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.

WSBK: Close Group Vies for Win in Race 1 at Assen

04/26/2010 @ 11:07 am, by Jensen Beeler1 COMMENT

WSBK: Close Group Vies for Win in Race 1 at Assen  Johnny Rea WSBK Race 1 560x300

The results of Race 1 at Assen may not be a huge surprise for race fans, but the racing that took place to get those results surely was. The first race of World Superbike’s stop in mayonnaise country saw some strong showings from hometown favorites, and some disappointments from WSBK greats. This trend in the 2010 season seems to be the norm this year, which means great racing for WSBK fans. With five racers vying for the win and only a handful of laps to go, you’ll be disappointed if you didn’t catch this race and its conclusion.

Riding on the Ten Kate HANNspree Honda, Johnny Rea took Race 1 with a comfy one second lead. Don’t let the lap times fool you though, Rea was under pressure from a bevy of riders up-until the last few laps, which saw at one point five riders with a possible step on the podium. The only trace of this contention can be seen in the half second spread that covers second through fourth place.

With Ten Kate Honda calling Holland home, and their facility a short trip away from Assen, it shouldn’t be surprising that Rea walked away as Race 1′s winner. It also shouldn’t be surprising that former Ten Kate rider (not to mention former WSBK Champion) James Toseland finished the race second. The pair have obviously lapped around Assen numerous times, and were able to figure out the newly re-done Ruskenhoek chicane quicker than the rest of the pack.

Strong racing was seen from the likes of Leon Camier & Carlos Checa, both of whom having come out of the woodwork this season to be formidable riders. Camier is often overshadowed by his more successful teammate Max Biaggi, who also had a fairly good day with a 6th place finish in Race 1, but has been consistently finishing strong this season. Checa on the otherhand is finding new life in his aging career, and has been the Ducati to beat at all the WSBK stops this season. The accomplished rider is not only showing the younger kids a few new tricks, but he’s also leaving many to wonder what’s going on in the Xerox Ducati camp (Haga 10th, Fabrizio 13th in Race 1).

Another strong outing came from Troy Corser, who did the BMW squad proud this weekend, leading the race at one point. Corser would finish Race 1 sixth, but definitively proved that the BMW could be made competitive in the series, after just finishing its rookie season.

With Leon Haslam finishing a disappointing 11th place, it would seem a new points leader would be crowned at Assen, but only time can tell.

World Superbike Highlights from Race 1 at Assen, Netherlands:

Results from Race 1 of World Superbike at Assen, Netherlands:

PosNo.RiderCountryBikeDiff
165J. ReaGBRHonda CBR1000RR-
252J. ToselandGBRYamaha YZF R11.106
32L. CamierGBRAprilia RSV4 1000 F.1.249
47C. ChecaESPDucati 1098R1.548
511T. CorserAUSBMW S1000 RR2.738
63M. BiaggiITAAprilia RSV4 1000 F.2.813
796J. SmrzCZEDucati 1098R6.296
835C. CrutchlowGBRYamaha YZF R112.022
967S. ByrneGBRDucati 1098R12.146
1041N. HagaJPNDucati 1098R19.753
1191L. HaslamGBRSuzuki GSX-R100022.204
1266T. SykesGBRKawasaki ZX 10R22.282
1384M. FabrizioITADucati 1098R22.780
1450S. GuintoliFRASuzuki GSX-R100023.364
1599L. ScassaITADucati 1098R37.097
1657L. LanziITADucati 1098R39.467
1777C. VermeulenAUSKawasaki ZX 10R46.468
1815M. BaioccoITAKawasaki ZX 10R57.170
1995R. HaydenUSAKawasaki ZX 10R1’01.634
2076M. NeukirchnerGERHonda CBR1000RR1’04.295
RET23B. ParkesAUSHonda CBR1000RR13 Laps
RET111R. XausESPBMW S1000 RR14 Laps

Comment:

  1. Bas says:

    Holland is not mayonaise country, thats Belgium! Holland is from windmills and wooden shoes. Keep your facts right. Besides that, great website!!!!!