A 2WD Hybrid-Electric Motorcycle for the US Military?

In the coming years, US special forces may be riding a tw0-wheel drive, hybrid-electric, multi-fuel motorcycle co-developed by BRD Motorcycles and Logos Technologies. Helping make this project possible is a Small Business Innovation Research grant from DARPA. The goal is to make a single-track vehicle for US expeditionary and special forces that will be nearly silent in operation, yet also capable of traveling long distances. Details on the proposed machine are light, of course, but it sounds like the 2WD dirt bike will be based off the BRD RedShift MX (shown above), and use an electric drivetrain, as well as a multi-fuel internal combustion engine to achieve its goals.

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.

WSBK Online Video Pass & beIN Sport TV for the USA

01/28/2014 @ 10:45 am, by David Emmett15 COMMENTS

WSBK Online Video Pass & beIN Sport TV for the USA satellite dish 635x476

World Superbikes will be easier to watch for fans around the world this year. The World Superbike series has announced that it is to make an online video pass available to fans this season, making it possible to watch WSBK races live on the WorldSBK.com website, or rewatch them at leisure.

The update comes as part of revamping of the series website, bringing it closer inline to the MotoGP.com website, now that the series is firmly in Dorna’s hands.

The influence of Dorna is clear in the WorldSBK.com redesign. The layout has been adapted to echo the structure of the MotoGP.com website, and the video player is now identical to the one used on the MotoGP.com website.

Using a single player, and Dorna’s existing video infrastructue is what has made it possible for the World Superbike series to offer the online video streaming of races and archive of past videos.

Though the announcement on the WorldSBK.com website is light on details, it promises live coverage of every weekend, including streaming of races, interviews with riders and ‘exclusive video content’. It will likely feature a similar service to that of MotoGP.com video subscribers, which includes an extremely comprehensive archive.

Two questions remain unanswered: what will the video pass cost, and where will it be available? The answer to the first question is completely unknown at the moment, though WorldSBK.com will have to make an announcement fairly shortly.

It seems unlikely that it will be set at the same level as the MotoGP.com video pass (€99.95 for the standard pass), given that the level of interest in WSBK is not the same as MotoGP. However, Dorna’s past record on streaming video suggests that it will not be cheap.

Availability is also uncertain. The WorldSBK.com website only mentions that the service will not be available in all countries.

Previously, World Superbikes representatives have explained that online streaming video was made complicated due to existing contracts with TV broadcasters, many of whom have also secured the rights to stream the video live on their websites.

With Dorna’s streaming infrastructure in place, streaming video is being handled differently as contracts come up for renewal. Such existing contracts mean that streaming video is unlikely to be available inside Europe, as Eurosport has its own online streaming package showing World Superbikes via the Eurosport Player.

However, enquiries made by us into the matter indicate that the pass will be available for fans in the US and Canada. More details will surely be announced soon, via the World Superbikes website.

US World Superbike fans will also be able to watch the series on TV. At least, they will if they have access to the oddly-capitalized beIN SPORTS channel in their cable package.

Just as it did last year, the channel will be showing every World Superbike race live, both on TV and via their beIN SPORTS PLAY mobile app. Whether the races will be streamed on the beIN SPORTS website is as yet unclear.

Source: beIN SPORTS

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

Comment:

  1. Halifie30 says:

    Watched every single race on YouTube last year. Hope I can do the same this year, but I doubt it with these new contracts and online streaming. Paying to watch races just doesn’t appeal to me.

  2. Norm G. says:

    re: “Paying to watch races just doesn’t appeal to me.”

    and there it is.

  3. talonz says:

    Id have no problem paying if it was reasonable, considering it would only be for a race series, or put on a decent channel here in canada.

    Beinsports just emailed me to let me know that their video pass will be $20 a month…thats far too much to watch a couple races every other month. Thats more than my entire movie package ffs.

  4. Rad Rage says:

    @Hailfie3o: Hate to burst your bubble, but you won’t be able to resort to Youtube anymore. I know every channel that posted the WSBK, WSS and STK races. All of them have been closed up.

    I subscribe to beIN, and sometimes I would watch the races on TV, sometimes the laptop (Youtube). Dorna is obviously capitalizing on the plethora of changes that have been made to both competitions (riders, manufacturers, regulations etc.) so they will no doubt offer an expensive product.

    FYI, beIN is basically rebranded Aljazeera Sports.

  5. Seth says:

    “Just as it did last year, the channel will be showing every World Superbike race live…”

    until about the last 3-4 rounds and they stop showing supersport entirely and stop having live brodcast of superbike.

  6. Norm G. says:

    re: “their video pass will be $20 a month…thats far too much to watch a couple races”

    and again… there it is.

  7. philly phil says:

    I agree…if the pass is $20/mo, that is too much.

    It wouldn’t cost that much to go on and get the sports package that would include beIn sports added to my cable.

    you don’t have to pay anything to watch to MotoGP on foxSports1…. that’s what I want. I want wsbk on regular tv or cable. I’ll watch all the commercials they want if it comes on regular cable. They should put on the practice and qualifying sessions as well…I’ve no problem with that. Just get it on regular tv/cable.

  8. Bruce says:

    beIN provided good coverage last season. Check with your satellite or cable carrier. I had beIN added for no additonal expense.

  9. Norm G. says:

    re: “you don’t have to pay anything to watch to MotoGP on foxSports1.”

    oh no…? wait awhile.

    re: “that’s what I want. I want wsbk on regular tv or cable.”

    you’re a bike world beggar who wants the world with a side helping of free lunch.

  10. Norm G. says:

    re: “I had beIN added for no additonal expense.”

    I got charged $8 additional bucks/month.

    and guess what, I was so happy to hear they even offered it, you know what I did…? I said lets see, 8 x 12 = 96 (finger math) right then, here’s a $100 spot for the year and keep the tip, now turn the damn channel on.

  11. philly phil says:

    Nobody’s begging for shit Norm. nothing is free. I already pay for cable. and I don’ t have pay anything extra to see crappy MototGP, and Moto2.

    it’s simple math. If the cost of the video pass is $20/ month, and cost to get the sports package for cable that includes beIn for $10/month…..why would u pay for the pass genius?

  12. KSW says:

    It’s not that people don’t want to pay, I think. It’s that everyone is now inundated with fees or subscriptions and it’s growing. In my lifetime we’ve gone from free tv and a few dollars for a phone like to pay for TV, pay hundreds for a phone and now everything you want according to analytics is hit with an additional fee. When the cost to participate as a “normal” citizen in this technology age is more than you’re making something is wrong.

    The Dorna example: You’re a photographer or media like Motto Matters/Asphalt & Rubber not a print publication who does full time MotoGP coverage. That’s a $500 fee to cover the event, plus the insurance to be on the track before you start. Magazines pay $500 to cover the event for the weekend. Now you’ve got to find other clients at the track because you’ve not yet paid for your fees or have a room or the trip to the race or eaten or….. But wait, my camera bag is $20K worth of pro gear and a camera needs repair or replacement which costs money. Oh, can you do a video for us and all the editing/audio/ color matching plus deliver it as soon as you give us photos……

    Personally I don’t know how any “Fan” is supposed to pay to see all this Dorna coverage. I suggest, get together with some friends, pool your money, plug the computer HDMI cable into the TV and do a Dorna viewing party.

  13. talonz says:

    Norm, I would happily pay $5 to get bein on my dvr/50″ tv. I can’t even get the channel up here in canada because the crtc rules it competes with crappy sportsnetworld because of all the soccer they both carry. Guess who doesnt watch soccer?

    We used to get ama, gp, and wsbk all on speed. Now that speed has dropped the ball the only way to watch 2 of those 3 is on youtube (until recently). Or I can pay $20 a month for some streaming videos of wsbk on my computer? @!#% that.

    I am stuck in limbo with these !@#%ing providers and the crtc that just perpetuates a bloody monopoly up here. Its frustrating as hell, and your sanctimonious drivel? You know what you can do with that.

  14. Norm G. says:

    re: “It’s not that people don’t want to pay, I think. It’s that everyone is now inundated with fees or subscriptions and it’s growing. ”

    no argument there. hey, I don’t like it either, but I think there might be a generational difference in the way the GenY/Millennial’s and the rest of the world perceive things.

    see in my generation, there was no such thing as “FREE”. free…? what…? arrest that man. to the stockades so we may pelt him with our stones and rotten vegetables…!

    now contrast that here with the late 20th/early 21st Century where we’re absolutely INUNDATED with the “notion” of it. in fact, I feel bad for you guys.

    see, there’s a problem. observe I said “notion”. why…? cause truth be told, there’s nothing any more FREE now…? than it was 30, 40, 50 years ago…? never has been. the Greeks figured the equations back in like 400 B.C. they had nothing else to do.

    like the Oracle, Madison avenue and Silicon Valley (home of not just the Raiders but the Internet) has simply told you what you wanted to hear. Normstradamus contends the root cause of this problem can be directly traced to a continued clash between this fantasy…? and reality. reality for the WIN.

  15. Kevin White says:

    Certainly interesting, but I’ve yet to really be impressed with streaming internet video. It always seems to feature more compression artifacts, a lower frame rate in the 20 to 30 range instead of the perfect 60 you get on television (for sporting events I mean), dropouts and freezes and delays, inferior sound, a lack of the easy pause, skip, slo-mo, and rewind functionality of the DVR, and I have to move the PC into the den to hook it up to the television or watch solo hunched over my desk.

    I quite missed WSBK last year. I don’t have beIN in my TV package, and to add it would mean another tier that costs about as much as this online pass thing ($20 / month when I don’t care about any of the other stuff that comes with that new tier). So if I wasn’t willing to pull the trigger on $20 / month last year for all around superior TV coverage, I probably won’t be willing to shell out $20 / month for inferior PC streaming with all of its downfalls listed above.

    I guess I’ll probably miss WSBK again. Or maybe I won’t exactly miss it since I’ve already had a year to get used to not seeing it…