Featured Threads Archive
Kawasaki rider Jonny Rea won his 12th WSBK race at Assen, extending his championship lead and closing in on the all-time win total by taking his 57th career victory.
In uncharacteristically warm and dry conditions, Rea showed his affinity with the historic Assen circuit by leading across the line in Race One for all but two laps.
He won the race by an eventual 0.981 seconds from local hero Michael van der Mark, who led for two laps on his Yamaha. But while Van der Mark was fast, he was also ragged, allowing Rea to control the race.
Rea’s third race victory of the year came after some good work in practice and qualifying, and being able to improve the pace in warm conditions, making a gap that he could control in the final few laps of the 4.542km long circuit.
Rea said: “I enjoyed...
Johann Zarco has seen his dream factory ride turn into a nightmare even quicker than anticipated, with KTM deciding replace him in the team with immediate effect.
Zarco and KTM had decided to mutually end their association at the end of 2019, but the Austrian powerhouse has decided to act now and relieve the Frenchman from racing duties for the remainder of the season.
The official reason is that 'developments and ongoing work mean that priorities have been realigned', and while Zarco is exempt from his MotoGP commitments, he will remain contracted to KTM until the end of the season.
He will be replaced in the team by test rider Mika Kallio - who rode the KTM on its debut in the MotoGP division in Valencia 2016 and has contributed strongly since the early testing phases of the...
The Spanish MotoGP race weekend at the iconic Aragon circuit saw Alpinestars launch the ‘Randy Mamola Legend’ Supertech R Race Replica boot in recognition of one of MotoGP’s most endearing characters, Randy Mamola.
The American enjoyed a successful career that lasted from 1979 through to 1992, with Randy finishing second in the premiere 500cc World Championship on four different occasions. Randy competed in 151 races in 500cc racing, securing 13 wins, 57 podiums, five poles and 11 fastest laps, and his unique blend of bike control, racecraft and showmanship saw him become a firm favorite with fans across the globe.
Recognized as one of the sport’s most charismatic personalities, Randy continues to entertain fans on and off the track, piloting the Ducati two-seat MotoGP bike as well...
Suzuki's GSX-R 750 has been some 25 years in the making and this is the result – a bike that's as close to Japanese sportsbike perfection as it gets.
Put simply, the 750 is the best bike in the Gixxer family. It has the sweet, lightweight chassis of the 600 without the need to be revved hard at every opportunity, and while it's still frighteningly quick – it's good for some 170mph – it doesn't have the outright urgency of the 1000. What all this does is put the rider firmly in control, allowing them to concentrate more on the road and exploiting what's on offer.
Swinging a leg over the bike the first thing that becomes apparent is just how familiar everything feels and just how comfortable it is. The seat is wide and plush, the bars come almost perfectly to hand, the mirrors work...
I've just done a 400-mile round trip to Bristol in the new Arai RX7-V in very changeable conditions, and first impressions are favourable.
The trip meant some nine hours in the saddle, and the Arai excelled throughout. It didn't fog in the freezing and cold conditions in the morning, the powerful vents doing a good job of keeping air circulating throughout the lid. They're easy to sue with gloves, and have a decent level of control from slight flow to full flow.
It's comfy too – despite the fit of the new shell and lining making it feel snugger than its predecessor, there are no pinch points, no marks on my head; it just fits.
The lining itself is supremely comfortable, with no itches, and the field of vision is excellent, easily allowing you to see what's going on around you.
Motorcycle race suits offer the very best form of rider protection. They’re constructed with abrasion resistant materials, have generous impact protection and are designed to keep you as safe as possible in the event of a crash. Leather slides incredibly well, and you’re more likely to suffer heat burns from your skin rubbing against the leather than damage from cuts and the likes. Speed causes a lot of injuries but the injuries caused by friction are far greater.
The Racing Absolute Leather Suit is different. Using lessons learnt from the MotoGP World Championship and input from Alpinestars athletes, the Racing Absolute is a state-of-the-art kangaroo leather one-piece racing suit which sets new benchmarks for protective technology available to riders. An example of this is the...
BMW Motorrad is launching the BMW Motorrad Street Air by Alpinestars, an advanced airbag system offering comprehensive upper body protection and the freedom to ride a motorbike in both on- and offroad situations.
The technology is adopted from the current Alpinestars Tech-Air® street airbag system, a system which requires no motorbike-mounted sensors and instead relies on a sophisticated algorithm that detects imminent danger and inflates the full upper body airbag to provide a highly-effective crash protection system ahead of the first impact.
The BMW Motorrad Street Air Dry by Alpinestars textile riding jacket is designed to interconnect with the Alpinestars airbag system vest and is an essential component for the system to be fully operational.
It offers instantaneous inflatable...
Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso won a spectacular Austrian Grand Prix with a last-corner pass on Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez after a terrific sparring match with the Spanish champion that lasted from the first to the last lap.
Dovizioso powered away well at the start from the front row, then overtook the provisional race leader Quartararo on Lap 6. He was followed immediately by Marquez, with whom Dovizioso then had an amazing scrap that only finished at the chequered flag.
On the final lap it was Marquez who held a slender lead, but Dovizioso used all of his race craft to line up and all-or-nothing overtake at the final corner reminiscent of Marquez’s own move on the Italian two years ago. However, unlike Marquez’s failed effort, Dovizioso pulled off the perfect block pass up the inside...
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez rode a controlled race, pouncing on the last lap to take the MotoGP win at Misano.
After a promising morning Warm Up session where Marquez, the Spaniard entered the 27-lap San Marino Grand Prix with confidence.
Marquez made a flying start to the race and moved to fourth by the first corner, quickly progressing up to third just a few corners later. Muscling past Yamaha's Maverick Viñales on Lap Four, the World Championship leader set about closing down the almost one-second lead of Petronas Yamaha's Fabio Quartararo. The Frenchman’s advantage was soon reduced to just two tenths, with Marquez electing to wait for his moment to attack. As the laps ticked down, the reigning champion began to edge closer and put increasing pressure on the young French rider....
When Guzzi launched the entry-level retro-styled V7 to the world in 2008 it looked the part but was more an exercise in style over substance – yes, the styling was gorgeous and while it had character, charm and authenticity by the bucket-load, its asthmatic 42bhp powerplant let it down. Badly. It just couldn’t compete with rivals such as the Triumph Bonneville or Ducati Sports Classic.
In 2012 Guzzi concentrated their efforts on thoroughly refreshing their 744cc V-twin lump, replacing or revising all of the components apart from the crankshaft and cases. The results are impressive. As well as increasing power to 51bhp, the engine feels more refined and offers better fuel economy (Guzzi claim a 12 per cent increase) and improved emissions. The only downside to this refinement is that...
So, last night Lincolnshire lad and motorcycling maverick Guy Martin added another accolade to sit on his already bulging trophy cabinet, setting a speed record for the fastest wall of death.
The Kirmington based rider broke the 60mph barrier on an Indian before smashing that and recording an impressive 78.15mph on his own prepared triple.
It was no mean feat – Martin was pulling more than 6G as he travelled around the wall – and in his own words he was starting to suffer with ‘grey / blurred’ vision.
And yet despite this achievement, and bringing motorcycling to the masses on primetime TV on a Bank Holiday, social media was awash with keyboard warriors belittling his efforts, and what he has achieved in his stellar career to date.
‘But he hasn't won a TT’, ‘Ken Fox could’ve...
Spain’s triple MotoGP World Champion, Jorge Lorenzo, and SHARK, the French helmet manufacturer, have announced a three-year partnership in MotoGP.
Five-time world champion Lorenzo will be wearing the Race-R PRO, SHARK’s flagship product, in all races, after binning HJC following several high profile helmet mishaps in 2015.
The Factory Yamaha rider said: “I am very proud to be tackling the forthcoming seasons with such a prestigious brand as SHARK, which has a long history in MotoGP. For me, this represents a most exciting challenge and I am quite sure that, together, we will form a great team. I really hope that I can reward all this confidence they have placed in me with some major successes.”
The Chairman of SHARK, Patrick Francois, was equally pleased with the news. He said: ...
There are now five bikes bearing the R nine T moniker, and this is the latest addition to the family – the Racer.
Essentially the sporty version of the range, the Racer S definitely looks the part. Long and low, the Racer comes with a fairing complete with BMW Motorsport paint, a steel fuel tank, a set of clip-on bars, new rearsets and a single seat. The rest – the headlight, clocks, the tail – has already been seen on the original R nineT. Yes, it may be a spare parts lash-up, but the overall effect is stunning – this looks every inch the carefully crafted cafe racer. This is in no small part down to the fact that Boxer motor looks perfectly so at home in a café-racer, especially one as sleekly proportioned as the Racer.
The first thing that makes itself known when sitting on the...
Day one of the WSBK test at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit saw factory Ducati’s Álvaro Bautista clocking the fastest time of the day, over four tenths of a second faster than Yamaha’s Alex Lowes and Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea.
Bautista said: “Today was a very positive day and I felt good on the bike right away. We mainly focussed on chassis set-up work by testing various solutions that I hadn’t tried out until now. I’m pleased because we were able to improve the turning of the bike, which gave me a lot more confidence going into the corner. In addition, we tried the different tyre solutions that Pirelli brought along for the weekend. Now we have to have a good look at the data and try and make another step forward, but all in all I’m very happy.”
The Spaniard’s best lap of 1’30.743...
Kawasaki’s litre bike may lack the desirability and looks of its rivals, but look beyond its bland styling and you’ll see a very capable weapon guaranteed to entertain.
This was the first Japanese bike to be fitted with a proper racing-type traction control system, and this one also has the optional high-performance ABS. But that’s not all – this 2012 bike is rammed full of rider aids including wheelie control and three power modes, although in reality the lowest mode is all but redundant.
Swing a leg over the bike and it feels tiny, mainly because it is, and although it’s very compact the ergonomics are surprisingly good – the low seat is comfortable, the controls fall easily to hand, and the adjustable pegs feel right in their standard position for my gangly legs. Even the low...
Ducati celebrates its 90th anniversary this year, and the Italian manufacturer used World Ducati Week to debut a limited edition machine – the Ducati 1299 Panigale S Anniversario.
This stunning bike is more than just a cosmetic exercise; there are only 500 motorcycles being produced and each will receive the special paint, gold-colored metal and technical upgrades.
The stand out features are the bike’s enhanced rider aids – this S Anniversario is equipped with an EVO version of the Ducati Traction Control (DTC) and Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) – the first Ducati to receive these systems. The enhanced traction control system bolsters the current Bosch IMU-powered lean-angle sensitive system by allowing the rider to slide the rear wheel through a corner – the system allows the wheel to...
Speculation continues to surround Guy Martin, with media channels across the globe wondering whether we will see the maverick road racer between the hedges in 2017.
Many are suggesting the fastest man to never win a TT has done with the roads for good, his huge off at the UlsterGP in 2015 proving to be the crash that broke the camel’s back.
However, we can reveal that the world’s fastest truck mechanic was in talks with Neil Tuxworth to ride for Honda last year, with Honda desperate to see Martin on their machinery in 2016.
Sources close to Martin revealed that the star was told he could name his price, but it isn't money that drives Martin and he told Tuxworth so. Instead of a fat pay cheque, Martin said he’d race for nothing, so long as he could race the RCV, the road-going...
These new boots are Sidi’s mid-range offering and have been designed as the prefect combination of a road and a race boot.
The Roarr is packed full of features that were previously only available on the company’s top-of-the-range Mag 1 race boots, including fixed, hard plastic shin plates, thick plastic anti-twist ankle braces which run half the length of the boots and replaceable toesliders.
The Roarr features Sidi’s Techno 3 ratchet closure system for a truly snug and reassuringly secure fit, stretch panels and a Teflon-coated lining to make getting them on and off easier and quicker.
Here it is – the eagerly-anticipated Yamaha R6, the manufacturer’s all-new supsersports machine.
It’s been a long wait, and the bike more than lives up to the hype. This is no evolution, think more full-blown full-on technical revolution.
Yes, the engine and chassis may be essentially the same, but the 2017 R6 features a revised suspension package, ABS brakes, traction control, and an optional quickshifter.
The ride-by-wire system has three riding modes, which can change the throttle response and engine map for more or less throttle aggressiveness, while there is also six-stage traction control, which can be switched off. Yamaha claims it is so smart it can even take adapt to tyre wear throughout a race or track session – trick.
Visually the bike apes the R1’s styling cues, which...
Let’s start off with the elephant in the room – the Versys is one ugly bike, and I mean fugly. It looks a mess – there’s just too much strangely sculpted bodywork. Every single one of my friends were blunt about its styling. “It’s hideous”, “it’s ugly”, and “it’s a poor man’s Street Hawk” were some of the kinder comments. There’s no getting away from it – the Kawasaki’s looks divide opinion, with some saying the appearance puts them off considering the bike as a road-only alternative to the leading adventure bikes, the BMW R1200GS, the Honda Crosstourer and the Triumph Explorer. Which is a shame, because beneath all that plastic is a solid, if unspectacular, bike.
The first thing to say is that it’s a very physically tall bike. I’m 6ft 2in tall, with long limbs, and it was a struggle...
Used test: BMW S1000RR
BMW’s litre bike took the class by storm when it was introduced in 2009, effectively reinvigorating sportsbikes and moving the game on substantially.
The bike was updated in 2012, and this is the bike we’re testing here. It’s well specced – Race ABS, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) and Gear Shift Assist comes as standard, and this one even has heated grips. Heated grips on a sportsbike? Yes, don’t knock them until you’ve tried them– toasty hands make a huge difference to your comfort and concentration levels this time of year.
The original bike was launched in a range of colours, including a very pale yellow and a lurid ‘piss’ green, but BMW reigned back the colour palette and this bike looks stunning in its red, white and black paint. Other subtle changes that...
Arai has just announced that it’ll soon be accepting orders for a limited edition RX-7V HRC.
The lid features Honda’s famous HRC logo, along with the manufacturer’s iconic wings motif and Honda racing colours, and has been designed by legendary designer Aldo Drudi – the very same man who paints all of Rossi’s lids.
Honda Racing Corporation has taken the significant move of granting Arai permission to use its logo, but only for a limited time, meaning Arai will only be able to make a small quantity of these hand-made helmets.
The £649.99 RX-7V HRC LTD will be available for preordering from Why Arai, and will come from Arai in Japan; it’s not being stocked at Arai’s European warehouse.
For more information contact your local Arai dealer.
Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea secured a fifth straight World Superbike title with two rounds to spare after taking victory in Race Two at Magny-Cours; the Northern Irishman, 32, becomes the first rider to win five World Superbikes titles.
His nearest title rival, Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista, exited early in Race Two after being taken out by Turkish Puccetti Racing’s Toprak Razgatlioglu.
Turkey’s Razgatlioglu beat Rea in Sunday morning’s Sprint Race which was same one-two as Saturday’s Race One.
That meant victory for the Kawasaki rider in Race Two was guaranteed to land him the title if Spaniard Bautista finished outside the top 11.
Bautista looked set to challenge strongly in Race Two before Razgatlioglu’s mistake on lap two led to both riders exiting which left Rea in second spot just...
Aprilia’s RS125 is right up there with some of the best bikes I’ve ever ridden – in the top three definitely – and rightly so. You’ll struggle to discover a bike that leaves you grinning as much as this little pocket rocket.
Aprilia ruled the roost in small capacity racing for years, dominating the smaller classes, and this bike is rammed full of the lessons they’ve learnt on the track. It’s light, agile and achingly good looking.
The RS125’s single cylinder engine may only pump out just shy of 15hp in restricted form, but it’s still an intoxicating ride. The lack of power means you’ll try and keep it in the sweet spot as much as possible – the secret to riding this bike is all about working up through the slick gearbox as quickly as possible and keeping the momentum going, and this...
01) Our roads are shocking, really fucking shocking. Massive potholes, cracks, poor surfaces, gravel – they need sorting out. Fast.
02) It’s still way too cold for vented leathers.
03) The Factory’s Akras sound like victory…boooooooom, braaaaaaap, baaaaaaang.
04) The amount of drivers using their phone behind the wheel is frightening.
05) Aching knees, wrists and necks mean I’m getting old, but the lack of thermals means I’m not getting wiser.
06) The first scraaaaaaaape of slider on tarmac of the year still brings a MASSIVE smile to my face.
07) Chicks dig wheelies.
08) I’d forgotten how good fish finger sandwiches are.
09) There’s A LOT of blood when you strike a pigeon.
10) Little Chef lollies do strange things to grown men…
The Ducati Factory WSBK outfit has announced Marco Melandri will be riding its Panigale R in 2017, the 34-year-old replacing Davide Giugliano.
Melandri will partner Chaz Davies, the Welshman who is spearheading the Italian’s current campaign, and a move which will see the former BMW team-mates reunited.
Davies, 29, is currently in the middle of his third season with Ducati and, thus far, has secured nine wins and 32 podiums overall on the Panigale R,while Melandri return to the series which has seen him claim 19 wins and 49 overall podiums in 100 races.
The Italian said: “I’m really excited to come back to racing, it’s a dream come true. I always said I was only interested in a top bike and top team, and I could not have asked for more. I kept following WSBK closely, and I’m...
This is the X-Spirit III, Shoei’s top-of-the range racing helmet.
Developed by knowledge gleaned from Marc Marquez, Bradley Smith, Eugene Laverty, Tom Lüthi and a host of other top racers from series across the globe, the X-Spirit III has been designed to offer superb levels of aerodynamic performance – an all-new shell and new wings on the side of the helmet boost stability while reducing buffeting.
The new shell and visor aperture have been designed to make it easier to see while sat in a full racing crouch, and a new design of comfort lining allows riders to tilt the helmet backwards or forwards on their head by four degrees – a useful trick for anyone who finds the helmet brow obstructing their forward vision when fully tucked in.
Another important new feature of the X-Spirit...
Ducati has released a micro website for Project 1408, the name of its secret new super superbike.
While the site itself has no information as such – it doesn’t even tease what Project 1408 could be – insiders within the factory have hinted that the bike will be a new Superleggera model, based on the Ducati 1299, which makes extensive use of the company’s MotoGP and WSBK involvement.
The bike will be far more than just a 1199 Superleggera with a new 1299 engine, and will feature carbon fibre throughout – for the frameless chassis, headstock, airbox and swingarm.
The wheels will also be carbon fibre, and will be manufactured by British company BST. Other trinkets include Öhlins suspension and a WSBK spec exhaust which ditches the underslung unit in favour of an underseat system.
Macau is one of the highlights in the international road racing season – and this year’s race saw an intense three-way battle at the front of the field, a battle of three BMW racers.
The protagonists were last year’s winner Peter Hickman, his Bathams team-mate Michael Rutter and Martin Jessopp on the RidersMotorcycles.com BMW.
This trio secured a great 1-2-3 result for the S1000RR in Macau last year, and they dominated the race again this year. Hickman, Macau record winner Rutter and pole setter Jessopp were involved in an intense fight for the lead, changing positions several times and soon building a huge gap to the rest of the field. After 12 thrilling and dramatic laps on the Guia Circuit, Hickman crossed the finish line as the winner, just 0.533 seconds in front of second placed...
The row over airbag supremacy rumbles on as Dainese has issued a statement responding to an earlier statement issued by Alpinestars over legal action between the two powerhouses regarding the ownership of airbag technology.
Dainese has now released its own statement, which insists that legal action was taken in the German market – the Court of Munich ultimately granting an injunction on the sale of Tech-Air products in Germany – and that legal action is underway in Italy.
Here is the statement in full: With respect to Alpinestars’ “Statement regarding press coverage of Patent Challenge,” and for the sake of clarity, Dainese deems it necessary to reply to the following claim:
“In Germany, Dainese did make a direct request to certain retailers, that they cease and desist...
HJC Helmets have reached an agreement with Cal Crutchlow to become his official helmet sponsor for 2019 and 2020 in the MotoGP World Championship.
Cal has been a permanent fixture on the MotoGP grid since 2011 and the British rider continues his relationship with Team LCR Honda in 2019 after celebrating three podiums in 2018 including a victory in Argentina. Unfortunately, an injury sustained in Australia excluded Cal from the final three races of the season.
A well-respected rider by all in the paddock, Cal will become a vital part of HJC’s racing program. His maturity and experience on track bring important knowledge to contribute to the development of HJC’s products, building on their 47 years of experience in manufacturing quality motorcycle helmets.
“I am very pleased to...
Since its introduction in 2011 Ducati has sold nearly 25,000 examples of the Diavel; a bike based loosely on classic American muscle cruisers and given a Ducati coating of fairy dust. The results were spectacular. The Diavel was a super cruiser like no other, combining comfort, power, presence and handling. And boy could it handle, even if its massive 240-section rear tyre and 1590mm-long wheelbase suggested otherwise. All this was backed up with superbike levels of electronic aids; traction control, ABS and a basic anti-wheelie system.
Ducati has just released two new models; the standard Diavel and a Carbon version. The standard model is available in one colour, Dark Stealth, while the Carbon Edition comes in either Red Carbon or Star White Carbon and features carbon fibre panels,...
After a wet morning of action at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, the red flag then came out during the second session for MotoGP – and it was decided to cancel the remainder of the session, as well as FP2 for Moto2.
With few bikes venturing on track during the early part of the session, it was Ducati’s Hector Barbera who went quickest and found himself unthreatened at the top of the timesheets in FP2. His Avintia Racing replacement, Mike Jones, was the next man in the table in his second MotoGP outing to impress once again, with Marc VDS rider Tito Rabat completing the top three. Danilo Petrucci on the Pramac Ducati was only a few hundredths off the Spaniard’s best in fourth, with the other two riders to venture out, Suzuki’s Aleix Espargaro and Yamaha’s rider Valentino Rossi, more...
The iconic New Zealand-built Britten machine will make its return to the Isle of Man in August with not one but two of John Britten’s ground-breaking creations taking to the Mountain Course once more at the Classic TT Races.
The pink and blue Britten and CRS Britten, owned respectively by Kevin Grant and Bob Robbins, were both campaigned at the 1994 Isle of Man TT races and will be ridden this year by Bruce Anstey and fellow Kiwi Stephen Briggs in the Classic Racer Magazine Classic TT Retro Parade on Monday 28th August.
Grant’s machine won the BEARS World Championship in the 1990s and was ridden by Nick Jefferies at the 1994 Isle of Man TT Races with the 1993 Formula One TT winner lapping at more than 118mph from a standing start in the 1994 Senior Race before being side-lined with a...
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez delivered his 60th premier class pole position from 120 premier class starts with a new lap record at the British Grand Prix.
Times were tumbling from early in the day as the Silverstone circuit record was improved on continuously throughout the day. The bar was provisionally set during Free Practice 3 when Marquez was one of three riders to enter the 1’58s – over a second faster than the record from 2017.
Immediately in the 1’58s from his first flying lap of Q2, Marquez left it late to set his fastest time as he secured pole with a 1’58.168 and set a new outright lap record around the Silverstone circuit.
The record-breaking lap is his 60th pole position in the premier class on what is his 120th premier class start. This is also the World Championship...
This is one of those bikes that manages to be all things to all people – it’s agile, punchy, entertaining and has character in spades. It’s British too, and it’s the best naked middleweight money can buy.
This is the ‘inbetween’ model, a final runout of the predecessor tot the current model which featured the neat, twin, underseat silencers but ditched the trademark bug headlights for some equally distinctive Dame Edna-esque units, which were cracked. I’ve ridden four of these bikes now, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015 (all press bikes admittedly) and they were all cracked. Not good enough.
The 675cc powerplant is the star here, its 105bhp more than powerful enough for the road, but it’s torque not power which is key here, offering a wide, silky smooth and elastic spread of drive out of...
The final day of testing saw Ducati dominate the timesheets with factory rider Danilo Petrucci leading the charge with a jaw dropping time of 1:58.239 after 32 laps.
The Italian said: “Today we started off on the right foot: I was supposed to try two ‘time attacks’ but one attempt, done with a medium rear tyre, was enough. When I saw the lap time on the dashboard, I was really happy. After that, we resumed our work on some new items. Unfortunately, however, I crashed while I was trying a new fairing around midday. Given the fact that I was also experiencing some issues with blisters in my hands, we decided to stop a bit ahead of schedule to recover and make sure we’re at our best in the next tests in Qatar. Overall, it’s been a really positive test.”
Rookie Francesco Bagnaia was hot...
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