The tip-off comes courtesy of renowned road racer Lee Johnston, who tweeted that the weather in California was just fine…while sitting next to the Brammo track trailer, and with a Brammo Empulse RR beside him (pictured above).
Belgian outfit Saroléa is back for the 2015 Isle of Man TT, after debuting the 2015 version of its SP7 electric superbike this past weekend. If you’re saying to yourself that the 2015 model looks very similar to the 2014 model, you are in fact correct, though the bikes are not actually identical.
The 2015 Saroléa SP7 has improved aerodynamics (namely a slimmer body), a revised center of gravity (for better handling), a reduction in weight (more carbon fiber and titanium parts), and proprietary fiber optic network that connect the vehicle control unit to the battery management system.
All of those changes are good for a 22 lbs overall reduction, but the biggest change though for 2015 is the new motor, which was built in-house and is rated at 150hp (down 25hp from last year’s machine).
We already know that Bimota plans to go racing at the 2015 Isle of Man TT (and other road races) with Brit Ben Wylie and American Brandon Cretu — the duo riding on a pair of Bimota BB3 superbikes.
What we didn’t know is that Bimota will make 60 replicas of these race bikes available to consumers, calling the machines the Bimota BB3 TTrofeo.
The BB3 TTrofeo bikes will have the same race livery as the road racing superbikes, along with “select performance upgrades” which we take to mean bolt-on goodies, not engine work.
The fourth iteration of the Japanese electric superbike, riders John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey should have potent weapons to tackle the Mountain Course with, come a few months’ time.
The main contender for the top podium spot, the Mugen Shinden Yon shows some modest changes from the Shinden San. The tailsection is clearly different in shape, as are the body panels on the front of the machine. We suspect, however, that the significant changes are beneath the skin.
Italy’s favorite boutique brand will be back at the Isle of Man TT races this year, with a two rider team that includes American Brandon Cretu.
Cretu and his teammate Ben Wylie will campaign for Bimota at the big four road races (North West 200, Isle of Man TT, Ulster Grand Prix, and Macau GP) on-board the Bimota BB3 superbike.
This is not the first time that Cretu and Wylie have raced together, having shared a pit while at the Wylie Racing team during the 2011 and 2012 Isle of Man TT races.
Though the Bimota BB3 was ruled ineligible for FIM events, the international road racing scene has no hang-ups letting the S1000RR-powered superbikes lineup on the starting grid.
I’m going to start the 2nd and final part of my 2014 photo retrospective with the image above of Marc Marquez. Taken at Woodcote during Sunday mornings warm up for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Woodcote was one of the most exhilarating sections of track I shot last year. The sensation of speed as the riders came past, back wheel sliding, only feet away was indescribable.
Mugen will have a new bike at the contest, named the Shinden Yon, “Yon” being “four” in Japanese, and the bike being the company’s fourth TT racer — like its lap times, Mugen’s engineers are very consitent with their naming conventions.
Little is known about the Shinden Yon, and Mugen is saying only that the machine is “newly developed to improve over last year’s model.”
The Isle of Man government is looking for an independent promoter that wishes to organize and commercialize the Isle of Man TT and Classic TT races, as well as develop a new global Isle of Man TT styled series.
This international “TT Series” would have road racing rounds that take place around the world, with the season culminating at the Isle of Man TT.
The nephew of Joey Dunlop has come into his own now as a racer, taking many of the race victories in the 2013 and 2014 seasons, and with a good ride underneath him, a sweep of the TT races is not outside the realm of possibilities.
Again we get a late answer, as we have news today that Michael Dunlop has signed with the Milwaukee Yamaha team for the 2015 Isle of Man TT.
As the countdown to the new season gathers momentum I thought I’d have a look back at some of my favourite photographs from 2014.
The image above of Scott Redding was taken as he came in for a tire change during qualifying at Le Mans. Sometimes the riders will disappear to the back of the garage during qualifying.
If you’re lucky they will stay on the bike while the crew get to work. If they do, it provides a great opportunity for a portrait as was the case here.