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.

MotoGP: Phillip Island to Name Corner after Casey Stoner

10/22/2012 @ 11:21 am, by David Emmett15 COMMENTS

MotoGP: Phillip Island to Name Corner after Casey Stoner Casey Stoner Repsol Honda MotoGP

The Phillip Island circuit is to name Turn 3 after Casey Stoner. A ceremony is to be held on Thursday at 11:45am local time to name the corner in honor of the 2007 and 2011 World Champion.

Stoner joins Mick Doohan and Wayne Gardner, Australia’s other two premier class World Champions, in having a part of the iconic Australian circuit named after him. Doohan has the first corner named after him, and the front straight running past the pits and into Doohan corner is named after Gardner.

It is fitting that Stoner should have Turn 3 named after him. The Australian has consistently named that corner as one of his favorite corners on the MotoGP calendar. It has everything which Stoner believes are the ingredients of an exciting turn: it is very fast, long, and the more courage you use in attacking the corner, the faster you go through there.

It is a corner where Stoner slides the rear to help turn the bike, a skill at which he excels.

The 2012 Australian round of MotoGP will be Stoner’s last visit to the circuit as a professional MotoGP rider. The Australian has announced that he will retire from professional motorcycle racing at the end of this season.

Speculation is rife that Stoner will make a switch to racing V8 Supercars in the future, and so Stoner could return to race at the circuit with a corner that bears his name.

He will likely ride the track on a motorcycle again too: Stoner has made no secret of his desire to keep riding motorcycles on track days, but has categorically excluded any possibility of a return to Grand Prix racing.

Photo: © 2012 Scott Jones / Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

Comment:

  1. smiler says:

    I bet Troy Bayliss is happy. Are they going to dump a load of stones on the corner?
    Fair dincum anyway.

  2. TexusTim says:

    good on ya !! he deserves it..one of the most underated riders with the biggest natural talent, unlike othere who advanced to the premier class he has won on everything he’s ridden even the sick ducati. somthing the other’s cant or havent done yet…maybe if spies can stop acting like he’s already won mutiple championships he can win on it too…most of these guys waite a few yeard before launching multiple million dollar investment projects or chase supermodle girls around euorpe..for god sake he got closer on the satalite bike than he did on the full factory ride..he just has to focus 100 % for every race weekend all weekend long leave his cell phone in the trailer, leave the friggin i pod with music and headphones in the trailer…if the ducatti guys see the same work ethic the yamaha guys saw spies will be done before 2013 is over i assure you..they put in the hours and dedication.

  3. Jake F. says:

    How great would it be to show up at a track day to find Casey Stoner, or any “alien” for that matter, getting ready to head out on track with you?

  4. Spamtasticus says:

    No aliens but I have had Hopper, Bostrom and Russle on the track with me at different club races. When they go by you it feels great and insulting at the same time.

  5. justadude says:

    @ Spamtasticus, That is so funny. “It’s like that is so cool, I was just passed by Scott Russell. Bummer, I was just passed by Scott Russell…” :-)

  6. “When they go by you it feels great and insulting at the same time.”

    Yeah, I can imagine that. Such as when Bradl was at Laguna Seca cruising around on a stock Fireblade and putting in mid-pack AMA Superbike lap times. That’d be humbling.

  7. Ricardo says:

    Does PI have a corner named after Bayliss yet?

    If not they suck.

  8. MikeD says:

    Good for him.
    He’ll be back…he’s yet too young and talented to throw it all away like is all good. The Bug will bite him again…wait and see……………………………..I hope, lol.

  9. smiler says:

    TexusTim – he has pretty much won nothing else except 2 motogp titles in what 7 years of trying.
    He has never won any other title in any other race series, not even a domestic one.

    At least Bayliss has won another series title in BSB. Clearly in some people’s minds 4 Superbike titles, a great personality, charisma and all round good guy trumps 2 gp titles in 7 years, no charisma, character or generosity of spirit.

  10. Damo says:

    @Ricardo

    No they don’t have one named after Bayliss (which is a crime), but they do have one named after Mick Doohan.

  11. David says:

    Maybe naming a corner after Stoner has something to do with his history as a youngster racing in Australia. Stoner was winning races as a youngster while Bayliss (in his younger years)was a spraypainter at Joe Berry’s.

    Quoted from Wikipedia:

    “He (Stoner) competed in his first race was when he was four years old, in an under-nine years old race at the Mike Hatcher’s dirt racing track on the Gold Coast of Australia. Between his very first race win at the age of nine and the age of fourteen, Stoner won 41 dirt and long track titles and 70 state titles.[3]

    One feat he achieved that illustrates his passion and “need” for racing was at age twelve. Over one weekend he raced in 5 different categories in all 7 rounds of each capacity; a weekend consisting of 35 different races. Not only did he compete in all these categories and different engine capacities, the young Casey Stoner went on to win 32 out of the 35 races. There were five Australian titles to be won that weekend, Stoner won all five.

    The legal age to enter into road races in Australia is 16. At the age of 14 years, Stoner and his parents agreed he was ready to move up onto road racing so they packed up and moved to England – where the legal age for road racing is 14.[3]

    From 2000 to 2002, he contested the national 125cc GP championships in Britain and Spain, winning the English 125cc Aprilia Championship in 2000, before moving fulltime to the 250cc GP World Championships in 2002. ”

    This desire to race is why I think Stoner will return to MotoGp.

    But then again, Stoner might get the corner name because he has the cutest wife! lol

  12. smiler says:

    Actually I was just reading about the other Troy, Corser. They could at least have Troy Corner. Unlike Stoner, Troy Corser won a number of adult titles before world titles.
    AMA Superbike and Aus Superbike titles. 2 WSB titles and nearly 3. Additionally he has been in the top 3 in WSB 7 times. Raced for Ducati Factory and Private), Aprilia, Yamaha, Suzuki, BMW, Petronas, except Honda.
    Can understand Doohan and Gardener corners of course.

    As I say in Top trumps, 2 titles in motogp, with 3 manufactuers competing trumps 3 WSB titles with more than 5 manufacturers competing, for some reason.

    I’m starting a campaign for Troy Corner.

  13. Jes says:

    Great news and deserving… Bayliss also deserves a corner, but he wont get one sadly :’(

  14. JW says:

    @ smiler

    For you to discount Stoner shows you are a casual observer of the sport with a big mouth, haters like you helped him make his decision. “Adult titles” you state, even after David was so kind to set the record straight. Even one GP title is a worthy accomplishment

    Dip – - – t

  15. Hisham Noh says:

    Have you even ride a GP bike before?? Critics will say almost everything once they hate and adore everything once they love it. Unless you ridden a GP bike, then you can say much