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.

Are You the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 848?

05/18/2012 @ 12:21 pm, by Jensen Beeler24 COMMENTS

Are You the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 848? 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 848 spy photo 635x423

The Hypermotard series is growing long in the tooth, and while everyone expects the Ducati’s smaller Superbike to get revamped in 2013, here is some evidence to suggest that the big news at EICMA this year will be an all-new Hypermotard model. Expected to have a water-cooled motor, best guesses would have the new Hypermotard using the 849cc Testastretta power plant, which would dovetail nicely with the supersport-sized Superbike getting an ~800cc variant of the new Superquadro motor.

Ducati has made a tradition of using its aging Superbike motors in the rest of its line-up, which helps the Italian company extend production run efficiencies and amortize tooling costs. The same technique was first tried with success on the Ducati Streetfighter line, and has since been used on the Ducati Multistrada 1200 and Ducati Diavel. The motor in the 2013 Ducati Hypermotard 848 is surely the same lump that is found in the Ducati Streetfighter 848, which should make for a nice broad and useable power band, suitable for street/urban riding.

From the photo we can see that the trellis frame remains on the HM858, while the muffler is mounted using a traditional side-exhaust setup. The tail seems very similar to the Multistrada’s, with a luggage platform looking to be present. The handlebars also seem to retain the same foldable mirrors and hand guard arrangement found on the current Hypermotards.

Our last observation is that the fuel tank appears to be very minimalist, though it is unclear how much bodywork is missing in this shot (note: the huge gap near the motor’s chin). How this model will fit in Ducati’s model range, presuming that a smaller Multistrada is on the way as well, remains to be seen.

Source: Il Ducatista


  1. MotoLady says:

    I’d be willing to bet money that is actually going to be an 848 Multistrada, not Hyper.

  2. Peter says:

    What sense would this make? Just put a MTS 1200 in Urban mode and you’ve got a 100 hp bike.

  3. MotoLady says:

    And why would you make an 848 Hyper when there is already an 848 Streetfighter? They would be in direct competition. Furthermore, they would do it for all the people who don’t want to buy a 1200 cc multistrada. The Multistrada 620 was well received, and I know a lot of shorter/more petite folk that would like a smaller Multi.

  4. 2ndclass says:

    Given that an 848 Hyper could just be an 848 Streetfighter and/or Multi just with different bodywork and long travel suspension, it’s not really that silly an idea, different clothes and forks won’t exactly need a huge development expense.

  5. MotoLady says:

    Please tell me why they would make an 848 when there’s already a 796?

  6. Westward says:

    Some of us prefer 848 and 796 over 1100 and 1199…

    Also, depending on where you are located, taxes and insurance makes a bike under 1000cc’s more practical and cost effective…

    Maybe Spies should race an 800cc M1, at least he would stand a better chance at winning a race in MotoGP this year…

  7. FastBikeGear says:

    Great now they take the air cooled motor that they have displaced from the hypermotard and stick it in the frame of the 848 they took the water cooled motor out of, raise the clipons two inches, and give us the new light weight, low maintenance SuperSport many of us are wanting.

  8. Bern says:

    Motolady… Even though the displacement numbers are the close the performance aspects are completely different. The 848 mill would easily out perform the 1100 air cooled motor but has the every day ride-ability of the 796. I’m wondering with the versatility of the 848 11° engine if it wouldn’t make both the 796 & 1100 motors obsolete and then having the Hyper Motard run as a single displacement bike.

  9. ML says:

    @MotoLady: I’ll take you up on that bet. $1,000.00 to the charity of the winners choice.

    On another note, its good to see that perhaps all future ducati bikes will have a aluminum tank. =)

  10. MikeD says:

    I WANT to find this RELEVANT… (-_-)’
    Maybe i will after i see the final Product…right now is so MEH.

  11. Halfie 30 says:

    I’m with FastBikeGear… My ’05 800 SS needs an updated sister….

  12. AK says:

    I want mini Multi, ST or SS model .. :) if they didnt comeout with either I have to go with Triumph 800 or BMW 800GS.

  13. Damo says:


    That is what I was thinking.

    Make a single hypermotard with a liquid cooled, 15,000 adjustment interval motor. Keep the traction control and fancy trim off it to keep the price reasonable and you got a nice little bike, with a beefy yet controllable power band.

  14. default says:

    I would love to have this bike in this mule/test form. Bare aluminum, ridiculous exhaust. It just looks mean. Like something that would be in the new Road Warrior.

  15. Damo says:

    It would make for a great setup. I am so happy Ducati is getting away from 7,500 mile service intervals on all their models.

  16. MikeD says:

    Another thing…Ducati, IF U ARE LISTENING AT ALL…do something about your SHITTY FUEL TANKS ( both the swelling and the LACK of capacity PROBLEMS, thank u).

  17. mxs says:

    Another “great” bike using motard in their name …. pls no.

  18. Slappy Fishnecks says:

    So, we’ll have a more costly bike (4v), water cooling, heavier bike. I thought the 2v air cooled Ducatis were fun, simple, and light weight. Seems that abandoning the trellis frame, selling MTS at 20k USD and cruisers are Ducatis new cash market. Bye bye Ducati, I was done with you after the ballooning fuel tanks, but doubling up your product line with a Hyper next to a Streetfighter makes zero sense to me.

  19. spanishduc says:

    For those of the saying you don’t understand the streetfighter and the hyper, have you ridden both? I have. I was going to buy the hyper 1100 but my friend convinced me to wait for the 848 streetfighter, which I took on a nice long test ride last weekend. It’s better than it was, but for me, the seating position of the hyper is much better. The placement of the handlebars in relation to the seat and foot pegs is perfect for a tall guy like me (6’3″). The streetfighter felt like the 1100 monster – better than the 696 monster but no where close to as comfortable as the hyper, no matter how much you customize it. It comes down to what’s comfortable for each person and for me, the hyper is by far the best fit. Will I wait for this? Probably. But if I come across a screaming deal on an 1100 hyper, I’m buying it!

  20. Damo says:


    I am glad I am not the only one that puts ergonomics first on bikes. I have similar size issues (6’2″ 200lbs)

    You can always tell the sport riders that put miles down on their bike every year by caring about ergos an such, as opposed to the squids who think a bike like the Hyper is “underpowered”.

  21. FLABueller says:

    This has been getting tossed around on the Ducati forums the last several days. Most are pretty sure it’s an 848 Multi and not a Hyper. Look at the rack on tail section. That thing screams put a giant ugly box here and hang saddle bags from it’s sides.

    Spanishduc I just came across a smoking deal on zero mileage 08 1100 hyper for 7K. Absolutley loving this thing. Now if I could just unload this Buell LOL

  22. PATRYK says:

    In my opinion its 848 Multistrada. Thats realy good idea :)

  23. Laurence says:

    Being the owner of an 1100 evo sp, I have to tell you that anyone familiar with current Hypermotards doesnt want a new hyper that makes LESS torque, at a 5000..yes 5000.. higher RPM. You have redlined and shifted on a 1100 before a 848 motor reaches peak torque. This is trading massive low end grunt for high rpm higher speed performance. Great, but you sit perfectly upright with zero wind protection on a hyper. Extra speed isn’t a great thing.

  24. MikeD says:


    I would gladly give 2K rpm ( maybe more ) for 10lbs-ft more than what i have (SV1000N)….redlines suposedly @10K but she fades off quickly after 9K.
    U got it, not much point on having power so high in the Tach and so much top-end speed when your “windshield” consist of one round headlite and one tiny instrument cluster.

    I rarely go beyond 6K, so………………………………..I think i see an H-D on my future…LMAO.