Featured Threads Archive
Ducati has unveiled a limited edition Panigale V4S in homage to arguably its greatest ever superbike, the iconic Ducati 916, which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary.
Just 500 individually-numbered Panigale V4 25° Anniversario 916s will be built, with bike number five being auctioned off in tribute to Carlin Dunne, who lost his life racing a Ducati at Pikes Peak earlier this year.
Although based on the 1103cc, 211bhp V4S, this special version features the front frame from the 998cc V4R, a dry clutch, Marchesini Racing forged magnesium wheels and a Euro4-compliant titanium Akrapovic silencer.
All 500 machines come in a distinctive new livery, inspired by Fogarty’s championship-winning 1999 Ducati 996 World Superbike.
Nicky Hayden’s 2017 Ten-Kate spec Honda CBR1000RR SP2 WSBK racebike is up for sale for a cool €95.000.
Former Honda WSBK team Ten Kate is selling the machine, which has matching chassis and engine numbers, matching ECU and electronics numbers, matching chassis build-up and is set to the exact specification that Hayden used on track.
Ten Kate lists the bike as in 'absolute showroom state' though the machine is a runner and ready for track duties. The Dutch racing outfit is also issuing a certificate of authenticity with the sale and it will come with a full package and parts sold by Ten-Kate Racing.
For more info on the bike please contact Kervin Bos at Ten Kate Racing: email@example.com.
Maverick Viñales is settling into life on board the Factory Yamaha well – fastest on day one at the Valencia test and then repeating the feat on day two for an amazing debut.
A 1:29.975 in the afternoon saw the former Moto3 World Champion take over at the top after completing 66 laps on his second day at Yamaha.
The difference between the Yamaha new boy and his veteran teammate couldn’t be more stark. While the Spaniard was encourage to ride around familiarising himself with the 2017 bike,
Valentino Rossi was in full testing mode, evaluating various swingarms over the course of his 45 laps. The nine-time World Champion put in a best of 1:30.709, good enough to secure him the seventh fastest time.
The Repsol Honda Team was also in full test mode, assessing a multitude of different...
This back protector is CE Level 2 certified, which means it’s at the top of its game when it comes to offering protection. This is largely down to the tough properties of the hard polypropylene external shell.
Another key feature is Knox’s trademark hinged panels, which allow maximum rider movement without compromising protection. The four panels span the length of your spine, and the lower back section even extends to protect the coccyx area.
The Meta-Sys feels reassuringly protective on, mainly due to the sheer amount of your back that it covers – the upper plates even offer a decent level of protection for the shoulder area – but it’s comfy too, thanks largely to the soft, foam-like nitrex insides, which have a sweat-wicking liner to keep you dry. There’s a decent amount of...
Assen proved to be a happy hunting ground for Kawasaki as Tom Sykes and Jonny Rea secured a Team Green 1-2.
The Race Two victory was the first win for Sykes since Misano in 2017 in emphatic fashion, while championship leader Rea finished a strong second today, despite launching from the third row of the grid after winning the first Assen race on Saturday.
Sykes, who stated on pole, looked unbeatable on Sunday, running clear of his early rivals and maintaining a remarkably consistent high pace throughout.
Rea found the going tougher – the three-time champions was fourth after Lap One, then third after four laps, before taking second place on Lap Six.
By that stage Sykes had already opened up a gap of 3.5 seconds, which grew as Rea had to defend his position.
Maintaining his own...
Assen was the venue for a sensational battle royale as eight riders duked it out for the win in one of the most incredible MotoGp races of all time at Assen.
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez emerged from the melee to take the win on premier racing's 70th visit to the track, but the headlines were stolen by the close racing as Marquez battled with Yamaha duo Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales, Ducati factory riders Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo, Suzuki's Alex Rins and LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow.
It was Marquez who took the holeshot from pole, with Crutchlow initially on his tail from second on the grid until Lorenzo sliced through from tenth to P2 after another awe-inspiring launch.
The Italian and Catalan GP winner didn’t wait long to strike for the lead either, attacking Marquez...
Suzuki's Alex Rins snatched a dramatic victory on the finish line to win the British Grand Prix at Silverstone ahead of Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez.
Marquez led virtually all the way round and was on course for his seventh win of the season, appearing to have held off the younger Spaniard, only for Rins to produce a spectacular piece of riding on the final lap for his second win of the season.
Another Spaniard, Maverick Vinales, was third, with MotoGP legend Valentino Rossi a place further back.
The result sees Marquez extend his lead in the Championship to 78 points after second-placed Andrea Dovizioso of Italy suffered a bad crash on the first lap.
Dovizioso suffered his spectacular crash on the first lap as he went into the back of Frenchman Fabio Quartararo and went flying off...
Dainese has taken legal action against Alpinestars for an alleged infringement over its airbag technology.
The move is significant as the Italian powerhouses effectively own the airbag market and whoever wins would have a monopoly.
However, today Alpinestars has hit back at the claims and has issued the following statement:
With reference to recent articles published about Alpinestars and Dainese being in dispute over airbag technology, Alpinestars is issuing the following statement to clarify the current situation:
Alpinestars has been subjected to an allegation of patent infringement by Dainese on a specific part of its airbag construction used in the Tech-Air Street system.
The Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Street system was launched in November 2014 as the world’s first...
In what has been a dream opening six races in Alvaro Bautista’s WSBK career, the Spaniard romped to another race win to become the first rider since Neil Hodgson to win the opening six races of a WSBK season, back in 2003, causing to another lights to flag victory in dominant fashion.
When the lights turned green, Bautista was able to hold onto first position from start to finish. Kawasaki's Jonathan Rea didn't have the outright speed to challenge Bautista and instead had his hands full dealing with Yamaha's Alex Lowes.
At the end of the first lap the leading trio had a slight gap over Kawasaki's Leon Haslam, Yamaha's Michael van der Mark and GRT Yamaha's Marco Melandri.
Soon, the big battle came from the scrap for fifth position, with van der Mark, Melandri, GRT Yamaha's Sandro...
Aprilia has unveiled its 2019 livery and team line-up for the new season.
As well as a new bike, the team has shaken up its squad in a bid to change its fortunes, appointing Massimo Rivola as new racing CEO, Romano Albesiano's as technical director, Bradley Smith as test rider, with Andrea Iannone joining Aleix Espargaro.
"The final part of last season and the winter tests were fundamental from a technical point of view," Albesiano said. "The arrival of Andrea and Bradley added new information to Aleix’s fundamental contribution, helping us to define the RS-GP’s line of evolution. This is a project that has come to fruition this season, with an overall improvement in every aspect.
"A lot of work was done on making it lighter. We made changes to the chassis architecture and...
The first ever WSBK Superpole race saw Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista destroy the field to add another win to his tally.
The fast-paced ten lap encounter was a thriller from lights-out to chequered flag, with Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea sweeping majestically into the lead at Turn One, and Race One winner Bautista hot on his heels.
By the end of the first lap, Yamaha’s Alex Lowes had moved to third position – briefly taking Bautista for second place, only for the Ducati Panigale V4 R to blast past, passing him easily down the Gardner Straight. However, unlike in Race One on Saturday, the Spaniard was unable to make a break away from Rea, who stayed with him – a completely different story in comparison to the first race of the season yesterday.
Rea’s team-mate Leon Haslam was pushed back...
Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso won an explosive opening race of the season in Qatar. The Ducati rider rode a calculated race, holding off Marc Marquez in an intense end of race battle to take the chequered flag just 0.023 seconds ahead of the Honda rider.
Dovizioso said: “I’m so happy. The strategy was clear for me and really good. I stopped Rins every time because he wanted to be faster too soon, and that was bad for the tyre and I was right. I stop him every time, fortunately I have more power on the straight. I lose a little bit of time in the middle of the corner because his speed in the middle of the corner is amazing, but I was able to overtake him every time and stop him and continue to save the tyre, that was the key to try and put Marquez on the limit in the last few laps. And...
This brilliant waterproof rucksack has accompanied me everywhere over the past five years – eight days touring around Ireland, 10 days riding through Scandanavia and northern Europe, long weekends watching the racing at Le Mans, Brno, Assen and the Sachsenring, a week at the TT, and countless other getaways – and it’s performed faultlessly every single time.
All Kriega’s gear is designed by a team of bikers, for bikers, and it shows – this is a high quality rucksack that is comfortable, tough and built to munch miles without any discomfort.
As the name suggests, the R30 has a capacity of 30 litres and is large enough to easily swallow a laptop and change of clothes for the daily commute, or several changes of clothes and spare visor and gloves for trips further afield.
BMW claims its new System 7 Carbon is set to become the new benchmark in terms of safety, versatility, and aerodynamic properties, and on paper it certainly looks promising.
An evolution of the hugely popular System 6, the System 7 Carbon can be converted from a full-face helmet to an open one by simply taking off the chin guard. No tools are required and it takes only a couple minutes to make the change. How good is that?
As the name suggests, the exterior shell is made out of carbon fibre and has reinforcement inserts. BMW claims the helmet will exceed all safety standards – some feat considering it weighs weighing just 1580 g or 1680g, accordingly to size.
The interior is made out of multiple EPS segments and different thickness foam padding to offerthe best shock absorption and...
The California Superbike School exists for one reason, and one reason only – to help riders master the art of cornering. Their step-by-step approach to training splits each Level into different drills, starting with the basics and adding elements on in simple but challenging exercises, all done under the expert eye of your own personal coach.
Every rider, regardless of ability, starts at Level One and there are four levels to the syllabus – the school’s riding system which is based on the radical A Twist of the Wrist manuals penned by Keith Code in the 1980s and 1990s. The system works – riders including James Toseland and Leon Camier have passed through the school's doors on their way to racing success.
If Level One is all about throttle control and keeping the bike stable, and we...
The Factory Kawasaki team has been classified as the winner of the incident-packed 2019 Suzuka 8H race.
Team Green had a stranglehold on the race as it entered the dying stages, with WSBK riders Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam putting in strong rides to build up a healthy lead over the Factory Yamaha #21 Yamaha bike and Factory Honda #33 machines.
With minutes to go, Rea was riding the final stint when the rain began to come down, adding more tension to an already close race. And then all hell broke loose as the the #2 SERT Suzuki let go of its engine heading into Turn 3. Instead of leaving the track and pulling off, the Suzuki rider instead chose to stay on the racing line, cruising round the circuit and depositing oil on track, which Rea hit and crashed with just two minutes left on...
A perfectly timed switch to slicks and a masterful ride aboard the RC213V saw Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez run away with pole position for the Czech GP and equal Mick Doohan’s premier class pole record.
Torrential morning rain ceased just ahead of Free Practice 3 but left the Brno circuit soaking wet. Although conditions improved throughout the morning session, the rain returned during the lunch break to ensure every Saturday session at the Czech GP was wet.
Undaunted, Marquez continued to challenge for the top spot as he had done throughout the weekend. Second in FP3 had the reigning world champion confident of a strong result in the wet or dry. Even with the rain, the grid would be decided on slicks and Marquez was the first to head out as the dry line appeared. Expertly navigating...
Following the recent bombshell that KTM would no longer be building superbikes once the RC8R comes to the end of its life, we thought we'd better ride one while we still could.
KTM’s eye-catching flagship RC8R certainly stands out from the crowd – its angular bodywork looking as crisp and fresh as it did when the original bike was launched to a stunned public in 2007. It’s aged well, and still looks futuristic in this its sixth year of production.
Yet underneath the aggressively sculpted plastics, stacked headlights and bright orange trellis frame lies a dying breed – a litre bike with no sophisticated electronics or riders aids. This is very much an analogue bike in a digital age and it’s all the better for it.
Swing a leg over the bike and the first things that strikes me is just...
Meet the BMW Motorrad Concept 101, a six-cylinder bagger aimed squarely at the American market.
Officially unveiled last week at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in Lake Como, Italy, the bike is based on the K1600 platform – the name “Concept 101″ comes from the 1,649cc displacement, which clocks in at 101 cubic inches.
BMW has enlisted the help of Roland Sands to build a concept again, this time one that was suitable for touring on America’s highways, and the bike boasts wood veneer side panels, fuel tank, and bags. The sweeping dual three-tip exhaust is equally striking.
The concept is expected to enter production later in the year.
Who’s it for?
Anyone aged 12 and over. The school has a fleet of Hondas of all sizes – 125s, 250s, CB500s, CBR600RR-ABS and Fireblades. The school is the ideal environment for riders who want to savour track riding without all the pressures associated with a trackday.
What do you get?
All riders on all courses get to savour the flowing and technical 12-corner, 2.487-mile, Donington Park circuit on new Hondas. There’s the chance to use the school’s helmets, leathers, boots and gloves if you need to, and you’ll also receive expert tuition and feedback from the school’s experienced team of instructors. All instructors are experienced racers or former racers, and you may see the likes of MCN’s senior road tester Michael Neeves or Rocket Ron himself offering tips and...
Honda has signalled the first death knoll for the supersport class after announcing that it is set to discontinue the Honda CBR600RR.
The main reason behind Honda’s decision seems to be the fact that the bike doesn’t meet the strict Euro 4 emission standards, and that demand for the pocket rocket is now so low it doesn’t justify the investment and updates required to make it Euro 4 compliant.
It’s worth pointing out here that Euro 4 emissions only apply to bikes sold in the European Union, but dwindling sales worldwide in the 600cc supersport class means Honda sees no point in releasing an all-new model.
The move reflects Honda’s lack of investment in its sportsbike range in recent times – the Fireblade was last updated in 2008 and has only received minor tweaks since then, while...
Shane 'Shakey' Byrne completed a dream double in front of a huge home crowd at Brands Hatch to take the lead in the BSB championship standings.
The two races on the legendary Grand Prix circuit produced five different podium finishers, representing five different manufacturers and five different teams with just seven races now remaining before the Showdown.
An incredible battle opened the day as Byrne denied Dan Linfoot his first ever MCE BSB victory as the Be Wiser Ducati rider stole the lead at Surtees with two laps to go before the race had a premature end due to changing conditions.
At the start of Race One Luke Mossey had fired the JG Speedfit Kawasaki off the line to take the lead from pole sitter Josh Brookes and Linfoot. However, a hectic opening few laps saw Brookes try...
These tyres are phenomenal – I'm still struggling to get my head around just how good they are.
I've just come back from three days on track at Jerez – and they excelled in the wet and greasy morning conditions as well as in the supper hot and muggy afternoon sessions.
They're performance is staggering – they're very quick to warm up and allowed me to to push hard within half a lap. And once they're up to working temperature they're superb; they're stable and offer supreme levels of confidence inspiring grip. And the amount of heat they generate and retain is astounding.
They're durable too. After two wet mornings and two dry afternoons, and one hot day on track they're just about shagged, but then again they're covered some 450 hard miles and they've not torn and have worn equally...
The opening race of the Thai Round in the WSBK world championship saw an intense fight between reigning champion Jonathan Rea and series newcomer Alvaro Bautista, with Bautista using the Ducati's speed advantage to power past the Kawasaki rider to take his fourth win of the season.
An action-packed start saw Bautista originally get a flying start but Buriram specialist Rea got ahead of the Spaniard through Turn 1 with Yamaha's Alex Lowes tucked in behind.
The GRT riders of Sandro Cortese and Marco Melandri ran wide at the same turn, with BMW's Tom Sykes slicing under them and into fourth. At the end of lap one, the top four were covered by 1.1s. A lightening start from Yamaha's Michael van der Mark saw him rise from 10th on the grid to fifth by the end of the opening lap.
The Kriega R3 is the British company’s take on the bum bag, and as always they’ve done an excellent job.
Made from tough 1000D Cordura, the R3 is a one-stop carry-all for all your essential items – multi-tool, camera, phone, driving licence, passport, wallet etc. And when you’re off the bike it’s the ideal storage carrier for your bike’s action camera (s).
As its name suggests, the R3 has a three-litre capacity in its main pocket, and this is waterproof thanks to Kriega’s signature roll-top closure system. There’s also a smaller compartment which is sealed with a water-resistant zip.
The R3 comes into its own when wearing leathers, giving you the advantages of the pockets that come with textiles, with none of the bulk associated with wearing such suits.
It’s tough, unobtrusive and...
1) A 749S Ducati gets mullered on the straights
2) But claws the lost time back in the corners
3) The track takes about two hours to dry
4) A 2008/2009 Blade can still hold its own against the very newest Panigales, ZX10s, S1000RRs
5) Turn 5 can be taken in fourth...may be even fifth
6) Duct tape is THE essential garage accessory – it can fix almost everything
7) It's not prudent to take a bike on track that's not been checked for three years
8) Half a second matters to grown men – it's enough to make them cry
9) A&P Plant stickers are rarer than rocking horse shit...proper factory
10) Six bricks is the hourly rate for brickies in the Telford area
This sporty rubber from German powerhouse Metzeler, sister company of the mighty Pirelli, has been designed ‘for sporty riders who use their machines in all conditions’. The tyres themselves have impressed in the four months I’ve had them. They’ve done three trackd ays, umpteen laps of the TT, too many motorway miles and their fair share of brisk B-road scratching, offering loads of feel and a huge amount of traction in all conditions. They’re also confidence inspiring in the wet, rolling smoothly and
predictably into the corners, giving loads of feedback and plenty of warning before things threaten to go sideways.
The M7 RR’s performance can be attributed to Metzeler drawing heavily from the lessons learnt from its experience in road racing in events such as the Isle of Man’s Tourist...
The Continental Sport Attacks you see here are shagged – they’re just on the right side of legal, but they’re still fucked. And what am I replacing them with? Another set of Sport Attacks. Here’s why…
I got these fitted ahead of my annual pilgrimage to the TT, and on the ride over from Tamworth to Liverpool to catch the early morning boat they impressed straight from the off.
After the obligatory scrubbing in period it became clear they have impressive levels of grip, allowing you to carry some pretty big lean angles.
Their performance cannot be underestimated. During that week on the Isle of Man they dealt with the very best and worst conditions that the island could throw at us – rain, greasy damp conditions, gravel strewn roads and sticky, hot tarmac.
They’re really quick to...
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez claimed his 50th victory in the premier class after a chaotic start to the Czech GP.
Saturday’s dreary conditions were initially nowhere to be seen as race day at the Czech GP began. But a brief rain shower half an hour before the start of the MotoGP race left the track with wet patches and led to a delayed start and a reduced race distance of 20 laps.
After securing pole by 2.524 seconds in thrilling style on Saturday, championship leader Marquez shot forward to lead the shortened race as the lights went out. With the likes of Andrea Dovizioso, Alex Rins and Jack Miller behind, Marquez settled into a consistent pace and steadily opened up a half second lead over his rivals by lap ten. Even with a moment at Turn 10, Marquez’s lead continued to grow as the...
This rucksack is tough, comfy and big enough to carry all the gear you’ll need for a week away. It's a bag for bikers which has been designed for bikers, and it shows.
The materials are top notch – it’s made from quality American Cordura – and the design means it’s brilliantly comfy on the bike. That comfort is mainly down to Kriega’s trademark harness system, which spreads the weight out instead of allowing it to dig into your shoulders.
Other nice touches include waterproof zip covers, and small zipped pockets on both chest pads – ideal for storing bank cards, loose change for tolls and the likes. These pockets mean you don’t have to keep taking the rucksack off when you’re filling up, a godsend when covering big miles – a handy feature if you live in 1-pc leathers. Another feature...
Meet the Ducati 1299 Panigale R Final Edition – the company’s farewell to its desmodromic V-twin platform.
However, this isn’t a limited edition, but instead a numbered edition machine – Ducati will continue to manufacture the Panigale R Final Edition for as long as there is consumer demand for it.
Looking at the bike’s spec list, it’s clear that this bike is a celebration of the Panigale, and the bike features the best bits of the model range.
Each 1299 Panigale R Final Edition is individually numbered and will be offered in a dedicated tri-colour scheme. An offshoot of the 1299 Superleggera engine, the Final Edition Superquadro packs nearly 209 bhp at 11,000rpm and peak torque of 142Nm at 9,000rpm. It features a lighter crankshaft with a larger crank pin and tungsten balancing...
There’s an awful lot to like about the Drift Ghost-S – it’s easy to use, it’s well-made, it’s well-specced and it shoots some pretty stunning footage.
It’s almost as if the Ghost-S has been designed with bikers in mind; it’s capable of shooting 1080p video at upwards of 60fps, and will also record 120fps video at 720p – a handy feature for any riders looking to shoot slow-motion footage.
This practicality extends to the camera itself. It has a generous-sized 2in LCD screen on the side, which can be used as a live video view and for playing back any recorded footage.
The Ghost-S is designed to be mounted horizontally, so that it sits flat against most surfaces. This is an important design feature as it keeps the camera's centre of gravity low, which reduces vibrations and camera...
The wait is finally over – Norton has unveiled its V4 RR superbike.
The bike is powered by a 1200cc, 72° V4 producing a claimed 200bhp, and is based very closely to the bespoke manufacturer’s TT racebike.
Norton is determined that this is the bike which will reaffirm its sportsbike credentials, and to this end the company has given the V4 RR a sophisticated in-house electronics suite including traction control, wheelie control, launch control and cruise control, and this is augmented by a six-axis inertial measurement unit. There’s also a state-of-the-art 7in high-definition display that includes a rear-facing camera; an up-and-down quickshifter and datalogger.
This attention to detail continues the chassis, with the single-sided swingarm boasting a fully adjustable pivot point...
01) Michael Dunlop can ride anything fast around the Rock. Winning on the new Suzuki? Some achievement that...
02) The Gooseneck is the best spot I've watched from yet. So close you can see the riders eyes. And the lines between the quicker and slower riders is fascinating
03) Brandywell is up there too...can hear them for miles, and watching the fast boys hug the very edge of the tarmac before they tip left is intoxicating
04) The howl from Bruce Anstey's RCV is earbleedingly loud. That noise is just beautiful
05) Josh Brookes is the most stylish rider around the Mountain course
06) The French are still the masters of the suicide move and love nothing better than just stopping at the side of the road in a large group with no indication whatsoever
07) But they're not as bad as the...
The opening race of the 2019 WSBK series was dominated by Alvaro Bautista on his maiden race on the Factory Ducati V4R, who set a scintillating pace and was able to clear off at the front of the pack from lap one. Bautista took the win in a convincing manner, winning by more than 15 seconds to become the first Rookie to win a WSBK race on his debut since Max Biaggi in 2007.
Off the line for the first time in 2019, Kawasaki’s Leon Haslam got a good start before being sandwiched into Turn 1 by Alvaro Bautista and early race leader and pole-sitter, Jonathan Rea on the other factory Kawasaki. However, Bautista soon blasted into the lead at Turn 3 and from there, built a gap, setting back-to-back fastest laps and building a gap of over eight seconds.
With Bautista untouchable, the...
This one-piece suit is fully CE-certified in its entirety, not just in specific areas, and every part of the garment conforms to the CE standard En 13595-1 for riding safety – a first for Alpinestars.
As you’d expect from a CE-certified suit, it boasts some pretty impressive spec. The suit is made from high grade, highly abrasion resistant 1.3mm leather, which is reinforced in the impact zones (bum, hips and elbows) and it’s full of technology proven in MotoGP and WSBK including the familiar sturdy plastic external armour on the shoulders, knees and elbows to stop the suit gripping the tarmac in the event of a spill. Then there’s the removable CE armour that sits below the leather on the shoulders, elbows, knees, hips, tibia and shins.
But all that protection is as good as useless if...
There are no two ways about it – riding in persistent rain sucks. I’m not talking about getting caught out by a light shower, I’m talking about incessant, heavy rain, the type that finds its way under your kit, then sets about chilling you to your core. Exactly the type of rain that I’ve been riding in these past two days…the kind that takes any pleasure away from riding and turns what is usually a fun-packed commute into a miserable feat of endurance; a chore.
We’ve been pretty lucky with the weather this year when I think about it – even the week spent hustling the RSV-R around the Isle of Man for the TT wasn’t too bad – and it’s only this week that I’ve been finally been forced to ditch my trusty vented leathers for textiles.
I’ve got to admit I’m a dyed-in-the wool sports bike...
Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi scored a sensational pole after posting a blistering lap the Twin Ring Motegi for the Japanese GP, as the Italian legend fought off Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez in a close Q2 to take his 64th pole – and equal the number of pole positions held by both Marquez and Rossi’s teammate, reigning Champion Jorge Lorenzo.
Rossi said: “It’s my third pole position of the year. I’m very happy because this year in qualifying I’m strong. We were struggling during this weekend to find the right balance and I’m also not a 100% fit, I’m suffering physically, I’m not feeling fantastic. In FP4 we improved the balance of the bike a lot and I did a very good lap and great braking in turn 11 and that was good. Starting from pole is always important and now we wait for tomorrow.”
I've just enjoyed a glorious test ride on Aprilia's WSBK-inspired superbike. Here are ten things I’ve learnt about the Aprilia RSV4 RF:
01) The bike is a technophile’s wet dream – launch and wheelie control, quickshifter, three riding modes, optional datalogger
02) I NEED a quickshifter…the noise as you bang through the box is addictive
03) It may look small but it’s perfectly formed. Narrow, light but roomy. Soooooooo comfortable
04) That lightness means it’s supremely nimble
05) The back brake is fierce
06) The front brakes are phenomenal
07) Superpole graphics look great from a distance…not so sharp up close
08) The stock can is hideous
09) And the screen’s not great for anyone over 5’10.
10) The niggles are just that....niggles. I WANT/ NEED one
The recent MotoGP race at Assen showed just how much grip is available in the wet with today’s tyres. Follow these tips to ensure you keep it shiny side up:
RELAX – “Many riders don’t enjoy riding in the wet and most actually avoid it where possible. It’s completely the wrong approach. The reality is that the skills you need in the wet are exactly the same as those you need when you’re riding in the dry, namely you need to be smooth with your inputs and you need to be relaxed on the bike.
“The biggest secret to good bike control is to ensure you’re in the right riding position. You need to be comfortable and leant forward slightly, with your arms bent – they need to be parallel to the road, and this allows you to steer the bike with the lightest of touches. This is important. If...
Page 5 of 13