The motorcycle media landscape is rapidly changing, and those changes have hit another publication: Motorcycle.com.
The original gangster of online motorcycle news, Motorcycle.com has seen its two raking newsmakers make their exits from the publication, Sean Alexander and Kevin Duke.
For those who don’t know, Duke was the Editor-and-Chief of MO since 2007, before losing the position in late-2017, while Alexander served as the Director of Powersports Editorial since November 2013, until about one week ago.
Both men now find themselves no longer part of the company, as Vertical Scope – Motorcycle.com‘s owner – re-organizes the brand.
This news has been a bit of a shock to the moto-journalist ranks, though perhaps not ultimately that surprising.
I know all you old-timers haven’t heard of it, but all the cool kids are using an app called Waze to get from Point A to Point B these days.
For motorcyclists, the popular “live map” program just a got a bit friendlier too, announcing today that it was adding motorcycles to its selectable vehicle types.
Don’t know what this means? Think of Waze like a social version of Google Maps. In fact, Google owns Waze and uses its data to power Google Maps’ route selector.
Unlike the users of Google Maps and the like though, Wazers (that’s the preferred nomenclature, dude) can report things to the app, like traffic jams, fuel prices, and our personal favorite: police speed traps.
Alongside the rise of self-driving cars, vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) technology is set to massively change the motorcycling landscape – arguably for the better.
The technology comes in a variety of forms, but its basics involves cars, trucks, motorcycles, and possibly even pedestrians sharing basic travel data, like which lane they are in, how fast they are going, and whether they are changing lanes, coming to a stop, or a similar action.
Being able to communicate these basic pieces of telemetry, and thus alert drivers and trigger self-driving systems, means a big safety increase for all motorists – motorcyclists especially.
Bosch estimates that one-third of motorcycle crashes could be prevented with V2V technology – basically any car-motorcycle crash where the car driver didn’t see the motorcyclist, or vice versa.
In the mainstream news, there is a lot of talk right now about net neutrality for internet service providers (ISPs), not to mention the whirlwind discussions about malicious electronic intrusions, like the Russian involvement in the 2016 US Presidential election, or the recent bout of ransomware that is being linked to North Korea.
The takeaway from these current events is that as our lives become increasingly dependent upon our online presence, we need to take our online security and privacy more seriously, especially during uncertain times.
Asphalt & Rubber might be only a modest motorcycle website, where you spend a handful of minutes during your day reading about all things two-wheeled, but we take these issues very seriously…and for good reason.
As such, we have enabled and forced HTTPS browsing for all users on our site, not only so your connection to our website is secure, but also so your privacy is protected from anyone who might wish to read or track your presence across the internet.
Today, RevZilla announced the departure of Bucci as its CEO, effective on January 13, 2017. After that point in time, fellow RevZilla Co-Founder Matt Kull will take on the job as interim CEO, while RevZilla continues to look for a full-time replacement. RevZillians shouldn’t worry too much about the leadership change though, as Bucci will continue his customer-facing activities with RevZilla, and he will also remain an integral part of RevZilla’s advisory team. This announcement also doesn’t affect Bucci’s position on the Board of Directors for Comoto, the holding company that oversees both RevZilla and Cycle Gear.
We are launching something very special today, which is geared towards our most diehard readers. We call it A&R Pro. It is a premium membership that offers more features to the Asphalt & Rubber website, and more of the A&R content that you have grown to love. For the A&R readers who can’t get enough of the site – often coming here multiple times per day to get the latest stories – we wanted to offer you more of the content and community that you thrive on; and in the same breath, give you a way to help support Asphalt & Rubber. That’s where A&R Pro comes in. Asphalt & Rubber has always strived to be an independent voice in the motorcycle industry. By signing up for A&R Pro, you help us to continue that goal, and in fact make us more independent.
The Suzuka 8-Hour endurance race is this weekend, and while the iconic race isn’t being broadcasted by a US television station, the Suzuka Circuit does make a live stream available via Ustream.
The live stream typically covers the Suzuka 4-Hour race (on right now, as of the time of this writing), as well as the free practice and qualifying sessions for the Suzuka 8-Hour. On race day, however, the stream usually just features a live-timing screen, which is still better than nothing.
You can find a schedule of the sessions on the Suzuka Circuit website, or just click right here.
I know a fair number of photographers whose main body of work is covering motorcycle racing, and the one tune they all sing in perfect harmony is how difficult it is to cover the expenses of traveling to races and then make some profit on top of that.
Some of these photographers do outstanding work, as many of you have seen here on the pages of Asphalt & Rubber, and yet they are trying to survive in an economy where the supply far outpaces the demand.
The demand that exists doesn’t often pay a premium price for premium work, preferring instead to get photos as cheaply as possibly.
This is understandable given that many teams and sponsors in motorcycle racing are themselves operating on shoestring budgets, with some fighting on a race-to-race basis merely to stay involved at their current level of competition. In this, they share something in common with many photographers.
One friend of A&R is the first we know of to use a crowdfunding site called Patreon to help stay involved in MotoGP. Scott Jones is bringing some pretty cool new content to his fans who support him in this way.
I want to take a break from our usual daily slew of news and opinion, to give my dear friend David Emmett a moment in the spotlight (something I’m sure he will hate), as this week will mark 10 years of David covering the MotoGP Championship.
David explains the genesis story of MotoMatters much better than I ever could, so I will simply refer you to his posting today on the subject, which can be found on his website. Simply put though, what started out as a modest forum posting on the ADV Rider forum, has turned into one of the most influential websites covering the MotoGP paddock.
As a mutual friend and colleague once said to me, there isn’t a press officer, team member, or rider that doesn’t read MotoMatters with regularity, and there is good reason for that – such is David’s influence on Grand Prix motorcycle racing.
It is a surprise that he has achieved such a mantle in 10 short years.
Now with the blessing of the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) the 2016 Daytona 200 is set to kick-off on Saturday, March 12th at 1pm EST, during Bike Week in Daytona, Florida.
Racing for 57 laps on the high banks of Daytona International Speedway, Daytona 200 contenders will be on supersport class machines, where tire management and careful drafting will be the most important aspects for the racers.
At one point in time, the Daytona 200 garnered the attention of motorcycle racing fans around the world, and its owners DMG hope to return the iconic race to that stature.
To that end, the AMA’s sanction now makes it is easier for FIM-licensed riders to participate in the Daytona 200, and vie for its impressive $175,000 purse ($25,000 goes to the winner).
And for fans, the race is easy to watch, as DMG will be live streaming the Daytona 200 on its FansChoice.TV web property. The pre-race action starts at 12:30 EST; so if you’re on the West Coast, you will want to rise and shine a little earlier than normal, perhaps.