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.

Video: Yamaha Welcomes Back Valentino Rossi

01/03/2013 @ 12:43 pm, by David Emmett24 COMMENTS

Video: Yamaha Welcomes Back Valentino Rossi yamaha welcome home vale 635x356

There is no real mystery to why Yamaha signed Valentino Rossi. His seven MotoGP titles are a sign of his undisputed talent, and despite two years in the wilderness at Ducati, he is expected to be competitive from the start of the 2013 MotoGP season.

But with the reigning MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo already signed, there was more to Yamaha’s decision than the need for a competitive rider. Marketing also played a massive role in the decision to sign the Italian, with reports that the decision came mainly after pressure from the marketing department, and in face of resistance from the people inside Yamaha’s racing department.

Whatever the truth of the matter, Yamaha will be sure to maximize their return on investment in Valentino Rossi. Rossi’s massive popularity in key markets such as Indonesia, Thailand and India mean that he could be a significant factor in expanding market share and sales in those regions, as well as consolidating Yamaha’s position in contracting sports bike markets such as Europe and the US.

Today, Yamaha took advantage of the first opportunity to use the selling power of Valentino Rossi to their advantage. The factory posted a video on Youtube welcoming Rossi back to the fold. The video runs through the highlights of Rossi’s career, ending with photo highlights of his return to Yamaha at the Valencia test in November 2012. It will be a fascinating time for both Yamaha and Valentino Rossi.

Source: Yamaha (YouTube)

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

Comment:

  1. Sixty7 says:

    Lets not beat around the bush here but it was his decision and money loads of money to quit yamaha so why are they welcoming the ***b back…???

  2. Fafpak says:

    @Sixty7 I don’t care about the reasons he left. I don’t care about the reasons he came back. All I care about and hope is that his return to Yamaha should add some spice to the GP races. Looking forward to good battles in 2013.

  3. 1198freak says:

    Well said Fafpak, the history with Yamaha doesn’t matter, all that matters is if he is competitive on the bike or not.. MotoGP needs competitive rider/bike packages more than anything else. For me, Rossi getting back on the Yamaha and how Spies does on the Ducati are going to be the most interesting things about MotoGP this year.

  4. tyler says:

    1:30.. “Where reunited”

    whoops…

  5. Mark says:

    1198freak Rossi and Spies will be the most interesting things about MotoGP in 2013? Each to their own I guess but I’m more interested in Marquez causing trouble for the established stars. Rossi will be competitive – there’s no question in my mind.

  6. Sixty7 says:

    @Fafpak

    Well lets hope he gets his arse kicked big time…..wake up people he’s a has been (and don’t bang on about titles that he’s won…thats wearing very thin these days) that much has been proven for the last 2 seasons…..must have been embarrassing to go back to Yamaha and ask if he could have a contract…lol JB is embarrassed to go back to Yamaha….2yrs to retirement can’t wait.

  7. Damo says:

    @Sixty7

    I can see you don’t know a whole lot about racing, motorcycle or high level riding, do you?

  8. FernandoARG says:

    I would love and give everything I’ve ever done and accomplished to be as embarrassed as VR and or JB.

  9. Sixty7 says:

    @Damo

    I do know a bit, but do believe the series would survive without #46 theres enough talent in the series with the up and coming young riders…..the trouble is theres to much BS that go’s with #46, when he was at Ducati he was more or less out of the championship and the racing just got on with it and was great racing (apart from if ur a fanboy that is…lol) I’m a Stoner fan, and Bayliss before that and Doohan before that I like my racers to be racers and not there for all the BS that go’s with u know who…..u catch my drift..???

  10. Halfie30 says:

    After Rossi’s desperate move on Sete in the first race of ’05, I really didn’t care much for Rossi. However, now I would like to see him show these kids one last time what the “old schoolers” can do. Now that he’s the under dog… Go Vale!!!!!

  11. smiler says:

    Well we will see how Lorenzo works under pressure. With Marquez, Rossi and finally Dani becoming a more mature and consistent rider. With Dovi on the Ducati and a few others making possible interesting viewing it might just be another mediocre season.
    67 likes his aussie racers. Stoner has gone prematurely. I really loved Bayliss in WSB but he had one good race in motogp and Doohan was just a machine. Presumably you don’t like Sheene, Simoncelli, Schwantz, Rainey who as well, like Rossi could race and had personalities. I would take capability and personality everytime.
    Off to WSB fulltime and one eye on motoGP.

  12. Mike Lewis says:

    @Sixty7; Casey? That you?

  13. crash test says:

    if you can stick out the propaganda video until the end, there is a more interesting video of Rossi testing the “2013 M1″ in what amounts to a very wet day.

  14. I respect Rossi for his riding talent and his past accomplishments. But, I lost all respect for the man when he felt so threatened by the arrival of a new teammate (Lorenzo), that he put a wall between the two of them, and refused to share any technical data.

    I lost all respect for Jeremy Burgess when he pontificated that he would walk into Ducati, and fix the Desmosedici in “80 seconds”, dismissing the super-human talent of Casey Stoner. How’d that work out for ya’ Jeremy?

    Rossi’s got his work cut out for him this year. Lorenzo has shown what the Yamaha will do. Rossi, back on the exact same bike, will have to “put up, or shut up.”

  15. Faust says:

    I’m so sick of all the Rossi hate, it’s really old. Sixty7… really? What a loser. The guy is good for the sport, and that’s just a fact. Of course this makes sense for Yamaha. Have you seen the mostly blank race livery they’ve been running since Vale left? What happened to the Fiat money when he left Yamaha? The absence of sponsors is bad for their race program, and that’s that. I like Lorenzo too, but the man has almost no personality. The fact of the matter is that the only person who figured out how to ride the Ducati GP bikes is Stoner and that’s it. It doesn’t make Rossi or Hayden poor riders, but rather is a testament to just how special of a talent Stoner was. I really don’t understand all the hate being aimed at Vale. If he’s guilty of anything, it’s that his (and Jeremy Burgess’) ego fooled him into thinking he could fix the inherent flaws in Ducati’s GP program. End of the day, Rossi is not Stoner and that’s ok. Colin Edwards says Vale gets his vote for Greatest Of All Time, and that is a bmore important endorsement than what any of the internet morons say.

  16. Snickerty says:

    Here here…
    Nicely put Faust.

    Even people who know nothing about bikes or bike racing know Rossi.
    His power lies in his universal popularity with the masses.

    Only bike riders with tall poppy syndrome would have the gall to knock one who has done so much for the sport we all love.
    Sad really….

  17. TexusTim says:

    I think there are more than a feww racess left in the tank for 46..these friggin hater’s that are spouting the hopes for failure must have just started riding then finaly got speed chanel ya know.cuz if you have been following the doctor and seen most races either on tv or on moto gp .com..you would not be embarassing yourselves so much right now.
    anyone notice as rossi gets older he looks more and more like steve mcqueen?

  18. Sixty7 says:

    @Faust

    Less of the name calling “theres a name for people like urself Keyboard warriors a bit of a big man behind the key board people like urself just make me laugh…..

  19. Sixty7 says:

    @Snickerty

    We all love…..I DON@T F**kin think so m8…..typical rossi fanboy BS…lol

  20. Sixty7 says:

    @TexusTim

    I’ve been riding for over 20yrs I’ll have u know…….crawl back under ur rock….

  21. Westward says:

    I see a tenth title for Rossi and a more competitive and title threatening Spies…
    I also see Pedrosa talking yet another backseat to another more talented pilot…

    I hope Dovizioso does well and Ianonne too.

    Would also like to see Depuniet and Edwards on a factory ride in the future, be it a BMW, Aprilia, or Suzuki. Those two should be teammates…

  22. L2C says:

    Sixty7 probably hates Micheal Jordan, Muhammad Ali, Roger Federer and all the other greatest champions in the history of their sports.

    He also must not like having fun. Except to troll, of course.

  23. L2C says:

    (Grammar Nazis, please don’t hurt me.)

  24. Michael says:

    Moto GP has become soooo boring since they got rid of the 500′s and the potential for high sides. If they are going to stick to these neutered traction control cycles only have riders who can stick together through every turn, if the pack can’t stay together where’s the race. It just turns into watching 20 indivual riders getting around the track at their pace. BORING BORING BORING.