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 Race Direction Summons Marco Simoncelli

06/01/2011 @ 3:57 pm, by Jensen Beeler22 COMMENTS

MotoGP Race Direction Summons Marco Simoncelli Macro Simoncelli race direction

It seems MotoGP’s Race Direction is not done with Italian Marco Simoncelli. Despite giving the San Carlos Honda Gresini Rider a ride-through penalty at the French GP for his entanglement with Dani Pedrosa, the sophomore MotoGP rider will have to go talk to the powers that be this week at the Catalan GP.

As if getting sent to the principal’s office wasn’t bad enough, Simoncelli has been the subject of some threats in the Spanish mob, a situation that probably wasn’t aided by the Honda rider’s comments about his penalty and the incident with Dani Pedrosa.

Simoncelli released a second statement, after the backlash of the first, apologizing for his actions, and hoping to move forward with the season. This effort however appears to be too little too late in the eyes of Race Direction and the Spanish fans alike. It goes without saying then that the Catalan GP should be an interesting one.

What remains to be seen is if Dani Pedrosa will race on Sunday, as the Repsol Honda rider wrote on his blog earlier this week that he was still uncertain. We’re sure this uncertainy has nothing to do with waiting until Race Direction finishes with Simoncelli first, as we doubt Pedrosa will want to miss riding in front of his home crowd.

Pedrosa’s crash and injury not only put the Barcelona event in jeopardy for the Spaniard, but also may have dashed, yet again, Pedrosa’s chances for a MotoGP World Championship title. We doubt Spanish fans will forget that injustice anytime soon.

Source: MotoGP

Comment:

  1. Keith says:

    I’ll take the UNPOPULAR posistion, the posistion that….simocelli didn’t do a thing wrong. Not so far as CAUSING Dani to bin it and bust his collar bone anyway. Both came in too hot, both braked too late (imo) BUT Dani waited way too long and came in way to hot all in an effort to try to keep Simo from taking that corner…Just race incident no negligence as such on anybodies part.

    BUT because simo is developing a supposed rep…it has gotten blown out of proportion imnsho. feh, that happened at a club race the wouldn’t have even called for a ride through or a call to the office.

  2. Chris says:

    >>feh, that happened at a club race the wouldn’t have even called for a ride through or a call to the office.

    LOL.. of course he wouldn’t, there’s not millions of dollars, the pressure from massive sponsors, and a Global audience.

    World Champ Lorenzo wouldn’t even have a career, if the powers that be at MotoGP decided to get all tough about so called ‘reckless’ manoevers when he was trying to make his name in GP’s.

    The world is becoming more and more of a Nanny State. Ever safer cars, motorbikes with airbags FFS, this latest come-down on a hard-man racer is just more of the same.

    I think Rossi summed it up best. “MotoGP these days is full of Pussies”

    :)

  3. heineken says:

    Agreed. He shouldn’t have even gotten the ride-through. He’s been the focus of a lot of anger in the paddock, when others are doing the same or worse and getting away with it. Looking at you, Lorenzo. Had the person Jorge passed in such a manner been in too hot, they would have ate it as well (was it Dovi? I forget).

    Bad luck for Pedrosa, but he shares fault for it.

    And I was a Simoncelli-hater at the beginning of the season.

  4. Westward says:

    The incident was just as much Pedrosa’s fault as anything, after all, it was he that hit Simoncelli. Watching a recording frame by frame and in HD, Simoncelli comes into frame first with knee down well before Pedrosa does, having just placed his inside foot on the foot peg…

    Passions are high, I’d expect no less from the Spanish…

  5. Isaac Chavira says:

    They both hit the corner too hot because they are both very competitive and niether wanted to loose out to the other guy. I think pride came into play as well as complacancy. They both must have relied on that alien magic to round them out so they could squirt out of the turn but……….well you saw what happened.

    All this boils down to is perception. Yeah it looked bad but hey none of us were out there on the bikes and none of us are mind readers. So, there is no way to tell.

  6. Anonymous says:

    It is the person coming from behind that is responsible for a clean pass. Period. Unless there is a claim that Pedrosa saw and intentionally ran into him then Cimoncelli is at fault. This is yet another example of his almost systematic dissregard for safety. Yes, it is racing, but riders must follow at least the minimum safety rules in an otherwise dangerous sport. As far as the mandatory ” in club racing ” comment, look up Isidro Castillo. A perfect example of a bad pass, executed by a rider with a history of overly aggresive racing resulting in death and in a “club” race. These kind of passes are unnecesary and not good racing in any venue, class or discipline. Cimocelli shows a pattern for dissregarding consequnces whether they be financial, safety, or mortal and that is why Dorna is taking him out back for a flogging.

  7. joe says:

    Simoncelli was clearly past and in the turn, it looked like Pedrosa stood the bike up after already entering the corner, maybe he didn’t think he could brake harder without washing the front? If he had committed to the turn and not stood the bike up he may have low sided instead of rear ending, or t-boning Simoncelli. Who knows, but it looked like a clean pass to me. I seem to remember Pedrosa making at least a few iffy passes in his time, with no penalties. One involved a team mate in line for the championship, hmm.

  8. DucracerX says:

    Everyone of you IDIOTS above are just that. Idiots talking out of the hole in your body that doesnt think!! Marco didnt have the line. Dani did!! Marco was late coming into the corner and late on the brakes hoping to pass Dani in the apex. Dani did nothing wrong. Dani was text book. Marco F’d it all up.

  9. Chris says:

    DucracerX you have more issues than the whole GP paddock combined.

  10. Other Sean says:

    LOL, I’m with DucracerX, and I’m floored by how many people think it was no harm no foul. Simoncelli shoved it in there and Dani had absolutely no time to react. And nobody has been a bigger Dani Pedrosa critic than me. I like Simoncelli, but he’s getting what he deserves.

  11. Keith says:

    heh, seems ducracerx has issues with percecption. Dani biffed it…period, his standing the bike up is proof. The collision was just a mistiming on both their parts. IF you can’t see that, well you have issues with judging corner entry on the track and the street.

  12. DarN says:

    Seems like almighty managers (Puig) and sponsors (Repsol) do not win championships after all…Now, if Dorna gets involved, maybe together they can win one for little Dani. Obviously, he cannot do it on his own.

  13. DanG says:

    I like Simoncelli a lot, i met him at the Indy Museum in ’08, super nice guy… he was just there taking in the sights. And while I’m glad that Pedrosa got taken out… I think Simo was a little out of whack on the pass attempt. In trying to pass on the outside without giving Pedrosa any room on the inside, he forced the contact and the crash. The ride through penalty was highly unusual, but the right thing to do.

  14. heineken says:

    Not that I can read minds, but I have a feeling Dani was intentionally into that corner a bit hot, so that he could drift out and push Simoncelli out mid-turn. Seems to me he didn’t think Marco could brake any later than he, let alone turn it in at that speed. Dani got in over his head, wasn’t comfortable cranking it over at the speed he was going and chickened.

    And DucracerX, you might have a few internet tough-guy issues. Just sayin’.

  15. Batty says:

    All good points raised. Apart from Ducracerx. Dude, this is not a f-u forum. Mum’s calling you for school, so run along now.

    What happens next with Race Direction @ Catalunya will be interesting, as it will set a precedent for all racing that follows. In racing, someone is going to try a hard pass on you. Fact of life! Did people also watch the previous race where Simo tried a similar pass, cornering around the outside of Stoner ? Stoner instantly backed off, held the line and eventually went on for a podium. This is Racing! When Simo did the same thing to Dani, I just think Dani freaked out a little bit and maybe, just maybe, could have saved it a little better – given his experience and skills.

  16. Isaac Chavira says:

    DucracerX,

    Way to be a troll. And I seriously doubt you have a Ducati parked in the garage. It would be more believable that you owned a ‘Big Wheel’.

  17. 76 says:

    Simo had the pace but rolled the dice and actually came out of it, thats it. Earth to everyone, they were racing, not only at the very pinnacle of the sport but on machines that are identical in performance. Margins are going to be slim, that is a simple fact especially now with the current GP format.

    It really gets to me when people say oh he could have waited? For what? There are so many different variables in racing GP, wait till next corner? maybe perdrosa takes him out, maybe next corner he forces and lowsides, wait till next lap, when your mapping automatically cuts your fuel by 15% so you can finish the race, yes stoner could not even make his slowdown lap, why he ran out of gas….when your racing you see a gap, chance, mistake and you take it, if you don’t well then your simply not racing.

    Leave this F1 Bullshit alone and get back to GP the way it should be, not about rules, being nice, and crying because pedrosa is injured, I can tell you this much, it dosent take an itailian to broke babybones, he does it every year, count them… now lets get cat on’!

  18. DarN says:

    The truth is – there are two kinds of riders: ones like Stoner,Pedrosa or Gibernau – they are great once they are in the front of the pack but freak out when someone gets too close to them. The other group – Rossi, Simoncelli, Lorenzo – they love hand to hand combat and that what racing is for me.

  19. Philip says:

    DarN, I agree with you except on adding JLo to that second group. He’s without a doubt one of the “pussies” Rossi talked about. Motegi and Valencia last year come to mind. And for what it’s worth bitching to the media and race commission about Sic this year makes him the biggest prick in motogp. More fitting than that “1″ plate would be “douche” on his front fairing.

  20. Batty says:

    Philip, right on the money. JLo gives me the shits too. I love to watch him comically stuff up his post race celebrations though. Also….I’m an aussie, but I wish stoner would STFU. Sometimes, his mouth outweighs his ability ;)

  21. DarN says:

    @Philip
    You are right. I included him in this group only for his ability to come from behind which the other group seems to lack. By no means I am thrilled by his comments / off truck antics (I think confrontation with Simo was pretty comical – just showed what a spoiled kid he is when things do not go his way)…

  22. buellracerx says:

    Racing’s a contact sport. Just ask Eslick.

    Simo’s move was legit & CONSISTENT w/ past laps.