. They fully trust my feedback and the direction I want to go in. For me, that is priceless and makes me feel even more comfortable. To continue that relationship is a key in being able to fight for the championship.”

Source: Kawasaki

Comment:

  1. Dan says:

    This is great news, Tom definitely deserves this opportunity the 2012 Championship is still up for grabs !

  2. John says:

    @Dan.
    I agree that the 2012 Championship is still open. Unfortunately I do not see Tom winning it all this year as the championship might possibly go to Melandri who has been more consistent. I think Kawasaki needs to get another world class rider from MotoGP (125, 250). I wonder if Josh Hayes would even pursue a World Superbike career even if it’s only for a few years. I would think he’ll have an opportunity to become a champion.

  3. David says:

    Now that’s a good idea, bring Josh Hayes to world super bike, he is dominating AMA. We need some American riders in World Super Bike.

  4. kevin hayes says:

    TSmart move to keep Sykes, he deserves a couple more years to get the Kawi. sorted out. It took BMW a few years to get their bike in winning form….. looking for Kawasaki to do the same. Would love Hayes in SBK but do not think it will happen. He did pretty well riding the Tech 3 bike last year. Anyone think Spies will return to SBK? Heard he is on Gresini’s radar in moto gp. We do need a couple solid American riders, Hopkins needs to see the writing on the wall and retire!

  5. Westward says:

    I will bet Haga could win the title on that Kawasaki, given the results Sykes has been showing…

  6. philly Phil says:

    that kawasaki must be amazing. now. Even the first ride of bike last season, i think he was on pole…but the issue is that he can’t stay up front…somewhat like haga and checa (at times). the place high, and then fall back. I’m not a kawa/sykes fan, but it’s nice to see him doing well with such an underdog ride…He’s killing it with all the pole positions

  7. Grant Madden says:

    Sykes has done an excellent job of getting the Kawasaki to the point where it can get the rear tyre to last a whole race.If it had been that way at the beginning of the season it would have been a different matter.He obviously has the pace to run at the front.With the bike entering next season with a years worth of develpment by both rider and machine I think you can expect big things next year but also the arrival of the new Ducati will make it real important to be on your A game right from the word go.How can I recognize that bike with out faux headlights?Huh?oh right,its green.

  8. Gutterslob says:

    The bike’s getting better too. They had the all-out (one lap) pace since the beginning, but watching the races, you kind of got the impression that it ate its tyres a bit too much early on, leaving too little grip for Skyes towards the end of the races. It could’ve been his riding style playing a part as well. Whatever it was, they seem to behandling things better than earlier in the season. He’s a bit of an outsider, but still has a decent chance for the title. Best of luck to the lad.