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.

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.

Marlboro: Stoner Should Apologize

09/28/2009 @ 9:00 pm, by Jensen Beeler9 COMMENTS

Marlboro: Stoner Should Apologize Casey Stoner apology 560x373

The Portuguese GP is only a handful of days away, and already the talk about the return of Casey Stoner to MotoGP racing is becoming a fervor. Absent for over a month now, Stoner’s return to the MotoGP is expected to be both anti-climatic in results, but monumental in quieting the circulating rumors.

Likely to disappoint any remaining fans, the young Australian is out of any points contention for the Championship, and isn’t expected to be on his A-game come this Sunday. Making matters worse are the clearly strained relations within the Ducati team and Stoner, as well as with title sponsor Marlboro cigarettes. Recently Maurizio Arrivabene, the most senior executive inside Philip Morris’ motorsports division stated he hopes “Stoner has the decency to apologize to the team in Portugal.”

Harsh, but expected words, Arrivabene goes on to chastise the GP rider by saying that “there are many of Ducati’s Borgo Panigale employees who wouldn’t stay at home with a stomach ache, especially in times of economic crisis.”

Touché.

Stoner is reportedly already in Europe, and making his way to Estoril for the GP. With rumors flying everywhere that the Australian won’t make his resurgence back into racing at Estoril, or could be absent from Ducati in 2010, there certainly is a lot of idle speculation going on in the MotoGP paddock (fanned mostly by the Italian press). However,  we haven’t seen anything that would make us believe that Casey Stoner won’t be on the grid in Estoril come Sunday morning. Time will tell, but we’re expecting a very interesting press conference after the race.

Comment:

  1. Marlboro: Stoner Should Apologize – http://bit.ly/NCrQw #motorcycle

  2. jake says:

    Maurizio Arrivabene is an idiot. How many of those employees have to muscle a 200+ HP bike around a race track against the skill levels of Rossi & Co? So yeah a “stomach ache” might be a bigger deal than someone sitting in an office talking on the phone all day.

  3. bill says:

    he may have to muscle a 200+ HP bike around against rossi & co, but he’s well compensated for it, probably a tad more than your typical ducati employee. moreover, he’s paid that kind of bank to appear ON the track, ON the bike, not on a fishing vacation while he’s “recovering.” stoner didn’t help himself by making it clear through his comments that he was mostly just unable to muster the mental toughness he’s being paid for. sorry, no pity here. he should apologize to the team, to the investors in his talent as well as the people whose livelihood depends on him getting his head out of his ass and racing.

  4. Gary says:

    I love how “armchair” racers like Bill act as if they know exactly what was going on in Stoner’s mind and body. As if they could even hang on to that bike at half speed in perfect health!

    Professional motorcycle racers are super-human. They are faster than us mere mortals can ever be and they risk the sanctity of their bodies without fear. These guys break bones and are back on the bike as soon as they can get them wrapped. Casey Stoner is not only a professional motorcycle racer. He’s one of the best and fastest. A “stomach ache” is not going to sideline him. He’s tough as nails and would make Mr. Bill look like a sissy in any activity you care to mention. There was obviously more going on than is being told in the news.

    I wish people would put their feet into the other person’s shoes before they’re so quick to judge them.

    Stoner can apologize if he wishes, but I think Arrivabene and people like Bill are the ones who should be apologizing. Stoner was sick, too sick to ride. Top-level racers in the championship hunt do not “go on fishing vacations” unless there’s a damn good reason.

    You want to insult professional athletes? How about the rookie NFL players coming out of college and refusing to play until they’re paid more money? That’s just one example of many that can be brought out.

    Mental toughness my ass. Let’s see you get on the track on that bike with an illness. Those bikes are beasts and are nothing like your cushy little street bike. He obviously knew he’d be a danger to himself and his competitors if he rode while ill.

    Give the guy a break. He’s more than proven himself. Think before you talk/write.

  5. mxs says:

    Well said Gary ….

  6. Anti-Gary says:

    I love people like Gary that will defend their idols to no avail. Nobody is questioning the guys skills or how he got there. Obviously he is a great rider or he wouldnt be at this level. It’s also a privledge.

    I love the always intelligent arguement of “lets see you get on the bike”… good one…. why dont we all do that. Or why don’t we switch topics to Rookie NFL players… this isn’t espn.com dummy.

    The fact is Stoner is and always will be a little b!tch. He has cried at every opportunity when things have not gone his way. Should he apologize? Of course he should apologize… sponsors like Marlboro dump miillions into this sport so that it can exist (and people like you can hang on his nutz)… like it or not. Stoner decided to mail it in this season because of an admitted mental break down. Try doing that at your office/work see how well that goes over.

  7. morpheous says:

    One thing is certain, we (the public) will never know the truth about his condition. You have to realize that for an elite level athlete to stop the very activity that they are being paid for or have worked their whole career for, there must be a real and good cause (be it mental or physical). Doctors orders boys. And an unfortunate situation for all involved. This kid CAN ride and has tamed the orange beast like no other. Give him his due. Peace.

  8. bill says:

    it’s a disappointment that the response is ad hominem, rather than offering some sort of argument as to why i’m wrong. i never even said i didn’t like stoner. he’s the only guy on the planet, as far as i can tell, that can win on the desmosedici. i also never said that he just had a stomach ache. i think his absence from the grid has very little to do with physical ailment, and very much to do with where his head is, based on his own remarks. i don’t pretend to know what the guy’s dealing with, i can only go on what he says.

    but we’re not arguing about his skills, or his fitness (nor mine, for that matter, to the extent you seem to think it relevant), but rather his obligations to his team, sponsors and fans. lest we forget, the rider is but the business end of a whole team of folks whose livelihoods rest at least in part of the performance of the team.

    when your rider takes a sabbatical because he’s struggling with his desire for/enjoyment of his sport (again, casey’s remarks), it’s at best a let-down for the team. I’m not questioning his decision to sit out some races (though I bet his team didn’t like seeing the photos of casey fishing, perhaps trying to hook his loss of heart), but I do think he owes something to the team and sponsors. This ain’t a charity; factory GP riders are compensated well enough to be expected to “suck it up” and ride when they don’t want to.

    I sincerely hope that this doesn’t damage his career, because he’s an amazing rider (and his success is important to ducati, a small manufacturer competing with giants), but from a business standpoint, it certainly raises questions about the soundness of the investment he represents.

  9. Jeff says:

    Like every bad horror movie, Stoner sees Rossi behind him every time he looks in the mirror. I love VR46, but that would scramble my eggs as well.