Riders Unhappy With Return Of 2013 Bridgestone At Austin

Bridgestone's decision to bring the 2013-spec medium compound rear tire to the Austin round of MotoGP has met with near universal displeasure among the MotoGP riders. The Japanese tire company was forced to revert to the 2013-spec tire, without the added heat-resistant layer, after a production issue with the 2014 tires meant that they were unable to bring enough of the new spec tires to the Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin.

That decision was cause for much disappointment among MotoGP riders. 'I'm not happy to use the old tire,' Valentino Rossi told the press conference. 'I don't like it. I want to use the new one, and what Bridgestone did this weekend, bring the old tire after we worked a lot on the bike to make it use the new tire, this is something that sincerely I don't understand.'

2014 Austin MotoGP Preview Press Releases

Press release previews from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone ahead of this weekend's Grand Prix of the Americas at Austin:

Round Number: 
2
Year: 
2014

2014 Austin Moto2 And Moto3 Preview Press Releases

Press release previews from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams ahead of this weekend's race in Austin:

Round Number: 
2
Year: 
2014

2014 Aragon World Superbike Preview Press Releases

The World Superbike teams and the series organizer preview the upcoming World Superbike round at Aragon in Spain:

Round Number: 
2
Year: 
2014

Colin Edwards Announces His Retirement: 2014 To Be His Last Season Racing

Colin Edwards has announced that he is to retire from motorcycle racing at the end of the 2014 season. The 40-year-old Texan told a shocked press conference that he had decided to hang up his helmet for good, after finding it increasingly harder to be competitive, and struggling to make the family sacrifices with children growing up.

Edwards seemed uncharacteristically at a loss for words as he made his announcement. The Texan has always been outspoken, and never afraid to speak his mind, yet this announcement was hard. 'I don't even know how to say it, I rehearsed it so many times,' Edwards hesitated. '2014 will be my last year racing motorcycles.' It was a tough decision to make, he said. He has been racing in Europe since 1995, and been away from his family an awful lot. With his kids reaching the age where they are becoming much more active, Edwards hinted that it was getting hard to keep missing big moments in their lives.

Ben Spies Interview: Goodbye, Or See You Later?

The following interview was done by Polish MotoGP journalist and TV commentator Mick Fialkowski back in October 2013 and published in Bikesportnews in the UK amongst others. As well as writing in English, Mick writes in Polish for the website and magazine MotorMania, as well as the Polsat Sport website.

Spies is hopefully feeling better by now, but by how much, we'll probably find out next weekend as the former World Superbike Champion is set to attend his home MotoGP round at Austin, Texas, as a spectator. Can he ever come back as a rider?

With former AMA and WSBK Champ Ben Spies announcing his retirement following two horrid seasons in MotoGP, Mick Fialkowski asks him why and if he's ever coming back.

As the likes or Marquez, Rossi and Crutchlow spend the off-season gearing up for 2014, Ben Spies has other priorities, recovering from a double shoulder injury which forced his recent shocking retirement from motorcycle racing at the age of just 29. 'Right now, when I wake up in the morning, I'm still in a lot of pain with both shoulders,' the Texan says from his house in Dallas in a first interview since announcing his retirement exactly a month earlier. 'The left one, which I've injured at Indy this year, was a pretty bad separation, it was a grade five, the three tendons that attach the AC joint to your shoulder they weren't even connected. That was pretty big but I don't think it will be too much of a problem, hopefully, for the long run. The right shoulder, the one from Malaysia of last year; all I can say is it's been over a year since I've had the first surgery and I haven't gone a day without waking up without pain or it troubling me. It will be tough. I don't want to say never but when I talk to the doctors they always say that for doing normal things in normal life it shouldn't be a problem but racing a motorcycle or playing golf, I'm going to be restricted in a lot of things and that just comes with the nature of the injury and the damage that I've done inside my shoulder that you can't really fix. When you have the rotator cuff and torn labrum stuff, it's pretty severe and that's why the second surgery was done to my right shoulder to try and fix some of those problems. It still feels like it's not at 100%, that's for sure.'

The Courtship Ritual Begins: Prelude To MotoGP's Silly Season, Part 2

This is the second part of our two-part series on how the silly season for next year's MotoGP rider line up may play out. If you missed the first part, you can catch up with the situation in the Honda and Yamaha factory teams here.

Up until late in the 2013 season, change in the rider line up for Yamaha and Honda's MotoGP squads looked to be limited. Though all four riders will technically be on the open market at the end of 2014, the most likely scenarios for 2015 and beyond looked fairly settled. Either the line ups of the Repsol Honda and Movistar Yamaha teams would remain identical, or Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa might swap seats. The biggest question mark, it appeared, hung over whether Valentino Rossi would continue racing after 2014.

Two major shake ups changed all that. For Valentino Rossi, the replacement of Jeremy Burgess with Silvano Galbusera – and the increased role for electronics engineer Matteo Flamigni – has helped him find at least some of the time he was losing to the three Spaniards who dominated MotoGP last year, making it more likely he will stay on at Yamaha for another couple of seasons. That leaves the situation at Yamaha look more stable than before.

The Courtship Ritual Begins: Prelude To MotoGP's Silly Season, Part 1

It is going to be a busy – and lucrative – year for the managers of MotoGP riders. With almost everyone out of contract at the end of 2014, and with Suzuki coming back in 2015, top riders will be in high demand. The signs that competition will be intense for both riders and teams are already there, with the first shots already being fired.

Silly season for the 2015 championship kicked off very early. At the end of last year, HRC Vice President Shuhei Nakamoto made a few casual remarks expressing an interesting in persuading Jorge Lorenzo to come to Honda. He repeated those comments at the Sepang tests, making no secret of his desire to see Lorenzo signed to an HRC contract.

Lorenzo has so far been cautious, ruling nothing out while reiterating his commitment to Yamaha. He is aware of the role Yamaha have played in his career, signing the Spaniard up while he was still in 250s, and bringing him straight into the factory team alongside Valentino Rossi in 2008, against some very vigorous protests from the multiple world champion. Yamaha have stuck with Lorenzo since then, refusing to bow to pressure to the extent of letting Rossi leave for Ducati, and in turn, Lorenzo has repaid their support by bringing them two world titles, 31 victories and 43 other podium finishes.

Looking Ahead: MotoGP Grids Filling Up With Aprilia Working On 2016 Return

Towards the end of the 800cc era, MotoGP looked to be in dire condition. Grids were dwindling, factories were reducing their participation, and teams were in difficult financial straits indeed. By the end of 2011, there were just 17 full time entries, Suzuki was down to a single rider, and were about to pull out entirely for 2012.

How different the situation looks today. The CRTs have served their purpose - to persuade the factories to help fill the grid, and supply the teams with (relatively) affordable equipment - and the reduction in costs brought about in part by the spec electronics is enticing factories back to MotoGP. Suzuki is in full testing mode, and getting ready to return to racing full time in 2015, and Aprilia is working towards a full-time return in 2016.

Marc VDS Press Release: Mika Kallio Analyzes The Circuit Of The Americas Track In Austin

The Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas is a difficult track to get right. The track features a mixture of both flowing and tricky sections, as well as fast straights with hard braking corners. To help give fans an insight into both setting up a bike for the track and the right approach to riding the circuit, the Marc VDS Racing team issued a press release in which Moto2 rider Mika Kallio explains his approach to the track. A fascinating look at this still relatively new circuit:


Mika Kallio: It’s all about compromise at the Circuit of Americas

Gosselies, Belgium – 5 April 2014: The Circuit of the Americas, situated on the outskirts of Austin in Texas, plays host to round two of the Moto2 World Championship next weekend.

The track, the first purpose built Grand Prix facility in the United States, runs in an anti-clockwise direction and features 11 left-hand and nine right-hand corners within its 3.4 mile or 5.5 kilometre length

The track made its debut on the Moto2 calendar in 2013 and Mika Kallio finished the inaugural Grand Prix of the Americas on the podium in third place, after a race long battle with Dominique Aegerter and Tito Rabat, who joins him this season in the Marc VDS team.

Round Number: 
2
Year: 
2014

Pol Espargaro Interview - On Collarbones, Learning MotoGP Electronics, And Racing Brothers

While much of the media attention at Qatar was focused on his brother Aleix, Pol Espargaro made a quietly impressive debut in the premier class. The 22-year-old Spaniard posted competitive times all weekend, but was forced to pull out of the race with a technical problem. Before the weekend started, MotoMatter.com's Scott Jones sat down with the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha rider to talk to him about how he viewed the season. The conversation ranged over Espargaro's broken collarbone, injured at the test just 10 days before the weekend started, adapting to a MotoGP machine after years in Moto2, and racing against his brother Aleix. A fascinating conversation with a rising star.

Q: First of all, let's talk about the collarbone. How does it feel?

Pol Espargaro: The collarbone feels better. Sure doesn't feel perfect, but for sure I have to be happy, because ten days ago I had the collarbone fixed, the pain is not big. So for sure I have to be happy because we are good.

Q: Pushing on the handlebars, it's OK?

Jerez WSBK Private Test Press Releases

Press releases from some of the World Superbike teams after the latest test at Jerez:

Year: 
2014

Jerez WSBK Private Tests: Guintoli Leads As Weather Plays Havoc On Final Day Of Test

The final day of testing for the World Superbike teams was disrupted by the rain, as predicted by the weather service. But the wind and sun between the rain helped dry the track, meaning that the remaining riders still managed to put in a few useful laps at Jerez, though it rendered the times set meaningless.

Sylvain Guintoli was the fastest man on the day, but the Frenchman was over 2 seconds slower than Davide Giugliano's best time from Tuesday. The factory Aprilia rider was half a second quicker than Alex Lowes on the Voltcom Suzuki and a second faster than Jonathan Rea on the Pata Honda. Guintoli's teammate Marco Melandri posted his times in the wet, and was 22 seconds slower than Guintoli.

Ducati Press Release: Testing And Promo Work Concludes For Ducati MotoGP Team In Jerez

Along with the World Superbike teams, Ducati's MotoGP team were also testing at Jerez, taking advantage of the unlimited testing allowed under the late MotoGP rule change. Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow spent two days at the Andalucian track, working on electronics and shooting a promotional video for the team. The riders now pack up and head to Texas, for the Austin GP on the 13th April. The press release issued by Ducati appears below:


Ducati Team testing at Jerez conditioned by bad weather

Two days of testing planned by the Ducati Team at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in Andalusia, Spain concluded this afternoon earlier than scheduled.

Today’s changeable weather conditions, following overnight rain, did not allow the track to dry out completely, and as a result the riders and the team were unable to take full advantage of the time available in preparation for the Jerez MotoGP race, which will be held on this circuit from 2 to 4 May.

Year: 
2014

Bridgestone Press Release - Bridgestone Europe Launches Competitions To Win Chance To Meet Valentino Rossi

Bridgestone Europe have launched a new series of competitions for MotoGP fans. Branded 'Club46', the competitions are being run in conjunction with Bridgestone's  brand ambassador Valentino Rossi. Six competitions are to be held throughout the year, giving fans a chance to win a range of prizes, with the top prize of a trip to a MotoGP race to meet Valentino Rossi. More details in the press release from Bridgestone shown below:


BRIDGESTONE EUROPE LAUNCH CLUB46 IN PARTNERSHIP WITH VALENTINO ROSSI

  • Bridgestone to run six competitions throughout the 2014 season; 46 winners each draw!
  • For each competition two of the lucky winners will receive the ultimate, money-can’t-buy prize – a VIP MotoGP experience and a meet and greet with Valentino Rossi
  • Fans can enter competition at www.bridgestoneclub46.eu
Year: 
2014
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