Calendar of the World Superbike Championship
      Home of the Official SBK Fast Dates Calendar Kittens

September 2017 Page 1


Rea Doubles Portimao World Superbike
Ducati Unveils New Stradale V-4 Superbike Engine
Tomy Elias and Yoshimura Suzuki win 2017 MotoAmerica
Dovizioso & Marquez Tie MotoGP Lead at Misano
Ducati 1299R Final Edition • MV Agusta Brutale 800 America
World Premier - New 2018 FastDates.com Calendars
2017 LA Calendar Bike Show Events
Edelweiss Paris to Omaha Tour with
SBK Fast Dates Calendar Kitten Kaustin


Previous Week - More Pit Lane News
New Model Sportbikes • Editorial Features: Pit Board

Nicky Hayden Dies in Bicycle Accident
2017 SBK Superbike Season Preview & Phillip Island Race
Marc Marquez - The Story of a World Champion
2016-17 IMS International Motorcycle Show
Ownership Change for Laguna Seca?
2016 Intermot International Show New 2017 Bikes
2016 AMA MotoAmerica Season Final- Beaubier Crowned
Edelweiss Bike Trip Paris to Omaha Beach with Kaustin
Fast Dates Calendar Shoot Laguna Seca 2016
2016 LA Calendar Motorcycle Show Coverage
2016 Laguna Seca USA World Superbike Coverage
2016 Missano SBK World Superbike
2016 SBK World Superbike Season Opener Phillip Island
SBK Superbike 2016 Media Guide - The Bikes, The Riders
Jonathan Rae - 2016-17 SBK World Superbike Champion
New 2016 Kawasaki ZX10 - New Bike for the SBK Champ
New 2016 Triumph Bonnevilles - More Watercooled Power
Meet 2016 2015 SBK World Superbike Champ Jonthan Rea
• Fast Dates SBK Calendar Kittens at Laguna Seca 2015
Ducati 1199R15 FastDates Review, Seup and Test

NEW! FAST 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 ...
Digital Calendar Magazine Yearbooks

the Bikes, the Builders, the Riders, the Kittens,
the Calendar Bike Show, the World Superbike races
all the Calendar Pictures, and Special Features...
We take you around the World for the making of the
2015 FastDates.com Calendars
Now in Members Corner

Honda RC213V Moto GP Streetbike Replica goes on sale
Corsa Motoclassica 2015 Willow Springs Racway
Fast Dates Edelweiss Tour of the Pyreness Spain & France!
Fast Dates Shoot with Jitka & Petra 2014 Laguna Seca SBK
FastDates Shoot 2013 Laguna Seca WSBK
Meet the SBK World Superbike Girls! - Photo Pictorial
FastDates.com Calendar Video Shoot - Kelsey and Jessica
World Superbike 25 Years -Maurizio and Paolo Flammini
Troy Bayliss Race Academy School Misano & Paris!
Ducati Corse World Superbike Book Cathcart & Gianatsis
• NCR / Poggopolini The Exotic Ducati Custom Bike Shop
DRE Troy Bayliss Racing Academy - Exclusive at 180mph!
• John Britten Motorcycling's Most Creative Innovator
High Speed World Superbike Movie with Sienna Miller

Fast Dates calendar 2012

This Month in the Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar ....
SBK Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar Kittens Sara Horvath, Alena Savostikova and Alena Pyshnaya with
Leon Camier's factory MV Agusta F4 RC at Laguna Seca World Superbike.
Order the Fast Dates Calendars HERE.


See More of the Bikes and Beautiful Calendar Kittens in -
Calendar Bike Garage
and Members Corner and Meet the Models



SBK Podium Kitten Kaustin Rose with Chaz Davies' factory Ducati 1199RS16 World Superbike

World Premier of the
New 2018 Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar!

The 2018 Fast Dates Calendar features the top factory race bikes and beautiful podium girls of the SBK World Superbike Championship photographed on location at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca USA World Superbike round by Jim Gianatsis. Featured on the cover and inside is World Superbike Champion Jonthan Rea’s Kawasaki ZX10R, Chaz Davies’s Ducati 1199RS, Jordi Tores' Althea BMW S1000RR, Leon Camier's MV Agusta F4, Niccolo Canepa’s Cresent Yamaha R1, Nicky Hayden’s Ten Kate Pata Honda CBR1000, Karel Abraham's Milwaukee BMW S1000RR and AMA Champion Cameron Beaubier’s Yamaha R1. Special customs including collector Thomas Stephen’s exotic Ducati NCR Hailwood Replica, Mick Wollet’s MV Agusta F3 Hailwood Replica, and LA Calendar Motorcycle Show winners Nick O’Kanes’s Honda CBX1100, Michael LaFountains’s Kawsaki W1, and photographer Jim Gianatsis’ personal Ducati 1199R15.    CLICK TO ORDER!

Fast Dates 2018 World Superbike Calendar order here
The beautiful Fast Dates Calendar Kittens featured with the factory race bikes are the official umbrella girls of SBK World Superbike: Kaustin Rose, Alissa Bourne and Sara Horvath, together with Jillian Janson all in skimpy swimwear!

Fast Dates Laguna Seca World Superbike photo shoot 2016

Fast Dates Calendar Celebrates 22 years of SBK World Superbike in America
with 2018 Fast Dates Calendar SBK Umbrella Kittens Kaustin & Alissa at 
Laguna Seca World Superbike and the LA Calendar Motorcycle Show 

By Jim Gianatsis   Photos by Jim Gianatsis • Clink on any Photo to Enlarge It

California, USA, July 17-20th 2016
 - For the 22nd year since SBK World Superbike first came to America at Laguna Seca Raceway in 1995, the FastDates.com Calendars and myself, producer / photographer Jim Gianatsis were excited to continue 
our ongoing association with SBK World Superbike and the UmbrellaGirlsUSA.com to bring 2 more beautiful FastDates.com Calendar Kittens; Kaustin Lanae and Alissa Bourne to shoot with me at the 2016 Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca United States SBK World Superbike and AMA National race weekend July 8-10th. There they served as the official SBK Podium Girls and helped me shoot the next Fast Dates World & AMA Superbike Calendar. Then, two weekends later the Kittens would work the
26th annual LA Calendar Motorcycle Show and Calendar shoot in Los Angeles on July 23-24th.     CONTINUED HERE

FAST Magazine

FAST 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 Digital Calendar Magazines
Go Behind the Scenes for the Making of the FastDates.com Calendars!

New FAST 2018 Calendar Yearbook!
Go behind the scenes for the shooting of the 2018 FastDates.comMotorcycle PinUp Calendars with photographer Jim Gianatsis and the Calendar Kittens. Travel to Laguna Seca World Superbike with the official SBK Umbrella Girls, the LA Calendar Motorcycle Show with the Top Custom Bike Builders, and take an Edelweiss Bike Tour across France from the Palace of Versailles to the World War II beaches at Normandy. Plus Editorial features on the Calendar Bikes and Kittens , and see every page in the new 2018 Fast Dates Superbikes, Iron & Lace Custom Bikes and Garage Girls Calendar.
Now in FastDates.com Members Corner

Each year's FastDates.com Calendar Digital Yearbook features 120- 138 pages of exciting hi-resolution digital photography that takes you with us behind the scenes to our photo shoots at SBK World and AMA Superbike, the LA Calendar Motorcyle Show, and in our photo studio. You'll meet the beautiful Calendar Kitttens in sexy biography pictorials, the top Factory Racers and Custom Bike Builders,and see detailed photo features on the top calendar and race bikes. Take a track day with World Superbike Champion Troy Bayliss at Misano, take an Edelsweiss Ducati World Superbike tour of the Ducati Factory & Museum and across Italy, ride a Vespa scooter around Paris and party at the Crazy Horse and the Moulon Rouge. Hang with beautiful teen rock star Taylor Momsen of the Pretty Reckless. Did we forget anything?

Oh yes, and you'll see every page in the new Fast Dates, Garage Girls, Iron & Lace Calendars!


2017 LA Calendar Motorcyel Show

The 2017 Los Angeles Calendar Motorcycle Show
& Calendar Bike Building Championship - Featuring 2 Events This Year!

Sunday October 15th 2017 Rider Roundup at Paramont Ranch in Agoura, CA.
Our Calendar Bike Building Championship joins Russell Mitchell / Exile Cycles at the Paramount Western Movie Ranch in Agoura, CA, down the road from the Rock Store, for an exciting day of Custom Motorcyles, Activities, Venders,
Manufacturers and Live Music. It's a benefit to fight Leukemia.
Walk-Up Spectator Event Admission is $10. Register Your Custom Bike for the Calendar Bile Building Championship Here.

Plus there's an optional Morning Bike Ride on Mulholland Highway
and an after the event Evening House Dinner Party with Russell Mitchell of Exile Cycles.
Look for more information and limited entry tickets on the ExileCycles.com website.

2017 Calendar Bike Builders Party

The Saturday July 15th 2017 Calendar Bike Builder's Party!
Top Calendar Bike Buider's joined Calenda photographer Jim Gianatsis at Jim's home / studio for a private Calendar BikeBuilder Party Shoot on July 15th 2017 with Invited Calendar Bike Builders and Calendar Kittens, followed by a Dinner Party with Live Music.It all took place at the FastDates.com Calendar Photo Studio in Woodland Hills, CA.

Some of the top custom bike builders and beautiful models joining us for the 2017 Calendar Bike Builder Party included former Calendar Bike Building Championship winners Samuel Kao / JSK Design, Adam Bean / Custom Airbrushing, Ron Simms / Simms Customs, Jim Giuffra / AFT Customs and Richard Jones. Shooting with us this week were former FastDates.com Calendar Kitten Sara Balint featured in our advertising campaign, and adult starlet Brittni Palmer. The live music was provided by Alex Nester, vocalist and keyboards for the legendary Carlos Santa Band, and singer songwriter Lenachka.

Complete 2017 Calendar Bike Builder Party Coverage Here


Desmosedici Stradale Unveiled
Ducati's V4 Superbike Engine for the Future

 
• New engine directly derived from the Desmosedici GP soon to go into production
• Key features include Desmodromic timing, counter-rotating crankshaft and Twin Pulse firing sequence
• New Ducati Panigale V4 Production Superbike to be unveiled at EICMA November 5th 2017 at 9 p.m

Misano World Circuit,(Rimini, Italy, September 7th 2017
– Out of the experience gained in MotoGP, where the 4-cylinder Desmosedici unleashes incomparable performance, comes a new 90° V4 engine designed to power the Ducati supersport models of tomorrow. In transferring the technology of its most cutting-edge power unit from racetrack to road, Ducati offers customers performance levels honed by years of MotoGP experience.

Called the Desmosedici Stradale, this engine is set to become yet another Ducati milestone: it will be the first time ever that the Bologna-based motorcycle manufacturer has equipped a standard production bike with a 4-cylinder engine.
 
The official unveiling took place in Misano during the San Marino and Rimini Riviera GP, the thirteenth round of the 2017 MotoGP championship. A perfectly natural setting for the presentation, as MotoGP is the proving ground from which the new engine has drawn experience, technology and grit.
 
“It's with undiluted pride that we unveil this technological gem. It represents the start of a new chapter for our company, underlining our vitality and an unshakeable commitment to investment in new products", stated Claudio Domenicali, Ducati's CEO, during the presentation of the Desmosedici Stradale. "This engine also highlights the close collaboration between Ducati Corse and the factory bike development team, proving just how instrumental racing can be in developing the technology that is later applied on production bikes. In November, at EICMA, we'll be showcasing the new Panigale V4, an all-new motorcycle powered by this extraordinary engine”.
 
While the Desmosedici Stradale engine is undoubtedly suited to the track, it has also been designed to respond to the needs of the road rider. For example, to maximise mid-range torque - essential for a satisfying road experience - and ensure punchy torque and power at lower revs, the engine has a slightly larger displacement than its MotoGP counterpart (1103 cm³, to be precise). Power output from the Euro 4 compliant engine configuration exceeds 155 kW (210 hp) at 13,000 rpm while maximum torque exceeds 120 Nm (12.2 Kgm) from 8,750 to 12,250 rpm.

Desmosedici Stradle V4 Superbike engine photo
 
1000cc R Version V4 Stradale Superbike to be Available and Raced in 2019
An R version with a displacement of less than 1000 cc - which revs higher and is intended more for track use - is currently at the advanced development stage. This will provide the foundation for the homologated version that competes in the Superbike championship, where this engine will be used starting in 2019 (one year on from the launch of the respective road version, as per the Ducati tradition).
 
As on the Ducati bikes used in racing, the crankshaft is of the counter-rotating type. This reduces the overall gyroscopic effect and makes the bike faster and more agile when changing direction.
 
The crank pins, offset at 70° as on the Desmosedici GP, involve a Twin Pulse firing sequence that generates easy-to-handle power delivery and optimises out-of-the-corner traction (“Big Bang” effect). This firing sequence also gives the Desmosedici Stradale a unique signature sound.

A 90° V4 configuration makes the engine extremely compact, allowing centralisation of mass and smoothing incorporation on the vehicle. The Desmosedici Stradale has, in fact, been inserted on the motorcycle with the front cylinders banked 42° back from the horizontal, just like the Ducati engines employed in MotoGP. This, of course, optimises weight distribution, allows the adoption of larger radiators and brings the swingarm pivot point forwards.
Its architecture also evens up first order forces naturally without the added weight and power loss that a balancing countershaft would involve.
 
As in MotoGP, the engine was designed with an 81 mm cylinder bore. This measurement reflects the maximum limit allowed by MotoGP rules; it’s also the highest in the 4-cylinder supersport segment.
Using the same bore as the Desmosedici GP engine means both power units share nearly identical in-engine fluid dynamics (i.e. on valves, intake ducts and throttle bodies, right where the power is produced).
 
Needless to say, the new engine is designed around the Desmodromic system, a key characteristic that helps make Ducati prototypes the fastest in MotoGP. On this high-revving engine the “Desmo” system achieves a degree of sophistication, lightness and compactness never before seen on a Ducati.
 
Variable-height air intake horns constitute another first for a Ducati factory bike, optimising cylinder intake across the rev range and giving significant advantages in terms of power delivery and handling. Completing the fuelling system are the oval throttle bodies, each equipped with two injectors: one above the butterfly and one below it.
 
This package of cutting-edge technical solutions - absolutely unique within the Supersport segment - makes the Desmosedici Stradale an engine like no other in the motorcycle world.
 
Main Technical Data:
• 1,103 cm³ 4-cylinder 90-degree V
• Bore x stroke 81 x 53.5 mm
• Compression ratio 14:1
• Maximum power exceeds 210 hp at 13,000 rpm
• Maximum torque exceeds 120 Nm from 8,750 to 12,250 rpm
• Counter-rotating crankshaft
• Twin Pulse firing sequence, crank pins offset at 70°
• Euro 4 emissions
• Desmodromic part chain, part gear timing with dual overhead camshaft, 4 valves per cylinder
• Wet multiplate anti-patter servo clutch
• Semi-dry sump lubrication with four oil pumps: 1 delivery and 3 return
• Fuelling with four oval throttle bodies (52 mm diameter equivalent) and variable-height intake horns
• 6-speed gearbox with DQS up/down system
• 24,000 km “Desmo-service” maintenance interval (15,000 miles


Ducati 1299R riders

An Open Letter to Claudio Domenicali, CEO, Ducati SpA
regarding the end of the legendary Ducati V-Twin Superbike

Dear Claudio, 

As a Motorcycle Racing Journalist and Photographer, Editor, and a full blooded Ducati V-Twin Superbike Enthusiast, Rider, Racer and Collector - I own all 5 generations of Ducati Superbikes from the first 888 Final Edition to the current Panigale 1199R! And together with British motojournalist rider and friend Alan Cathcart, I am one of the few motojournalists who can afford and do own Ducati sportbikes....

I am very disappointed to hear the Panigale V-Twin Superbike will be discontinued after the 1299R Final Edition. Especially since the 1199RS is still very competitive in SBK World Superbike 2017. It is also disappointing this is the first time the "R" designation has been used on a bike who's engine is too large in displacement be homologated for World Superbike Racing. Two very poor marketing choices by Ducati. 

And as Dorna moves closer to making SBK World Superbike a Superstock formula, where the V-Twin will always hold its larger 1200cc advantage over the 1000cc 4-Cylinder bikes, and the organizers have always restricted the different manufacturers’ motorcycles to make them equally competitive, I think the Ducati V-Twin will always remain competitive in SBK racing. 

That is not to say, Ducati could homologate and race BOTH the V-Twin and V-Four in SBK World and National Superbike racing. I was very disappointed when Ducati produced the 2005 Desmosedici V-4 and did not homologate and race it in WSBK back then.


The Design, Development and all 5 Generations of Ducati V-Twin World Superbikes arefeatured in this beautifyl full color coffe table book by Alan Cathcart and Jim Gianatsis. Click to Order.

Ducati current success, particularly here in America, Ducati’s largest sales market, grew from Ducati’s legendary 4-valve V-Twin Desmo’s participation and winning in SBK World Superbike with your legendary riders like Doug Polen, Carl Fogarty, Troy Corser, Troy Bayliss and now Chaz Davies.

The majority of older generation Ducati enthusiasts like myself, who can afford to buy Ducati’s expensive Superbike models, prefer the Desmo V-Twin for its sound, power characteristics, low-end torque and power and easy ridabability. I stopped owning and riding Japanese 4-cylinder sportbikes the first time I rode the then new Ducati 916 back in 1993 (I was the suspension engineer for National and World Champions Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey) . I love the Ducati V-Twin immediately and have loved it ever since.

In fact, when the Desmosedici V-Four was announced at World Ducati Week 2002, I was the first person to place a deposit on one with Ducati Corse Press officer Jullian Thomas, and then later with my local Ducati dealer. But when I had the opportunity to ride a friend’s Desmosedici, before taking delivery of my own bike, I actually disliked the Desmosedici’s power characteristics so much compared to my 999R Superbike at the time, that I cancelled the purchase of my Desmosedici. It was not an enjoyable bike to ride with its high reving powerband.

And even in recent years, if I wanted the SBK winning credentials of an Italian V-4 Superbike I could have bought an Aprilia RSV4, but I did not. I much prefer the V-Twin power of my latest Panigale 1199R 15.

I would ask that you and Ducati please consider keeping the Desmo V-Twin Superbike in production, evolving it and SBK racing it forever as long as sales justify it. This is Ducati’s history, its heritage, present and future. And this is the bike most Ducati enthusiasts like myself will always want to buy and own if it continues to evolve.

Best regards, Jim Gianatsis, 
Editor, Racer, Ducati Owner & Enthusiast
FastDates.com Calendars & Website
______________

09/15/2017 - I just received this nice Personal Email reply from Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati, regarding the new Panigale V4 and my recent letter to him, asking not to discontinue the current Panigale V2 and the legendary Ducati V-twins Superbikes which have made Ducati legendary and which many of us love so well -

"Dear Jim,
Thank you for writing me you letter where your passion for VTwin and for the brand is very clear.

While I understand your concern I can assure you the new Desmosedici Stradale is taking from the V Twin a lot of charachteristics.

I think numbers will speak more than everything: you said that you did not like the power characteristic of D16RR. Just take note that @7500 rpm the Desmosedici Stradale has 11Kgm of torque, that is 35% superior than the D16RR and 5% higher than your 999R! This engine is not only very powerful but more than everything very torque oriented.

Both the sound and the vibration are very very similar to our current Panigale.

I really hope you will try the new Panigale V4 and change your mind.

Nevertheless the Panigale 1299R final edition will remain in production as the best expression of the twin cylinder philosophy.

Ciao, Claudio"
______________

Sept 17th 2107 - A Rebutal from Editor Gianatsis - Claudio, "Same Torque as a 999R +5% at At 7,500rpm" ?!?

I short shift all my torquey Ducati V2 Superbike R-models at 5-6,000rpm on the street and in the canyons. I'm Googling Ducati 999 / 1199R / 1299 Dyno Charts now....

The old 999S with full 57mm Termignoni Exhaust (equivalent in power to a 999R) which Claudio cites, only makes 75 ft lbs torque at 7,500rpm. + Claudio's claimed+ 5% for the new V4 os just = 78 ft. lbs

While a current 1299 / 1199R make 90 ft lbs at 7,500rpm. So the new Panigale V4 even with its cheater 1100cc engine (they will have to downsize to 999cc for WSBK) will not come close to matching the current Panigale V2 1199R and 1299 Superbike engines for mid-range torque. The V4 will be down in Torque about 15-20 ft lbs across the mid-rance

I'm not bad mouthing the V4, its certainly going to be an awesome track bike, but I just don't want them to stop developing, racing and selling the V2 to their established Ducati enthusiasts. Now, only offering the 1299R Final Edition at $38,000 will kill this last V2 Superbike when the new V4 comes out next year around $18,000 for the base model.

Both the latest Ducati V2 Superbikes and new V4 have far too much top-end power you'll never be able to use on the street. While in Superbike racing, the Balance of Performance adjustments (1200cc vs 1000cc) and restrictors will always keep the V2s competitive. 

But the V2s big added advantage for both street and track, is it will alway have more useable torque and power in the lower RPM range to make it easier and more fun to ride, and be easier on tires. That's why I stopped riding 4 cylinder bikes and switched to Ducati V2s 24 years ago. 

Ducati's V4 is fine in MotoGP where it makes better power compared to the same size 1000cc in-line 4s, but in WSBK it just isn't need with the BOP adjustment advantage.While for 95% of Ducati Superbike owners who only primarily on the stree, the V2 will wile sorely be missed, with possibly a resulting significant decrease in future Ducati Superbike model sales?

1299 Panigale R Final Edition (MSRP $39,900)
The Sad, Final Tribute to Ducati’s twin-cylinder Superbike Legacy
The most powerful production twin-cylinder engine in history (209 horsepower), combined with the most advanced aluminum monocoque chassis. Limited availability shipping to U.S. dealers now · Dedicated Tri-Colore livery with World Superbike style full titanium exhaust

Ducati Premiers the 1299R Final Editon at Laguna Seca WSBK
a tribute to the legendary twin-cylinder engine, the most victorious in SBK World Championship history
Ducati CEO Domenicali confirms the last of the V-Twin Superbike, with the new V4 to Preimer at EICMA in November

Pebble Beach / Laguna Seca, California USA July 7th 2017 – An exceptional, exclusive bike, born out of respect and admiration for the engine that has made Ducati history and written the World Superbike Championship record books. The new 1299 Panigale R Final Edition is more than just a bike with a dedicated colour scheme or a limited edition.With a tricolour livery, as eye-catching as it is evocative, it offers a fitting tribute to Ducati's iconic twin-cylinder power unit, which reaches its peak on this latest bike.
 
For its world preview, Ducati has chosen round eight of the World Superbike Championship, taking place this weekend at Laguna Seca (California-US), where Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Motor Holding, unveiled the new 1299 Panigale R Final Edition together with Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri (the two official Aruba.it Racing–Ducati riders and stars of the awesome presentation video).
 
This latest built-in-Bologna gem offers unparalleled technology, performance and design. A Euro 4 compliant road bike, each 1299 Panigale R Final Edition is individually numbered. An offshoot of the 1299 Superleggera engine, the Final Edition Superquadro packs a 209 hp* punch at 11,000 rpm and a torque of 14.5 kgm at 9,000 rpm. It features a lighter crankshaft with a larger crank pin and tungsten balancing pads, while the con-rods, like the intake-exhaust valves, are made of titanium. As on Superbike engines, the two 116 mm diameter pistons have just two segments and slide on steel cylinder liners.

Panigalle 1299R Finale Edition photo
 
Developed by Ducati Corse, the ultra-compact monocoque structure incorporates the airbox and plays a pivotal role in containing the dry weight of the 1299 Panigale R Final Edition to just 179 kg**.
 
The chassis set-up on this latest Ducati supersport is the same as that on the Panigale R, characterised by Öhlins mechanical suspension and a 24° rake.
 
Equally sophisticated and light is the complete all-titanium Akrapovič exhaust with high dual silencer (Euro 4 compliant), just like the one on the Panigale R that competes in the World Superbike championship.
 
The electronics package features the Bosch Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) and is equipped with ABS Cornering, Ducati Wheelie Control EVO (DWC EVO), Ducati Traction Control EVO (DTC EVO) and Engine Brake Control (EBC). These systems have default settings linked to the selected Riding Mode (Race, Sport and Wet) but can be personalised as desired.
 
Top-drawer tech content and the all-new tricolour livery ensure the 1299 Panigale R Final Edition is set to gain cult status among the vast community of Ducati twin-cylinder aficionados.
 
"I'm incredibly proud to present this latest version of our Panigale" stated Claudio Domenicali during the presentation. "Maybe no other motorcycle manufacturer has bound its name so tightly to an engine as Ducati has to its sports twin-cylinder. Today, we're here to celebrate its history, just as we stand on the cusp of a new era in which our desmodromic system will be used on a new generation of V4 engines derived from extensive experience in MotoGP, a championship in which our engine has demonstrated outstanding performance. But that's the future. Today, we want to pay homage to a twin-cylinder engine that - thanks to incredible torque and compactness - has seen Ducati win races in every SBK championship it has ever participated in. In short, it's the engine that has written World Superbike history. From Marco Lucchinelli's first victory on 3rd April 1988 with the 851 at Donington Park (in the first-ever world championship for modified production models) to the stunning 2017 wins by Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri on the Panigale R, Ducati has won no less than 333 races and taken 17 Constructors' titles and 14 Rider's titles”.
 
The 1299 Panigale R Final Edition will play a pivotal role throughout the weekend at Laguna Seca. On Saturday morning, immediately after the Superpole, the bike will go on display both at Ducati Island (the space Ducati traditionally sets aside for its fans during American events) and inside the Paddock Show.

And, to complete this historic moment, the Aruba.it Racing–Ducati team celebrated the arrival of the new 1299 Panigale R Final Edition by decking out its two official race bikes in the same special livery, to be used by Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri on this race weeekend at Laguna SEca World Superbike.

1299 Panigale R Final Edition (MSRP $39,900)
·The Sad, Final Tribute to Ducati’s twin-cylinder Superbike Legacy
· The most powerful production twin-cylinder engine in history (209 horsepower), combined with the most advanced aluminum monocoque chassis
· Limited availability shipping to U.S. dealers now · Dedicated Tri-Colore livery with World Superbike style full titanium exhaust


Lausitzing 2017 SBK PodiumChaz Davies on the top step in both races at Lausitzring.

2017 SBK Motul World Superbike Championship, Autodromo Internacional do Algarve , Round 10 of 13

Rea takes dominating double at WSBK Portimao
Portugal, September 15-17th 2017 - Jonathan Rea (KRT) completed a confident double win performance at Portimao in the FIM Superbike World Championship, despite starting today’s 20-lap race from ninth place - under the reverse grid rules that come into play for race two this year. Jonathan now has 11 wins for the season and he extended his championship lead to 120 points with another full points score today.

After his first Portimao race win on Saturday, from pole position, it was a more difficult challenge for Rea today. He took only two laps to get into the lead and despite a small electronics glitch at times he carried on at an unmatchable pace to record his 34th win for Kawasaki, becoming the company’s all-time WorldSBK race winner.
 
Rea now has 49 race wins over his entire WorldSBK career and is the third most successful rider in the history of the class. The record sits at 59 wins, set by the legendary Carl Fogarty.
 
Kawasaki scored a full house of wins in every class this weekend – with Rea’s double in WorldSBK, Kenan Sofuoglu in WorldSSP, Toprak Razgatlioglu in STK1000 and Ana Carrasco in WorldSSP300.

Sykes Bike Crash.
 
Above, the Sykes crash in Practive on Saturday in FP3 morning split the tank and sent the bike up in flames. Jonathan was the lone KRT rider today as his team-mate Tom Sykes was in Barcelona undergoing surgery to repair left hand injuries from the big crash. Tom suffered a broken little finger which had to be plated, and fractures to his wrist. He did return to the track to watch the race on Sunday.

Tom Skes crash Portimao
 
With Tom unable to score today Jonathan moved 120 points clear in the championship fight, with Sykes second overall and race two faller Chaz Davies third, 135 points from Rea’s lead.
 
Three rounds of the championship remain, the first of them at Magny Cours in France, between 29th September and 1st Octobe

Jonathan Rea, stated: “I am really happy to win and aside from one little issue it was plain sailing race. I made some tough passes in the first laps to get my track position and as soon as I hit the front I made my rhythm and went away. We had a completely different bike set-up today. I had a lot of feedback from the bike and I was able to ride in my own rhythm but with seven or eight laps to go I had a drop in power in second gear. But as the laps were ticking down I could see that the gap was staying constant, and then I saw Chaz went out and I had some breathing space.

We have had our bad luck this year in Donington. The championship lead is massive now and we can go to Magny Cours thinking about trying to win it in France. If we have a solid enough weekend in Magny Cours we can get it done.

I said to Pere before the race today that because Kawasaki had won every race at Portimao there was big pressure now. He said that there was no pressure as we had done all the jobs, and I should go out and do what I had to do. I visited the podium in every single race at Portimao to say congratulations to the Kawasaki riders. The most impressive was Ana Carrasco(Female SBK 300 Supersport Championship Winner). I have never seen an atmosphere like it and our pit box was like a football match. All the KRT team were up there at the podium, so it was cool to see.”

Jonthan Rea race action world Superbike

Runaway Race One victory for unstoppable Rea

Saturday Race One - Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) took his tenth win of 2017 with a fantastic ride at the Prosecco DOC Portuguese Round - which saw him dominate the race from pole and cross the line 6.189s seconds ahead of second placed Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati). Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) just held off Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) for third place on the finish straight.
 
Rea was untouchable over the 20 lap contest around the 4.592km Autodromo Internacional do Algarve at Portimao as he shot away from the head of the grid and soon built up an unbridgeable lead at the front. The victory was Rea’s 18th podium in 19 races this year and the Northern Irishman now enjoys a 95 point lead at the head of the standings.
 
After a crash in SP2 Davies also rode brilliantly, coming from ninth on the grid to take a highly creditable second place, beating his teammate Melandri across the finish line by just under four seconds. Melandri in turn beat Camier by just +0.342 as the Brit chased him hard in the final stages of the race.
 
The top five also featured Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team), with Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) sixth and Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) seventh.
 
The top ten was completed by Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia), Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) and Roman Ramos (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven).
 
There were crashes for Stefan Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) and Leandro Mercado (IODARacing), meaning DNFs for both, although the pair escaped their incidents otherwise unscathed.
 
Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) missed the race and is out of action for the rest of the weekend after sustaining a finger injury in an FP3 crash earlier on Saturday.


 
P1 - Jonathan Rea - Kawasaki Racing Team
"The weekend in general has been really positive. We've not changed the bike a lot since the test, the bike has been working really well. I have been working on myself and what I can change on the bike. We got a really good start and we made the best of the tyre, once the gap was at five seconds we aimed to pull the gap and it seemed we had extra even at the end. Riding the bike is a pleasure and I want to thank my team for the amazing package."

P2 - Chaz Davies - Aruba.it Racing - Ducati 
"It was a definitely a recovery and that was what we had to hope for today. Rea's pace has been unbeatable all weekend, and it was all I could to get into the podium fight. To be honest I didn't expect to get there quite as quickly. I am happy with the result but not how the bike felt, we need to address why I couldn't extract 100% out of myself and see what we can do tomorrow."

P3- Marco Melandri - Aruba.it Racing - Ducati 
"It was very difficult because I had no rear grip at the beginning of the race and the bike was very difficult to ride, with it also being unstable under breaking. I tried to break harder to improve my speed but that made it even worse. I felt I was not pushing hard and every time I pushed I made a  mistake, so we will try to do better tomorrow.”

Superbike Race 1 - Complete Results Here
1. Jonathan Rea Kawasaki
2. Chaz Davies Ducati +6.189
3. Marco Melandri Ducati +10.166

Rea takes dominating double at Portimao
Sunday Race 2 at the Portimao’s Autodromo Internacional do Algarve saw Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) complete a perfect weekend, with a victory by almost six seconds over second-placed Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team). Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) rounded out the podium behind the leading pair.
 
In the absence of the injured Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) and with
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) crashing out with three laps to go in Race 2 it was another significant victory for Rea as he edges closer and closer to a third successive WorldSBK title.
 
The weekend could not have gone better for Rea as he won both races, secured pole position on Saturday and wrapped up the 2017 Pirelli Best Lap Award title. He now leads the general standings by 120 points over his teammate Sykes and could secure the 2017 WorldSBK title at Magny-Cours in two weeks time.
 
Van der Mark was delighted with his first podium with Yamaha after the Dutchman beat Melandri to the finish line by 3.367s. Just off the podium was Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia), whilst Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) also featured in the top five.
 
Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia), Leandro Mercado (IODARacing), Anthony West (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), Ayrton Badovini (Grillini Racing Team) and Takumi Takahashi (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) completed the top ten.
 
There was a big crash for Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) midrace at turn 13, with Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) also going down shortly afterwards at turn 3. Fores picked his machine up to finish 13th.
 
After an exciting Prosecco DOC Portuguese Round the WorldSBK riders will next be in action at the Pirelli French Round in two weeks’ time, over the 29th September to 1st October weekend.



1st - Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) - "It's incredible. These weekends don't come usually, I had to focus on how to ride the bike the best I can. I want to thank all my team, we had some difficulties, my bike cut out on the seventh lap but in the end it stayed on and I'm so happy. It's now time to think about winning this championship." 

2nd - Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) - "I am really happy, this season we have come close a couple of time and we have had a bit of bad luck. I had a good start, I struggled with the grip in the beginning, I found my rhythm and It was enough for a podium. I want to thank my team, we have worked so hard and to finally get a podium is fantastic."

3rd - Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) -"It was a very difficult race, after three laps I lost the rear break and I went very wide. I tried to come back, but I lost a lot of time with Eugene but when I came back I tried to do my best to catch Michael. The pace wasn't too bad, my pace was better than yesterday and I'm happier."

Superbike Race 2 - Complete Results Here
1. Jonathan Rea Kawasaki
2. Michael van der Mark Yamaha +5.834
3. Marco Melandri Ducati +9.201

Michael Van der mark


Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing's Toni Elias clinches 2017 Motul MotoAmerica Superbike Championship with new 2017 GSX-R1000 in Saturday’s opening race in Millville, New Jersey.
New Jersey Motorsport Park, Sep 10th 2107– Eighteen months ago Toni Elias was at home in Spain contemplating retirement from the sport in which he’d tasted success at the very top. Now he’s the 2017 MotoAmerica Superbike Champion after a dream season in which he never finished worse than second, except for a crash that was no fault of his own.
 
And the 2010 Moto2 World Champion and former MotoGP winner wrapped up his title in style with his ninth victory of the season. This one came in the MotoAmerica Championship of New Jersey, presented by K&N, and it gave him an insurmountable 265 points, 84 more than his Yoshimura Suzuki teammate Roger Hayden with three races left to run in the 2017 season.
 
The championship also ended a drought for Suzuki, the 192nd victory for the brand giving it its first AMA Superbike Championship since Mat Mladin won on a Yoshimura Suzuki in 2009. Since Hayden has also wrapped up second in the title chase, it marks the first one-two championship finish since Ben Spies and Mladin did the deed in 2008. Since then, Yamaha’s Josh Hayes, Josh Herrin and Cameron Beaubier had run the table with seven Superbike titles in a row.
 
The win was also the 15th of Elias’ career and it moves him into a tie for ninth with Eric Bostrom and Freddie Spencer on the all-time Superbike win list. His next victory would move him into a tie for eighth with his childhood hero Wayne Rainey, the president of MotoAmerica.

Tony Elias 2017 AMA MotoAmerica Superbike Champion photo

“I’m so happy, for many reasons, first of all because Suzuki gave me this important deal last year,” Elias said. “I found an incredible team (with) good bosses, the technicians, the mechanics, Suzuki from Japan, Yoshimura U.S., (they are) always the best. This year the new bike has been amazing. We could fight a lot with this new bike power. The last rounds the situation came better and better. I didn’t want to wait (to win the championship), I wanted to win today and we did it. Josh (Hayes) and Roger (Hayden) pushed me a lot. I was trying to open a gap and it looked possible, but at the end I was thinking no. They came back, but at the end everything finished in a good way. We could win this championship. It is an amazing feeling for me (and) for all this group. I’m so happy and proud of these people, so for me it’s not only a championship, it’s more than that. It’s coming from s**t, because I was in a big s**t. I decide to quit between five or six hundred days ago, and look at how the situation can change, no? Just a phone call (from Yoshimura Suzuki), come here, I start to get good results. This time, being here, winning, and being champion is amazing for me. I did some mistakes in the past, and this has been a big lesson I will remember for the rest of my life. I will continue doing my best. I will enjoy this moment, and congratulations to my rivals, Josh, Roger, Cameron (Beaubier), they have been so strong. We’ve had big battles. We enjoy, we suffer and they did an incredible job. They pushed me hard and in the end we finish perfectly. I’m so happy.”

Hayden finished a close second to his teammate, fighting his way past Monster Energy/Yamalube/Yamaha Factory Racing’s Josh Hayes late in the race to make a run at Elias. At the finish, he was just .039 of a second from making the 34-year-old Spaniard have to wait another day to earn the title.

“I wanted to make Toni (Elias) at least wait another day,” Hayden said. “As a competitor, you don’t want him to wrap it up this early. But, I struggled early in the race with the front end of the bike a little bit. I’m not sure what it was. In the middle to end of the race when these guys tapered off their lap times a little bit mine kind of stayed the same. I tried Toni once in Turn 1 and I got a good run on him. The last corner, I remember last year I passed him up the inside, and I think maybe he was expecting it because he blocked it a little bit, so I just went wide and got the best run I could get. It was actually pretty close at the line. I’m happy, somewhat happy, to (finish) second in the championship, Suzuki first and second. For the team, I’m happy for them. All those guys work hard and they put a lot of faith in us. We’ve gotten beat pretty bad the past couple years and it’s been a while for those guys to be top dog for the year. I’m looking forward to tomorrow and it’ll be another dog fight.”

Hayes led the race and was in the fight for most of the 23 laps before settling for third place, 2.4 seconds behind. Hayes, who has won 11 Superbike races in his career, will try again tomorrow in Motul Superbike race two.

“I actually felt really good on the motorcycle all weekend,” Hayes said. “I was just digging in there pretty hard. When I have a clear racetrack in front of me I’m able to do pretty decent work, even when Toni (Elias) was there and had a small gap I was able to just focus on where to put my motorcycle I felt like I was doing okay and was just biding my time. It was hard, but I could maintain it and keep doing it. But when I would get close to him and have to look underneath him I just paid for it fairly dearly every single time. In the end, I just beat my bike up and ended up not having the tools I needed to do anything with them at the end. I was pretty disappointed with how it finished. I felt pretty good all weekend, but they just had some pace at the end that I couldn’t do. We’ll go back to the drawing board and see if we can figure it out for tomorrow.”

Fourth place went to Josh Herrin, the replacement rider for the injured Cameron Beaubier nabbing the spot from Genuine Broaster Chicken Honda’s Jake Gagne in the final corner on the last lap. Gagne held on for fifth, his second-best effort of the season.
 
Sixth place went to YCRS/Cambr/KWR’s Kyle Wyman, some three seconds behind the Herrin/Gagne battle.
 
TOBC Racing’s Danny Eslick finished seventh and that gave him victory in the Bazzaz Superstock 1000 class, the Oklahoman some two seconds clear of M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Jake Lewis. Bazzaz Superstock 1000 Championship points leader Mathew Scholtz was ninth (and third in class) on the Yamalube/Westby Racing YZF-R1 and Cycle World Suzuki’s Hayden Gillim rounded out the top 10.
 
Scholtz now leads the title chase by 60 points with three races left on the schedule, including tomorrow’s second Motul Superbike race at NJMP. Scholtz has 347 points to Lewis’ 287. Quicksilver Latus Racing Kawasaki’s Bobby Fong is third in the standings, 78 points behind after struggling to 14th today.


Andrea Dovizioso (ITA - Ducati) 40'45.496
Dovizioso Silverstone, Maverick Viñales photo
No time to reflect: high speed, high stakes as Marquez takes win four of the year - and equals Dovizioso on points

2017 MotoGP World Championship, Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, Round 13 of 18

Marquez Ties the Championship Lead at Misano
Misano Cicruit de Marco Simoncelli, Rimini, Italy, Sunday September 10th 2017 - Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) took his fourth win of the year in a high stakes duel at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, with the conditions torrential and the top three in the title fight lining up for the challenge on the front row. But as the spray cleared, it was Danilo Petrucci (Octo Pramac Racing) just ahead of the reigning Champion on track as the two dueled - and Marquez pounced on the last lap for another 25 point haul. That gives the number 93 the Championship lead once again as Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) came home third, with the two rivals equal on points and equal on wins - and Marquez ahead by virtue of more second places.

But despite the challengers on the front row in the #SanMarinoGP, it was Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) who got away best from Row 2, taking the lead through the first two corners after tousling with Marquez and shooting away into the distance. Marquez slotted into second and Dovizioso in third, with Petrucci then slicing around the outside of Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) at the start of the second lap to begin his charge. After Viñales, the Pramac rider then shot past Dovizioso, beginning to hone in on Marquez and then taking over in second.

Jorge Lorenzo Misano
Lorenzo (99) was running off with an early lead ahead of Marquez and Petrucci.

After setting the timesheets alight and clear in the lead, drama then struck the head of the race as Lorenzo suddenly highsided out at Turn 6 – rider ok – leaving Petrucci in the lead and a long game of highspeed chess to set in: Petrucci, Marquez, Dovizioso, and nothing between them.

As the laps ticked on and the stakes seemed to get higher and higher, Dovizioso began to fade backwards and the trio became a duo in the battle for the win. The ring of the Honda getting louder and louder behind him, Petrucci held firm but Marquez chose his moment well: heading through at Turn 1 on the final lap. The rider from Cervera was then able to keep a small margin as the spray kicked up behind him, holding his nerve to take win number four of the year – and the Championship lead.

That meant Petrucci took second and his fourth premier class podium, 1.1 seconds off the win after Marquez fired in the fastest lap of the race on the final lap. Dovizioso took a safe third place - his first podium finish at Misano - and another good haul of points, with Viñales able to similarly avoid mistakes despite the stakes, taking fourth to keep himself very much in the title fight.

Behind the front four, Michele Pirro (Ducati Team) made steady progress and once again impressed as a wildcard for the Borgo Panigale factory, completing the top five. Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) put in a signature stunner in the wet from way down on the grid, for some time threatening Viñales for the top four before eventually crossing the line in sixth. Seventh over the line was a fight back from Scott Redding (Octo Pramac Racing), ahead of a quality ride from rookie Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar).

Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) shot through the field from P16 on the grid to take ninth, with an impressive double act behind him for Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, as Bradley Smith took his first top ten with the Austrian factory and teammate Pol Espargaro crossed the line in eleventh.

Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) took points in P12 and kept out of trouble, ahead of Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) in P13 – who crashed in the early stages and remounted. It was a tough day at the office for Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team), as the Spaniard struggled to find grip and get heat into the tyres, crossing the line in P14. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) supplied some late drama as he had a problem on the final lap, but managed to push the bike over the line for the final point.

Now it’s the final European round before the flyaway races, and Marquez and Dovizioso are equal on points. They’re also equal on wins, but the number 93 has more second places – making him the new leader in the sixth change so far this season. And Aragon? That’s Marquez’ backyard, and the number 93 will march home with a single focus: victory.

MotoGP Race Results - Complete Results & Standings Here
1 - Marc Marquez (SPA - Honda) 50'41.565
2 - Danilo Petrucci (ITA - Ducati) + 1.192
3 - Andrea Dovizioso (ITA - Ducati) + 11.706


Andrea Dovizioso (ITA - Ducati) 40'45.496
Dovizioso Silverstone, Maverick Viñales photo
How close do you like it? Dovizioso leads Viñales across the line.

2017 MotoGP World Championship, Octo British Grand Prix , Round 12 of 18

Dovizioso & Ducati Stun at Silverstop to take MotoGP Championhip Lead
Silverstone Circuit, Great Britain, Sunday August 27th 2017 -Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) became the first man to win four races this season at the British GP, as the Championship challenger put on a tactical masterclass once again. In a close second but unable to make a last lap lunge was Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP), with early leader Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) completing the podium in his 300th premier class race start. As well as the podium finishers, the standings took a shake up as Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) was forced to retire.

It was Rossi who bolted off the line; the nine-time World Champion getting a lightning start from the middle of the front row and disappearing into the distance in the initial stages. Behind the ‘Doctor’, Marquez led a close five rider train with Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda), Viñales, Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) and Dovizioso on the chase. Marquez suffered a huge moment early on, but the rider from Cervera remained in charge of the chasing pack.

Soon, the Dovizioso struck against Lorenzo and the group began to pull away from the ‘Spartan’, just as Rossi pulled away on his own at the front. The game of high-octane chess continued with the four in line and staying within touching distance of Rossi, until a sudden puff of smoke gave the Championship a serious shake up and Marquez was out of it.

That left four, with Rossi then reeled in and everything looking like it would go down to the wire. And that it did, with Dovizioso able to pounce with three to go and get past his compatriot, swiftly followed by Viñales. The ‘Doctor’ tried to fight back but found the duo able to just stay clear – and the final lap was approaching.

With the concertina effect seeing the Ducati able to pull a gap and then the Yamaha able to close, it was incredibly tight as the two headed around the final 5.9km lap of Silverstone. Having played his hand to perfection, Dovizioso was able to keep the advantage to the line – taking his fourth win of the year. Viñales took second, with Rossi completing the podium. Crutchlow, not quite able to get close enough to make his move, took fourth.

Lorenzo had a great race to cross the line in fifth - and only 3.5 seconds off the race winning time of his teammate. The ‘Spartan’ overcame Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) in the latter stages to pull a sizeable gap on the Frenchman over the line as he continues to move forward. Zarco took P6, comfortably ahead of a more difficult day at the office for Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team).

Scott Redding (Octo Pramac Racing) showed his home race pace once again to take eighth, with Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) equaling his best rookie result in ninth just behind the Brit. Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team), after a more difficult qualifying day, completed the top ten.

Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) was hugely impressive once again for KTM, taking P11 after also getting straight through to Q2. Tito Rabat (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) followed him home, with Karel Abraham (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) and Reale Avintia Racing pairing Hector Barbera and Loris Baz locking out the fastest fifteen.

Now it's Misano - home turf for many, including Valentino Rossi and new Championship leader Andrea Dovizioso.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 1st “I’m so happy about today’s victory, my fourth this year, because every race we win is different from the others, and this means that we are really strong and can fight for the championship. It was a really tough race because all of our rivals were on top form. Today Marquez was unlucky, but we did a perfect race because, even though we were probably not the quickest outright, we were able to interpret it in the best possible way and go on to win. This means that the work we did during the weekend was excellent, and so was my race strategy because I managed to get into the right position at the right time. This year every race is a story in itself and the tyres are always a key factor, but we are very focused on our working method which is producing results.”

MotoGP Race Results - Complete Results & Standings Here
1 - Andrea Dovizioso (ITA - Ducati) 40'45.496
2 - Maverick Viñales (SPA - Yamaha) +0.114
3 - Valentino Rossi (ITA - Yamaha) + 0.749
4- Cal Crutchlow (GBR - Honda) + 1.679


Lausitzing 2017 SBK PodiumChaz Davies on the top step in both races at Lausitzring.

2017 SBK Motul World Superbike Championship, Lausitzring, Germany , Round 9 of 13

Davies and Ducati Return to Winning Ways in Germany
Lausitzring, Germany, August 18-20th 2017 - The EuroSpeedway Lausitz (Germany) was home to a memorable weekend for the Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team, who took a sensational double – the second of the season after Imola – with Chaz Davies. After winning Race 1 on Saturday, the Welshman repeated the feat starting from ninth position. Quickly recovering ground thanks to a strong start, Davies pulled away together with his teammate Marco Melandri and Kawasaki's reigning Champ and Points Leader Jonthan Rea, with Davies taking the lead during lap 11. He then made one decisive charge with 5 laps to go, as a light rain started to fall, to take his sixth win of the year. Davies looks like he is returning to his race win streak that he had last year at this same time, to finish out the previous 2016 WSBK season.
 
Melandri also enjoyed a positive Sunday, bouncing back from a difficult Race 1 with a solid third place (his eighth podium of the year) that leaves him hopeful ahead of the next rounds. The Italian, who started from pole position, led the race for the first five laps, fighting for the victory for most of the race and showing significant improvements in terms of overall pace. 

After nine rounds, Davies (276 points) and Melandri (218 points) are respectively third and fourth in the championship behind the Kawsaki duo of Rea and Tom Sykes.The Aruba.it Racing - Ducati team will be back in action at Portimão (Portugal) for the tenth round of the season, scheduled for September 15-17.  
 
Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati #7) – 1st - “It was a great race and I loved every minute of it. It was different from yesterday though, as we had to work our way up from third row on the grid. We had a good start and in the first couple of laps we were within sight of the lead, so when I saw Rea making his move I tried to hunt down him and Marco. It wasn’t easy to pass them, but then I just tried to set my own pace, ride clean, and not make mistakes. I was surprised by our rhythm today in the high 1:36 mark, we definitely improved since the tests here a month ago, and it shows the effort everyone is putting in. I’m confident going into Portimão, but we’ll enjoy this double for now and get prepared for another battle.”

Chaz Davies action SBK Lausitzring

Fantastic Daturday Race One Win for Davies in Germany
Davies speed to victory, with Rea and Sykes also on the podium

RACE ONE, Saturday Aug 19th - As the riders enjoyed their first race since the summer break it was Welshman Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) who produced a superb ride at the Prosecco DOC German Round on Saturday, taking victory by a 1.834s margin from Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team), with Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) also on the podium.
Repeating his Race 1 victory from Lausitzring last year Davies controlled the race well after starting in sixth on the grid, taking the lead on the second lap. He was too strong for Rea and Sykes despites their best efforts to chase him down.

Sykes had set a new pole record earlier in the day but could not match Davies’ race pace and crossed the line in third place, 3.25s down on the Ducati-equipped race winner.

The Saturday contest at Round 9 in Germany saw Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) cross the line in fourth place, 16 seconds down on his teammate Davies, with Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) getting a creditable fifth place as he finished half a second behind Melandri. Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) put pressure on Camier for fifth but just missed out by 0.186s as the highest finisher on the YZF R1.

Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia) was the best finisher on the Aprilia RSV4 RF in seventh, whilst Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team), Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) and Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) rounded out the top ten.

On his WorldSBK return wildcard Markus Reiterberger (Van Zon Remeha BMW) was running in a solid eighth place for much of the race before he ran into the gravel at turn 10 and dropped down the order to eventually finish 13th.

Earlier Leandro Mercado (IODARacing) had suffered a midrace off track excursion and he ended up 11th. There were several high profile crashers and retirees including Italian quartet Riccardo Russo (Pedercini Racing SC-Project), Raffaele de Rosa (Althea BMW Racing Team) and Davide Giugliano (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team).

Stefan Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) was forced to sit out due to pain in his left elbow, after crashing on Friday and having a further medical check following Superpole on Saturday morning. His condition is to be evaluated again on Sunday morning before Warm Up.

Race 1 - Complete Results Here
1. Chaz Davies, Ducati
2. Jonathan Rea, Kawasaki 
3. Tom Sykes, Kawasaki


Davies Dominates to Take Double in Germany
RACE TWO Sunday, August 20th - Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) wrapped up a superb weekend on Sunday with his second victory of the Prosecco DOC German Round in Race 2, whilst Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati) also secured podium results.
 
With light rain falling during the final laps the WorldSBK riders had to focus hard in order to avoid any mistakes and Davies did just that to register a third victory in four races at Lausitzring. Coming from the back of the third row on the grid the Welshman ultimately beat Rea across the line by 2.29s, with Melandri just over two further seconds back having held the lead early in the race.
 
Despite setting pole on Saturday Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) could not stay with the front three on this occasion and finished in fourth place having started Race 2 in seventh on the grid.
 
The results saw World Champion and standings leader Rea open up a 70-point gap over his teammate Sykes in the standings with four rounds to go.
 
Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha Official WorldSBK Team) just beat Leon Camier (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) to fifth by 0.237s, with five Britons finishing in the top six.
 
Just behind them on the finish line was Lorenzo Savadori (Milwaukee Aprilia) as the top Aprilia-equipped rider, just trailing Camier by 0.115s in that tight group also involving Lowes.
 
Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team), German wildcard Markus Reiterberger (Van Zon Remeha BMW) and Xavi Fores (BARNI Racing Team) completed the top ten. A brave ride by Stefan Bradl (Red Bull Honda World Superbike Team) saw him finish 13th, after he missed Race 1 due to severe elbow pain from a crash on Friday.
 
Randy Krummenacher (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), Eugene Laverty (Milwaukee Aprilia) and Pawel Szkopek (Pazera Racing) all crashed out, with Riccardo Russo (Pedercini Racing SC-Project) also suffering a DNF as a late retiree.
 
The WorldSBK grid return to action in just under a month (15th-17th September) at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve, Portimão, Portugal.

Race 2 - Complete Results Here
1. Chaz Davies, Ducati
2. Jonathan Rea, Kawasaki 
3. Marco Melandri, Ducati



1st - Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati)  - "It's incredible, I knew the second race was going to be tighter, it was hard to come from the third row, I made some good passe out there and had a lot of fun. It was a a case of setting my won rhythm, we had a lot of fast sections but they were quicker than me in other sections and for that reason it was harder to get away, but I made some good passes and got the job done." 

2nd - Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) - "It was as much as we could expect, I really emptied the tank in that race, the bike is so easy to ride here so I gave it 100% to bring the fight to Chaz. I did all I could to stay with him but he was so fast and I was beaten by a better guy today and we look forward to the next one."

3rd - Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing - Ducati)  -"After yesterday I couldnt beleive to inish on the podum today but the team amde an asesome job, a fwe orenrs it was too slow, i couldnt open the throttle too mich but I am happy ith the result and thanks to all the guys." 


Rossi_Marquez_Pertucci_Assen 2017
Marquez (93) tries a last lap, last corner "Hail Mary" outside pass on Dovizioso (04) but looses control just enough for Dovi to hold on to his lead and take the win.

2017 MotoGP World Championship, NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Osterreich, Round 11 of 16

Unfinished business: Dovizioso vs Marquez reign in the Red Bull Ring
Red Bull Ring, Austria, Sunday, 13 August 2017 - Some races immediately enter the history books as the flag falls. The 2017 Austrian GP proves one such example, as Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) and Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) staged a showcase of the best of the sport, right down to the wire. Almost side-by-side over the line, it was ‘DesmoDovi’ who took his third win of the year – with Marquez just keeping it on track for second in signature style. Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) completed the podium, coming back from a Q1 hurdle on Saturday to make big points gains in the standings.

Polesitter Marquez took the holeshot, before a stunning move from Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) saw him cut inside second-placed Dovizioso and then take Marquez on the exit - an incredible second ahead over the line at the end of Lap 1. Marquez slotted into second as Dovizioso threatened, with Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) a big mover - into fourth past teammate Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP).

There was early heartbreak for Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), who was forced to retire as his rear brake was damaged in an early incident – before Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) was then also forced in. Danilo Petrucci (Octo Pramac Racing), who suffered a big wheelie off the line, was next to enter pitlane after a warning light on the dash.

Back in the battle, Viñales had run wide into Turn 1 to lose some ground and come back on track from the run off, with Lorenzo at the head of the race then being reeled in by Marquez. Soon, Marquez was the man to misjudge an apex - Turn 3 - with Dovizioso quickly pouncing to take over in second. Meanwhile, Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) had moved up to tag onto the front four, with Pedrosa the next man to join the party – making a train of five behind Lorenzo in the lead. Marquez then struck back against Dovizioso, with 18 laps to go and everything still in the air.

Some stunning action then shook up the lead as Lorenzo headed deep, Marquez cut inside – and Dovizioso then blasted past both as the three machines were almost neck-and-neck. But Marquez struck back, before an almost replica replay of the earlier trio saw Zarco run deep, Rossi pounce – and Pedrosa take both. Then it was Rossi’s time to run wide – off at Turn 1 and dropping back into seventh as he made his way back on track.

At the front, Marquez and Dovizioso had begun to pull away, and everything settled into what felt increasingly like the calm before the storm - and was proved exactly that.

Swapping places whilst keeping the pace searing, the two men fought it out until the end. Dovizioso, ahead as they crossed the line for the final lap, kept everything inch perfect as he waited for the move he knew would come. Marquez, for his part, couldn’t make a much-used Turn 7 move this time around, and the corners were counting down.

Almost a flash of unified colour around the penultimate corner, breath was held as the moment arrived – and so did Marquez. Lunging for the inside on the final corner and then sliding out just wide, the reigning Champion was spectacular – but it wasn’t quite enough, with his Italian rival cutting back inside to cross the line for his third win of the year.

Pedrosa completed the podium after some solid pace, taking Lorenzo and at one point in striking distance of the lead. The number 26 also moved to within only two points of Rossi in the standings. Zarco took fifth after holding off Viñales and coming home top Yamaha, with Rossi crossing the line in P7.

Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) had a stunning Sunday comeback to take eighth, able to pull clear of another impressive performance from Loris Baz (Reale Avintia Racing) in ninth after the Frenchman also made it through directly into Q2.

Despite early heartbreak for Pol Espargaro, there remained something impressive to cheer for Red Bull KTM Factory Racing at their first home GP – with wildcard test rider Mika Kallio riding a superb race into tenth. The second consecutive top ten finish for the Austrian marque, the Finn was also only a tenth off Baz in ninth.

Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was P11, ahead of Scott Redding (Octo Pramac Racing), Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) and Karel Abraham (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) in P14. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) completed the points scorers after a tough race.

After the NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich, Marquez remains ahead on the road to Silverstone, but it's now Dovizioso hot on his tail - 16 points adrift. Viñales, after Austria, moves out the top two in the Championship for the first time this season - and Pedrosa is now within two points of Rossi. The British GP will not disappoint.

MotoGP Race Results - Complete Results & Standings Here
1 - Andrea Dovizioso (ITA - Ducati) 39'43.323
2 - Marc Márquez (SPA - Honda) +0.176
3 - Dani Pedrosa (SPA - Honda) +2.485


Rossi_Marquez_Pertucci_Assen 2017
Marquez continues to extend his MotoGP Championship points lead.

2017 MotoGP World Championship, Monster Energy Grand prix Ceske Republiky, Round 10 of 16

Marquez blitzes flag-to-flag at Brno
Reigning Champion plays his hand to perfection as rivals face a mad dash back through the field

Brno, Czech Republic, Sunday, 06 August 2017 - Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) threw down the gauntlet to his Championship rivals in the Czech GP, with the race declared wet but the track quickly drying at the start – conditions made for a tactical masterstroke for those willing to gamble. And that’s exactly what the number 93 pulled off. A second consecutive victory saw him grow his Championship lead, with teammate Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) closing in on those above him in the standings with an impressive ride into second – taking his 150th podium. Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) managed to stage an impressive charge back up through the field to complete the rostrum, limiting the damage caused by pitting later and keeping himself second in the standings.

With the field all on wets, Marquez got away in the lead at lights out, but a storming start for Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) from fifth saw him then moving through for the lead on Lap 1. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) slotted into P3, with Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) just besting Pedrosa to take fourth.

Lorenzo began to pull away with a good gap as Rossi swooped through on both Dovizioso and Marquez to take second, and a dry line was already appearing. The Marquez was dropping through the field and was the first to dive into the pits and make the switch to slicks – at first struggling on the slick softer tyre and taking the gamble early, but it quikly turned to his advantage as his oon began turning quiker lap times than everyone else stilll on rain tires.

Rossi was hunting down Lorenzo as the track was drying and drying, before the ‘Spartan’ headed in – as did many of the front group. Meanwhile, Marquez was on a charge setting red sector after red sector back out on slicks, and it appeared he’d played his hand to perfection.

As the deck shuffled, he was soon taking the lead – and proving his decision to pit a tactical masterstroke as the dust settled and the gap back to P2 was around 20 seconds.


Lorenzo lost his race lead with a slow pit stop when he pulled in to change from his wet tire bike to his sprae big with race slicks.
The Brno race weekend saw Lorenzo riding with a new fairing design on the Ducati GP17 which featured huge side covered ducts to cover the FIM outlawed exposed dive planeswinglets from last year.

Meanwhile, Lorenzo was delayed in the pits as the riders around him - including Viñales - streamed out, with Rossi and Dovizioso steadfastly remaining out longer until both diving in together.

Viñales got the hammer down from the mid-pack as everyone shuffled back out on track, slowly starting to reel in those ahead of him. Picking them off one-by-one, the rider from Roses finally battled past Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda), Danilo Petrucci (Octo Pramac Racing) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) to make it into some clear air, some six seconds off Pedrosa in second and the podium seeming decided. Pedrosa, meanwhile, ate a good number of seconds off Marquez' lead, more than secure in P2.

Slightly further back, Dovizioso had a simple mission: after both pitting late, the Italian needed to stay as close to compatriot Rossi as possible. Close on points in the Championship, ‘DesmoDovi’ managed some good damage limitation in managing to stay close enough, but Rossi kept the upper hand.

With Cal Crutchlow the last man in between the ‘Doctor’ and his teammate Viñales as they honed in on the top four, Rossi got his head down and pushed on – eventually catching the Brit and able to get past him on the final lap. Dovizioso followed the number 35 home and took P6, close but not quite able to shadow his compatriot over the line. Petrucci took a solid result in seventh after losing grip in the latter stages, ahead of Aleix Espargaro after a penalty for an unsafe release in pit lane saw the Spaniard move back three places.

There was a rockstar performance in P9, with Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) crossing the line only two tenths off his older brother, taking a stunning result in a tough race and bringing some good points home for the Austrian factory.
Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) completed the top ten, with the German rookie slicing back through the field and escaping the clutches of fellow rookie Alex Rins. Folger had been well outside the points, and Rins’ result was the culmination of a promising weekend for the Spaniard as he comes back from injury - the second rookie home and ahead of Zarco, who was twelfth. 

Karel Abraham (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) was running much further up for the initial stages until the pack shuffled around him, but the Czech rider nevertheless took solid points at home in P13. Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was fourteenth after a more difficult weekend.

Jorge Lorenzo, after leading early on, found his delay in the pit lane costly. The five-time World Champion put in a good comeback, however, moving through from outside the top twenty to complete the points in fifteenth – bridging some big gaps along the way.

The next stop on the calendar will be heartening for Lorenzo and the Ducati team, as MotoGP™ heads to Austria – a track that suits the ‘Desmosedici’ like no other. And despite Marquez’ domination at Brno, everything remains very much an open book – with Viñales, Rossi, Dovizioso and Pedrosa still in hot pursuit ahead of next weekend’s visit to the Red Bull Ring.

MotoGP Race Results - Complete Results & Standings Here
1 - Marc Márquez (SPA - Honda) 44'15.974
2 - Dani Pedrosa (SPA - Honda) +12.438
3 - Maverick Viñales (SPA - Yamaha) + 18.135

Maverik Vinales brno MotoGP grid girlVinales gave Yamaha a 3rd at Brno.

Ducati Evolves New Enclosed Side Pod Wings
August 5th, 2017 - Since Jorge Lorenzo (98 above) isn't in contention for the MotoGP title this year, Ducati relegated him to test rider at the Brno race riding with a new fairing design on the Ducati GP17 which featured huge enclosed side pods to cover the FIM outlawed exposed dive planes aka winglets which Ducati pioneered last year. The new system worked really well to improve traction on the damp Brno track, giving Jorge the race lead from the start until he pitted to change tires. We hope the FIM will allow this new style enclosed dive plane duscts to remain legal, to give the MotoGP bikes a unique look like Formula One cars. Click on the pictures to go BIG.

We alredy discussed last year when Ducati first introduced exposed wings / dive planes on their MotoGP bikes, the increased downforce with no weight penality provided by winglets works great on race cars where the aerodynamic downforce is perpendicular to / cented over the contact patches of the tires. But on a racing motorcyle, once you lean past 45-degrees, the aerodynamic downforce begins to push the bike sideways in a corner and loose traction. Only a computer analysis of each race track and the time spent at each lean angle, can determime how much advantage the bike enjoys under braking / turn-in / acceleration out of a corner versus what it actually looses in cornering traction during high lean angles. But on a wet race track like Brno this past weeked, when probably no one was leaning past 45-degrees, the winglet tunnels on Lorenzo's Ducati definetly gave him an advantage of better wet grip over the other riders without winglets.

Andrea Dovizioso (04 below) and the other Ducati support riders ran the conventional fairs which hides a smaller dive planes / ducts inside the lower section of the more conventional style fairing.


MV Agusta Brutale 800 America

MV Agusta introduces Special Edition 800 Brutale and Dragster RC
Varese, Italy. 29 June 2017- Celebrating the long history and relationship between MV Agusta and the USA, MV Agusta introduces the special edition 2017 Brutale 800 America. Based on the highly acclaimed new three-cylinder Brutale 800, the America edition pays tribute to the classic America range from the 1970’s. 

To define the America, the MV Agusta design team wanted to match the exuberance of the country that bears its name, in a special livery.  From its rich culture, individuality, patriotism, innovation and the United States flag, the team set about bringing the passion of these elements into a never-before-seen metallic blue color scheme that catches the light with a shimmering iridescence. Whilst on the tank, a star-studded motif, like the one on the 1973 MV Agusta 750 S, takes the brand back to its glory days. Elsewhere, gloss black paintwork brings out the best in component details, such as the front fender, which sports the MV Agusta logo. 

MV Agusta Brutale 800 America

Other reminders of the rarity of the motorcycle are found on the rear fender and side radiator panel with decorated ‘America Special Edition’ logo. Even the America’s red seat has been specially designed to incorporate the livery theme, using gilt stitching to compliment the finish of the tank. 

Limited to a production of only 50 units to match the 50 states of the USA, the pure exclusivity of the motorcycle can be seen in the triple clamp with the laser cut sequential production number, alongside the ‘America Special Edition’ logo. The same number can also be found on a specially framed certificate of authenticity that comes with each motorcycle.

Based on the new 2017 Brutale 800 Euro 4 platform, the Brutale 800 America offers all of the latest technical specifications and will go on sale in the USA in July 2017 at an MSRP of $14,998 with two years warranty and two years roadside assist.

The official and world-first unveiling of the Brutale 800 America will take place following the 4th of July Independence Day celebrations at Laguna Seca, California, for Round 8 of the World Superbike Championship, 7-9 July, 2017. Industry and customers can be the first to witness the special edition at the MV Agusta stand, with the chance to meet the MV Agusta Reparto Corse team and check out the latest model range.

To find out more or to register your interest, please fill out the contact form on mvagusta.com.

MV Agusta Brutale 800 America photo picture

MV Agusta Dragster

MV Agusta Limited Edition 800 Dragster RC
June 13rg 2017 - With an exclusive limited production of only 350 units worldwide, the new Dragster RC featuring Leon Camier #37 World Superbike number is a rare sight and a highly sort after motorcycle which has now started to arrive in dealership showrooms across the U.S.

Based on the top-selling MV Agusta motorcycle the Dragster RR, the new Dragster RC plays tribute to the race livery of the current Reparto Corse World Superbike and Supersport team. Whilst adopting the powerful specification and technical advances of the Dragster RR, the RC also receives the stunning Reparto Corse livery, carbon fibre windshield, carbon fibre radiator panels, gold anodised fully adjustable Marzocchi front forks, red stitched saddle with RC logo and stunning F4 RC alloy forged wheels.

For 2017, the Dragster RC also comes with significant mechanical updates that improve overall ride at low rpm and mechanical efficiency. Each Dragster RC comes with a certificate of authenticity, a build plaque with the production number stamped and a special Dragster RC bike cover.

To find out more or to register your interest, please fill out the contact form on the MV Agusta website.


Aprilia RS-GP 2017 MotoGP motorcycle

APRILIA RACING - 2017 RS-GP - TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS
Engine Aprilia Racing narrow V4, 81mm bore, counter rotating crankshaft, timing with pneumatic valve recall system
Power 260 HP
Electronic ECU Magneti Marelli, Dorna software
Gearbox Aprilia Racing seamless upshift and downshift, 6 speeds, removable
Lubrication Dry sump
Frame Aprilia Racing in aluminium
Swingarm Aprilia Racing in aluminium
Suspension Öhlins
Brake system Brembo, front with 320-340 mm diameter dual carbon disc, 255 mm diameter rear single steel disc
Tyres Michelin


Noale (Venice), May 2017 – Last year the RS-GP made its début in the Doha tests, the first MotoGP bike developed entirely by Aprilia Racing to compete in the premier class of Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing. Just twelve months later, the all-Italian project must now face an important final exam: the constant progress demonstrated in the first season, with 16 Top-10 finishes, was reconfirmed during the tests in Valencia, Jerez, Sepang and Phillip Island.

Aleix Espargarò, a welcome returnee to the Aprilia camp, immediately found the right feeling with his RS-GP, especially in terms of braking stability. The Spanish rider was also able to test the 2017 evolution of the Italian MotoGP bike, approving of the progress made compared with the 2016 version and demonstrating encouraging competitiveness during the official tests.
Sam Lowes, on the other hand, could not help but have a different task than his teammate's. The talented English rider must first of all become familiar with a prototype that is very different from the Moto2 bike he has ridden in the past, both strictly in terms of performance and in terms of the riding style it requires. The progress demonstrated during the tests led to reducing the gap behind the best in the category and, much more importantly, improving his sensations in the saddle. 

Roberto Colaninno, Piaggio Group CEO and Managing Director
“Aprilia Racing represents one of the Piaggio Group's points of technological excellence. In fact, racing is the highest point of experimentation and the development of technological solutions from which all the products and brands in the group then benefit. Last year, we introduced our RS-GP, the first MotoGP bike designed and built entirely here in Noale. In the second half of the season, the new bike showed clear progress, consistently finishing in the Top-Ten. This year, we want to continue our growth trend and be a threat to manufacturers who have been in this class for decades and we have everything it takes to achieve this goal: staff, technology, experience and a lot of passion.

Romano Albesiano - Aprilia Racing Manager
"For us, 2017 begins with a different situation compared with last year. We already know that we have a bike, the RS-GP, which has reached a good competitive level. The evolutions that we studied and applied in view of the new season concern every aspect of the bike, from its weight, which has been optimised, to overall balance, not to mention engine performance and the electronics package. An all-around operation but without any drastic changes, given the good starting base, with which we want to take another step toward the goals set for the Aprilia MotoGP project. The initial feedback has been encouraging. Aleix likes the new bike and has some rather clear ideas on which characteristics have the most room for improvement, so we will be working in those areas throughout the season. The racing department put in a lot of effort during the winter break. Everyone understands the importance of the challenge we are facing and our front fairing is just the most visible example of Aprilia's dedication to innovation. During the tests we stayed in a group of very competitive bikes and riders, where just a few tenths of a second can make a big difference. Our goal, after showing that we can consistently battle for the Top-10, is to improve further."


Winston Yeh MV Agusta custom motorcycle

Now in the Calendar Bike Garage!
Winston Yeh's exciting new MV Agusta "Ballastic" Custom with Calendar Kitten Jillian Janson with complete Build Details and a Large Screen Size Photo Gallery. - http://www.FastDates.com/IronLaceGarage.HTM


Parris to Omaha Beach

We're Back! Riding Edelweiss Motorcycle Tour - From Paris to Omaha, France
Versailles, France, August 2016 - How we spent our summer vacation! On the exciting Edelweiss Bike Travel 2016 Paris to Omaha Beach 10-day motorcycle tour across western France visiting the histroric battle sites of World War II where editor Jim Ginatsis father, B26 bomber pilot Capt. James Gianatsi played a pivital role in te D-say invasion and liberating France. We rode 2-up two-up with awesome FastDates.com SBK World Superbike Calendar Kitten Kaustin "Kaussie" Rose in a story for the FastDates.com Website. Our bike of choice would be the newly introduced BMW R 1000 XR Sport Tourer, based on the potent BMW R 1000 RR Superbike. For the Complete Story Click on the Photos or Check Out the Complete Story Here

Edelweiss Motorcyle Tours - Paris to Omaha

For complete Pricing, Bikes, and Booking Information visit the Edelweiss Website HereEdelweiss World Motorcycle Tours


2016 2017 Progrssive International Motorccyle show story photo photo pictures


Sara Vyvus Ducati

Now in the Calendar Bike Garage...   The World's Coolest Naked Ducati!
Beauitful FastDates.com Calendar Kitten Sara takes us for a ride on the world's most exotic and expensive Ducati streetbike
ever - a $110,000 Vyrus NCR 983 Superleggera in the Calendar Bike Garage and in Members Corner.

David BeckhamTriumph motorcycle

Now in the FastDates.com Calendar Bike Garage!
David Beckham's Amazon Triumph Scrambler build by legenday Calendar Bike Builder Rickard Pollock / Mule Motorcycles, photographed with Calendar Kitten and Penthouse Pet Aleska in BIG full screen saver size photos.

Samuel Kao BMW 90T Custom

Now in the Calendar Bike Garage...
Samuel Kao's Calendar Bike Show class winning BMW R 90T Bar Hopper with beauitful FastDates.com SBK World Superbike Calendar Kitten Sara featured in the Calendar Bike Garage / Members Corner and in the new 2016 Iron & Lace Calendar


1997 Fast dates SBK World Superbike Calendar

The cover of the 1997 Fast Dates Calenar was endorsed by SBK World Superbike and was photographed by Jim Gianatsis at the first Laguna Seca round of the SBK World round held at Laguna SecaRaceway in 1995. Our four Calendar Kittens also served as the offical SBK podium girlsthat race weekend. Here they are shown on the cover of the Calendar with Calr Fogary's 2004 / 2005 World Championhip winning Ducati 954 / 998.

SBK Dorna Media Officer Ends 23 Year Partnership with Fast Dates Calendar
We need your help to keep Calendar Photo Access to World Superbike  

Dear World Superbike Friends,

California, USA, July 17-20th 2016 - It makes me very sad to tell you that for the first time in 23 years (and 37 years attending and working the annual AMA Superbike Races at Laguna Seca), I am not being allowed to attend and join you at the Laguna Seca USA World Superbike round this July 6-8th 2017 weekend to photograph the Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar, to cover the race weekend for FastDates.com Pit Lane News, nor to provide, at what has been always at considerable cost to me, the beautiful FastDates.com Calendar Models to serve as the official SBK Podium and Grid Girls, or to serve as Umbrella Girls for some of the Factory Race Teams.

The SBK Dorna Media Department has "DENIED" my Media Credential Request for the first time ever and they will not provide me any reply or explanation.

However, I have heard through others that new SBK Dorna Media Officer Benjamin Cobb has rationalized the FAST DATES Calendar is not a current Media Media News Source. While it is and does remains the only historical reference of all the factory race teams, riders and their sponsor competing in the SBK World Superbike Championship from year to year beginning back in 1991 with Doug Pollen’s Fast by Ferracci 1991 World Championship winning Ducati 888. And for WSB Race Fans and Collectors the Fast Dates Calendar is the only regularly published news source which has documented the top race teams and riders for 27 years since the Championship began. 

While the very production schedule of a season Calendar, even the official SBK Yearbook for that matter, which is photographed at last year’s races, means it can not have the current season’s race bikes or sponsors when it is released on July 1st for the coming season.

Brans Hatch World Superbike 2005FastDates.com Calendar Kittens Monica and Gemma at Brands Hatch SBK World Superbike 2005 with a crowd of 105,000 race fans where they served as the offical SBK girls on the Statrting Grip and Race Podium. TheCalendar Shoot shoot is featured in the 2007 Fast Dates World Superbike Calender.

Not withstanding that the FastDates.com Pit Lane News website has covered every round of the SBK and MotoGP World Championship since the year 2000, making it a regular published current news source as well. And also worthy of SBK media access on its own merit.

Mr. Cobb also seems feel my inclusion of Nicky Hayden and his Ten Kate Honda CBR1000 bike in the new 2018 Calendar is not appropriate, dispite the fact the 2018 Calendar had already gone to print when Nicky had his unfortunate accident. Having Nicky and his bike in the new 2018 Calendar is a tribute to Nicky and what he gave back to our sport. To leave Nicky out of the 2018 Calendar would be dis service to our sport and everyone who knew Nicky, and shameful for the Media Department to think as much. The 2017 Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Race Program pays tribute to its own American Nicky Hayden, so why shouldn’t the now released 2018 Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar do the same?

Mr. Cobb’s 3rd justification, I heard, in denying me SBK media access is that I cc: / copy too many people in my Email correspondence leading up to the race to secure Credentials for the Models and Myself. In past year’s my SBK Credentials were provided through the SBK Marketing Department as part of a trade sponsorship where under Flammini management Fast Dates was the official Calendar of the SBK World Superbike Championship. I was required to co-ordinate in advance the shooting of the Calendar with the Race Track Manager and Media Department, the SBK Race Teams and their Press Officers, and the SBK Marketing and Credential Departments who approve of, and provide the Credentials for my Models and who would be working for the Marketing Department on the race days. Mr Cobb feels this is all his domain now, and I should not have contact anyone else but him. But if i don’t, the Calendar could not be photographed and the Models would not have access to the track or be working the Podium and Grid for SBK.

Mr. Cobb has seemingly made this all a Catch 22, where I am damned if i do, and damned if i don’t, in his rational to remove me and my passion to help, support, provide regular and historical medias coverage and promote the SBK World Superbike Championship after having done so 27 years, essentially the entire history of the SBK Championship,

In closing I would like to thank you all for your support with working with me over the many years, allowing me to photograph your team bikes and support your sponsors, and in providing complimentary Umbrella Girls for some of your team on the grid. I love World Superbike and the time you have allowed me to share the sport with you...

Thank you for your friendship, it was great getting to know and work with you at the races!

P.S. If you have the time, I hope you might talk or write to SBK World Superbike / Dorna Director Daniel Carrera, and ask if he might intervene in the SBK Media and Marketing Departments to help me return to World Superbike in the coming years to document your race bikes in the Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar. His Email contact is: WorldSBK@Dorna.com

Thanks in advance for your help! Best regards,

Jim Gianatsis, Producer & Photographer
Gianatsis Design Associates
FastDates.com Calendars, Books, Website

Los Angeles, CA 91364 USA

Nicky and his Ten Kate Honda are featured in the new 2018 FAST DATES World Superbike Calendar available here - http://www.FastDates.com/ FastDatesNews.HTM

Nicky Hayden Ten Kate Honda


Ducati Corse World Superbike Book

2016 Best of Show
From the left: Builder Hirokai Takai, Calendar Show producer Jim Gianatsis, Calendar Kitten Kaustin Rose, Best of Show winner Yuichiti Yoshizkwa, Kittens Alissa Bourne and Daria Dali.

We Have a Winner!

Yuichiti Yoshizkwa takes 2016 LA Calendar Motorcycle Best of Show
Calabasas, CA, July 23rd, 2016 - Yuichiti Yoshizkwa / Custom Works Zou, flew his bike in from Japan to take Best of Show at the 2016 LA Calendar Motorcycle Show. This was the 5th year in a row that Asian Builders had claimed the top spot at America's premier custom motorcyce show with their unique had craft builds. Yuichiti's Cafe Racer themed bike features a front swingarm suspension with its Amrican V-Twin replica Shovel Head
fed by a exhaust driver turbocharger!

Complete coverage if this year's 2016 LA Calendar Motocycle Show HERE

Raccia Kawsaaki W1 cafe racer

Calendar Bike Show Winner
Now in the FastDates.com Calendar Bike Garage!

Mike LaFountain's 2016 LA Calendar Bike Show class winning 1967 Kawasaki W1 Cafe Racer with SBK Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar Kitten Jessica Harbour in Big Screen Saver Size Pictures and bike details - http://www.FastDates.com/IronLaceGarage.HTM


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FAST 2018 Calednar Yearbook

FAST 2018
Calendars Yearbook
OnLine Digital Edition
in Members Corner

2014 Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar

Order the New
2018 Calendars!

with the FastDates.com Calendar Kittens - the official SBK Umbrella Girls!

Garage Girls Calendar Calendar

Iron & Lace custom motorcycle Calendar

Click Below for more
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Sports illustrated calendar
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2018 Wall Art Calendar
w/Hanger 11x17

Sports illustrated calendar
Playboy Lingerie 2018
Wall Art Calendar

Art w/Hanger 11x17


2015 SBK Girls
Sara Horvath

Meet the offical SBK
Fast Dates World Superbike Calendar Kittens!

Kaustin Rose
Kaustin Rose

Petra SBK Girls 2014
Petra Ruzickova

SBK Worlf Superbike girls photo pictorial
Alena Savostikova


Troy Bayliss - A Faster Way

        New! Troy Bayliss
A Faster Way

        Track Riding Book

Ducati Corse Racing Yearbook 2009 MotoGP,  World SuperbikeRetail $49.95 ea.
Click to Order from Amazon.com


Ducati Corse
World Superbikes

by Alan Cathcart
& Jim Gianatsis

World Superbike SBK yearbook 2010

The Official SBK
World Superbikes
1987-2012
25 Year History Book

World Superbike SBK yearbook

The Official SBK
2016-2017 Yearbook

These SBK Yearbooks are the Best Books Ever about World Superbike. They feature wesome color photography of the riders, bike and racing action. The feature a deailed revue of the past season in pictures and stactics, awith a detailed look at the bikes and riders.

Plus a technical look data all the bikes, a preview of the upcoming season's Championship!
We buy this every year ourselves and highly recommend it!

World Superbike SBK yearbook 2010

The Official SBK
2015-2016 Yearbook

World Superbike SBK yearbook 2010

2014-2015 Yearbook

World Superbike video game Playstation

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Tom Sykes Injury Update
Monday Sept 18th 2017 - The 2013 Superbike World Champion underwent successful surgery following a fracture sustained in his little finger following his free practice crash in Portugal at the Portimao circuit. The operation took place on Sunday 17th September at the iMove Traumatology department of the Clínica Mi Tres Torres in Barcelona, with a quick recovery expected.
Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) suffered a tough crash on Saturday 16 September during the WorldSBK round 10 at the Portimao circuit in southern Portugal. The crash, which occurred as he was going through turn nine, left Sykes with a fracture in his little finger on his left hand, as well as a fracture on his fourth finger and wrist. Following the crash, he was operated on the following day.

On Sunday the 17th the 32-year-old British rider, who sits in second position in the championship standings, was transported to iMove Traumatology, in the Clínica Mi Tres Torres in Barcelona, undergoing repair surgery on his hand and left wrist. The operation lasted less than two hours, and was performed by doctors Jordi Font Segura and Enric Domínguez, from the hand and elbow unit of iMove.

"The surgery we performed consisted of the reduction and osteosynthesis of the fifth finger through the placement of a plate explained Dr. Segura. “Tom will be kept in for 24 hours for post-operative control and medical treatment; and during the next week he will have a new checkup will be made. Also with the TAC, we have confirmed that Tom had a fracture on the fourth finger and on the left wrist. The recovery will depend on the athlete, in the best scenario he could return to compete soon.”
 
Tom Sykes, stated: “I have had an operation and the doctor seems to be happy with how it went. Obviously it was a nasty break and basically snapped the little finger clean in half, so it was more than a dislocation and he found a couple of other things in the hand as well – a crack in the finger next to it and a crack on the radius on the wrist. I have had that injury before and raced with it four days later in Australia, so I have been able to race with a broken wrist before. We will see what happens from now on, and see how the fingers get on in the next few days.”

New Classes Introduced For MotoAmerica 2018
$1 Million In
Prize Money On Offer

COSTA MESA, CA (September 13, 2017) – MotoAmerica has announced it is making changes to its class structure for the 2018 MotoAmerica Series with the addition of three new classes and the realignment of two others.

MotoAmerica has announced changes in the class structure for 2018.|Photo by Brian J. Nelson.
The three new classes are Stock 1000, Twins and the previously announced Junior Cup, which takes the place of the KTM RC Cup. The 2018 season will also see the demise of Superstock 1000 and Superstock 600 with those two classes no longer incorporated into the Motul Superbike and Supersport classes, respectively.

The Motul Superbike class will be just that beginning in 2018 – Superbikes only. The same goes for Supersport. Supersport will see an adjustment in technical rules, blending parts of both the current Supersport and Superstock 600 technical rules.

“Our focus has always been to build the Superbike class,” said MotoAmerica President Wayne Rainey. “The Superstock 1000 bikes have proven to be competitive in the Superbike class and the teams and riders who run those bikes are now racing near the front at every round. We also found that having the Superstock 1000 class inside the Superbike class was confusing for our fans and we feel the class will gain strength by being Superbike-only going forward. We look forward to having a Superbike class with top-notch motorcycles, riders and teams from the top of the field to the bottom – just as the premier class should be.”

The reasoning behind doing away with the Superstock 600 class mirrors the reasons behind going to Superbike-only – to do away with the confusion of having two classes racing on track at the same time.

The Stock 1000 class is designed to be a feeder class to Superbike, giving riders the chance to gain experience on 1000cc motorcycles before making the move to Superbike. The class licensing restrictions will ensure this category will be for participants with little or no current 1000cc experience at the National level.

The new Twins class is an addition that will address one of the most popular categories of motorcycles sales, as well as giving tuners some freedom to modify suspension and engine components. The class has also shown strong participation throughout the club racing scene.

The Junior Cup will be open to manufacturers who homologate machines for the category. The class will continue to have an age limit, though that has changed from 14-22 years old to 14-25 years old.

The series will further be bolstered by an impressive offering of over $1 million in prize money for the 2018 season with over $775,000 earmarked towards the Motul Superbike class.

“We’re proud to be able to announce a big increase in purse money,” said Rainey. “Most notably that comes in the Superbike class as we continue to look for ways that the MotoAmerica Series can benefit teams. We are also hopeful of continuing to provide additional funds in the years to come.”

The provisional technical rules for all 2018 MotoAmerica classes can be found here:

Superbike
Supersport
Stock 1000
Twins
Junior Cup

Licensing information for each of the classes can be found here:

Licensing Information

Valentiion Rossie Breaks His Let in Dirt Bike Accident
August 31st, 2017 - Movistar Yamaha MotoGP‘s Valentino Rossi sustained displaced fractures of the tibia and fibula of his right leg, following an enduro incident on Thursday evening, August 31st.
ollowing an enduro training accident on Thursday, August 31st. Movistar Yamaha MotoGP star Valentino Rossi was diagnosed with displaced fractures of the tibia and fibula of his right leg.

38-year-old Rosiwill undergo surgery as soon as possible.
Sept 1st, 2017 - Last night Movistar Yamaha MotoGP's Valentino Rossi had a successful operation on the displaced fractures of the tibia and fibula of his right leg.
The MotoGP-star was hospitalised after an enduro accident yesterday evening.
Following a medical examination at the 'Ospedale Civile di Urbino', where he was initially diagnosed, the Italian was transported to the 'Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Ospedali Riuniti' in Ancona.

Upon arrival, he received surgery between 2am - 3am by Dr. Raffaele Pascarella, Director of the Orthopedics and Traumatology Division. During the surgery the fractures were fixated using a metal pin - a locked intramedullary nail - without any complications.

Rossi to Miss the Misano Grand Prix
Italy, 4th September 2017 - Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team‘s Valentino Rossi will be unable to take part in the Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, this weekend.Gerno di Lesmo

The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team regrets to report that Valentino Rossi will not be able to compete in the upcoming Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, to be held this weekend.

The Factory Yamaha team will compete in round 13 of the 2017 MotoGP World Championship with Maverick Viñales as its sole rider.

Rosi Completes
Test Rides at Misano

Sept 19th 2017- Movistar Yamaha MotoGP's Valentino Rossi improved his feeling on the YZF-R1M during the second day of testing. He will make a final decision on his attempt to compete in the Gran Premio Movistar de Aragón after a further medical examination.

Having ridden his first laps around the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli yesterday, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP's Valentino Rossi was back aboard his YZF-R1M today at 3:30pm (GMT+2) to resume his physical test.

During the two-hour private riding session the nine-time World Champion was able to complete 20 laps in total. He wrapped up this second day of testing with an improved feeling and a more positive impression compared to yesterday.

Tomorrow Rossi will undergo a medical examination - to verify the positive rehabilitation progress experienced in today's session - after which he will make a final decision on his attempt to take part in the Gran Premio Movistar de Aragón. A further update will be given after the Italian's check-up.

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APRILIA FACTORY RSV4 MACHINES RETURN IN WORLD SBK 2017-18 WITH MILWAUKEE APRILIA RACING TEAM
Riders Italian Lorenzo Savadori and Noethern Irishman Eugene Laverty

Sept 22nd 2016 - Two Aprilia RSV4 bikes will be on the track in the 2017 World Superbike Championship with the Milwaukee Aprilia Racing Team colours.
This is a two-year contract, so it will also be valid for 2018.

The agreement specifies that technical material and related direct assistance and support will be provided by Aprilia Racing, including bike development, which classifies Milwaukee as a Supported Factory Team.

This means that Aprilia Racing - the Piaggio Group racing department and technological point of excellence in the Italian motorcycle industry - is confirming its high level presence in the premier competition for factory derivative bikes, alongside its important efforts in MotoGP.

The goal is to compete at top levels in World SBK in order to emphasize the competitiveness of the Aprilia RSV4, capable of taking no less than seven World Titles (three Rider and four Manufacturer) between 2010 and 2014, proving to be the most victorious bike in recent WSBK history.

The result of a project intended to create a true racing bike that any enthusiast could have, the RSV4 astonished from its rookie season, winning a race in its maiden year and then racking up repeated championship wins in both the Manufacturer and Rider competitions (twice with Max Biaggi and once with Sylvain Guintoli). All this while the street version - obviously also characterized by an exclusive narrow 1.0 litre V4 - continued to win comparative reviews year after year with the best competitors in the world, both European and Japanese.

The team run by Shaun Muir, which boasts two British titles, will be able to count on a top shelf rider lineup: in addition to the 2015 Superstock Champion Lorenzo Savadori, who quickly drew attention this year in his rookie World Superbike season, Northern Irishman Eugene Laverty will be back in WSBK, 2013 runner up astride none other than an Aprilia RSV4.

Romano Albesiano - Aprilia Racing Manager
"Shaun Muir's team, after making a good name for themselves in the British championship, wants to get to the top of a world category. Our agreement includes, in addition to providing bikes and materials, support from Aprilia Racing personnel to manage and develop the RSV4, within a Factory Support type relationship.
The birth of the Milwaukee Aprilia Racing Team also marks Eugene Laverty's return to WSBK, a rider who we know well and whose professional and personal qualities have our utmost respect. He will have Lorenzo Savadori working alongside him, a young rider who has been part of our sports project for two seasons in which he won the Superstock 1000 title first and then drew attention in WSBK with an extremely positive rookie year".

Shaun Muir - SMR General Manager - "For SMR, collaboration with Aprilia Racing for 2017 and 2018 means a real chance to fight for the win. Aprilia has a strong and victorious history in World Superbike and we are determined to continue on the same path. Having Eugene and Lorenzo on board makes this a dream team. Without a doubt, Eugene is coming back to WSBK for one reason only - to win. Lorenzo, on the other hand, is the fastest rookie and a sure protagonist. I wish to thank Milwaukee, Gulf and all of the partners who are supporting our project".

Eugene Laverty - "I'm excited to return to Superbike with Aprilia and the RSV4, a bike with which I took ten wins and second place overall in the championship. I hope to be able to pick up where I left off with those results, thanks to the support of Aprilia and a fantastic team like Shaun Muir's. Everything is in place for us to be competitive straight away".

Lorenzo Savadori - "I am very happy to continue my adventure in World Superbike with Aprilia. This is another chance to achieve great results, with one more year of experience on the RSV4 for me. In a demanding rookie season I was already able to express a good performance level, learning a lot, both about race management and working in the garage, but I do not want to stop here. We will definitely be highly motivated at the start, with an ambitious project and a great desire to do well".

Jason Chiswell - Vice President of Marketing Milwaukee Tools
"At Milwaukee Power tools our vision is always to win and that same mentality is shared with the SMR team. We see the next year with Aprilia as being an exciting and a new winning chapter in our World Superbike program”.

Frank Rutten - Vice President of Gulf Oil International- "As the world’s fastest growing oil brand we are very excited by the prospect of moving forwards with what we believe will be one of the most rapid teams in SBK next year. We have been extremely impressed by the way SMR has entered the World Superbike arena. They are one of the best organized and most professional outfits in the paddock and we have developed an excellent working relationship with both them and the team’s title sponsor, Milwaukee Tools.

We are very excited by the prospect of moving forwards with them as team sponsor and official lubricant partners”.

Friends of Laguna Seca looks to have won the right to manage track, maybe, probably, it seems
MONTEREY COUNTY BOARD KEEPS OTHER TWO CONTENDERS HANGING ON IN CASE THINGS DON’T WORK OUT
Reprinted from Autoweek, October 15th 2016 - The non-profit Friends of Laguna Seca is on the way to managing the storied track and bringing it back to fiscal health. Unless, that is, the Monterey County Board of Supervisors decides it wants to go with two other groups vying for management control of the race facility.

Specifically, Friends of Laguna Seca won the right to “negotiate initially” with the county for a concession agreement. The county board would have to approve any agreement that comes out of the negotiations. If things don’t go well in the concession agreement process, then the board can pick up with either of the other two groups that had turned in proposals. Those groups are Chris Pook’s (he who made the Long Beach Grand Prix into a great event) World Automotive Championship of California, and the existing managers, Sports Car Racing Association of the Monterey Peninsula (or SCRAMP, which has been running the track since it was built in 1957). SCRAMP bid in partnership with International Speedway Corp. ISC owns and operates 13 tracks, from Daytona to Watkins Glen.

The decision to change track management came out of a civil grand jury report released last July that said the Monterey County Parks Department and SCRAMP were not managing the facility well. If you wanted to cut SCRAMP some slack, you could point out that the troubles date back to 2008, when a recession hit the country and many businesses took a hit. Nonprofit race tracks were among those suffering the effects.

The Friends of Laguna Seca includes local racer and race car restoration and sales expert Bruce Canepa and motorsports entrepreneur Gordon McCall, who puts on The Quail A Motorsports Gathering, The Quail Motorcycle Gathering and the big kickoff event to car week popularly known as The Jet Party, held at Monterey Airport. We’d be happy with those guys running things. Friends leadership also includes vintage racer Jonathan Feiber, Porsche Club and kart racer Ross Merrill, historic racer, karter and food industry executive Thomas Minnich, racer and realtor Warren “Ned” Spieker Jr. and motorsport executive Lauri Eberhart.

On its website, Friends president Ross Merrill said, “We are committed to managing Laguna Seca with fiscal responsibility and for the benefit of our community. We’re driven by a passion for motorsports, a dedication to our community, and a desire to transform nearly six decades of renowned racing legacy into a new engine for our local economy. Ultimately, our aim is to restore the raceway’s former glory.”

The Friends proposal includes a 25-year commitment to rebuild the LSRA complex and implement a new business model that will include:

– A $50 million dollar capital improvement plan with $25 million invested in the first five years
– Establishing a profitable mix of events that will use all the assets of the LSRA
– Maximizing sponsorship opportunities and race track rentals
– Developing premium camping areas and an upgraded rifle/pistol range
– Enhancing the end-user experience facility-wide
– Bringing new events and premium programs to increase utilization within current restrictions, taking particular care to respect neighbors on Highway 68.

We wish them all the best and offer them this item of advice to begin with: Don’t be afraid to call it Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca a couple of times, just to keep your naming rights sponsor happy. But they already knew that.