Dorna Eyeing a North American Championship?

06/23/2014 @ 2:17 pm, by Jensen Beeler54 COMMENTS


The discourse in AMA paddock is palpable. From 2013’s surprise revelation that AMA Pro Road Racing’s TV package would not cover all the events, to 2014’s complete lack of television coverage, there have been serious questions raised about DMG’s ability to market the premier road racing series in the United States.

A constantly dwindling calendar of events has caused many to wonder about DMG’s ability to organize race weekends, as this year’s provisional five-event calendar was marked with the absence of any races west of The Rockies (the motorcycle industry’s sweet spot), a move that would cause John Ulrich of Roadracing World to start his own three-event “Superbike Shootout” series (Laguna Seca would later be added to the AMA calendar as a sixth event).

This year was also marked by an exodus of top-level teams (Michael Jordan Motorsports and Erik Buell Racing), as well as marquee sponsors (The Army National Guard and GEICO).

Just recently torrential rain, a field of Superbikes on slicks, and not a red flag in sight caused a dust-up just a few weeks ago at Road America, resulting in a modest investment in publication ink regarding the officiating at AMA Pro Road Racing events, especially in regards to rider safety.

American road racing has long been in decline, but never before has the frustration with the series been so evident across the series’ stakeholders of riders, teams, sponsors, fans, and journalists. The malcontent is evident whenever the subject is broached.

No one can say for certain what form American road racing will take for the 2015 season, but things do not seem to be taking a positive direction with DMG’s ownership of AMA Pro Racing.

American road racing is in serious danger of fracturing if the Superbike Shootout continues, and it could legitimately collapse altogether if DMG continues operating the way it has to date. As if that wasn’t enough, a third option is waiting in the wings: Dorna.

We first saw mention of the MotoGP and World Superbike media rights holder’s interest in the United States road racing scene come from Larry Lawrence, and like any good gossip in the AMA paddock, Lawerence gave the information the appropriate treatment of skepticism and cynicism.

There is after all something amusing about the state of American road racing reaching such a lowly state that American fans are actually excited about the prospect of Dorna Motor Sport’s involvement with the series.

The rumors haven’t stopped circulating though, and our sources have intimated Carmelo Ezpeleta’s desire to run the big show on US soil, with a twist. According to the people who we have talked to, Dorna’s involvement would actually see the creation of a North American Championship that would include Canada, Mexico, and the United States of America.

This NAFTA of motorcycle championships would serve not only to help Dorna’s interests in cultivating talent from North America, but would also presumably side-step any legal entanglements with the litigiously quick French family that runs DMG.

A glimpse at Dorna’s work with the Spanish national championship shows the media company’s success at this level of sport, with the CEV being perhaps the top feeder-series for riders hoping to enter grand prix racing.

From a business perspective, the idea of a North American championship is intriguing, and there could be some interesting sponsorship opportunities for brands that deal heavily in these three countries.

The move could also be a stepping stone for Dorna into the South American market, a location the Spanish company is keen to get a foothold in for its MotoGP and World Superbike properties.

A lot remains to be seen from this rumor though, and from American road racing in general. Again, the very fact that we’re talking about this rumor shows the state of the sport.

If true, who would have thought 10 years ago that a European company could control AMA Pro Road Racing. And if false, it just shows the level of desperation for motorcycle racing fans and stakeholders here in the United States. Either way you look at it, it’s a scary proposition.

Source: Bothan Spies

  • JAke

    doesn’t matter who is running the show. if there isn’t a market in the US for the sport it ain’t going to happen. Every world championship that has tried to establish itself here has more or less failed. If not failed out right then failed in comparison to get and maintain the interest that it gets in Europe. Unfortunately it’s the land of NASCAR and Montertruck

    One other thing I really get annoyed with hypocrites. And riders and athletes are some of the biggest. No one makes them race it is a choice. So what no one put out flags or stopped the race. At any point any of the riders at RA could have come in and changed bikes (or whatever the rule allows) and just come in all together. But they were more concerned with points or whatever than their own safety. So they can’t really complain about the AMA/DMG not caring either. Both should be accountable.

  • Craigo298er

    I love the idea of a North American championship! More races, more fans, more interest! AMA should adopt WorldSBK rules, even if just EVO class. Make it a feeder class to the world stage. Bring in classes for 250’s in the US and get kids racing. If kids get into it, then when they grow up, they will share that interest with their kids. Racing in America needs help, and who else can give it, but the company that is being successful overseas? It is obvious that DMG can’t do it.

  • JAke

    before anyone responds I don’t know this or that about pro racing… doesn’t matter that I am not a pro racer. My personal safety starts with myself. If I buy a track day and it starts raining and the organizers decide to go on with the event, its my choice to ride because I paid for it or to say my life is worth more then the cost of a trackday or whatever it is. Those riders had the same choice. It if was that unsafe (and I’m not saying it wasn’t) they shouldn’t have raced. The ama/dmg or anyone else can’t hold a race if there are no riders. Yes there would be some riders that didn’t care and would race anyone but again that is their choice.

  • Anvil

    Rumor or not, it makes a certain amount of sense. Doran has a vested interest in revitalizing the sport on this side of the world.

  • Agent55

    It needs to happen, SOMETHING needs to happen. Roadracing is abysmal in the States and an organization that understands it and has a much better track record than DMG certainly isn’t gonna hurt things. It’ll be a long road (maybe endless) to rejuvenating roadracing here, but there must be a change for that to even be a possibility.

  • CharlieDog

    I watched the Sunday coverage from Barber, and it wasn’t too bad-especially the lack of commercials. The sad part was seeing how few spectators there were. I have been to Barber several times when the crowd was numbered in the thousands-this time it may have been in the hundreds. A track cannot host an event with such low attendance.

    DMG has managed to make almost everyone mad at them from the manufacturers to the riders to the spectators with their focus on short term gains rather than the long term interest in the sport. Hopefully someone will come along and let them keep their sacred cow, the Daytona 200, and build a series around all the other venues for the sake of motorcycle road racing to survive in the USA.

    I do not believe everyone is into NASCAR and Monster Trucks.

  • Phil Daulton

    If Dorna came over here, quite a few tracks would have to make a lot of changes to come up to the level of European tracks, in the case of runoff area and track width. Can’t think of many tracks that would qualify.

  • JoeD

    Bring It. Please. Unless you want to end up with the DMG Road Racing Video Game Championship Series. (Free game download eventually offered with the toy monster truck sold at WM.)

  • b_bobby43

    Barber only in the hundreds? I was there. The crowd was pretty healthy this year compared to the last 2. But, I remember the pre DMG days where there were 30k people there for a sunday race. I hate DMG as much as the next person. I worked the Barber race as an official. I KNOW how DMG operates and it is comical at best. I had to get security to let Earl Hayden into the Hot pit because the event staff didn’t even know who he was??? The woman working the gate demanded his credentials and said she didn’t care who he was. They run a pitiful operation at best. They have ZERO interest in roadracing of any kind… Just look at what they did to Grand Am and American Le mans. But having said all that, this is the FAN’S fault. If the attendance and the tv ratings were good, then the series would be able to absorb most of DMG’s mistakes. I hear everyone complain about AMA, but the level of racing from the top teams is fantastic. Honda turned it’s back on the US entirely. Look at how they treated Nicky in favor of a spanish brat that still to this day hasn’t won a damn thing. Then 2 years later turned their back on us completely. Chuck Graves and Yamaha, with the help of Yoshimura and EBR have helped the series from folding. And correction on the article, EBR is still a factory team in the AMA. Number 13 Cory West, and they support Pegram pretty heavily. The FAN’s should quit crying and support these guys. To hell with DMG, do it for these guys busting their tail at the track to put on the show. They deserve our loyalty if nothing else.

  • Jordan

    I had heard speculation that the guys that run BSB were interested in taking over AMA road racing. It seems that BSB is really popular in its home country and has had exchanges of talent with WSBK and MotoGP. I would like to see AMA brought back to its former glory, but current management just seems really incompetent to ever let that happen. At least fanschoice is a really good service.

    Josh Hayes should be in WSBK…

    A series that races multiple countries across the continent(s) would be really good and I’m happy that at least rumors are circulating about reviving road racing on this side of the globe. I thought since the US market viewed bikes as recreational machines and not something sought out of necessity like in Asian countries and bought en masse, there wasn’t much of a market to promote to but I would be happy to be proven wrong. I imagine all the manufacturers see countries in South & Central America ripe for marketing not unlike how we see MotoGP is utilized for selling Repsol replica scooters.

  • b_bobby43

    And a few more things… I have never watched a sporting event because I cared about who ran the series, I did it because I enjoyed the show. Most of you guys complaining about the show haven’t actually watched any of it since 09. You moan and complain based on what you hear from other web sites or your friends. There is a certain segment out their of loyal fans and old school racers that hate DMG. I get it. I am there with you. But the kids out there trying to make it big are busting their tales to put on a show and you aren’t even giving them a chance. I haven’t donated my time, spent my money, and shown all the support I possibly could. I put my money where my mouth is. Quit complaining about how bad the series is unless you are willing to do the same. I also think the former stars should get off their butts and give back. There are alot of guys out their that made a fine living and made it big because they used the AMA as a stepping stone to greater things. They don’t show even a trickle of support for american racing now. Kenny Roberts, Kevin Schwantz, Ben Spies, Colin Edwards, and the list goes on and on. Where is their love for the american version of the sport. They give absolutely ZERO support. Can you only imagine how big american racing could be if these guys came together and showed some leadership. Former greats are active in almost all other forms of motorsport, even nascar. They become team owners, promoters, officials. These guys do SQUAT… They thump their chests and complain, call names… But they do SQUAT to change things.

  • Bobby, paragraphs. Embrace them.

  • b_bobby43

    Jensen, embrace the message and quit being the grammar police. Typical from you though. You love to bash american racing and Erik Buell in particular every chance you get.

  • I’d embrace the message, if I could read it between the 14 lines of block text you’ve got going on there.

    That’s a good analogy for what’s going on with the AMA though, because no matter how good the message or on-track action is, if you can’t package it for people to consume, it’s meaningless.

    Pointing the finger at fans, ex-racers, and me isn’t going to save AMA Pro Racing, that much is for certain.

  • b_bobby43

    Once again Jensen. I was writing in conversational english. I have a functioning brain and can read and understand it just fine. How many AMA races have you been to in the last 5 years Jensen? Let me guess, none… Right? Quit to point a finger about something you know nothing about. How many track days have you ridden in in the last 5 years Jensen. Bet that number is pretty low too. Let me pause here so your feeble little brain can comprehend.
    New paragraph just for Jensen. You SELF PROCLAIM yourself as an industry leader, a cruel joke at best. Do you even take part in the american motorcycle racing industry? I bet I could guess the answer to that question as well. I implicate the prior stars because they show NO leadership. Look at all the major sports in the U.S. today. Prior stars take very active leadership roles in each one.
    Once again, new paragraph just for Jensen. Don’t want to make this hard on you. You write an article and proclaim that teams and sponsors are leaving. And yet, Geico and EBR are still there. Once again, you prove my point that you know very little about what is actually going on there. If you really want to nit pick over grammar and my writing style, how about verifying your information before you publish it as news. They taught me that in my very first journalism class in college. Bet you haven’t been in many of those either…

  • Looter

    Ricky Bobby, guess they didn’t teach you about paragraph spacing in that fancy journalism class of yours.

    As for AMA racing, I’d like to think that there would be American interests wanting to step in before DORNA.

  • b_bobby43

    Yes they did teach me that Looter. The website software automatically condensed my comments. Thanks for speaking out of turn.

  • Kalle

    A true North American series, run by Dorna. Who cannot get excited by thought of that?

    And yes, this is a chicken-and-egg-problem, interest in sport bikes is automatically going to revive unless there’s something causing publicity and and assuming leadership.

    Like a North American Championship run by Dorna.

  • Daniel Croft

    Jensen – you’re making fun of bobby’s paragraphs (or lack thereof) when you have so many obvious errors in the article? Come on, mate.

    To me, Dorna running a series in the US (USA only or NA) is the best thing that could happen to American racing and racers in the US. Whether you’re in the “support them anyway” or the “DMG broke everything so I’m not going to support a broken series” camp, I don’t think you can argue that road racing in the US has gone drastically down hill since the rights were sold to the DMG. With this in mind, I think it’s fair to say that they deserve responsibility for that since the downward slide while under the AMA’s control was at least somewhat manageable.

    Since the DMG took over it’s been clear that they have no idea about not only what will sell OR what the fans are looking for. I guess if you’re a patient person, you can wait until some of the shit they’re throwing actually sticks to the wall, I’m just not that patient and gave up on the series a while ago. I was following results for a while but after they dropped TV coverage I totally lost interest.

    The sooner we get a series manager that’s actually interested in the sport itself, the sooner we get good racing and good racers. Until that happens, road racing – and the talent that hasn’t yet fled – really doesn’t exist for me.

  • b_bobby43

    Knowing the AMA paddock fairly well, I find it a tough sell for most of the current riders. Most really dislike DMG, but their thoughts on Dorna aren’t a lot brighter. A lot of the AMA guys have raced in european series from time to time, and they have very little love for Dorna. And, might I add, WSBK is no longer televised in the U.S., and that was primarily Dorna’s doing.

    I truly believe that the series needs to change hands. There is very little to zero creative marketing skills inside the DMG organization. In the right hands it could become viable again. It’s never going to be a major sport in the U.S., but it can be healthy. Leadership and tradition are 2 things sorely missing from the current atmosphere.

  • proudAmerican

    The wife and I used to love watching AMA Racing on TV. However, the series devolved in such a way that we used to make bets on how many laps would get completed before the first red flag. It seemed a race couldn’t be run without at least one red flag. You need to re-build your broken motorcycle? No problem, this red flag will be over an hour long!

    DMG told the manufacturers they weren’t needed, but changed rules repeatedly to accommodate Buell.

    Michael Jordan and Geico are in the business of making money. If there’s no exposure of their monetary investment, then they’re absolutely right to leave. Spend your money wisely. In other words–somewhere else.

    Retired racers do not owe it to DMG to come back and “give” anything. These people also have bills to pay and lives to live.

    Sorry Bobby, the fans lost interest because the series became a joke. Feel free to stand atop your mountain and scream at the fans, manufacturers, and Jenson…you’re the only one up there.

  • b_bobby43

    So Proud American, since they canned Roger Edmondson in 2009, none of that stuff has happened since. Just exactly what would it take to get you to come back? Sincere question…

  • J Wilson

    Simple proposition.

    DMG (and AMA racing) has been a failure. The Frances are rich and clueless, they’re even managing to steadily kill NASCAR a little at a time.

    DORNA needs the US. Match the rulebook/specs with WSBK. Include American DORNA races with several WSBK events in the US, and let the Americans race side by side and compete for the win, and then allow the top five (or ten or whatever a good number would be) season finishers compete the next year in WSBK ’round the world if they wish.

    This would eliminate two different rulebook bikes, the manufacturers could sell the same-spec bike in either series (more customers for them) and would eliminate them having to build/fund different platforms. Sell it to sponsors as a global opportunity.

    And for God’s sake, please give John Ulrich a senior position to run the thing !

  • Edshreds

    b_bobby43, a less combative, more conversational tone might get some people on side like you are hoping. I get that this is a topic pretty close to home, but the people reading this site are motorcycle enthusiasts just like you. They wouldn’t be here otherwise.

  • smiler

    b_bobby43 – be a real man and write like one.

    I would be all for this if Dorna’s intentions and actions were the same.

    They have said for a while they wish to reduce the Spanish content in MotoGP and open it up.
    However they have:
    Approved movistar as new Yamaha sponsor for the next 5 years. So the two best teams are Sponsored by Spanish companies.
    Promoted Marc Marquez to top spot on Repsol’s demand and dropped the rookie rule.
    Ignored the comments made by Stoner (like hime or not) about the real nature of riding under Dorna’s management.
    Heavily promote the CEV championship, the Spanish feeder series to MotoGP. The only one they promote.
    Added another round in a former Spanish colony, without reducing the number of rounds in Spain.

    So in order to help Spanish exports why not establish a series in a country with a burdgeoning hispanic population.

    If they had been all about promoting MotoGP and by proxy the AMA championship then presumably they would not have:
    – Hindered TV rights in the US for MotoGP,
    – Dropped Laguna Seca, which no matter what anyone says always brings great racing and go for the money.
    – Caused the situation with Kevin Schwantz which disgusted many motorcycle racing fans.
    – Ensured by demand more American riders come into the series as Hayden and Colin Edwards exit.

    Cannot help but feel that aiding the US motorcycle sport to fall apart, helps their cause.

    As for there being no market for motorcycle sports in the US. Historically that is just not true.
    It is now however more difficult for riders from any country not close to Spain to be able to get into MotoGP. One of the reasons why Stoner quit and now 23% of MotoGP riders are from Spain. In 1989 it was 6%.

  • Faust

    The comments on here are absurd. The reason I don’t watch AMA anymore is not because I’m a terrible fan, it’s because the product is terrible. Well, that and it’s not even on TV anymore, although I like what they are doing with the online thing. If it’s not on TV, people aren’t going to be able to secure sponsors. Remember the Ducshop team with Zemke riding? I was talking to Mark Sutton from Ducshop about why they pulled out and he said he couldn’t find a sponsor to finance a team without any TV exposure. I don’t blame them. Has anyone on here tried to suffer through the AMA coverage on the net lately? My goodness. No replays, announcers who have no idea what they are talking about (except Russel), and cutting away from race action to watch that girl ask nonsensical questions to crew members….I mean wtf!

    In other news, as soon as I saw possible Dorna involvement I scrolled to find anti-Dorna, anti-Spanish rhetoric from smiler. I was not disappointed. I hardly comment on stories anymore because the comments from so many people on here are just unbelievable.

  • JoeD

    It really is no wonder the US racing program is a world wide joke. Half of the market is owned by HD . Now there’s some fine racing bikes, eh? Competitive with what? It does not take talent to ride from bar to bar.

    The mindset of the fan base has been fostered to deride anything that is not orange and black just like anything without the nascar logo is a cheap, second rate series with drivers who do not have the skills to be a proper nascar huckster.

  • Bob

    “In other news, as soon as I saw possible Dorna involvement I scrolled to find anti-Dorna, anti-Spanish rhetoric from smiler. I was not disappointed. I hardly comment on stories anymore because the comments from so many people on here are just unbelievable.”

    Exactly. Unbelievable. Just like the comments closer to the top, where people are actually comparing a contracted professional, doing his job, required by his contract and sponsors, to some casual rider going to a track day. Seriously, someone actually went there. Comparing themselves at a freaking track day… to AMA professional racers. WOW.

    “If I buy a track day and it starts raining and the organizers decide to go on with the event, its my choice to ride because I paid for it or to say my life is worth more then the cost of a trackday or whatever it is. Those riders had the same choice.”

    No, they don’t. There are too many variables involved for a paid, contracted, professional to just throw their hands up and come in at the first site of a downpour. If they don’t race, they don’t get paid. If a racer gets a reputation for quitting too easily, they won’t have a job the next season. There is nothing remotely similar between the situation of participating in a track day and being a paid, professional racer.

    It is up to the organizers to make sure the race, as a whole, is safe. It is up to the racers to race when there is a race being run. That’s it. That’s their job.

  • Mattm

    I’ve read through most of the posts and saw no mention of the WERA Pro series scheduled for next year. So there is indeed another option for pro racers next year. And get this, they have no fewer than 10 races schedulesd WITH TV coverage! More details to follow including a completely open class with no restrictions other than the bike must run fuel that burns with a visible flame and has two wheels. I know my daughter Elena is excited!! Bring on 2015

  • JoeKing

    Yep…Dorna will magically turn the foundering ship of American motorcycing roadracing off the rocks..NOT

    Just like the numerous failed attempts of popularizing the “European” sports of F1, endurance racing & soccer, Americans have never embraced motorcycle roadracing as their own & never will; just like NASCAR & (American) football & baseball don’t play well in Madrid.

    American tastes in sports are just “different” than Europeans & neither Bernie Eccelstone nor the France family are “clueless”…they are just trying to sell the wrong product.

    Add to this the fact that the prime demographic think that smart phones & social media are cooler than motorcycles ….even Steve Jobs couldn’t make roadracing mainstream.

  • Bruce Monighan

    Seriously folks, who would have thought it could have been worse than AMA running it up to 2008 when they sold it to DMG and Edmunson . Yes only 5 seasons since DMG took it over and look how much worse it has gotten.

    Regardless of what people may think about Dorna I would be happy to see them take a shot at it before the series implodes altogether. That is unless John Ulrich wants to take it over or run it for Dorna

  • Faust

    Bob, totally agree. Anyone that compares their track day experiences to a contracted professional racer is way off base. I, for one would favor an outside organization coming in to save this. I’m sick of racers bailing on this series because of how poorly it is run (Mladin anyone?). The US used to be a powerhouse in the racing world with so many great champions, and now nothing. Honestly the only guy I watch in AMA that I even want to see on the world stage is Cam Beaubier.

    On a side note, don’t sweat the haters Jensen, we appreciate your work.

  • proudAmerican

    @ Bobby,

    You asked what it would take to get me back interested in DMG Racing? Well, I’m still interested, but living in California, I’ve no opportunity to attend. And I can’t “give” anything, I’m kept close to home by a full-time career. ;-)

    Catching the races during their only showing on the computer isn’t convenient enough for today’s instant-gratification-expecting fan base. DMG needs to invest in exposure of their races, not run with the cheapest option and hope that it’s good enough to silence the angry.

    The racing needs a complete overhaul, and that’s going to cost money up front. Promote the series, expand the series, and expose (t.v. coverage) the series. Solicit the input of sponsors, manufacturers, teams and racers. Align rules with those of other series worldwide that have proven to work (BSB?).

    Make it so fans are (again) excited at the approach of an upcoming race weekend.

  • #890

    An alternative view point: I think AMA got screwed by Moto GP and here’s my case. There is a big business philosophy that states, “If you are not One or Two, you are through.” AMA was once number Two here in the U.S. in four-stroke motorcycle racing. Not anymore! When Moto GP moved away from two-stokes, it pushed AMA one step back. Now Moto GP is the primer class of 1000/600 racing. WSBK is #2 in 1000/600 racing. AMA is #3 in 1000/600 racing. How many times can the average race fan watch the same size bike do the same s*** in one weekend? Clearly, not three.

    The only way it to change is to change. I love the idea of MAttM “…a completely open class with no restrictions other than the bike must run fuel that burns with a visible flame and has two wheels.” I would watch that!!!

  • Yooperbikemike

    Marquee, not Marquis

  • Starmag

    Jensen, I didn’t read all the comments, especially the acrimonious ones, but that is a spot on hilarious graphic for this article.

    One can only hope that motorcycle racing improves in the good ol’ USA. It seems like the only direction it can go is up.

  • crshnbrn

    Will the outsourcing ever end?

  • Starmag

    To MattM, Is that you Mr. Myers? If so, nice job, Elena is both talented and beautiful.

  • b_bobby43

    @proud american, I agree with you on alot of points. I got angry when I read this article because it was written by someone completely detached and unknowing. I get tired of hearing people say how bad it is who don’t even watch. Most get their information second hand and spew negative comments without knowing the truth.

    Now, to become truly viable again there are a few things I would change immediately if it were put in my hands.
    1) Adopt identical rules as world superbike. Not Evo rules, but the whole package. If you can’t afford to race under these rules, then find a new sport. Racing was never meant to be cheap. I couldn’t care less about watching spec bikes. I want to see innovation and unobtainium.

    2) Get Honda back… First Phone call I make.

    3) Hire a dedicated marketing firm. Someone who understands how to promote. Hell, a Pro wrestling promoter could teach the folks at DMG more than they currently know.

    4) Get the former stars involved. Form a leadership council of prior champions and highly respected former riders. Let them have heavy input in how to make the sport more accessible to young and up and coming riders.

    5) start a development series for young riders. Red bull rookies was a great example of this (damn good racing too)

    6) Kill Daytona Sportbike. It was a dumb idea to begin with and it still makes no sense. Never did.

    Just a start, but I think the sport instantly moves forward if these simple ideas could be put into place.

  • MJM

    On the surface, this would be great. However, in my (anecdotal) experience, your average ‘murican gives no shits about motorcycle racing. I do track days, the vast majority of people I know and meet have no idea such a thing exists, let alone racing. :(

    In this country, motorcycling exists in the public’s consciousness are Harley “bikers”, and squidouches with helmet hawks, whom they (rightfully) despise. Circuit racing will never catch fire here, and that makes me sad.

  • I’m no NASCAR fan, but why not run AMA races before NASCAR events??? Same fricken owners. Ok, maybe not every round but throw a few in there to get eyeballs on the bikes. Sell that to sponsors. I just attended the Loudon Classic in New Hampshire…oldest motorcycle race (roadcoarse) in the country and they share time with cars… Works out fine, and not that there are any real spectators to speak of, but it’s club racing… Hitch up with NASCAR at least for promotional stuff.

    I subscribe to and coverage, and both are fantastic (well, WSBK is ok). FansChoice is pathetic. I could do more with a pocket full of GoPros than what they are accomplishing. Russel is ok, and Danielle Teal(sp?) is fine too. Just give her a better script.
    I mean , Jesus, Youtube is filled with awesome slow-mo, and every damn cell phone has HD 12ofps capabilities and FansChoice can’t step up their production?

    Open up the races (like WERA next year, looking forward to that) and include club races, link up with some NASCAR events, and have a concert, and sell pointy foam fingers…just do something, DMG!

  • sunstroke

    Superbike was invented in the US so AMA needs to be unique and display some form of leadership in the motorcycle racing, regardless of who is in charge. Unique racing classes also create opportunities for international viewership and participation.

    AMA FX was a unique format that reflected strong sales of 600cc machines in the US. FX should return (in some form higher than WSS), and since the US cannot afford to run WSBK rules or EVO rules, FX should be the premier class. The Japanese factories will support an FX class because it’s sales-motivated. MV and Triumph also have bikes in the middleweight segment. The top riders will jump from FX to WSBK or GP, like WSS riders do today.

    Daytona Sportbike is a good concept in the wrong segment. The middleweight segment is high-strung fully-faired race bikes. Affordable mods and performance balancing is not a beneficial format. Naked-bikes, on the other hand, are a diverse and popular market segment with some direct ties to the original superbikes of the 70s and 80s. Daytona Sportbike should be a performance-balance class for naked bikes up to 1050cc (1200cc air-cooled) with a handlebar, operated by rider-owners or private teams who race for entertainment and pay, not necessarily to make the leap to an international FIM series.

  • Frank

    @ Faust – Your comments are sound. Thanks for bringing a level head to a heated conversation. I do get fired up when I see things getting worse for our young racers here in the states. The teams and racers are still working just as hard to do what they do with little support.

    @ Jensen – Keep it coming brother! Even if people disagree with you, you are providing a valuable service through your work, ensuring that we all have a forum to hash this stuff out. I get frustrated by some of the relentlessly negative voices that visit, but at least we are talking about motorcycle racing something that we all clearly have an intense interest in.

  • FWIW, I’ve been going to AMA races for years and for the most part recently, at least at Sears Point and Laguna Jensen was there.


  • “Honda turned it’s back on the US entirely. Look at how they treated Nicky in favor of a spanish brat that still to this day hasn’t won a damn thing.”

    That, right there, is the very definition of ignorance. That ‘Spanish brat’ has won 3 World Championships, had 45 pole positions, 48 wins and 130 podiums. I’d call that a damn thing, bud. Jeebus Cripes. His career is the very definition of success and consistency, only having been marred by a proclivity towards injury. Some guys bounce real good; Dani breaks.

    No offense intended towards Hayden, but he’s about 100 podiums shy of the brat.

  • buellracerx

    Jensen – longest comment string ever?

    Simple truth is, cultivating passion for an American road racing championship is like trying to grow corn in the desert…and DMG stares blankly at the sky, talking about how great they are and criticizing the clouds.

    Dorna has their work cut out for them, but I’m all for it. Hey, maybe we’ll even get some excitement back into the announcing crew and be relieved of Scott’s lifeless repetition “…yep, he really put his head down there…”

  • b_bobby43

    Last time I checked Trane, Nicky still has more Motogp championships than that Spanish brat. And if you want to count lesser series wins and podiums, Nicky has still put up pretty DAMN good numbers. Oh and last time I checked Pedrosa has been on the best team in motogp for many years now, while Nicky has endured through probably the worst…

    Motogp Championships:

  • Nobody’s taking away Hayden’s accomplishment of a premier-class championship. That said, seriously stop being an apologist for the guy and trying to downplay Pedrosa’s stats compared to Hayden’s. If we ignore all the lesser classes and concentrate only on MotoGP, Pedrosa basically pummels Hayden’s stats to a pulp.

    Hayden (2003 start):

    Wins: 3
    Podiums: 28
    Poles: 5
    Championships: 1

    Pedrosa (2006 start):

    Wins: 25
    Podiums: 89
    Poles: 27
    Championships: 0

    To say that Hayden “endured through probably the worst” is a horror of revisionist history. He was an HRC factory rider from 2003 through the end of 2008. That’s six (6) – count ’em – six seasons. So, before you go blowing smoke and whining about the injustices the Kentucky Kid has had to endure, he only had 3 years less with HRC than Pedrosa has enjoyed, yet Pedrosa’s stats fare far, far better than Hayden’s.

    Again, not to downplay the championship win; to finish first, you first must finish and Hayden’s 2006 season surpassed that of anybody else’s. ‘Nuff said. However, to bleat that Pedrosa’s career has been anything less than stellar is to mock excellence itself. His stats are unsurpassed by most on the grid. In the list of all-time GP winners, Pedrosa places 8th. Hayden places 171st. Of those all-time GP winners who are still racing, Pedrosa finishes 3rd behind Rossi and Lorenzo.

    Brat indeed.

  • b_bobby43

    I am biased Trane and I will admit it. I don’t like Pedrosa and that will never change. He is a fantastic rider and very successful.

    buellracerx, the amount of comments just goes to show you that there are a lot of people still left that DO care about american motorcycle racing. There is still hope.

  • Hayabrusa

    I see this is getting a lot of omments from ‘the people’ – that is good! Just goes to show that we Americans DO care about motorcycle racing. Withoout a doubt, DMG has taken AMA racing to its lowest possible level EVER – the only thing lower is no racing at all! Any 5 of us commenting on this article could do a FAR better job than DMG! I think the idea of Dorna coming in and making a North American Championship is GREAT! North of the Border, they have some great riders, and a small, but ‘nice’ series. Plus, it would be neat to see what could eventually come from South of the border. Hope this rumor/pipe dream comes to fruition!

  • A return to the halcyon days that saw the rise of Freddie, Wayne, Eddie and Kevin would be most welcome. The racing was superb and the media gave it great coverage.

  • N American racing needs rebuilding from the ground up. But don’t let Dorna anywhere near it. They’ve made numerous dubious decisions in MotoGP. They’re destroying WSB. And they did nothing with BSB.

    Whoever it is that rebuilds it could do worse than copy BSB. That’s spec tyres, roughly EVO spec SBK and Supersports. With STK600, STK1000 and a GP125/Moto3 filling out the programme. The big thing though is getting the strength in depth in the flag ship SBK and Supersports races. The rules need to be open enough so that all manufacturers can be competitive, but cheap enough that there’s 10 riders within 20 seconds of the winner and a further 10 riders that don’t get lapped.

  • Arthur Dent

    Its about time. American Motorcycle has spent the last ten years being systematically dimantled by the happy amateurs at the AMA and the clueless Venture Capitalists at DMG. The series (if you can call it that) is an unsafe, bare bones joke and instead of providing a steady supply of exciting new talent as it used to, the best rider it can produce is hard pressed to keep up with also-rans from the Spanish series in Moto2.

    The talent is here and always has been. Theres just nowhere for it to go in this entire continent to develop. Dorna would fix that. They are absolutely the best thing that could happen to the sport in North America. They will make it safer, market it professionally and bring on a new generation of riders capable of competing at a lot higher level than the glorified club races currently masquerading as a national series.

    American Racing needs Dorna. They may not be the ideal solution, but after years of watching the alternative, they’ll do.

  • alex

    I say it should be run by whatever entity turned a testicular cancer victim into a 7 time every other country ass kicking warrior.

    Because if they could make tour de france watchable then just imagine like 150 more mph added in.