April 2005
Superbike, MotoGP Racing & Calendar Girl News
Official Calendar of the SBK World Superbike Championship

Home of the official SBK Fast Dates & Team Ducati Corse Umbrella Girls

Page 3 - Bike of the Year: Ducati Multistrada S
Jerez Spain MotoGP Season Opener to Rossi • BSB Thruxton
Race Prepping Yamaha R1 / R6 • Honda CBR1000RR
Rossi's M1 Dyno the 999R05Robin does MV F4-1000 Ago

Phillip Island World Superbike Troy Corser on top of the World!
BSB Superbike Brands Hatch Ryuichi Kiyonari's Japanese Invasion
AMA 2005Season Opener Daytona Suzuki and Mladin with Hodgson close.
Qatar SBK World Superbike Suzuki wins Season Opener

2005 SBK World Superbike Season Preview - The Most Competitive Ever
Pirelli Calendar 2005 Supermodels get naked in Rio de Janero
• New Bikes!   • Ducati 999R FILA Special Edition   • MV Agusta F4-1000
Ducati 999R05 Our Exclusive First Test with Superbike girl Robin!
2004 LA Calendar Motorcycle Show - World Records, Beautiful Girls
Calendar Angels Rock Laguna WSB Race Weekend Robin, Andra, Nicki

Cover Girl Joanna Kruppa at play
in Garage Girls

Japanese rider Ryuichi Kiyonari (6) cleaned house again this weekend in British Superbike at the Thruxton round, He is now 4 for 4 on the HM Plant Honda CBR1000RR. See report at right:

Gibernau Injured! MotoGP drama continues at Grande Premio de Portugal 
April 12th -The dramatic start to the MotoGP World Championship at Jerez last Sunday enters its second chapter after a break of just four days as the Grande Premio de Portugal gets underway with the first free practice session at Estoril on Friday morning.

The battle for honours between Valentino Rossi and Sete Gibernau at the opening round in Spain has been a hot topic of conversation since the dust settled on their last-corner collision, with the latest twist coming on Monday night when Gibernau’s team announced that their rider’s participation in this weekend’s event is in doubt. A medical report compiled by doctors in his hometown of Barcelona has revealed a ‘capsular injury to the joint linking his upper arm and shoulder blade’, damage that is reportedly being treated with an intensive course of physiotherapy, anti-inflammatory medication and daily ultrasound treatment.

Should Gibernau recover in time for the sixth consecutive Grand Prix to be held at Estoril there promises to be another titanic struggle for supremacy between himself and Rossi, the top two riders over the past two seasons of MotoGP. The sparks will begin to fly in Thursday’s pre-event press conference, when the riders will come face-to-face for the first time since the tense post-race ceremonies in Spain....

Valentino Rossi is ready to defend his Championship title again against the Honda hordes who dominate winter testing with the quickest times.

2005 MotoGP World Championship, Round 1 of 17

Destroying the pole record at Jerez and toping the field by 1/2 second!
Rossi Begins his Title Defence in Spain
with a Dramatic Last Corner Collision Pass on Gibernau

Jerez, Spain, April 8-10th - Gauloises Yamaha Team rider Valentino Rossi put the gloss on a perfect start to his defence of the MotoGP World Championship at the Spanish Grand Prix in Jerez today, smashing the lap record by over two seconds and adding an incredible race victory to the pole position he took in yesterday’s qualifying session. The reigning World Champion stalked Sete Gibernau (Honda) for almost the entire race, passing him for the first time two laps from the end but allowing the Spaniard back in front with a mistake halfway through the final circulation.

The pair diced their way through the decisive series of fast right-handers in the second half of the lap before Rossi demonstrated that he has talent and determination in equally abundant measures with a daring last chance inside pass on the brakes into the final left-hand hairpin. The ensuing collision sent Gibernau careening off into the gravel traps as Rossi used the unfortunate Honda rider to berm shot his way to the checkered flag.

"it was the only place where I could pass" Rossi explained in the press conference afterward as Gibernau, sitting next to him with a grim face, clutching his badly bruised shoulder. "We touched but motorbike races are sometimes like this. I know Sete is not happy but there are going to be 16 more races this year and there will be many more hard battles. The level of this race was really high. ”

Rossi (46) stuffs his Yamaha inside race leader Gibernea (15) in a dramatic last corner pass, pushing Sete off the track. The Doctor wasn't taking prisoners in his title defence.

The Italian’s effort was particularly special thanks to the hard work put in by the Gauloises Yamaha Team engineers and staff, who worked against the clock to find the ideal set-up for his YZR-M1 after an uncharacteristic crash in this morning’s warm-up.

The fastest motorcycle racers on the planetreunited at the Spanish circuit of Jerez for the opening round of the 2005 MotoGP World Championship and Sunday’s Gran Premio Marlboro de España signalling an eagerly-awaited return to competitive action for the teams and riders after a long winter of testing and development.

Valentino Rossi started the defence of his MotoGP World Championship title from pole position when the 2005 season gets underway at Jerez on Sunday after a stunning new lap record in Saturday’s qualifying session. Rossi clocked a time of 1’39.419 to overcome the challenge of local hero Sete Gibernau and knock almost one and a half seconds off his previous record, set last season. Rossi almost unexpectedly decimated the factory Honda riders who consistantly turned the quickest lap times in all throughout pre season testing while The Doctor sat back and instead concentrated on bike development and setup for the Yamaha YM1-05. The operating theatre is now set and the surgeon is again ready to perform.

The Warm Up - World's Top Riders desend on Jerez for MotoGP Opener
Twenty MotoGP riders lined up for the traditional preseason photograph in bright sunshine and strong winds with one objective in mind: dethroning the man in the middle of the picture, reigning World Champion Valentino Rossi. The Yamaha rider has now won the premier-class title for the past four years and has taken victory at Jerez on no fewer than five occasions in all categories, a record he is keen to defend in what he expects to be his most difficult season yet.

“Last year we caused a surprise but this year it will be harder because everybody knows what to expect,” admitted Rossi, who became the first man since Eddie Lawson in 1989 to win consecutive titles for different manufacturers after switching from Honda to Yamaha last year. “Honda have worked very hard in the winter and they have a lot of strong riders but this sport is not about one factory against another – every rider is alone. The winner at the end will be the person who stays consistent and arrives on the podium the most.”

After months of preseason testing the fun-loving Italian added that he is looking forward to getting back to doing what he does best and promised plenty of entertainment for the season to come. “It’s been a long winter and sometimes it’s hard to stay motivated but in the race I will be giving 100%. Everybody is ready – the riders are in good shape and the bikes are set up. This year will be another great show.”

Despite Rossi’s ebullience there is no shortage of confidence throughout the remainder of the grid that this could be the year his dominance comes to an end. Sete Gibernau has run the World Champion closer than any other rider over the past two seasons and says he is better prepared than ever to challenge for the title.

“My only aim is to raise my level of riding to a point where I don’t have to depend on anybody else, and I think my level is higher now than it has ever been,” said Gibernau, who took victory in a wet race at this circuit last season. “Valentino is obviously the man to beat because he has won the championship for the past few seasons by being the best. It’s up to us now to raise our level, stay focused and do the best job we can at every race.”

Unlike past seasons the whole grid arrived at the opening Grand Prix reporting a clean bill of health, with Alex Barros claiming full strength after two years of injury troubles, John Hopkins recovering swiftly from operations to remove metal plates from his legs and Max Biaggi having made miraculous progress from a broken ankle he sustained in November. Even Carlos Checa, who missed the final official test of the preseason here at Jerez just over a week ago with a shoulder problem, remarked that he “should be 100 per cent fit for the race."

Dani Pedrosa is no stranger to miraculous recoveries having himself bounced back from two broken ankles just over one year ago to clinch the 250cc title in his first season. The Spanish youngster is predicting a tougher challenge this time around but is confident of getting off to the right start in front of a passionate home crowd expected to top last season’s stunning total of 125,000 after recent improvements to the spectator facilities on the outskirts of the circuit.

“We’ve had a really good preseason, something I didn’t have last year, and we have taken a step forward in every aspect,” commented Pedrosa, who made a brief dash to Portugal for two days of tests at Estoril last week. “I’m starting the season defending the number 1 plate and I’m very motivated and excited about that. I know it will be a difficult season and I will be under the spotlight but I’m ready. Everybody is looking forward to the start of the season and if the atmosphere is usually impressive at Jerez, it should be unbelievable for the first race!”

Local hopes in the 125cc class rest largely with the experienced Pablo Nieto, who has returned to Derbi in an all-Spanish line-up alongside rookie Nico Terol and is already one of the favourites for the title. “I’m on the verge of going crazy wanting the World Championship to start!” commented Nieto, the highest ranked rider in the class. “It’s been pretty tense over the past few weeks but I think I speak for all the riders when I say we just want to get on the bike tomorrow and start giving it some gas!”

Friday Practice has Gibernau setting the pace over Rossi
Friday April 8th - Sete Gibernau was the quickest rider on a cool and cloudy opening day of action at the Gran Premio Marlboro de España at Jerez on Friday. Due to the MotoGP World Championship’s new qualification format, which sees only the final session contribute to the formation of Sunday’s grid, today’s two free practice sessions presented the riders with a chance to build on the machine set-up work they had begun at this circuit during three days of tests two weeks ago.

Gibernau went head-to-head with Valentino Rossi almost as soon as the track opened for the morning session, lapping inside pole record with a time of 1’40.800 as he looked to strike the first psychological blow in what promises to be another colossal challenge for the title between the pair. The pace set by the Spaniard and the Italian was not bettered by any of the riders as the track cooled in the afternoon, leaving the pair separated by just 0.086 seconds overnight.

“I think the good preseason the team have had, together with Honda and Michelin, is starting to show,” commented Gibernau. “We have to be satisfied with the first day because we’re on top and we’ve still got room for improvement. It’s the first time the afternoon session hasn’t counted for qualifying and we used it to find a good race setting, completing as many laps as possible on the race tyres, and the pace we set was very satisfactory.”

The young trio of Nicky Hayden, John Hopkins and Marco Melandri, the fastest three riders from the final preseason test here, posed the biggest threat in the afternoon and look certain to challenge for the podium in Sunday’s race. Meanwhile, Max Biaggi had a more than productive afternoon as he knocked a spectacular 1.3 seconds off his morning lap time to move up to sixth place.

Shinya Nakano also made significant progress on the Kawasaki to end the session seventh fastest ahead of Colin Edwards, who lost two tenths of a second from his lap time between the morning and afternoon sessions after making set-up changes to his Yamaha.

Final MotoGP Practice Results

Rossi Smashes Pole Record at Jerez
Qualifying, Saturday April 9th - Valentino Rossi will start the defence of his MotoGP World Championship title from pole position when the 2005 season gets underway at Jerez on Sunday after a stunning new lap record in today’s qualifying session. Rossi clocked a time of 1’39.419 to overcome the challenge of local hero Sete Gibernau ( a full second behinf at 1'39.915) and knock almost one and a half seconds off his previous record, set last season.

"My fast lap was incredible!” smiled Rossi at the end of the single qualifying practice, which this year replaces the previous format of two sessions over the two days previous to the race for the MotoGP class only. “Michelin made a great job with the qualifying tyres – my first one was good but the second was even better. There is a big question mark over the tyre choice for the race tomorrow because after a few laps they start to slide a lot, but it’s the same situation for everyone. Now we’re just looking for good weather tomorrow and hopefully it will be a beautiful race.”

Rossi is not the only person in Jerez keeping their fingers crossed for good weather, with crowd figures expected to top the 125,000 who turned out here in torrential rain last season. Huge local support was on hand today to back Gibernau’s challenge for pole, which fell some 0.496 seconds short of Rossi’s stunning lap time.

Gibernau will attack Rossi from second place on tomorrow’s grid and he will be joined on the front row by Marco Melandri, who will start his first MotoGP race for Honda from third spot. Melandri’s late effort knocked factory colleague and fellow youngster Nicky Hayden back to the second row, where he is joined by Kawasaki rider Shinya Nakano and Ducati’s Loris Capirossi, who rode with a chipped bone in his ankle after crashing in this morning’s free practice.

Makoto Tamada made a late charge to seventh place ahead of Honda colleagues Alex Barros and Troy Bayliss, denying Alex Hofmann a third row start as the German dropped to tenth place on the Kawasaki. John Hopkins battled through a bout of the flu and the effects of a crash this morning to qualify eleventh on the Suzuki whilst Ducati rival Carlos Checa, who is struggling with a shoulder injury, was twelfth.

The surprise of the session came from Spanish rookie Toni Elías, who will make his MotoGP debut on the Yamaha tomorrow ahead of vastly more experienced rivals such as Kenny Roberts, Colin Edwards and Max Biaggi.

Starting Lineup Pole Qualifying Results

Camel Honda team mates Troy Corser (12) and Alex Barros (4) had a heated race long battle just behnd the podium leaders.

Rossi collides with Gibernau in the last lap final corner to snatch Victory

The Race, Sunday April 10th
- Valentino Rossi began his MotoGP World Championship defence with a determined performance at Jerez today, snatching victory from home favourite Sete Gibernau in a dramatic final corner manoeuvre. A minute’s silence in memory of Pope John Paul II provided the calm before the storm as Rossi stalked Gibernau for virtually the entire race, with Valentino making his move on the final lap only to make a mistake in his first attempt to pass and forced hand the lead back to the Spaniard.

It set up a breathtaking finale, with the pair exchanging places in the fast right corners which lead into the final left-hand hairpin, where they collided as Rossi forced his way up the inside. Gibernau ran it wide into the gravel but returned to the track to limp across the line in second place, benefiting from the huge gap the two riders had opened up over third-placed Marco Melandri, who completed the podium in his first MotoGP appearance for Honda.

“This was for sure a great race, especially after the problems I had in the morning,” said Rossi, who had crashed out of the warm-up and caused extensive damage to his number one Yamaha machine. “Sete rode a great race and set a very fast pace. I attacked at the end but made a mistake on the last lap and then we touched in the final corner. I’m sure Sete’s angry about it right now but racing motorcycles is hard. There are 16 races to go and it will be a hard battle.”

Marco Melandri took an incredible 3rd in his 2nd ever MotoGP race to put both Telefonica Moviestar Hondas on the podium for the home Spanish crowd.

Melandri took third place after Nicky Hayden had crashed out with just eight laps to go, ending hopes of what looked like a certain podium for the American, the only rider to match the pace of Rossi and Gibernau throughout the race. Alex Barros clinched a distant fourth after a hard battle with Kawasaki rider Shinya Nakano and his Honda team-mate Troy Bayliss, who took a creditable sixth place on his debut for the Japanese factory.

Max Biaggi recovered from his worst ever grid position of 16th to take seventh after overcoming the challenge of Honda colleague Makoto Tamada and Yamaha’s Colin Edwards, whilst Carlos Checa fought through the pain of a recovering shoulder injury to complete the top ten at his home circuit on the Ducati.

MotoGP Results
1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Gauloises Yamaha45'43.156
2. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Movistar Honda+8.631
3. Marco Melandri (ITA) Movistar Honda +18.460
4. Alex Barros (BRA) Camel Honda +26.938
5. Shinya Nakano (JPN) Kawasaki Racing+27.659
6. Troy Bayliss (AUS) Camel Honda +28.509
7. Max Biaggi (ITA) Repsol Honda Team +30.618
8. Makoto Tamada (JPN) Konica Honda +36.887
9. Colin Edwards (USA) Gauloises Yamaha+37.608
10. Carlos Checa (SPA) Ducati Marlboro Team +39.678
World Championship Standings
2. Sete Gibernau (SPA) 20
3. Marco Melandri (ITA) 16
4. Alex Barros (BRA) 13
5. Shinya Nakano (JPN) 11
6. Troy Bayliss (AUS) 10
7. Max Biaggi (ITA) 9
8. Makoto Tamada (JPN) 8
10. Carlos Checa (SPA) 6

MotoGP Final Results

Despite Gibernau’s misfortune in the premier-class the 127,000 crowd had plenty to cheer in the 250cc race, as reigning World Champion Dani Pedrosa and his Honda stormed to a clear victory over Aprilia’s Sebastian Porto. Randy de Puniet and Casey Stoner both crashed out of third place to leave Aprilia colleague Alex de Angelis with his third career podium in the quarter-litre class ahead of Honda debutantes Andrea Dovizioso, Hector Barberá and Andrea Dovizioso.

Marco Simoncelli proved his wet victory here last year was no fluke as he went from pole position to the top step of the podium for the second successive season in the 125cc. The Aprilia teenager rode a controlled race in a typically frenetic lead group, which saw home hope Pablo Nieto crash his Derbi just two laps from the end when challenging for second place. Nieto’s misfortune opened the way for KTM rider Mika Kallio to snatch second with a last-corner move on Fabrizio Lai, who took third on his debut for Honda.

The 2005 Multistrada 1000Smodel features Ohlins race quality suspension front and rear, along with carbon fibre bits like the front fendar and cam belt covers. Also on our bike is the Ducati Performance Termignoni exhaust silencer. Our tester is beautiful SBK Fast Dates Ducati Corse World Superbike girl Robin Cunningham.

SBK Fast Dates Ducati Corse girl and bikini clad Tomb Raider Rockin' Robin Cunningham
gets into some hard core action with the Ducati Multistrada 1000

2005 Bike of the Year Award
Ducati Multistrada 1000S DS

It’s no secret the Ducati’s Multistrada 1000 DS which was first introduced back in 2003 was one of our favorite motorcycles. The somewhat quirky looking, do everything aircooled V-twin Desmo did everything really well. It may not have been the world’s best bike in any one particular category from canyon carver, to off road adventure bike, to around town commuter, to cross country tourer -but it was very close. It does excel in everything really well.

No other bike on the market is quite capable of matching the Ducati Multistrada for overall versatility, performance and just sheer riding pleasure. Now with the introduction of the new upgraded Ohlins suspended 1000S model for 2005 the Multistrada has become so close to perfect in so many categories that, as an overall package the staff at, the world's premier streetbike website, feels the new Multi S is the world’s best streetbike. It’s so good in fact, we decided to create an award and make the Multistrada 1000S our first ever Bike of the Year for 2005. Our congradulations go out to Ducati and Multistrada designer Pierre Terblanche for creating the perfect bike.

Complete Ducati Multistrada S Feature Story with Rockin' Robin HERE!

LA Calendar Motorcycle Show
on July 16-17th is new qualifying round of the
AMD World Championship of Custom Bike Building

Los Angeles, CA, April 11th - The Los Angeles Calendar Motorcycle Show, America's premier custom and performance street bike event is excited to announce its affiliation with American Motorcycle Dealer magazine, the world's leading dealer trade magazine for the American V-Twin market, as an official Affiliate Sponsor and Qualifying Round of the AMD Pro Show World Championship of Custom Bike Building sponsored by Custom Chrome.

The Los Angeles Calendar Motorcycle Show is produced by Gianatsis Design Associates, a well-known and respected advertising design agency in the motorsports market, and producer of the world famous Motorcycle Calendars and Website. Agency Director Jim Gianatsis had this to say about the Show's new affiliation with the AMD Pro Show-

"We have been a strong supporter and friends with publisher Robin Bradley and his American Motorcycle Dealer magazine since he first began publishing it some 10 years ago. For our own advertising clients like Mikuni American and STD Performance, Robin's AMD magazine is the most effective, affordable and attractive way of reaching dealers and distributors world-wide in the American V-Twin market.

Our affiliation as a Qualifying Round for AMD Pro Show's World Championship of Custom Bike Building sponsored by Custom Chrome is a natural pairing. It brings together our LA Calendar Show, America's premier custom and performance consumer street motorcycle event with its key industry manufacturers and retailiers exhibiting their products here to the public, our international media attention from all the world's top motorcycle magazines and TV shows, along with many of the world's top custom bike builders showcasing their hottest newest machinery here,now joining together with AMD's recently established World Championship of Custom Bike Building which will is poised to become the crown jewel in the professional bike building world.

The LA Calendar Motorcycle Show qualifier with its own huge $70,000 Cash and Awards Purse, will be taking place again this year at the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA, the 3rd weekend of July on the 16-17th this year, will give our Performance Machine Best of Show winner, Best Performance Machine Equipped Bike winner, and the top 3 winners in our Pro Builders Class a guaranted invitation to the AMD World Championship final in Las Vegas on November 15-16th 2005 with its own huge $50,000 cash purse posted by sponsor Custom Chrome.

The tie-in is even more significant because Custom Chrome and Motorcycle Stuff under the Global Motorsports Group, are two of the major distributors of our Calendars. Even more exciting is the fact that last year's AMD World Championship winner, Roger Goldammer Cycle Works out of Canada and his beautiful retro Board Track racer, are featured on the cover of the upcoming new 2006 Iron & Lace Custom Motorcycle Pinup Calendar which will premier at our LA Show in July."

For additional information on the LA Calendar Motorcycle Show Qualifier in July go to Bike Show.
For additional information on the AMD World Final in Novemebr go to

Hot Chicks That Kick Ass....

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Fast Dates Calendar Motorcycle Roadracing News. Complete coverage of the SBK World Superbike, AMA National Superbike and MotoGP World Championship. Fast Dates Calendar and Umbrella Girsl. Max Biaggi, Valentino Rossi, Ben and Eric Bostom, James Toseland, Regis Laconi, Loris Capirossi, Troy Bayliss, Troy Corser, Noriyuki Haga. Ducati 999 Monter Multistrada, Yamaha R6 R1, Honda CBR600RR CBR1000RR, Kawasaki ZX6 ZX6RR ZX10, Suzuki GSXR600 GSXR750 GSXR1000, Aprilia Mille, MZ Agusta F4 Brutale

The Biggest Streetbike Show in America!
July 16-17th 2005
$70,000 in Awards!
• World Record Jardine Dyno
• 2-Wheel Tuner Sportbike Class Ducati Class

• AMD World Championship of Bike Building Qualifying Round
Exhibitor Information

British Superbike
Round 2 Thruxton
Ryuichi Kiyonari continues to steamroller the locals
April 10th, Thruxton, GB- Japanese rider Ryuichi Kiyonari on a Honda CBR1000RR continued to dominate in British Superbike for the second race meeting in a row, handily wiining both races today and take a commanding points lead in the world's most competitive National superbke series. Former World Superbike rider Gregoria Lavila on Ducati, and former British Superbike champ Michael Rutter, Honda mounted, traded the other 2 podium spots both races behindKiyonari.

RIZLA SUZUKI racer Scott Smart found extra performance from his GSX-R1000 during a tough day's racing at the second round of the British Superbike Championship at Thruxton.
Smart finished seventh in the opening race at the Hampshire circuit. He then altered the rear suspension settings on his Rizla Suzuki for the second race and despite pulling out on lap 13, came back to the pits upbeat that he has unlocked extra performance that will let him race at the front in the future.
British Superbike Champion John Reynolds took a battling 14th place finish in the first race. Still suffering from a broken right leg, JR was outside of the points and struggling against the bumpy nature of the track in the second race when his crew called him into the pits to retire rather than risking further injury.
Former Formula One commentator Murray Walker joined Rizla Suzuki at its home Thruxton circuit to lend his support to the team. He spoke highly of JR's bravery in racing at one of the fastest tracks in the UK. Honda's Ryuichi Kiyonari won both races.

The BSB teams go to Oulton Park on Friday 15th April for an official BSB test before the Championship resumes with the third round at Mallory Park on April 24th. Channel Fourin GB will be showing highlights of today's racing next Sunday morning - featuring a competition to win a pillion ride with Rizla Suzuki at Mallory Park.

Race One Result: 1: Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) 28:05.231, 2: Michael Rutter (Honda) +9.672, 3: Gregorio Lavilla (Ducati) +12.111, 4: Leon Haslam (Ducati) +15.791, 5: Sean Emmett (Yamaha) +15.817, 6: Karl Harris (Honda) +17.628, 7: Scott Smart (Rizla Suzuki ) +18.340, 8: Dean Thomas (Kawasaki) +18.615, 9: Glen Richards (Kawasaki) +25.311, 10: Tommy Hill (Yamaha) +32.655, 14: JOHN REYNOLDS (RIZLA SUZUKI) +45.634.

Race Two Result: 1: Kiyonari 28:45.734, 2: Lavilla +0.444, 3: Rutter +1.298, 4: Emmett +7.055, 5: Richards +8.896, 6: Thomas +9.066, 7: Haslam +9.188, 8: Harris +10.392, 9: Jeremy McWilliams (Honda) +21.668, 10: Steve Plater (Kawasaki) +21.833, DNF: John Reynolds), DNF: Scott S,art (Rizla Suzuki).

BSB Championship Standings after two of 13 rounds: 1: Kiyonari 100, 2: Lavilla 72, 3: Rutter 69, 4: Emmett 46, 5: Richards 43, 6: Harris 38, 7: Haslam 35, 8: Thomas 31, 9: Scott Smart (Rizla Suzuki) 17, 10: John Reynolds (Rizla Suzuki) 16.


Marlboro Spanish Grand Prix, Jerez, Friday practice, April 8 - Ducati Marlboro Team riders Loris Capirossi and Carlos Checa used today's opening two practice sessions for Sunday's Marlboro Spanish GP to continue development work on Ducati's innovative new engine-braking system. After initial tests last month, both riders had both their bikes fitted with the new unit for the first time, illustrating the factory's confidence in this new technology. The new system is designed to optimise braking stability by reducing excessive engine-braking forces, and has the added advantage of slightly reducing fuel consumption.

"We are using the new system because we know that the best place to really stress new parts is at a race," said Ducati Corse director Filippo Preziosi. "During testing you can ride many laps without problems, but it is under pressure in a race situation that you find new limits, which gives us better information to improve. Today is the first time that we have focused 100 per cent on the new system. After just two hours of track time we're very happy with progress. We have already matched our best time on race tyre from our November tests here and we're not so far from the front guys. It's encouraging but we still don't know how long it will take us to find all the benefits of new system, but we are working towards that."

Loris Capirossi ended the first day of the 2005 MotoGP season in ninth spot. The Ducati Marlboro Team man spent much of both sessions working on the new clutch system, which has undergone minor improvements since the team tested here two weeks ago.

"I'm still getting used to the system - it feels very different to ride with, like you've switched off the engine when you brake," said the Italian. "But it already has its good points and I believe it will give us a real advantage by improving stability during heavy braking, that's why we're sticking with it. At the moment the new system isn't quite as the same level of the standard system but it gets better every session. We had some trouble this morning but made a big improvement this afternoon."

Carlos Checa slid off during this afternoon's practice session, thankfully not aggravating the shoulder injury he sustained when he tumbled at Catalunya last month. The Spaniard is having to play catch up here because he missed last month's group Jerez tests, following that fall at Catalunya.

"It wasn't a big crash," said the Ducati Marlboro Team rider, so far 16th fastest. "I went down at the hairpin at the end of the back straight, just before the gravel trap. My shoulder is probably about 80 per cent at the moment, but I thought it might be even worse before I got here. I have a lot to do here because I missed the tests - I'm getting my feeling back after a few weeks off, as well as working on set-up and the new clutch. I've had better days but I'm confident we will improve tomorrow."

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Rossi-Gibernau duel boosts TV audiences for MotoGP opener
The heart-stopping 45-minute battle between World Champion Valentino Rossi and his long-standing rival Sete Gibernau in MotoGP’s 2005 season opener, the Gran Premio Marlboro de España in Jerez, saw huge support from TV viewers worldwide. Unsurprisingly, the largest audiences were recorded in their respective countries, Italy and Spain, where viewers of both Mediaset (Italia 1) and Televisión Española enjoyed the thrilling showdown live in their homes, with the race remarkably taken to the final corner by both riders.

An average of over 7 million spectators enjoyed Rossi’s win through Italia 1, representing a market share of 34.4%. At the broadcasting peak, during the last lap of the race in Jerez, almost 8 million fans were tuned in. In total, the transmission reached 11.5 million spectators.

A similar phenomenon occurred in Spain. Although the huge 127,000 crowd present at the circuit and the TV viewers at home were unable to celebrate their home-hero’s victory, TVE’s main channel scored its largest race audience since Alex Crivillé’s World Championship win in 1999. The average viewing figures for the race were 3.7 million, with an average share of 38%. The “golden minute” of the broadcast, immediately before the dramatic outcome of the race, recorded 5.5 million viewers (46% market share).

Another good example of the success of MotoGP’s first race of the season was the audience in the United Kingdom through the BBC. The average viewing figure for the show was 1.2 million (14% market share), one of the largest for MotoGP broadcasts, and well above the regular network audience for Sunday lunch-time.

This data reflects the massive interest in the 2005 MotoGP World Championship, with fans across the globe eagerly waiting for the next round in the Rossi-Gibernau showdown, which takes place in Estoril on Sunday April 17th at the Grande Premio de Portugal.

Hot Shots!
Fast Dates Calendar shoots Rossi's MotoGP Championship Yamaha

With Heather Caroline
April 14th - The world's hottest race bike and centerfold model - The Fast Dates Calendar is shooting next week Valentino Rossi's World Championship winning Yamaha M1 MotoGP bike for our next calendar with beautiful red haired Playboy Playmate Heather Caroline. Just for the fun of it we also tossed in Roland Sands' ( "Hard Rock" custom for the Iron & Lace Calendar, and a Graves Yamaha R1 Superbike. What more could any guy want, except maybe a sponsored ride?
If you are a good boy we might show you some photo out takes in a few weeks.
But for now its back to work....

Marilyn does Mickey
Living too close to Disneyland in Florida? Iron & Lace Calendar bike builder Cyril Huze got a little wacked with his latest custom bike paint job featured on the cover of the 2005 Cyril Huze calalog!

Daijiro Commerative GP Helmet Computer Mice
GP Helmet Mouse is available in the two different trademark Blue / Yellow and Red / Yellow color schemes worn by Daijiro, and have all the hot race features like an 800dpi optical laser for smooth tracking, left/right click functions for precise turn-in, and a quick throttle scrolling function. Included is a long, 36in. detachable USB cable for stealth operation when the tech inspector stops by. The GP Mouse is compatible with both superstock Windows (98 and later) and superbike Apple OS machinery.

Available in America from Sudco International to Dealers,
and Retail direct for $47.00.

Phone weekdays
8am -6pm PT

Supermodels who
like to get wet...

Sports Illustrated
Swimsuit 2005 DVD

Maxim Swimsuit DVD
hosted by MTV's Rachel Perry

The Death of Professional Roadracing in America

Don Emde Comments on AMA
Pro Racing and American Honda
Don Edde won the Daytona 200 in 1972 aboard a Yamaha TZ350. He now publishes a dealer trade magazine Parts Magazine.This is a leter he sent to us and Cycle News to follow up on a column in Cycle News last week by contributing journalist Henry Ray Abrams on the demise of this year's Daytona 200, relagated to a one brand Honda showcase attended by less than 5,000 spectators. has been voicing a similar opinion since August of 2004. We are glad to see someone else in the Industry havng the courage to speak on the factors contributing to the demise of pro roadracing in America. -Ed.

I wanted to comment on Henny Ray Abrams’ thought-provoking Chicanery column (“A Farce”) that ran in the March 23rd issue of Cycle News. In my opinion, the two biggest issues that cloud the direction of roadracing by AMA Pro Racing is the number of classes that they run and the structure of the AMA Pro Racing Board of Directors.

First, it seems clear to me that the AMA’s goal is to have lots of classes so that most, or all, of the manufacturers can win a class championship. Kind of like the Olympics when the “Medal Count” is what teams shoot for rather than any single Main Event.

I know some people don’t like to hear “Back in my day,”but…back in my day, yes, we had some preliminary races during Daytona Bike Week, but there was one big shoot-out on the last day with all the big dogs on the track at the same time. That’s the kind of Daytona 200 that I won, as did Kenny Roberts, Wayne Rainey, Freddie Spencer, Scott Russell and others in their day. There needs to be a Main Event and that is what we didn’t have this year at Daytona.

There are two key classes of motorcycle sportbikes – 600s and 1,000s. But we have four classes in the AMA series. Sure, some allowances need to be made for the Ducatis and other brands that emerge with less cylinders, but that can be worked out. But there is no need to have two classes each for 600s and two for 1,000s. The fan confusion is really hurting the sport.

Secondly, I don’t have anything against Ray Blank or American Honda, I think Honda makes great products. But it is totally wrong, in my opinion, that only a representative from Honda should sit on the AMA Pro Racing Board and participate on all the decisions are being made, while the others sit by their mailbox waiting for the news to arrive about what the rules of racing will be.

A few years back when it was announced that this one manufacturer would sit on the board, people wondered if decisions would be unbiased. Now, I think the answer is clear. As Keith McCarty replied in the “Chat Room” interview on page 16, they were notified about the switch to Formula Xtreme machines for the 200 in August. Don’t tell me that’s when Honda first knew about it. And look at the number of rule changes that have effected the Superbike class in the past three or four years as Mat Mladin and Suzuki have continued to succeed. I could be wrong, I hope I’m wrong, but that has always appeared to me to be “strategic.” Whatever the reasons have been, the result was that this year the defending champion of the race was already on his way home when the Daytona 200 started. And the Yamaha and Kawasaki team trucks were somewhere in East Texas heading west.

As a result of its “for-profit” corporate structure, the AMA Pro Racing board is not required to publish its meeting minutes, so we don’t know what proposals are brought forward and how the voting goes. But I’d say the board should have been overly sensitive to the possible criticism of the bias issue, but they failed completely to do so. So how else should they think the public and industry would react to a “Daytona 200 by Honda,” with only the four factory-support Honda rider pummeling a field of privateers?

Even during Bike Week and since, I’ve had conversations that range from “we have to fix the situation at the AMA” to “it’s not fixable.” Fixing what we have would seem to be the best direction as we’d hold everything together in one series. But if the latter is true, then the AMA and Honda can go do their series and the rest of the sport can go do something else. I think there are some people and organizations out there that could run events that could be very fan-friendly even with just three-of-the-four Japanese brands.

Whichever way this goes, the most important aspect is that there is a level playing field for all the participants and that everyone has an equal voice. As Henny Ray pointed out, big changes are needed and it’s going to take people with some balls to make them.
- Don Emde, Laguna Niguel CA

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Yamaha takes on Honda!
Announces its MotoGP Scooter deal to fill out the starting grid with an equal number of Yamahas
Jerez, Spain 14/4/2005 - Yamaha is proud to announce a two year deal with MotoGP series promoter Dorna that has seen the Japanese motorcycling giant become the Scooter supplier of the MotoGP World Championship. The agreement, which was sealed on the eve of the opening round of the 2005 season - held in Jerez, Spain - includes Yamaha supplying the championship organizer Dorna with a fleet of limited edition 50cc BW's scooter which will be used through the 2005 and 2006 seasons.

Yamaha Motor Europe's Manager of the Power Two-Wheeler Marketing and Sales Division Robert Landman presented the new fleet of MotoGP liveried BW's to Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta at the Jerez MotoGP. The limited edition MotoGP BW's livery features the official MotoGP logo, race-inspired colour scheme as well as track maps of each circuit featured on the 2005 and 2006 seasons. In addition the liquid-cooled unit also boasts a carbon-fiber replica seat and trick instrument dash layout.
Production replicas of the Yamaha MotoGP Scooter will be on sale from June at your local dealer. For more information on this and the rest of Yamaha's motorcycle range visit

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Ballentine Does
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Just one of the incredible bands a t his July's LA Calendar motorcycle Show is Ballentine, an LA based pop/punk/rock band, began by touring internationally with the USO. Shortly after, they signed an "In-Theater" documentary deal with MovieTunes, which led to having numerous songs from their album, "4U" played in over 20,000 AMC/Carmike Theaters nationwide. Heather (lead vocals) and Frank (bass/vocals) starred on ABC's nationally televised summer reality show, "The Ultimate Love Test" which exposed Ballentine's music to millions of viewers. Most recently, Ballentine signed a recording contract and national distribution deal with OME (Original Man Entertainment) and Lightyear / WEA (Warner/Electra/Atlantic).
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