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The official announcement that Alex Rins has signed a two-year deal with the LCR Honda team means that the 2023 MotoGP grid is now officially half full. The factory Yamaha, KTM, and Aprilia seats are all confirmed, as is the Gresini Ducati team.

There has been official confirmation of one side of the Repsol Honda, Ducati Factory, and LCR Honda teams.

Does that mean that the remaining 11 seats are still wide open? Not all of them. There are some which are sure bets, while others are still very much open.

Suzuki and Dorna have finally agreed terms for the Japanese factory’s withdrawal from MotoGP.

In a press release issued today, Suzuki made official that it would be pulling out of the MotoGP championship at the end of the 2022 season, and ending the participation of the Suzuki Ecstar MotoGP team.

At the same time, they announced they would be withdrawing from official participation in the EWC Endurance World Championship, where they race under the Yoshimura SERT Motul banner.

Alex Rins is to race for the LCR Honda team for the next two years. The official announcement only came today, but that Rins would end up at LCR was a foregone conclusion since the MotoGP race at Assen, where the Spaniard had admitted as much.

“We are almost done and everybody can imagine where I will go next year with the exit of Alex Marquez going to Gresini,” Rins had told us on the Sunday night of the Assen race.

Episode 89 of the Brap Talk motorcycle podcast is out with another “weekly” episode, for your two-wheeled listening pleasure.

In this episode, we sit down and talk a bit about motorcycle culture, and what makes owning a motorcycle akin to being involved in a cult.

This leads to an interesting conversation into what goes into branding and the motorcycle lifestyle, and ends with a surprise gift from one of the best in the business at this vary task. It’s a fun show, and we think you will enjoy it!

Pecco Bagnaia has been involved in a car crash while vacationing on the Spanish island of Ibiza, which occurred while he was under the influence of alcohol.

According to local Spanish media, Bagnaia crashed the car he was driving at a roundabout, losing control when he caught a wheel in a ditch.

Though no other vehicles were involved, when the police arrived, Bagnaia failed a breath test, showing a blood alcohol level of 0.87g/l. Spanish law states that the legal limit in a breath test is 0.25 g/l, while the limit for a blood test is 0.5 g/l.

In many ways, Ducati’s MotoE project is the opposite of all the electric motorcycle projects which have gone before.

Up until very recently, conventional motorcycle manufacturers have mostly stayed well away from electric motorcycles, preferring to wait and see how the technology, and the political and legislative framework in which this all takes place, will play out.

Exceptions have been few and far between: beyond electric scooters, KTM have the Freeride, an electric enduro machine, and Honda worked with Mugen on their bike which dominated the TT Zero race on the Isle of Man.

That has left the field open for a host of new companies, which have operated with varying success. Silicon Valley produced a large swathe of start ups, mostly run by motorcycle enthusiasts from the area’s electric vehicle and technology industries, and funded with VC money.

A few others, such as Energica, are engineering start ups producing electric vehicles and based in areas with strong automotive industry links. Small companies with limited manufacturing and engineering facilities which relied on widely available components and techniques for a large part of their bikes.

So when Energica won the first contract to produce the MotoE racer, they were competing against other specialist electric motorcycle manufacturers, sometimes no bigger than a handful of people based in of small workshops.

But all had the same philosophy: to take their existing products and turn it into a race bike, by stripping unnecessary ballast and upgrading suspension, braking, and various chassis components.

Their race bikes, and the Energica Ego Corsa which became the MotoE bike when the series first started in 2019, are basically the electric bike version of Superstock spec machines: production bikes which have been turned into racing machines by upgrading existing components to racing spec.

At the technical presentation of their MotoE machine on Thursday, the contrast between what has gone before and Ducati’s approach couldn’t be greater.

The venerable Honda Gold Wing is getting a recall that affects only the manual transmission model of the long-distance tourer.

According to NHTSA documents, the recall affects 1,740 units from the 2020-2022 model years, and concerns the ignition timing programmed into the bikes’ ECUs.

This recall does not affect any Honda Gold Wings that have the company’s dual-clutch transmission (DCT) installed.