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.

Living the Dream – A Photographer’s Story: Qatar

Imagine if just for once you didn’t have to stick to your usual nine-to-five job. Instead you were able to do the one job you’ve always wanted to do, but any number of things (it’s usually money) have stood in the way. This is exactly the situation I found myself in six months ago when the company I had worked at, for the last 14 years, decided to close, making everyone redundant. This decision did not come as a surprise; in fact, I had been hanging around for the last few years hoping that it would happen, as I had a plan. Fast-forward six months and I have just finished photographing the opening round of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship in Qatar. The plan is starting to unfold.

AMA Daytona Sportbike VIR: Who Won Race 1?

08/17/2010 @ 4:15 pm, by Jensen Beeler14 COMMENTS

AMA Daytona Sportbike VIR: Who Won Race 1? AMA Pro Racing Race 1 VIR photo finish1

AMA Pro Racing had to use this photo finish to decide who won Race 1 of the Daytona Sportbike series at Virginia International Raceway this weekend. Coming up to the finish line #30 Bobby Fong is sling-shotting past #36 Martin Cardenas, as both riders vie for the race win. Official standings place the victory margin at 0.001 seconds. Can you make the call as to who won? Race results after the jump.

Race Result from Race 1 of the AMA Pro Racing’s Daytona Sportbike Race at Virginia International Raceway:

Pos No. Rider Bike Interval
1 30 Bobby Fong Ducati 848 23 Laps
2 36 Martin Cardenas Suzuki GSX-R600 0.001
3 1 Danny Eslick Suzuki GSX-R600 0.363
4 6 Tommy Aquino Yamaha YZF-R6 1.666
5 15 Steve Rapp Ducati 848 2.220
6 60 Michael Beck Ducati 848 4.529
7 34 Michael Barnes Yamaha YZF-R6 8.489
8 133 Kyle Wyman Yamaha YZF-R6 12.343
9 7 Fernando Amantini Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R 14.916
10 2 Dane Westby Yamaha YZF-R6 14.940
11 32 Santiago Villa Suzuki GSX-R600 25.807
12 38 Kris Turner Suzuki GSX-R600 25.931
13 120 Jodi Christie Honda CBR600RR 35.918
14 811 Michael Morgan Suzuki GSX-R600 36.354
15 55 Chris Fillmore Suzuki GSX-R600 37.494
16 13 Melissa Paris Yamaha YZF-R6 40.585
17 78 Reese Wacker Suzuki GSX-R600 53.958
18 461 Abe Stacey Suzuki GSX-R600 22 Laps
19 175 Sam Rozynski Yamaha YZF-R6 0.892
20 57 Cory West Suzuki GSX-R600 19 Laps
21 210 Paul Allison Yamaha YZF-R6 16 Laps
22 213 David White Kawasaki ZX-6R 14 Laps
23 54 P. J. Jacobsen Suzuki GSX-R600 11 Laps
24 119 Jeff Wood Yamaha YZF-R6 10 Laps
25 4 Clinton Seller Yamaha YZF-R6 2 Laps
26 47 Josh Day Yamaha YZF-R6 43.637
27 8 Josh Herrin Yamaha YZF-R6 2:59.537

Source: AMA Pro Racing

Comment:

  1. Lefty says:

    AMA racing has been quite good this year …

  2. dp says:

    Maybe you are right Lefty. But as it stands, who and where are the stars? If I wanted to go watch a bunch of no names, I would go to my local track. I wouldn’t spend my time or money paying for an AMA sanctioned event, and the attendance base would probably be about the same. The problem remains that all the talent has left, even the old ‘factory’ riders that are left (Hayden, Hayes, etc) should be cleaning up, but they are not. I also get tired of watching the same bike (GSXRs) make up the top 9 places out of 10. The AMA has succeded in killing superbike, as well as the support classes.
    Sorry for the rant, I just needed to get that off my chest.

  3. Westy says:

    Actually these guys are in Daytona Sportbike class, not Superbike. Hayes, Hayden and Ben Bostrom are cleaning up the superbike races. VIR race 1 saw Hayden win by .004 of a second over Ben. Hayden almost tucked the front after crossing the line (finish is on a curve) and had to stand it up and run into the grass at 170 mph! Can’t say the series isn’t entertaining this year…

  4. Rob says:

    dp – who cares if there are huge names. Right now the most interesting racing has been AMA and Moto2. These kids may not be starts yet (in the Daytona Sportbike group anyway) but in due time, the best of the best will go farther just as Spies has. Watch the AMA racing at VIR and watch the Brno GP and tell me which was more interesting. GP is so boring I almost don’t care to watch the races anymore.

  5. AMA Daytona Superbike VIR: Who Won Race 1? – http://aspha.lt/19v #motorcycle

  6. buellracerx says:

    dp – maybe if you take time to actually start watching the races, you could make an educated statement as to the current state of the AMA classes. I was at VIR; it was some of the best racing I’ve seen (well, in DSB anyway).

    Are you and is everybody else entertained to watch a Rossi-like character come to a race & clean up??? Cleanup races are boring, I don’t want to watch some guy running up front all by himself. Give me a race like DSB last year @ MID-OHIO between Eslick & Hacking; now that’s excitement.

    Oh, and for the record, the Eslick’s GSXR was getting owned @ VIR in terms of power by both the R6 and 848. Maybe if you started watching DSB you’d sing a different tune…

  7. johnrdupree says:

    Wow, they need a better finish line camera.

  8. Ken says:

    ^^ yeah i thought this was a picture from 1930 or something until i noticed it was new age bikes

  9. Steveo says:

    The camera is actually very expensive it takes hundreds of photos and compresses them together at the finish line hence its grainy but accurate out come. It would be extremely tough to decipher one photo snapped at a given point instead they take 100′s and then bunch them together to make a whole image as the bikes cross the line. Heres a link.

    http://www.finishlynx.com/products/finishlynx/overview/body.htm

  10. Tricky says:

    That race was awesome! Far more entertaing than MotoGP. I don’t think dp actually watched it or he would have a much different opinion… I mean there were 3 848′s in the top 6 and only 2 GSXRs!!! :) and the finish was literally to the wire! Great race!

  11. jamesy says:

    It looks like a slightly flat area was photoshop’d onto Martin’s tire. Nothing like a good conspiracy!
    But I agree with Rob; Moto 2 and AMA have had spectacular racing this year much to my very pleasant surprise.
    Anyone who thinks Eslick is not a racer’s racer is delusional. Watch that kid go on to more prestigious series. And Cardenas is spectacular to say the least.
    Westy can go watch club races if that works for him, but having participated at that level, good as some guys were we didnt see that close of racing at the top. Not 20 to 40 spectacular passes per race, never!
    Bottomline: If that racing doesnt make you wanna grab your chair arms, you better check your pulse.

  12. jamesy says:

    OOOOPS sorry Westy!!!, I meant dp… apologies to all

  13. Sean Mitchell says:

    Steveo,
    I have no doubt you speak the truth, but I sure as hell can’t even tell from that picture!

  14. irksome says:

    After the debacle of last year I had given up on AMA racing, but this season has really changed my thinking, in particular the level of racing in Sportbike. These kids have delivered again and again; and is anybody doubting Eslick’s abilities now that he’s not “cheating” on an 1190cc Buell?
    Even Superbike has been an eye-opener; enduring (rather than watching) the Yoshi/Mladin Show had gotten pretty damn old. And I’m old enough to remember Mladin on a Ducati, Duhamel on the HD VR, Russell, Polen, all the way back to the pre-NASCAR track configuration at Laconia.

    And btw, Mr. Fong got it by a mile…