Aleix Espargaro is to have surgery on the hand he injured at Le Mans. The Spaniard had a massive highside during FP3 at Le mans, falling heavily and injuring his hand.
The scans he had at the time showed no sign of fractures, but examinations on Monday by Dr. Mir turned up a torn ligament in his right thumb, a condition more commonly known as skier’s thumb.
I was recently corrected by Ducati as to the proper naming of its pinnacle Superbike model, now that it does not share the 1,299cc displacement with the other models of that name.
Officially the 2015 Ducati Panigale R, the 1,199cc v-twin superbike is the top of the line model from Bologna, and it has some major differences from its “S” and base model siblings to fit that special designation.
For starters, the Panigale R is not equipped with the electronic suspension that is found on the Panigale S. This helps keep the Panigale R’s wet weight to a paltry 406 lbs wet (the other models tip the scales at 420 lbs).
However, the 2015 Ducati Panigale R is equipped with an IMU, cornering ABS, and Ducati’s GPS-using data acquisition system — making it a very tech-savvy package.
Of course the super-trick parts, the ones that will force you to part with your hard-earned $34,000, are the tungsten-balanced crankshaft and two-ring pistons, which come straight off the Ducati 1199 Superleggera, and are present for WSBK homologation purposes.
Rounding out the race-ready package is mechanical Öhlins suspension, a lithium-ion battery, and a complimentary Akropovi? full-titanium competition exhaust.
While we were fairly unmoved by the 2013 Ducati Panigale R, mostly because it didn’t seem to offer enough exotica to justify its added price, the 2015 model certainly fits the bill. We have 92 high-resolution photos of it, after the jump. Enjoy!
After a few grayscale photos of the new Africa Twin hit the internet from Honda’s Australian patent filing, now even more photos have emerged, which show the adventure-tourer from every angle…literally.
The Honda CRF1000L, as it is designated, will features a 1,000cc parallel-twin engine, an option dual-clutch transmission that has been tuned for road use, and a setup very similar to Honda’s Dakar stage-winning bike.
If the hype is to be believed, the Africa Twin is going to be a very capable off-road ADV bike, something that the machine’s 21-inch front wheel hints at with a purpose.
Something always happens at Le Mans. Something happens at every MotoGP race, of course, but Le Mans seems to always have more than its fair share of happenings.
Unlikely events, weird crashes, high drama. Marco Simoncelli taking out Dani Pedrosa. Casey Stoner announcing his retirement. Things that nobody had seen coming emerge from the shadows. News that was half-suspected is suddenly thrust into the limelight. Something always happens at Le Mans.
Dani Pedrosa was happy with his day’s work despite crashing and remounting on the 1st lap. He reported no ill effects following his arm pump surgery, other than the expected lack of strength.
Another strong showing by Andrea Dovizioso who claimed his 4th podium of the season.
Valentino Rossi still leads the world championship but Jorge Lorenzo is starting to look threatening.
Motorcycle racing would be a good deal less complicated if it was an indoor sport. Leaving the complications of housing an area covering several square kilometers to one side for a moment, having a track which was not subject to rain, wind or shine would make things a lot more predictable.
No longer would the riders and teams have to worry about whether the track was wet enough for rain tires, or slicks could be used with a dry line forming. Nor would they have to worry about track grip dropping as temperatures rose beyond a certain point.
Or differences in grip from one part of the track to the next, as clouds hide the sun and strong winds steal heat from the asphalt. There would be only the bike, the rider, and the track.
Jorge Lorenzo had to settle for 3rd place on the grid after a faulty sensor on his Moviestar Yamaha caused him problems in his 2nd qualifying run.
A fantastic effort by Andrea Iannone to qualify 5th despite his shoulder injury.
A 6th place start tomorrow for Bradley Smith. He’ll be hoping to capitalize on his best qualifying of the season in tomorrow’s race.
If you had put money on Bradley Smith being the fastest man at the end of the first day of practice at Le Mans, you would probably be a very happy camper this evening.
The Monster Tech 3 Yamaha rider does not often top a practice session – the last time was nearly a year ago, on the Friday at Barcelona – though he often shows plenty of speed.
But there has always been one thing or another to prevent him from converting speed through a particular sector into a really fast flying lap.
That’s where the Jerez test helped. At Jerez, Smith, along with several other riders, tested a new front fork setup that made a huge difference to his riding. The aim of the change had been to absorb more of the force in braking, and allow the front tire to retain its shape.
We have already seen “spy photos” of the KTM 1290 Super Duke based tourer. Some more photos are making the rounds again, you’ve probably seen them on other sites.
We stumbled upon this render of the new model, and think it looks pretty spot-on to what the general public can expect to see later this year, when undoubtedly the new model debuts.
Whether you call it an SMT or a Grand Tourer, this new model looks simply to be a Super Duke with a windscreen and luggage options — an interesting choice from the Austrian brand.