Kevin Schwantz Tests Suzuki XRH-1 MotoGP Bike at COTA, While Randy De Puniet Matches Pace of Open Bikes

Suzuki’s MotoGP test team took advantage of the presence of the MotoGP paddock at Austin to plan a test directly after the Grand Prix of the Americas. Under the watchful eye of team manager Davide Brivio, the team planned to have test rider Randy De Puniet put in three days of testing at a circuit, as the team had not yet tested the Suzuki XRH-1 at COTA, in a bid to gather more data ahead of their return to the series in 2015. Unfortunately for Suzuki, very heavy hail and thunderstorms made testing extremely difficult on Monday, leaving the track very dirty and much slower than it had been for Sunday’s race.

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.

MotoGP: Race Results from the Qatar GP

04/07/2013 @ 2:54 pm, by Jensen Beeler12 COMMENTS

MotoGP: Race Results from the Qatar GP valentino rossi motogp qatar gp yamaha racing 635x423

MotoGP Race Results from Losail International Circuit in Doha, Qatar:

Pos.RiderTeamBikeKM/HDiff.
1Jorge LORENZOYamaha Factory RacingYamaha166.442’39.802
2Valentino ROSSIYamaha Factory RacingYamaha166.0+5.990
3Marc MARQUEZRepsol Honda TeamHonda166.0+6.201
4Dani PEDROSARepsol Honda TeamHonda165.8+9.473
5Cal CRUTCHLOWMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha165.2+18.764
6Alvaro BAUTISTAGO&FUN Honda GresiniHonda165.0+22.148
7Andrea DOVIZIOSODucati TeamDucati164.8+24.355
8Nicky HAYDENDucati TeamDucati164.8+24.920
9Andrea IANNONEEnergy T.I. Pramac RacingDucati164.0+37.124
10Ben SPIESIgnite Pramac RacingDucati163.5+44.908
11Aleix ESPARGAROPower Electronics AsparART163.2+49.809
12Randy DE PUNIETPower Electronics AsparART162.8+56.495
13Hector BARBERAAvintia BlusensFTR162.0+1’09.599
14Yonny HERNANDEZPaul Bird MotorsportART161.9+1’10.742
15Hiroshi AOYAMAAvintia BlusensFTR161.8+1’13.600
16Claudio CORTINGM Mobile Forward RacingFTR Kawasaki160.8+1’29.444
17Michael LAVERTYPaul Bird MotorsportPBM160.5+1’34.341
18Lukas PESEKCame IodaRacing ProjectIoda-Suter160.5+1’34.683
Not Classified
Colin EDWARDSNGM Mobile Forward RacingFTR Kawasaki161.97 Laps
Danilo PETRUCCICame IodaRacing ProjectIoda-Suter160.510 Laps
Stefan BRADLLCR Honda MotoGPHonda164.814 Laps
Bradley SMITHMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha162.418 Laps
Bryan STARINGGO&FUN Honda GresiniFTR Honda149.221 Laps
Karel ABRAHAMCardion AB MotoracingART0 Lap

Source: MotoGP; Photo: Yamaha Racing

Comment:

  1. Halfie30 says:

    Such a spread. Lap times all over the place. At least we know Rossi can still surf with the Aliens.

  2. Tyler says:

    What a GREAT race! Things are going to be quite entertaining this year I think..

  3. L2C says:

    Phenomenal race! That guy…that Rossi guy made me look good today. He did exactly what I knew he was still capable of. I admit, I had to back that knowledge up with a bit of faith, but clearly Rossi is still a master of this game. And a great one at that. Also, I hope he doesn’t mind me stealing a tiny bit of his spotlight/sunshine/moonlight for myself. :-)

    However, my man Pedrosa had a hard time of it all weekend. Pure concentrated struggle. Though, it was no more of a struggle for him than it was for anybody else, so there are no excuses. Pedrosa has to get his killer instinct back. I don’t know where he found it last year, but he needs to rediscover it in no less than two-weeks time, because Lorenzo, Vale and Márquez are only going to intensify their efforts as the season progresses. And Crutchlow is going to be better equipped by the time Le Mans rolls around.

    So I have this nagging question. Why did Pedrosa fade away from the three-way battle for second so easily? He was still in the mix and could have remained in the hunt! I can only guess that he suffered some sort of mental/emotional trauma after being passed by both Márquez and Rossi. We saw (and boy did we see it) what Rossi did when he saw his podium chances slipping away. We saw how Márquez didn’t let go of second without a fight. So why didn’t Pedro stick to his guns? It’s inexplicable to me, because with his speed and pace capability, he could have really amped it up in the final laps to get on the podium. At least that’s what I think.

    Losail gave all of the riders a headache this weekend, but Pedrosa seemed to be the only top rider not to have Losail under his thumb for the race. Again, there seemed to be some sort of mental/emotional disconnect going on with the man, because when someone lights a fire up under your ass, you are supposed to sizzle, and not flame out like a bucket of water has been thrown over you.

    Fourth is not a terrible finish, but you’d think Pedrosa came in last by the way he finished the race. And his body language said all the depressing shit that needed saying. He’s stronger than that, and he knows it. But he has to believe it like the other guys believe in themselves, otherwise the season and his championship hopes are over already.

    Anyway, great race. Looking forward to more!

  4. Jw says:

    Been a long long time since I got excited watching a motogp race. Dani must be hating life right now, Crutchlow you have my respect, Rosi is back and has made his point, Marquez has nothing to loose, Lorenzo looked a little worried just before the trophy presentation…

  5. irksome says:

    Psychoanalyze him all you want, Pedrosa struggled with corner entry speed all weekend.

    That old man on the Yamaha, he could really have a future in MotoGP, huh.

  6. Jonathan says:

    It’s good to have the circus back in town! These previous comments have pretty much said it all for me, so I’ll just note that if the rest of the season provides as many demonstrations of skill, racecraft and balls then I’m set.

    The guy who delivers Dani’s pep talks has his work cut out though.

  7. FernandoARG says:

    Welcome back doctor. What a pleasure and what an exciting race, grazie Vale.

  8. Skip says:

    Clearly Rossi is over the hill. What kind of old fart comes back from 7th like that ?

    O yes the Doctor !

  9. Marc F says:

    5 real contenders… it’s almost like the good old days. Imagine if Stoner were still in the mix. Seeing this must make him want to come back.

  10. Jvp says:

    I said it Before and I will say it again: the Return of the King!! He is back and the entire MotoGP world knows that the championship will be decided by three men–Lorenzo, Rossi and Marquez. Pedrosa will not win it if ever.

  11. Neil says:

    My money is on Marquez this year, great poise in his first MotoGp race, the way he came back on Rossi was good to see…….I’m still pulling for Hayden though…

  12. jasinner says:

    I wonder at the end if Rossi’s power management kicked in to try to stop him from running out of gas (based upon how Marquez almost passed him again at the end). Pedrosa did look completely dejected in the paddock but based upon what I saw, it seemed he was having traction issues with his bike. I don’t know if Lorenzo was worried during the trophy or kinda annoyed that he can win the race but the crowd will still chant Rossi’s name. This is the power of Rossi, charisma. Can’t wait for next race.