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.

Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing

08/02/2009 @ 7:15 pm, by Jensen Beeler12 COMMENTS

Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing Mat Mladin old school Suzuki 560x397

Mat Mladin has announced this weekend that he will retire from motorcycle racing at the end of this season. Originally thought to be only reitiring from the AMA, and presumably looking to World Superbike or MotoGP for his next-step, Mladin has confirmed that his absense from Superbike racing here in the US is in fact a complete departure from the sport.

Mladin has always been one to voice his opinion, and clearly he has not been happy with the performance of the Daytona Motorcycle Group in managing AMA racing. While certainly the recent events of the AMA play a factor in Mladin’s decision to retire, one also has to keep in mind that Mat is 37 years old now, and has been a dominating force in AMA Superbike racing for the past 10 years.

Mladin has also been a loud advocate for rider safety in motorcycle racing. For this reason, Mladin is also sitting out this weekend’s AMA stop at Topeka. Speaking on Twitter, Mladin sandblasted the AMA, fellow racers, and bike rags for their failure to stand-up and hold track officials accountable for what he believes to be unsafe conditions.

“So Topeka today! 170mph turn 1 and you can hit the concrete with your shoulder, which leads to turn 2 head on into concrete which leads to turn 3 where a wall has removed and if you run off the track you go into a 10ft deep ditch. The track seem willing to do work but the wrong people are advising what to do and unfortunately I do not wish to die or be busted up waiting for that work to be done. Some riders are saying that the work will happen in stages. It’s the reason why some places we go now are still bad. Because riders wont stand up and be counted. Amazing how great they can ride a bike but be the most gutless people I have ever known. Spineless!”

Whether its politics or a logical conclusion to years of motorcycle racing, Mladin has left his mark on AMA racing. Some will be happy to see the Australian go, but others will feel the void left behind by his personality, and racing style.

Official Press Release from Mat Mladin Below:

After so many great years of racing in the USA, I will retire from AMA racing at the end of the 2009 racing season in New Jersey.

My career has been long and above and beyond my wildest expectations. I won my first national championship on dirt bikes back in 1981 (28 years ago) and have had an amazing career ever since.

If I had my time again, I would not change a single decision I have made, in life or in racing.

I would like to thank my team for their constant hard work. Without these guys, the 80+ race wins and multiple championships would not have been possible.

I wish to thank my fans. I want you to know that you all have helped me achieve so much. I will miss you.

I want to thank my mum and dad for getting me involved in such a fantastic sport that turned into my profession. I love you both.

My brother and sister for all the miles you done cramped into the back of a little pick up / ute in the early days. These were great times and the ones in racing I will cherish the most. You mean the world to me.

My daughters are growing fast and it is time I put my efforts into their future.

My wife, what can I say? You have unselfishly given your time and efforts to this lifestyle of ours. Racing had its down days, but with you by my side it was easy to get up and smell the fresh air, and realize how lucky I am. You have been a rock for so long, and if I could live another 100 years I still would not have the time to repay you for your commitment. I love you, babe.

Mat Mladin

Source: Superbike Planet

Comment:

  1. Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing – http://bit.ly/RsmVS #motorcycle

  2. Ducati Desmo says:

    Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing – Asphalt & Rubber http://bit.ly/16LIJH

  3. Bob Bryant says:

    Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing – Asphalt & Rubber http://bit.ly/FW7Nf

  4. Stacey Hall says:

    Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing………. http://bit.ly/VdzVC

  5. Don Mays says:

    Mat Mladin will be greatly missed,hes been the guy to watch,hes great with his fans ,always takes time for his fans.Mat loved the sport,good race or bad race,he was always a roll model to everyone.Im very sorry to see him go! I hope other racers have learn from Mat and keep the racing as interesting and fun for years to come.

  6. eloisethepug says:

    SHUT UP. HUUUUUGE NEWS (not kidding) Rt @ducatiparts Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing – Asphalt & Rubber http://bit.ly/2JEQoR

  7. Imagine you started road-racing this year and in 2011 you had a MotoGP ride racing with Valentino Rossi and company? I know, it’s almost inconceivable but that is exactly how Mat Mladin’s road racing career started. He truly was a mega talent. My tribute to his career is at http://www.ducatinewstoday.com/2009/07/mat-mladin-announces-his-retirement-from-racing/

  8. Bob Bryant says:

    Mat Mladin Retires from Motorcycle Racing – Asphalt & Rubber http://bit.ly/zo5yv

  9. Alex Crookes says:

    Mat Mladin to retire at end of season – http://is.gd/25lBr – Would have loved to see him race in Europe but not to be.

  10. Aaron Jarmon says:

    Say what you will, @MatMladin Set the standard for American SBK racing. Pay homage to the man… http://bit.ly/VdzVC #MotoGP #AMA #WSBK

  11. PJS says:

    Mat son are we going to see you take a run at the Bathurst 1000 just like that other great aussie Troy baliss in FORD of course ?

  12. Kevin says:

    It would be nice if Suzuki gave you a wildcard ride of your choice. WSB or MotoGP since both seasons extends beyond the AMA. Just saying.