Recent comments

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 1 day ago

    I want to see Loris Baz on a Tech3 Yamaha, now !

    And I don't want Maverick to be stuck for three years with Suzuki !

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 1 day ago

    What did it end up costing Lorenzo to stay?

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 1 day ago

    Each factory is allowed 4 Factory Option entries, 2 entries in a factory team, and 2 satellite entries. They can enter as many bikes as they like in the Open class.

    Iannone's team will officially be a satellite team, but it will be one run by Ducati Corse with full factory backing. Nothing in the rules to prevent that. I do not know whether Pramac will run a satellite bike or an Open bike, as they have done this year. I suspect an Open bike, it's a lot cheaper.

    Avintia will run GP14s in the Open class in 2015, as Hernandez has done this year (running last year's bike under the Open rules).

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 1 day ago

    Looks like the Japanese flag is at half mast for Randy DePuniet's chances at Suzuki. I guess he'll just have to console himself in the bosom of Lauren. Yep sure does suck to be Randy.

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  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 1 day ago

    Agree, they should be worried about Phillip Morris. Why does PM throw money down the hole on a mid-pack bike that can no longer say Marlborough.

    I never took the "1 billion dollars" a year comment seriously. VW/Audi/Porsche/Ducati are in Business to make money, no one is going throw 1 billion at a single race. That's just silly.

    I honestly cannot understand why Suzuki would bother coming back, why not focus on WSBK? I can't see how Moto GP will not collapse in on itself in the next 5 years or so. The racing is terrible (same 4/5 people/bikes winning for almost the last 10 years) Outrageously expensive, thanks to all the brilliant "cost cutting measures" and it's no longer a prototype series, it's a spec series like F1.

    Ducati dominated WSBK because they had great riders AND because they had the rules tilted in their favor for so long. Everyone seems to forget that.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 1 day ago

    Great news for Ducati. Retaining 2 top riders is good for the continuity of the team. I'm glad to see a complete redesign of the GPXX is coming. I'd like to see them rebrand the bike to send an even stronger signal that the team is moving forward. It was a great legacy in the hands of Stoner but I feel the Desmosedici GPXX moniker sends a message that is all but mediocre. Throw some spaghetti at the wall and see what shapes they make, presto brand new name. Im pretty sure thats what Honda did with noodles when naming the RC213VNSRGOLDWING.

    Lorenzo is going to Yamaha. he has no negotiating power at the moment and they know it. If only Rossi had stayed 2011-13 Rossi, Lorenzo would be getting whatever he wanted. Yamaha are offering him the one thing all Spaniards desperately want, employment so that deal should be sewn up soon.

    Ducati also launched a new range at WDW

    GeorgeBourke.com | DCA 14 Range

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  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 1 day ago

    That former world champion is sadly over the hill. Redding is outperforming him quite consistently on the same bike.

    As for Bautista; how often do riders pin their poor performances on the tyres, when everyone is using the same tyre? Bautista has different suspension and brakes - and he sometimes performs well. Other times he over rides the bike and crashes. Maybe he shouldn't have a semi-factory bike, but I think he's more competitive than many in the field.

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 2 days ago

    I think it's quite easy to understand. He's a lovely guy and a great ambassador for the sport (although he hardly gets on TV nowadays). However, Redding has beaten him nearly all year, and it's difficult to say his career isn't on an upward trajectory.
    Nicky is not performing so well on the same bike, and he's older, is injured, etc.
    Plus Redding seems to have support to keep his ride paid for, whereas Nicky seemed to struggle to get the necessary support after leaving Ducati.
    If you ignore the distant past and think about this year and next it's not too difficult to decide.
    It is a shame, but when there are only 24 seats, or whatever it will be, some very good riders are going to be left out.
    I hope his wrist turns out to be OK, that he can then swop to WSB on a good factory package, and take another title. No-one has done it the other way around, so perhaps....Biaggi has shown it's possible.
    He must be one of the most marketable people, and his career after riding bikes has to be pretty good. He's not in such a bad place.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    The billion dollar argument sounds, well, like a sound bite. So I did a little research. Both the Wall Street Journal [1] and the BBC [2] estimate the cost at around $200 m per year, which makes 0.4 billion in total. Much less than a whole billion.

    The misperception that the Le Mans cars are only used for the Le Mans 24 hours is probably widely spread. Actually, there's a whole World Endurance Championship (WEC) [3] consisting of 8 races.

    Porsche has the most Le Mans victories with 16 wins, followed by Audi with 13. That's a huge marketing boost. Endurance racing is about fuel efficiency, the current WEC ruleset demands hybrid cars. So the research effort is not just for a single race, but it does also apply to their "consumer products". Much more so than the MotoGP prototypes, IMHO.

    The different Volkswagen marques have to finance their racing effort on their own. And I would call neither Porsche nor Audi financially irresponsible. Quite the opposite.

    [1] http://on.wsj.com/1ivmPTa
    [2] http://www.bbc.com/autos/story/20140402-can-porsche-win-at-le-mans
    [3] http://enwp.org/2014_24_Hours_of_Le_Mans

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    There is still a link with the biggest carbuilder in the world and Yamaha, so perhaps ..............

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    This past year, Audi & Porsche (both owned by Volkswagon) spent nearly a BILLION dollars combined on JUST the 24hr Le Mans race. A parent corporation that allows 2 of its subsidiaries to rack up that kind of bill for just one race isn't even going to notice the Ducati MotoGP budget.

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 2 days ago

    I think that the silly season's two biggest questions are if Avintia will run Ducatis and if Aprilia will actually enter as a factory. While the first seems probable but the second does not seem to be so. If Aprilia wants to run advanced versions of the present ART as factory bikes for next season, I really do not see why they should come in one year early. The ART is nowhere in contention for anything other than making up numbers on the grid and the rule changes taking effect in 2016 will make the present motorcycle redundant. It makes sense if Aprilia can debut their new prototype next year in order to use one year for development but just to run the old bike doesn't seem to be reason enough.

    Ducati can run a three member factory team like Honda did with Casey Stoner, Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso. In which case the points will be scored by the best and the worst finishing bikes. I don't know if that rule is still applicable for next year though. Maybe Cal Crutchlow will be pushed onto a factory spec Pramac run bike instead of Iannone. If Avintia is to run two customer Ducatis Alvaro Bautista could join Hector Barbera there, since Avintia is a Spanish team. If Jack Miller is going to leap frog Moto2 and come straight to MotoGP then maybe he will take the RCV 1000R in the LCR team if they can run a second bike and Bradl could continue with LCR since Lucio Cecchinello seems to like him. In Aspar, who could be the Spanish rider for the second seat? Maybe Bautista is the preferred candidate there? Then who at Avintia? This is all about the bottom feeders now, isn't it?

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 2 days ago

    How exactly, on God's green earth, is it that if DORNA is said to be looking to cut Spanish fat is Bautista not looking for a ride? I can't bear to hear about Showa equipment being the limiting factor again!
    The past few seasons Bautista seems to spend more time in the sand than did RDP before he switched to Bridgestones.

    And nothing against Scott Redding, but give the Honda to the other Former (2006) MOTOGP World Champion on the grid. Egads.

    I JUST DON'T GET IT!!

  • Silly Season Update - Ducati Confirmed, Suzuki Announcement Imminent, And Will Aprilia Be Back Sooner?   1 week 2 days ago

    Re Ducati -

    Avintia is to be running 2 Open 2014 Ducatis. Ducati Corse obviously continuing w two Marlboro liveried Factory bikes. Here is where it is getting interesting, and I have a Q re a specific rule David and fab readers in a sec here. I hear that Ducati has made a proposal to Marlboro for AI29's bike to be a full factory bike (as my understanding he has now, exactly the same as the boys in red) but with Marlboro livery and increased technical support.

    Is there any possibility that Pramac would not be running IA29's bike necessarily, but some single bike addition entity? Or some other change getting another Factory Ducati on the grid for 2015?

    Aaron Rowles, for instance, writes at gpextra.com that 'with current IRTA rules saying that a team can only submit 4 machines in a 'class,' the current 4 bikes on the grid will all have to be Factory entries, leaving Avintia to run the Open machines.'

    Really? Pramac back to 2 Factory bikes and Avintia taking over the Opens?

    Thanks for confirming the Aprilia plans. There is always more (job security for you David).

    Keep up the great footwork over there.
    :)

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    I was a huge fan of ducati throughout their days dominating World Superbikes and thought, when they moved to MotoGP, that we'd be in for something very special indeed. As it turns out they have won just one world championship in 11 years in the series, 12 if you count this one. Over a 40 year timespan, in which they've dipped in and out of GP/MotoGP from time to time, Suzuki have won 5 titles. Why are we not talking about Suzuki as serious challengers?

    It is almost unimaginable to believe Suzuki are going to come back and win another title anytime soon, so I find it equally hard to believe Ducati are going to set the world alight next year, the year after, or any other year in the near future. To my mind Ducati came into MotoGP on the back of an fantastic run of results in superbikes, which I suspect was largely down to the pairing of a great bike with a great rider, Fogarty. Success breeds success and other great pairings in superbikes ensued. They have never been able to emulate this in MotoGP, which makes me think 2007 was a year of everything coming together, but unsustainably so. If you look at their pattern of results throughout their time in MotoGP, they have always been pretty ordinary, with the exception of when they had Stoner. I suspect Stoner flattered a not very good bike and if he hadn't been that successful we wouldn't even be having this conversation.

    For me, anyone 'unlucky' enough to not win a ducati seat for next year is not missing out that much, unless they just want or need a bigger bank balance; and as is only too evident this year, the cash alone seems to be inadequate compensation for losing your status as a serious contender for podiums.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    I think they should be more worried about Philip Morris, who is the major backer of the MotoGP team. For a company that's not allowed to even put their name brand on the bike, they want results!

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    Development of their seamless gearbox was slow by comparison with Honda because of lack of resources. Their bike badly needs a new engine but it won't be getting one next season, again for resources reasons, but Ducati's bike will. Why does Jorge have a break clause after a year into his new contract. Because he isn't sure Yamaha can build the bike he thinks he needs. Do you think he's wrong?

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    You have to wonder how long Audi will throw money down the black hole that is Ducai Corse in Moto GP. I have to guess that after a few more seasons they will realize what a colossal waste of money this is. Ducati is the Apple of the motorcycle world, whatever they build and slap a Ducati sticker on the sheeple will buy regardless of how it performs. I have to think eventually Teutonic business sense will win out on "Italian Passion" and the plug will be pulled on the entire project.......

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    "Hard to see currently how that bike's going to be a Yamaha. But it could be a Ducati."

    ... how you made that leap in logic?

    Just because the Ducati is going to be "all new" most certainly doesn't mean it's going to be "all good."

    And not exactly Yamha's first rodeo... they've been pretty good to adapting to new rules over the last 10 years, other than this last fuel cut.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    Might be more return on money spent to just take the entire MGP development budget & offer it to Stoner as salary.

    He'd probably make up for more time on the bike by just sitting on it than their next 2 years of development combined.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    Even if the 2015 bike is competitive, 2016 throws in spec electronics and new tires to upset the apple cart. Could be worse, could be better. What I see is a lot of teams in "wait and see" mode, and being as conservative as motorcycle racing really is, are looking to minimize the changes over the next couple years. Hence most everyone staying where they're at.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    As a fellow Aussie and former Stoner fan - and now Marquez fan, I think you're probably right but regardless of who won, I'd just love to see them race.

  • Post-Sachsenring Surgery Update - Arm Pump Operation For Crutchlow, More Wrist Surgery For Hayden   1 week 2 days ago

    Nicky, Nicky, Nicky...

    First you have the Herbert Screw removed because it was sticking out past the bone and rubbing soft tissue. Never mind the screw is in their to hold together a dead bone that won't knit. Then when it doesn't get better (why should it), you have clean up surgery. Then when that doesn't work you have a row of 3 bones (including the offending scaphoid or carpal navicluar) removed, and the top of the Radius bone trimmed (which I'm sure leaves that surface in just a prime condition for a joint surface).

    Did anyone consider re-installing the Herbert Screw into your bone properly so it didn't stick out. I realize according to the literature that the PRC is supposed to get you back quickly, but do you really think there will be any strength in your wrist? If you think it was arthritic before, just how well will the 2nd tier of remaining carpals mesh with the end of your (trimmed) radius and ulna now?

    I pray that this is not the end of your career, and salute your toughness. I am sad in that, from an outside view, it appears you received less than stellar medical advice. Then again, what the heck do I know.

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    Nick Harris really needed Gavin Emmett to keep him in check. New chappy probably isn't comfortable enough to call him out, yet

  • Ducati Line Up To Remain Unchanged For 2015: Crutchlow Dovizioso And Iannone To Ride Radically Revised Desmosedici GP15   1 week 2 days ago

    The problem I see for Crutchlow is that even if the 2015 bike is good, its unlikely to be a real championship contender in its first year, with no data/experience etc. Listening to the rumblings and grumblings about Ducati wanting Crutchlow out to make room for Iannone, there's surely no way he'll get a renewal for 2016/17. He'll be left doing all the hard development work next work for next to no real results (championship wise, even if the bike is good), yet he'll be out of a job when the bike has a chance of coming good in 2016. Bummer...

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