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 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.

WSBK: Race Results for Race 2 at Phillip Island

02/26/2012 @ 5:06 pm, by Jensen Beeler12 COMMENTS

WSBK: Race Results for Race 2 at Phillip Island Carlos Checa WSBK Phillip Island 2 635x409

As is the custom with World Supebike racing and with Race 1 out of the way, the WSBK grid lined up to it all again. Treating fans to a double-dose of motorcycle racing, you would think that the second race would be a repeat of the previous, but it was anything but that. Exciting from the first lap to the very last, the 2012 World Superbike Championship was off to a great start with its season-opener at Phillip Island, Australia. Continue on for results.

Mimicking the first race, Tom Sykes got off to a great start to take his Kawasaki from the pole position to the head of the pack at the start of Race 2. Hot on his heels though was Max Biaggi, who immediately got the crowd on its feet as he ran off the race course at Turn 1. Able to keep his Aprilia upright, Biaggi rejoined the race, and made one of the most stellar comebacks possible in the sport. While Biaggi worked his way through the WSBK field, the race was on with Rea and Checa getting past Sykes. Several laps later, Checa took over from the Englishman and broke away from the rest of the field uncontested. With the Kawasaki’s now holding fourth and fifth, Sykes would end up being the lone bannerman for Team Green, as Lascorz crashed out from the race.

Seemingly set to take the third step on the podium, Sykes had to contest with a charging Biaggi. Holding the Roman Emperor off for several laps, Sykes finally succumbed to Biaggi’s superior speed, and fell again to fourth place. Though unable to catch Carlos Checa, Biaggi was able to get past Johnny Rea — completing his comeback from last to second place over the 22 lap race distance. That battle put a carrot in front of Sykes, who was able to regain contact with Rea as well, and finally pass his fellow countryman as the two came onto the straightaway for the final time. Checa, Biaggi, and Skyes —  three very different ways to get on a WSBK podium.

Race Results from World Superbike Race 2 at Phillip Island, Australia:

Pos. No. Rider Country Bike Diff.
1 7 C. CHECA ESP Ducati 1098R  -
2 3 M. BIAGGI ITA Aprilia RSV4 Factory 5.707
3 66 T. SYKES GBR Kawasaki ZX-10R 12.521
4 65 J. REA GBR Honda CBR1000RR 12.655
5 91 L. HASLAM GBR BMW S1000 RR 18.179
6 33 M. MELANDRI ITA BMW S1000 RR 18.831
7 121 M. BERGER FRA Ducati 1098R 18.939
8 58 E. LAVERTY IRL Aprilia RSV4 Factory 19.478
9 4 H. AOYAMA JPN Honda CBR1000RR 19.554
10 59 N. CANEPA ITA Ducati 1098R 26.289
11 96 J. SMRZ CZE Ducati 1098R 26.479
12 2 L. CAMIER GBR Suzuki GSX-R1000 29.145
13 34 D. GIUGLIANO ITA Ducati 1098R 36.482
14 87 L. ZANETTI ITA Ducati 1098R 38.113
15 25 J. BROOKES AUS Suzuki GSX-R1000 43.234
16 67 B. STARING AUS Kawasaki ZX-10R 43.526
17 35 R. DE ROSA ITA Honda CBR1000RR 53.929
RET 17 J. LASCORZ ESP Kawasaki ZX-10R 12 Laps
RET 50 S. GUINTOLI FRA Ducati 1098R 13 Laps
RET 44 D. SALOM ESP Kawasaki ZX-10R 14 Laps
RET 20 D. JOHNSON AUS BMW S1000 RR 18 Laps

Source: WSBK


  1. SBPilot says:

    Incredible performance by Checa, simply class act. To win the second race after the high side he had is some serious mental focus and strength. Not to mention pain tolerance, all at his ripe age of what is it now, 39?

    WSBK looks like it’s gonna be killer this year though. Too much awesome in the first round to even speak of!

  2. Dc4go says:

    Great races today loved watching Rea trying to stay on the podium!!! Great job Checa and Biaggi for making a spectacular comeback in race two!!! Can’t wait for the Imola!!!!!!!!

  3. MikeD says:

    Ducati: Not bad at all for “a vintage bike and jockey”, is it now ? Can’t wait to see the 1199 race.
    Aprilia: It still have plenty of go it seems, they sure made their homework with this one. Can’t wait to see the next RSV4.
    Kawasaki: Looks like they got the SHIT together…or getting there. (^_^)

    And of course, mad props to the pilots, w/out them there would be no race happening.

  4. BBQdog says:

    Looks the RSV4 is by far out the best bike in the field. Stable cornering, nimble, enough top speed. If Biaggi doesn’t do stupid things like last year Checa is going to get a hard season. It was not by accident he flew off the first race.

  5. Lumengrid says:

    What a great session it was!

    Thumbs up for Melandri, race 1 was awesome, race 2 not bad either. Its nice to see that he can pull it togheter :)

  6. "@Asphalt_Rubber: WSBK: Race Results for Race 2 at Phillip Island – #motorcycle"

  7. Damo says:


    Have to agree, that RSV4 was in beast mode on Sunday.

    I am not a huge Biaggi fan at all, but no one can deny that comeback from last to 2nd was beyond brilliant. First race of the season and I am already pumped.

  8. Bryan says:

    Loved both races! It’s nice watching racing where multiple riders/manufacturers are competitive. There is parody in WSBK that MotoGP only dreams of. Checa had guts to come back from that highside to win in race two. I wish they would take the 6kg of extra weight off of the Ducati’s though. Checa didn’t win last year due to a power or top speed advantage, he won by being smart and smooth and preserving tires better than the other guys. To add 6kg to a bike that already had a disadvantage on the straights and is the oldest design in the field seems a little unfair.

  9. AK says:

    Biaggi was on fire… Love that RSV4

  10. Keith says:

    Hopefully, I say HOPEFULLY the rest of the season is just as exciting.

  11. John says:

    Parody or parity? Either way, the racing in Worldsupers is simply great. I hope MotoGP can produce half the excitement.

  12. Westward says:

    Biaggi was on fire, only because Checa exploded… As long as Checa and his Ducati can keep the rubber on the asphalt, Biaggi and his Aprilia have not a chance, race 2 reveals that…