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: Another Nail-Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island

02/28/2010 @ 9:39 pm, by Jensen Beeler9 COMMENTS

WSBK: Another Nail Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island WSBK Race 2 Phillip Island Checa 560x351

Phillip Island served up another nail-biter for WSBK fans this Sunday. With the race winner making a last lap pass, no one could have guessed the top four finishers in this race. With a few familiar faces, along with a few new hopefuls, wrapping up the first stop on the World Superbike Championship only wets the appetite further for the rest of the WSBK season. Rider quotes, video highlights, and race standings after the jump.

Starting the race out early was the surprise duo of Alstare Suzuki’s Haslam and Guintoli. Haslam has been the surprise entry this weekend at Phillip Island, winning not only the Superpole qualifying event, but also Race 1. Even more surprising was the Frenchman Sylvain Guintoli’s presence up front throughout the race. Despite his terrific run, Guintoli finished under half a second behind Michel Fabrizio, who finished third.

Talking about his top-form result, Guintoli said the following:

I have really enjoyed today and it’s been great fun. I can’t remember the last time I was leading a world championship race, so to lead quite a lot of race two was a great feeling and now I want to do it again. When I was in front, I felt comfortable and I knew I could keep up a good pace. Everything felt very smooth and it was all going to plan until I made a small mistake and Leon and then Carlos went through…My pace was good, but I was too far off the leaders, but I am learning about WSBK race pace and also the fact that the races are longer than what I have been used to. I am very happy with all the work we’ve done and am enjoying riding this bike so much. It was nice to get a trophy and I hope that it will just be the start of many to come. I am looking forward to Portimao and my next trophy.

Perhaps the only thing that could overshadow the good results from Astare Suzuki is the Race 2 win by privateer Carlos Checa. Checa, who has an impressive racing resume, had a great week at Phillip Island, and showed strong times during the practice and qualifying events. The Ducati’s were in top form throughout the weekend, but Checa took the lead on the last lap from Leon Haslam, and drove it home to the finish line. The private team upset certainly should wake up the factory supported teams, namely Xerox Ducati. Talking about his surprise win, Checa said the following:

”The second race was perfect. In race one we chose a tyre that was perhaps too hard for the conditions and I found it hard to brake. In race two we selected a better tyre and I could brake much more strongly, I also had a very good pace and was able to pass riders fairly easily. My style of riding actually seemed to mean that tyre wear was less of a problem for me than for some other riders. By the last lap I was up in second and I could finally get pass Haslam. I wanted to pass him earlier but it was impossible and he didn’t leave me space to pass until the very end. I am of course extremely happy with the result, it is my first race with the Althea team and on the Ducati 1198 and we have a good package with which to fight this season. My thanks go to the entire team for their hard work and dedication.”

World Superbike makes its next stop at Portimao, Portugal on March 28th. Check out below for race highlights (see Vermeulen’s scary crash into the tire barriers!), and race standings for Race 2 at Phillip Island.

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

Pos No. Rider Country Bike Diff
1 7 C. Checa ESP Ducati 1098R -
2 91 L. Haslam GBR Suzuki GSX-R1000 0.307
3 84 M. Fabrizio ITA Ducati 1098R 0.434
4 50 S. Guintoli FRA Suzuki GSX-R1000 0.837
5 41 N. Haga JPN Ducati 1098R 3.453
6 65 J. Rea GBR Honda CBR1000RR 11.530
7 11 T. Corser AUS BMW S1000 RR 12.026
8 3 M. Biaggi ITA Aprilia RSV4 1000 F. 13.068
9 35 C. Crutchlow GBR Yamaha YZF R1 14.401
10 52 J. Toseland GBR Yamaha YZF R1 14.707
11 2 L. Camier GBR Aprilia RSV4 1000 F. 14.743
12 67 S. Byrne GBR Ducati 1098R 14.851
13 57 L. Lanzi ITA Ducati 1098R 15.143
14 25 J. Brookes AUS Honda CBR1000RR 30.947
15 88 A. Pitt AUS BMW S1000 RR 41.855
16 76 M. Neukirchner GER Honda CBR1000RR 48.844
17 31 V. Iannuzzo ITA Honda CBR1000RR 1’06.866
18 95 R. Hayden USA Kawasaki ZX 10R 1’07.751
RET 15 M. Baiocco ITA Kawasaki ZX 10R 5 Laps
RET 66 T. Sykes GBR Kawasaki ZX 10R 9 Laps
RET 77 C. Vermeulen AUS Kawasaki ZX 10R 15 Laps
RET 96 J. Smrz CZE Ducati 1098R 16 Laps


  1. RT @Asphalt_Rubber: WSBK: Another Nail-Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island – #motorcycle <They were both GREAT races!

  2. WSBK: Another Nail-Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island

  3. Michael Bush says: WSBK: Another Nail-Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island: Motorcycle news, Industry Rumors, MotoG…

  4. Ducati Desmo says:

    WSBK: Another Nail-Biter for Race 2 at Phillip Island

  5. Will says:

    Real good stuff!, a pair of fabulous races to start the year off correctly.

  6. Harumph says:

    I was totally pulling for Guintoli, he really pulled it out for a while. Checa’s pass was pretty satisfying though.
    Both great races, agreed.

  7. CBR600RR 09 says:

    Looking at this table and nothing more, the Kwaka’s SUCK!

    And bloody hell Chris get it together! Learn to ride, not crash! (From an Aussie)

  8. marty says:

    chris was riding the arse off that Kwaka until he crashed out in race 2.

    he was up to 4th after the start and really looked in a good groove. crash looked really bad.

  9. Smith says:

    Phillip Island, i like this sircuit.