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I’ve had this bike for a week now and put quite simply, this is the best bike I’ve ever ridden by a country mile…and I’m still grinning now. I make no apologies if this review comes across as a gushing love letter to this bike…the V4 1100 Factory APRC has moved me and got under my skin like no other bike has to date. It’s addictive, intoxicating and the way it mixes state-of-the-art technology derived from Aprilia’s participation in WSBK with blistering performance means it never fails to entertain.
So what’s the difference between the standard RR and the Factory? Well, this bike comes with fully-adjustable Öhlins rear shock, forks and steering damper and the simply stunning ‘Superpole’ paint scheme, which really suits the bike and is exquisitely finished in the metal.
Swing a leg...
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez took his third win of the 2019 season with another dominating performance at Le Mans.
Cold conditions from morning Warm Up carried through until the start of the French Grand Prix at 14:00 local time, with a track temperature of just 18°C making for treacherous opening laps.
Marquez was able to keep clear of trouble at the front, opening a small advantage over Pramac Racing's Jack Miller, and while Miller was briefly able to get past, the Repsol Honda Team rider responded to the challenge on lap six and retook the lead.
Steadily building his lead lap-by-lap, Marquez crossed the line 1.9 seconds clear of Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso, claiming Honda’s 300th win in the premier class in the process.
The Spaniard said: “Of course here in Le Mans it’s always...
The French MotoGP race weekend at the legendary Le Mans circuit is one of the highlights of the racing calendar, a heady mixture intoxicating history, Gallic passion and close racing. Local hero Johann Zarco has tasted success at his home track; in 2017 he finished second and became the first French rider to finish on the podium in the premier class at his home race since 1988, and he secured third in the Moto 2 race in 2015.
Johann is a back-to-back Moto2 Champion, and has a 125cc win, 15 Moto2 wins and six premier class podiums, four poles and four fastest laps to his name. Noted for his blistering speed, daring overtakes and aggression, Johann is one of MotoGP’s frontrunners, with his smooth riding style often in the thick of the action. The Johann Zarco 2019 Limited Edition...
Even a crash during Q2 couldn’t stop Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez from claiming his third pole position from five races as he conquered the tricky conditions at Le Mans.
With a track temperature of just 14°C and a brisk air temperature of 12°C, conditions were treacherous in FP4, and Marquez suffered a slow speed fall at Turn 9 early in the session.
Rain returned to the 4.2 km long Le Mans circuit the same moment as pit lane opened for Q2, and a second fall of the day, this time at Turn 6, after setting his fastest lap could not stop Marquez taking pole position for the French GP. It was Marquez’s 55th premier class pole and draws him level with Valentino Rossi and just three behind Mick Doohan’s record 58 premier class poles.
The Spaniard said: “Today was one of those days! The...
The first and only race at at Imola on Sunday was the Tissot Superpole Race, which provided fireworks once more. On a damp but drying circuit, there was drama before the race even started, as BMW’s Tom Sykes missed the warm up lap and was forced to start from pit lane.
At the front, Ducati’s Chaz Davies got the jump from pole, while Race One winner Jonathan Rea went side-by-side with the Welshman, but the Ducati held firm and maintained the lead.
With the race settling down, a mistake from Davies at the final chicane allowed Rea and Alvaro Bautista on the other factory Ducati to get ahead of him. Davies now had to put in the hard work all over again, as reigning champion Rea began to pull out an advantage.
Davies soon despatched his team-mate and the two dominant forces of WSBK in...
It was a welcome return to the top step of the podium for Kawasaki's Jonathan Rea, who put in a riding masterclass to take victory in Race One.
The Ulsterman enjoyed a bright start, but couldn’t get the better of Ducati's Chaz Davies down into Tamburello. However, on the run to Acque Minerale, Davies suffered a problem and was forced to retire, handing Rea the lead while Davies’ team-mate Bautista moved up to second.
At the end of the opening lap, Rea and Bautista had the leading positions, with BMW's Tom Sykes in third and ahead of Yamaha's Michael van der Mark.
As the race settled down, Rea built a comfortable lead and was extending his advantage over Bautista by around 0.7s per lap. Bautista in turn was escaping the attention of Sykes but the main battle through the race was for...
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez has become the first repeat premier class winner of 2019 after storming to victory in Jerez.
Marquez stormed off the line to lead the 23-rider field through the opening corners, and once at the front he never looked back. Lap eight saw the Spaniard begin to open a gap and begin to break away, steadily building an advantage with each corner and eventually crossing the line 1.654 seconds ahead of second place rider, Suzuki's Alex Rins.
Marquez said: “This race was a mental race, more than a physical one. After the mistake in Austin it wasn’t easy to lead the race like that from beginning to end, but I knew I had the pace to do it and the bike to do it. I wanted to do a race like in Argentina and at the start in Austin to prove it was a mistake there. I felt...
Petronas Yamaha's Fabio Quartararo became the youngest ever MotoGP pol sitter at 20 years, 14 days after setting a new Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto lap record in qualifying, a 1:36.880 seeing the Frenchman beat teammate Franco Morbidelli by 0.082 as the new Petronas Yamaha SRT outfit lockout the front of the grid, with Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez in third, 0.090 behind Quartararo.
At the start of the session it was Repsol Honda's Jorge Lorenzo who led the field onto their first flying laps and stalking the number 99 was teammate Marquez, and the reigning champion was able to take full advantage of Lorenzo’s draft to set a 1:36.970.
Marquez emerged on his second set of Michelin slicks before the rest and it was looking good for the Honda rider to move the goal posts further from...
Former MotoGP Dani Pedrosa now has corner named after him at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto.
Turn 6, formerly Curva Dry Sac, is now officially known as 'Pedrosa Corner' after a presentation at the circuit on Friday evening.
The three-time World Champion joins names such as Jorge Lorenzo, Sito Pons, Angel Nieto, Jorge ‘Aspar’ Martinez and Alex Criville to have corners named after them at the circuit.
The Spaniard spent his entire grand prix career with Honda – starting in the 125cc class in 2001, followed by two seasons in 250 and then 13 years at the factory Repsol team in MotoGP, culminating in his final race at the 2018 season finale in Valencia.
Pedrosa and Honda claimed 54 race victories together, 31 in the premier-class, while winning the 125cc crown in 2003, then 250cc...
Michael Dunlop is the third most successful rider in the Isle of Man TT’s long and illustrious history and has 18 victories so far to his name. The northern Irish racer is widely recognised as one of road racing’s most determined and tenacious competitors, and the 2019 campaign sees him join the Alpinestars line-up as he races between the hedges in a bid to add more silverware to his name.
Michael will wear Supertech R boots and recently visited the company’s Italian HQ in Italy to get measured. He said: “Alpinestars is the best company in the world in terms of producing protective rider equipment. For 2019 my plan was to make sure I have the best materials available to me, and that is why I’ve chosen Supertech R boots. I firmly believe these boots are a different level. I’ve spoken...
Suzuki’s Alex Rins secured his maiden win in an incident-packed race in Texas, thus giving Suzuki’s its first premier class victory since the 2016 British GP.
As the lights went out it was LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow who got the better launch out of the front three on the grid, with Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi also getting off the line well as the duo pulled alongside polesitter Marc Marquez up the hill, but it was Marquez who was bravest on the brakes to grab the holeshot.
Rossi and Crutchlow slotted into second and third as the duo tried to keep tabs on the leader, with Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso making a stellar start from P13 to move up to P6 on the opening lap.
Marquez didn’t get away from the clutches of Rossi straight away in the opening couple of laps, but the reigning World...
Alpinestars has launched a Limited Edition Kenny Roberts Sr. Supertech R boot at the Circuit of the Americas as a celebration of American racing.
King Kenny’s distinct riding style, honed on the dirt, redefined premier class motorcycle racing, with his kneedown style soon being adopted by the rest of the field.
King Kenny enjoyed 60 starts in 500cc racing, securing 24 wins, 44 podiums, 22 poles and 27 fastest laps as he dominated the class.
Regarded as a legend of the modern era, the Kenny Roberts Sr. Limited Edition Supertech R recognizes King Kenny’s racing success, his revolutionary riding style and his bravery. Featuring all of the technical innovations of Alpinestars’ class-leading Supertech R boot, the special colorway allows fans to enjoy a distinctive, premium race boot fit...
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez secured a seventh straight pole position at the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas after setting a 2:03.787 in Q2 to finish 0.273 clear of Yamaha's second Valentino Rossi, with LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow completing the front row in Texas.
After horrendous weather throughout the morning in Austin, the lightening and rain was replaced with beautiful blue skies above the Circuit of the Americas for qualifying. Normal service was resumed at the beginning of Q2 as Marquez slammed in a 2:03.787 straight out the gate, chasing down teammate Jorge Lorenzo – who topped the timesheets in Q1 - to put in the best time of the weekend. Lorenzo then encountered a chain issue with his Honda machine heading onto his second flying lap behind the number 93 – a Marquez-style...
Michael Dunlop has taken to the track for the first time on the all-new Tyco BMW S1000RR during a shakedown test at the Kirkistown Circuit in County Down, Northern Ireland.
The latest version of the German Superbike was unveiled at the 2018 EICMA motorcycle show in November, but Dunlop’s Tyco BMW team and Peter Hickman’s Smiths Racing BMW team only took delivery of their machines in the last month. Since then it’s been a race against time for the teams to get the bikes prepared and built to official Superbike specification.
Despite their best efforts, neither team had their bikes ready for the official British Superbike tests in Monteblanco, Spain or Portimao, Portugal last month and they were also forced to miss the final BSB test earlier this week at Silverstone.
The BMW has been...
Nicky Hayden's iconic #69 will be retired from premier class racing in a special ceremony at the Circuit of the Americas this weekend.
The event kicks off at Midday on Friday and will see FIM President Jorge Viegas and Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta preside over a ceremony attended by Hayden's family and friends in which the Kentucky Kid's #69 will be officially retired from the MotoGP class.
Later that day, the MotoGP paddock will join Hayden's family, friends and track marshals at Turn 18 'Hayden Hill' grass berm, where Hayden's 2006 Championship-winning Repsol Honda will be on display.
Race day will then see the Hayden family present at the front of the MotoGP grid, together with Nicky’s 2006 RC211V.
Alvaro Bautista enjoyed another perfect round at his home race at Aragon to maintain his perfect start to the WSBK season, taking another three wins to bring his total to the season to nine.
The MotoGP exile produced a carbon copy performance, taking a comfortable Race One win before adding the Sprint Race and Race Two victories to his tally to extend his lead in the standings to 39 points over Jonathan Rea.
The Spaniard said: "It has been an extraordinary weekend for me. Winning three races here in Spain in front of my family, my friends and the Spanish fans was really great. In all three, I was able to make my own strategy, that is get a fast start and maintain my own pace.
“The conditions in the three races were different, especially today in the Superpole Race which took place...
The top twenty seeded riders for the 2019 Isle of Man TT Races are confirmed as follows
No. 1 Conor Cummins Milenco by Padgetts Motorcycles Honda
No. 2 Dean Harrison Silicone Engineering Kawasaki
No. 3 John McGuinness Norton
No. 4 Ian Hutchinson Honda Racing
No. 5 James Hillier Quattro Plant Wicked Coatings Kawasaki
No. 6 Michael Dunlop Tyco BMW
No. 7 Gary Johnson RAF Kawasaki
No. 8 Michael Rutter Batham's Honda RCV
No. 9 David Johnson Honda Racing
No. 10 Peter Hickman Smith's BMW
No. 11 Lee Johnston Ashcourt Racing BMW
No. 12 Derek McGee Doyne/McGee Racing Kawasaki
No. 13 Sam West Cycle Store BMW
No. 14 Phil Crowe Sheffpack BMW
No. 15 Jamie Coward PreZ Racing Yamaha
No. 16 Derek Sheils Burrows Engineering / Kelly Developments Suzuki...
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez took a brilliant victory in Termas de Rio Hondo with a dominant performance at the front, taking the championship lead in the process to leave Argentina four points clear on the way to Texas.
The Spaniard said: “Today was a perfect day. I have been so concentrated since FP1 and everything worked well, just a tiny hiccup in FP4. But we kept pushing, pushing and in the race I knew that my strongest point was the first five laps. I put everything in and then I saw the difference, one second, two seconds, three seconds and then I settled into my rhythm and pushed a little less. I managed the tyres and the bike, it was a really sweet feeling with the bike.”
Marquez took the holeshot from pole as Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso pounced for second, with Yamaha's...
A flying Marc Marquez proved unstoppable in Argentina as he powered to pole.
Saturday’s proceedings at the Argentina GP opened with the Free Practice 3 session and Marquez was fast from his first lap, quickly moving to top and becoming the first rider to set a 1’38 to move straight through to Q2.
Marquez continued to show impressive speed aboard his Honda RC213V and claimed his fifth pole position at the sixth running of the Argentina GP with a lap of 1’38.304.
Marquez said: “In Qualifying I was really focused to push to the maximum and fight for pole position. On the second tyre I made a small mistake at the first corner so I cancelled the lap and went back in. We had planned to do three runs and my team was ready. I am happy because it’s never easy to get pole position here,...
Aprilia has unveiled a new, track-ready version of its hugely successful RSV4 to celebrate 10 years of production; the RSV4 X.
As part of the 2019 Aprilia All Stars event at Mugello, Aprilia unveiled a track-only version of its RSV4 sportbike; the 225hp X. has been tailor-made by Aprilia Racing – and if you delve into the bikes technical specification, it’s obvious that it’s serious about its performance on track.
The bike is the creation of Aprilia Racing and makes use of a selection of lightweight components, including a carbon fairing, a lightweight fuel tank, a billet aluminium clutch lever, front brake lever guard, engine sump guard, adjustable foot pegs, upper steering plate and Marchesini forged magnesium wheels. All in this extensive weight saving programmer means the bike...
Arai’s Limited Edition TT Isle of Man RX-7V is the latest in the line of stunning, collectible helmets which began in 2007. Renowned designer Drudi Performance has ramped up the colour this year with fluorescent yellow set against black with the three legs of man, the famous triskelion, picked out in gunmetal on either side. Details include the TT logo on the chin bar and TT Limited Edition printed on the back, set below atmospheric black and white chequers.
For 2019, riders including Michael Dunlop, Ian Hutchinson, Conor Cummins, Davey Todd, Derek McGee, David Johnson and Lee Johnston will be racing on the roads i n the RX-7V.
The Arai RX-7V IoM TT 2019 edition will be available in the paddock at the Isle of Man TT races and thereafter at every authorized Arai dealer.
In what has been a dream opening six races in Alvaro Bautista’s WSBK career, the Spaniard romped to another race win to become the first rider since Neil Hodgson to win the opening six races of a WSBK season, back in 2003, causing to another lights to flag victory in dominant fashion.
When the lights turned green, Bautista was able to hold onto first position from start to finish. Kawasaki's Jonathan Rea didn't have the outright speed to challenge Bautista and instead had his hands full dealing with Yamaha's Alex Lowes.
At the end of the first lap the leading trio had a slight gap over Kawasaki's Leon Haslam, Yamaha's Michael van der Mark and GRT Yamaha's Marco Melandri.
Soon, the big battle came from the scrap for fifth position, with van der Mark, Melandri, GRT Yamaha's Sandro...
Alvaro Bautista kept his winning run going in the Thailand sprint race, which was cut short by a red flag following an incident between Leon Camier and Thitipong Warokorn.
The factory Ducati rider had another strong race on the V4R, trading passes with Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea on the opening lap of the sprint race before gradually pulling clear until a red flag on lap six prematurely ended the race early.
The red flag was caused by an incident involving Moriwaki-Althea Honda’s Camier and Kawasaki Thailand’s Warokorn at the Turn 3 hairpin. The Thai wildcard rider was taken to the medical centre immediately while Camier was shown walking away unaided from the incident.
With results taken from the last completed sector point, effectively the halfway through lap six, Bautista won by 1.6s...
The opening race of the Thai Round in the WSBK world championship saw an intense fight between reigning champion Jonathan Rea and series newcomer Alvaro Bautista, with Bautista using the Ducati's speed advantage to power past the Kawasaki rider to take his fourth win of the season.
An action-packed start saw Bautista originally get a flying start but Buriram specialist Rea got ahead of the Spaniard through Turn 1 with Yamaha's Alex Lowes tucked in behind.
The GRT riders of Sandro Cortese and Marco Melandri ran wide at the same turn, with BMW's Tom Sykes slicing under them and into fourth. At the end of lap one, the top four were covered by 1.1s. A lightening start from Yamaha's Michael van der Mark saw him rise from 10th on the grid to fifth by the end of the opening lap.
Nicky Hayden’s 2017 Ten-Kate spec Honda CBR1000RR SP2 WSBK racebike is up for sale for a cool €95.000.
Former Honda WSBK team Ten Kate is selling the machine, which has matching chassis and engine numbers, matching ECU and electronics numbers, matching chassis build-up and is set to the exact specification that Hayden used on track.
Ten Kate lists the bike as in 'absolute showroom state' though the machine is a runner and ready for track duties. The Dutch racing outfit is also issuing a certificate of authenticity with the sale and it will come with a full package and parts sold by Ten-Kate Racing.
For more info on the bike please contact Kervin Bos at Ten Kate Racing: email@example.com.
Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso won an explosive opening race of the season in Qatar. The Ducati rider rode a calculated race, holding off Marc Marquez in an intense end of race battle to take the chequered flag just 0.023 seconds ahead of the Honda rider.
Dovizioso said: “I’m so happy. The strategy was clear for me and really good. I stopped Rins every time because he wanted to be faster too soon, and that was bad for the tyre and I was right. I stop him every time, fortunately I have more power on the straight. I lose a little bit of time in the middle of the corner because his speed in the middle of the corner is amazing, but I was able to overtake him every time and stop him and continue to save the tyre, that was the key to try and put Marquez on the limit in the last few laps. And...
The final race of the Australian Round in the opening meeting of the 2019 WSBK Championship went the way of Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista, who completed a dream WSBK debut.
Initially taking the lead at Turn 1, Bautista started putting time into kawasaki’s Leon Haslam, who had managed to pass team-mate Jonathan Rea at Turn 4. Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha) also made a fast start and was fourth whilst Michael Ruben Rinaldi escalated from eighth on the grid into fifth, with Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha) remaining sixth.
At Turn One on lap two, Eugene Laverty (Team Goeleven) made a brief appearance into sixth, passing Melandri, only for the Italian to repay the compliment. Back in the fight for second position, Haslam began to pull away from Rea, the reigning champion not having things his...
The first ever WSBK Superpole race saw Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista destroy the field to add another win to his tally.
The fast-paced ten lap encounter was a thriller from lights-out to chequered flag, with Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea sweeping majestically into the lead at Turn One, and Race One winner Bautista hot on his heels.
By the end of the first lap, Yamaha’s Alex Lowes had moved to third position – briefly taking Bautista for second place, only for the Ducati Panigale V4 R to blast past, passing him easily down the Gardner Straight. However, unlike in Race One on Saturday, the Spaniard was unable to make a break away from Rea, who stayed with him – a completely different story in comparison to the first race of the season yesterday.
Rea’s team-mate Leon Haslam was pushed back...
Aprilia has unveiled its 2019 livery and team line-up for the new season.
As well as a new bike, the team has shaken up its squad in a bid to change its fortunes, appointing Massimo Rivola as new racing CEO, Romano Albesiano's as technical director, Bradley Smith as test rider, with Andrea Iannone joining Aleix Espargaro.
"The final part of last season and the winter tests were fundamental from a technical point of view," Albesiano said. "The arrival of Andrea and Bradley added new information to Aleix’s fundamental contribution, helping us to define the RS-GP’s line of evolution. This is a project that has come to fruition this season, with an overall improvement in every aspect.
"A lot of work was done on making it lighter. We made changes to the chassis architecture and...
The opening race of the 2019 WSBK series was dominated by Alvaro Bautista on his maiden race on the Factory Ducati V4R, who set a scintillating pace and was able to clear off at the front of the pack from lap one. Bautista took the win in a convincing manner, winning by more than 15 seconds to become the first Rookie to win a WSBK race on his debut since Max Biaggi in 2007.
Off the line for the first time in 2019, Kawasaki’s Leon Haslam got a good start before being sandwiched into Turn 1 by Alvaro Bautista and early race leader and pole-sitter, Jonathan Rea on the other factory Kawasaki. However, Bautista soon blasted into the lead at Turn 3 and from there, built a gap, setting back-to-back fastest laps and building a gap of over eight seconds.
With Bautista untouchable, the...
The final session of the opening day Round One of the 2019 WSBK season concluded with Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista taking over at the top of combined times, ahead of Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea and team-mate Leon Haslam, who finished in second and third positions.
Bautista’s time was the fastest in the individual FP2 session. The Spaniard was once again quickest in the speed trap and was by far the fastest of the all-new Ducati Panigale V4 Rs. The Rookie set a blistering lap time of 1’30.327 to go ahead of Rea in the final minutes by just 0.014s. By comparison, Ducati team-mate Chaz Davies only managed 14th position overall.
Bautista said: “Even though the main aim was not to set the quickest time, today was really positive and I’m very satisfied. We knew we had a good pace, so everything...
Day one of the WSBK test at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit saw factory Ducati’s Álvaro Bautista clocking the fastest time of the day, over four tenths of a second faster than Yamaha’s Alex Lowes and Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea.
Bautista said: “Today was a very positive day and I felt good on the bike right away. We mainly focussed on chassis set-up work by testing various solutions that I hadn’t tried out until now. I’m pleased because we were able to improve the turning of the bike, which gave me a lot more confidence going into the corner. In addition, we tried the different tyre solutions that Pirelli brought along for the weekend. Now we have to have a good look at the data and try and make another step forward, but all in all I’m very happy.”
The Spaniard’s best lap of 1’30.743...
The factory Kawasaki WSBK team has pulled the wraps of its 2019 race bike.
Reigning WSBK champion Jonathan Rea and new team-mate Leon Haslam unveiled the 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR ahead of next weekend’s opening round of the championship at Phillip Island in Australia.
Rea said: “KRT always push the boat out when it comes to launching the new colours and it is the first time you see your final bike in the flesh.
“Everything is real and now we turn the page to 2019. Alpinestars have done a great job with my leathers as well. I changed my number 1 plate a little bit too, incorporating some new logos.”
KTM has unveiled the 2019 liveries for its Factory and satellite teams at a special event at its Austrian HQ in Mattighofen, and while the 2019 Factory KTM MotoGP livery follows the colours of the previous two seasons, the new satellite Tech 3 team’s striking blue, silver and orange paint caught the eye.
The team had used a black-and-white test livery for the Valencia, Jerez and Sepang winter tests, but this has been ditched in favour of blue and silver, combined with KTM orange, similar to sponsor Red Bull’s paint for its Toro Rosso ‘Junior’ team in F1.
Motorcycle race suits offer the very best form of rider protection. They’re constructed with abrasion resistant materials, have generous impact protection and are designed to keep you as safe as possible in the event of a crash. Leather slides incredibly well, and you’re more likely to suffer heat burns from your skin rubbing against the leather than damage from cuts and the likes. Speed causes a lot of injuries but the injuries caused by friction are far greater.
The Racing Absolute Leather Suit is different. Using lessons learnt from the MotoGP World Championship and input from Alpinestars athletes, the Racing Absolute is a state-of-the-art kangaroo leather one-piece racing suit which sets new benchmarks for protective technology available to riders. An example of this is the...
The final day of testing saw Ducati dominate the timesheets with factory rider Danilo Petrucci leading the charge with a jaw dropping time of 1:58.239 after 32 laps.
The Italian said: “Today we started off on the right foot: I was supposed to try two ‘time attacks’ but one attempt, done with a medium rear tyre, was enough. When I saw the lap time on the dashboard, I was really happy. After that, we resumed our work on some new items. Unfortunately, however, I crashed while I was trying a new fairing around midday. Given the fact that I was also experiencing some issues with blisters in my hands, we decided to stop a bit ahead of schedule to recover and make sure we’re at our best in the next tests in Qatar. Overall, it’s been a really positive test.”
Rookie Francesco Bagnaia was hot...
Yamaha pilot Maverick Viñales got within just 0.067 of Jorge Lorenzo’s fastest ever lap of Sepang on Day 2 of testing, with the 1:58.830 set by Lorenzo last season – although not an official lap record – now surely under threat on Day 3. Top gun Viñales had been hovering in third for much of the latter part of the day before he dug deep to light up the timesheets. More than three tenths up before the final sector, the Spaniard eventually crossed the line 0.527 ahead of nearest rival Alex Rins on the Suzuki.
Viñales said: ““Honestly, we tried to work really hard today on the race pace. We were always using the spec for the race. I felt good and around midday we made good lap times, especially during the race simulation when it was hot, without grip, so I’m actually really happy how we...
Despite still suffering the effects of surgery on his left shoulder during the winter break, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez topped the timesheets on Day 1 at the Sepang Test with a 1:59.621, 0.259 faster than Suzuki’s Alex Rins in second and 0.316 quicker than third place rider Maverick Viñales on the factory Yamaha.
Marquez completed 29 laps on Day 1 before stopping in the early afternoon to give his left shoulder a rest ahead of the next two days, with the reigning world champion heading for more physio in the afternoon. New team-mate Jorge Lorenzo is sitting out the test due to injury, but there were three Hondas in the top ten as Takaaki Nakagami, LCR Honda, fastest in Jerez, took seventh and Stefan Bradl (Honda Test Team) ended Day 1 in P9, just under six tenths off Marquez.
The factory Ducati WSBK team squad has officially presented the new V4 R which it hopes will fight for the 2019 World Superbike championship.
Ducati recently launched its road version of the V4 R in order to homologate the bike in time for the 2019 campaign. There will be four Ducati V4 R Superbikes on the 2019 grid with Barni Racing fielding Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Team Go Eleven partnering with Eugene Laverty.
Chaz Davies and Alvaro Bautista have been busy putting the bike through its paces at pre-season testing at Jerez and Portimao ahead of the season opener at Phillip Island on February 22-24.
A new era has dawned on the factory Yamaha MotoGP team with the unveiling of a new livery; the Movistar colours have been ditched in favour of a darker black-and-blue look for the arrival of new title sponsor Monster Energy.
Lin Jarvis, managing director of Yamaha Racing, said: “We like the new colours of the bike a lot. It’s more aggressive and I think that is what we need to be. We need to adopt the attitude of ‘beast mode on’ to be world champions.”
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