Month: November 2013

Moto2: Rea announces American partnership for a full racing season.

After a year of being a true privateer in Moto2 there was high hopes that Gino Rea would have shown enough of his talent and all of his determination and land a good ride for the 2014 season.

With competition for seats fierce and paying to ride instead of rewarding talent becoming, sadly, much more common Londoner Rea has not been one to sit back and let his career fall by the wayside.

So, after shifting between Gino Rea Montaze Broz  wild-card rides and a stand-in stint at Arginano & Gines for the flyaway rounds; giving the Spanish team their best performances; Rea has at least guaranteed he will again be present on the grid and this time he will have more stability, via American involvement in his own project, easing his funding worries.

Gino Rea

In Moto2 again for 2014, Gino Rea announces his new project. Image via Flickr and by the excellent Jared Earle, used under the creative commons agreement and licencing rules.

One again a one rider team, Rea will be based in the USA and riding under the World Motors/AGT Rea Racing banner.

Texas based World Motors will run the team and will be the only U.S. based entry in the championship. They bring with them American sponsor money from AGT, a green technology lighting company.

This continues a slow burning trend of increased American interest and presence in the MotoGP Paddock. Following on from Attack Performance and GP Tech’s wild-card performances and the addition of Austin to the calendar, the inclusion of the first U.S team arrives with the promising Josh Herrin being signed to ride for Caterham, pretty much the running the opposite of the Rea Team with an American rider at a British based team.

Rea had made a tremendous start to his Moto2 career when he scored a podium in his debut season in 2012 at the Malaysian Grand Prix. His Team for 2013 then withdrew leaving Gino ride-less, forcing him to pick up his game which he did amicably, forming his own team to ride and gaining donations via his own website, which he designed. The Brit even spread his wings far enough to start his own coffee company!

Rea will once again be using FTR, but will not be alone in doing so in 2014 as the NGM Mobile Forward Racing Team also switch to using the British chassis.

He will also not be the only Briton in the class after Scott Redding moved up to MotoGP and Danny Kent dropped back down for a stab at Moto3 glory as he will be joined by Sam Lowes at Speed Up.

Rea was, understandably elated:

“I couldn’t be any happier right now! 2013 was a difficult year for me and I’m over the moon that my hard work has brought me this amazing opportunity. Joining forces with Dave Peterson of World Motors Inc. and Martin R. de Rooy with the support of AGT (American Green Technology), to race in the full Moto2 Championship as a permanent team is just incredible. I am so grateful and I can’t wait to get started. It’s a very exciting time for us. We have worked extremely hard to make this happen and I believe we have the potential to do great things in 2014.

“This year we progressed a lot throughout the season and at the last race of the year as a privateer team, I showed what is capable by qualifying just 0.5 tenths from second position. I can’t wait to go testing and work logically and methodically with the bike, it’s something we never got to do this year.”

Full press release below where you can find out more about the new team and there are links too for all of this blogs previous Gino Rea content:

Previously on survival of the fastest:

Moto2:Recommended reading Gino Rea’s blog

Moto2: news and new merchandise from Gino Rea – Coffee

Moto2: Gino Rea has to wait for Le Mans to kick off season

Moto2: Gino Rea creates his own team for wild-card rides in 2013

Moto2: Gino needs you! Rea loses funding and place on 2013 grid

Don’t forget you can get involved to by visiting ginoreaclub.com or buying coffee (yes, coffee, why not?!) at ginoreacoffee.com

Press Release:

AGT REA RACING SET TO COMPETE IN THE 2014 MOTO2 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP WITH GINO REA​

AGT (American Green Technology) will back World Motors Rea Racing team in their entry to the 2014 Moto2 class of World Motorcycle Grand Prix (MotoGP) on a full-season basis with their rider, Gino Rea.

Dave Peterson, President and CEO of World Motors, Inc., based in Austin, Texas, has joined forces with new Team Director Martin R. de Rooy in conjunction with Dave and Gino Rea of Rea Racing, to create World Motors Rea Racing LLC. Welcoming AGT on board as title sponsor, World Motors Rea Racing will be known as AGT Rea Racing in what will be the only American-based Moto2 World Motorcycle Grand Prix Racing Team.

AGT REA Racing will compete in what is arguably one of the most competitive motorcycling classes in the world with their debut race taking place under the floodlights of Qatar on March 23rd. Team owner Dave Peterson has expressed his excitement.

“We are excited to support our partner and rider Gino Rea in his quest for Moto2 glory in the 2014 World Championship,” states Peterson. “We’d like to thank AGT for all of their support and sponsorship. We look forward to a fun-filled and successful campaign”

Danny Bogar, CEO of AGT, compares the way in which AGT can transform the lighting industry to the rich history of motorcycling and the innovations in technology that are required to compete at an elite level. “Competing in business and sports is like anything else, you have to stay in the game and anticipate your next move and your competitors’ next move. Build a better bike or your competitor will build a better, faster bike. I like the parallels. It’s a fun sport that draws an international audience. We are happy to be a part of it.”

AGT Rea Racing rider Gino Rea has made a promising start to his Moto2 career. Debuting in Moto2 in 2012, he found the podium with a third place finish in the Malaysian Grand Prix . Unfortunately, Gino’s team withdrew just before the 2013 season and he was forced to run his own team and budget. Joining forces with the Montáže Brož European Superstock 600 team for the latter part of the 2013 season, Gino benefitted from a more professional set up and the support of a bigger crew. Gino’s talent did not go unnoticed and he was invited to substitute for an injured rider in the Argiñano & Ginés Racing Team. Despite the challenge of getting to know a new bike, Gino more than proved his worth, scoring the team four valuable Moto2 World Championship points and delivering their best performances of the season.

Gino had this to say about the new partnership, “I couldn’t be any happier right now! 2013 was a difficult year for me and I’m over the moon that my hard work has brought me this amazing opportunity. Joining forces with Dave Peterson of World Motors Inc. and Martin R. de Rooy with the support of AGT (American Green Technology), to race in the full Moto2 Championship as a permanent team is just incredible. I am so grateful and I can’t wait to get started. It’s a very exciting time for us. We have worked extremely hard to make this happen and I believe we have the potential to do great things in 2014.

“This year we progressed a lot throughout the season and at the last race of the year as a privateer team, I showed what is capable by qualifying just 0.5 tenths from second position. I can’t wait to go testing and work logically and methodically with the bike, it’s something we never got to do this year.”

Peterson further states, “I am just recovering from the initial terror and trepidation of forming an international racing team. After years of dreaming about this, it’s wonderful to see it become a reality. I’ve always had such a great passion for MotoGP. With Gino’s considerable talent and AGT’s quest for world markets, the decision to form a world class Moto2 Grand Prix team was easy and finally a realization of my dreams.”

The 2014 MotoGP season kicks off at Losail International Circuit on March 23, 2014 in Qatar. www.motogp.com

Learn more about AGT & Gino Rea

About American Green Technology:

American Green Technology® is a leader in efficient technologies and the manufacture and import of “magnetic induction lights”, the most energy efficient mass lighting solution. Boasting a life span over 100,000 hours, induction lights reduce energy costs by 50-70% and virtually eliminate maintenance. Primary markets include municipal, industrial and commercial applications. More than 1,500 independent lighting professionals represent American Green Technology across the United States, and internationally in more than a dozen countries. For more information about AGT, visit www.agtus.org or call 269-340-9975.

 

And the award for the most crashes in MotoGP 2013 goes to…

The season is over and the first part of testing is done, so what to fill the early days off the off-season with?

First up – The Dorna Final Falls report.

The MotoGP organizers have collated all the data from Qatar to Valencia to provide an insight into a much asked question – who crashes the most in MotoGP?

No Spoliers here! The least crashy rider (Lorenzo) on the least crashy track (Qatar). what might have been with just one crash less (Assen) – quantity isn’t everything!
Image via Flickr by Fiat Yamaha Team and used under the creative commons licence.

As you would expect from such a huge grid Moto2 is the class with the most crashes, it has held that ‘honour’ every year since it was launched to replace the 250cc class in 2010.

The race weekend that was the scene of the most falls was Le Mans, registering 68 crashes over the three racing classes. Misano was a close second with 66, Putting the notion that the rain causes accidents aplenty to bed – both races were dry.

By comparison the opener in Losail, Qatar under tricky lighting conditions from being a floodlight night race has the least crashes, with just 34 to it’s name. Also scoring low was the next best – Indianapolis – and despite the riders still having safety concerns after some recent heavy crashes (which will hopefully become a thing of the past after getting their new asphalt laid!) it saw just 37 crashes over all three classes in 2013.

The corner which saw the most crashes was La Caixa (which is what my gravatar profile is represented by, the little picture in the top corner of this blog is the famous ‘La Caixa’ timing scoreboard, as taken by me at the track, though you can see the iconic symbol long before you arrive!).

Also known by the more boring ‘Turn 10’ the left hander at the Montmelo track in Barcelona saw an immense 28 crashes over the course of the 2013 Catalunya Grand Prix!

It was streets ahead of the nearest rivals both in Le Mans – turns 3 and 7 – which had 18 each.

Now the big one – the riders with the most crashes in each class (and despite his reputation there is no room for Axel Pons!)

Moto3 – Eric Granado – 19

Moto2 – Rafid Topan Sucipto – 26 (also the highest overall figure)

MotoGP – Yonny Hernandez – 20.

Eric Granado is still very young after initially joining Moto2 during the 2012 season when he had to wait to turn 16. His first year in Moto3 has clearly been a big learning curve after making the step down.

Sucipto actually tailed off his crashes in the last few races to put in some strong results, while it is also worth noting that Hernandez also crashed less when he departed the Paul Bird Motorsport team for Pramac Ducati. He gets to ride for them again next season where he could prove again to be one of Ducati’s least prolific crashers.

To complete the MotoGP top three, Marc Marquez came in second with 15, Cal Crutchlow third with 14.

At the other end of the scale, with just three crashes each were Andrea Dovizioso, Colin Edwards and; proving it’s not how often you fall but how hard that counts; Jorge Lorenzo.

 

Recommended Reading: Alex Briggs on Burgess -“He has probably forgotten more than I will ever know.”

MotoGP is full of characters, and not just on the race track.

In many ways it is inevitable that the bigger the rider, the more light will shine on those who have worked with them as their personalities show through in the paddock too.

Valentino Rossi’s right-hand man Uccio is so ubiquitous that if he wasn’t there you’d wonder why, and in the garage; to the end of this season after an unexpected split; you always expect a shot of Jeremy Burgess hard at work, so popular and well known that he was often the grid interview when the Italian wouldn’t comply.

Burgess had a lot of fellow Australians working under his guidance wherever the job of being ‘The Doctor’s’ mechanic took them, one of which was Alex Briggs.

Briggs has now been in the MotoGP paddock for 21 seasons so losing the guy who had been your boss for that time suddenly was shocking as an outsider. The mechanic has been kind enough to explore this in an excellent blog post on his personal website, wrenchracer.com.
Alex Briggs

Alex Briggs at Yamaha. Image via Fiat Yamaha Team’s Flickr account, used under Creative Commons agreement.

The post entitled ‘Thanks for that call’ is a touching account finishing with how Briggs came to work with Burgess after his fellow Aussie left a message for him to call, but mainly deals with how much of an influence Rossi’s head mechanic had on bike development and racing.

Many people in this paddock don’t know why they do certain procedures or how things became the way they are. They might say “oh well that’s how we have always done it!” but they don’t realize that that’s how JB wanted it done and his riders and team were winning so everyone started to take notice of what he was saying and then implement it”.

Without wanting to give too much away (it really is worth a moment of your day!) the quote above gives a great insight into where his post is at. Burgess has had one of, if not THE greatest racing mind in the paddock and whether alongside the Mick Doohan or Rossi his ideas have been game changing.

Briggs also hints at what ‘JB’ the person is like, giving just the slightest of mentions of his family life and his storytelling ability.

The full blog post is available here: http://www.wrenchracer.com/1/category/all/1.html

It is an insightful, smart and poignant read, enjoyable to the final full stop.

The post started as something too long for a tweet, but there’s plenty to see at Alex Briggs’ Twitter account too – https://twitter.com/Alex__Briggs

And if you have a bit of spare change to give then he also does ‘Movember’ ( growing a mustache to raise money for prostate cancer charities if you don’t have it round your way!) and you can donate by clicking here.

Image of the GP: Congratulations Champions!

No clever, funny or controversial pictures this week. The news in pictures is this week just a celebration of the the MotoGP world championship winners; Moto3 – Maverick Vinales; Moto2 – Pol Espargaro and MotoGP – Marc Marquez.

The individual images are from each of the riders personal twitter accounts to show how they shared their championship wins with the fans. Compiled with the group photo it also gives some good images of the celebration helmet specials and winning t-shirts (Marquez’s baby champion was particularly lighthearted and good fun, without a whiff of controversy this time!).

So congratulations champions:

Your 2013 MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 Champions; l-r Pol Espargaro, Marc Marquez and Maverick Vinales. Image by @ECdeportes on twitter, editorial use only under fair use act.

Your 2013 MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 Champions; l-r Pol Espargaro, Marc Marquez and Maverick Vinales.
Image by @ECdeportes on twitter, editorial use only under fair use act.

Maverick Vinales celebrates after taking Moto3 to the final lap. Image via @maverickmack25 details as above.

Maverick Vinales celebrates after taking Moto3 to the final lap.
Image via @maverickmack25 details as before.

Pol Espargaro was lucky enough not to need to wait to Valencia, he celebrated his win in Japan, via @PolEspargaro, details as above.

Pol Espargaro was lucky enough not to need to wait to Valencia, he celebrated his win in Japan, via @PolEspargaro, details as before.

Marc Marquez won the big one, and was top rookie too, via @marcmarquez93 details as above.

Marc Marquez won the big one, and was top rookie too, via @marcmarquez93, details as before.

Not forgetting the CRT Champion Aleix Espargaro, he was crowned three weeks ago, image via Aleix Espargaro on Instagram, details as before.

Not forgetting the CRT Champion Aleix Espargaro, he was crowned three weeks ago! Image via Aleix Espargaro on Instagram, details as before.

 

 

 

 

Moto2 Redding Vs Espargaro – Helmet wars! (Vote Now!)

They battled hard all season with Pol Espargaro eventually victorious but who won the Valencia helmet-off between the 2013 champion and runner-up Scott Redding?

Ok, so as he won we will first take a look at Espargaro’s celebratory effort:

Pol Espargaro shows of his shiny winning effort. Image via Espargaro on Facebook, editorial use only under the fair use act

Pol Espargaro shows of his shiny winning lid.
Image via Espargaro on Facebook, editorial use only under the fair use act.

The Spaniard has opted for a shiny and slightly expected gold winning effort, featuring a large splash of the yellow and green from his main design on the ‘world champion’ font.

It’s nice.

Next up is Scott Redding’s effort proving you can kick a man when he’s down but you can’t mess with his sense of style:

Redding's Valencia effort was touching. Image via @ianwheeler on twitter, who owns the image, editorial use only

Redding’s Valencia effort was touching. Image via @ianwheeler on twitter, who owns the image, editorial use only

Redding may have added a lost tooth to his injury list over the weekend but still had a loud and toughing helmet to show off ahead of Sunday’s Valencia race. Much bolder than Espargaro’s effort it’s a shame that the pain barrier the Brit fought hard against limited it’s screen time.

Redding also chose to carry a touching tribute to his team and their four years together on his leathers, in place of his name.

For me the winner is Redding. Cheerful, colourful and thankful, plus Pol already won something – the title!

Now here’s you’re chance to have a say, please vote, then I’ll add an update for the outcome!

For a more serious and informative look at the final round of the Moto2 championship for the duo try :

http://www.crash.net/motogp/news/198023/1/moto2_redding_espargaro_never_give_up_in_moto2_swansong.html

MotoGP Valencia race reports online now!

What a race weekend! It was a pleasure to be able to report on the whole of the 2013 season and Valencia saw the year end with a flourish.

Moto3 surely has to go down as one of the best race ever in any class, race report available at crash.net here.

Moto2 sure proved that it had racing left in it even with the title decided, race report for that also on crash here.

For a briefer digest there’s always my race round-up for Paddock Chatter.

This is also my final summary of the Redding/Espargaro title battle, plus I also have news on where Moto3 Brit John McPhee will be riding in 2013!

Click the links for more on any of the above or just to connect to fellow fans and tweet, like and comment with other race fans!

MotoGP: We are family! Valencia helmet heaven continues with Bautista

So much helmet news to discuss this weekend, but this could be my favourite:

Alvaro Bautista celebrates familia with his special Velencia effort. Image shARED VIA MotoRaceFeed via Twitter, editorial use only under the fair use act.

Alvaro Bautista celebrates familia with his special Velencia effort. Image shared via @MotoRaceFeed via Twitter, editorial use only under the fair use act.

Alvaro Bautista has gone for a family theme for his Valencia special edition, the Bautista clan appears to have a few babies on the go at the moment, lets hope he can give us a good view of it and build on his fourth place in Japan, helping set a first (first time four Spainsh riders have filled the top four spots in a GP!) It won’t look as good in the gravel!

Moto2: Malaysian rider Hafizh Syahrin heads to Moto2 for 2014?

Last year after an amazing result at his home race, I asked :

What next for Malaysian wild-card Hafizh Syahrin? Click on the link to see just how much promise he showed in his wild-card world championship appearances and a brief look at his history.

We know know what is next for the talented young rider. After a smattering appearances in this years championship Malaysian fans were given something to shout about as Syahrin appears to have landed himself a seat in Moto2 for 2014.

The team hinted at this in the quote from the Petronas Team Manager Barry Leong in the previous story, but asiaroadracing.com confirms the move seems to be done.

Hafizh Syahrin as a wild-card in Moto2. Image via asiaroadracing.com and Petronas Raceline Malaysia, editorial use only, under the fair use act

Hafizh Syahrin as a wild-card in Moto2. Image via asiaroadracing.com and Petronas Raceline Malaysia, editorial use only, under the fair use act.

 

 

 Team Petronas Raceline Malaysia announce in the article that they should be entering the Moto2 class of the 2014 World Motorcycle Grand Prix with  Syahrin . The announcement is made “pursuant to a written confirmation from Dorna and IRTA to Team Petronas Raceline Malaysia manager, Barry Leong”.

The move would continue the strong relationship that the Malaysian rider and team have forged; since Syahrin was twelve they have raced together; taking titles in the Petronas AAM Malaysian Cub Prix Championship before moving on to the Asia Road Racing championship and the Spanish Championship together, where the Malaysian has been competing this year with a win in the Moto2 class of the CEV at the Navarra Circuit in September leaving him currently third in the riders overall standings.

It has been ten years since Malaysia has had a home based team in the the world championship. when Team Petronas Sprinta Yamaha rode in the 250cc class for 3 seasons.

Petronas were pleased with the move and what it does for malaysian motorsport as well as the progression of thier young charge Syahrin:

“Petronas is extremely happy with this announcement. Our commitment to Malaysian motor sports remains focused”.

“Through structured motorsports sponsorship and talent development programmes,  Petronas has played an instrumental role in providing right platforms for racing talents like Hafizh Syahrin and team management talents like Barry Leong and his Malaysian crew in the Team Petronas Raceline Malaysia to grow and flourish professionally.”

It means that Malaysia will have at least two riders to follow every race as Moto3 rider Zulfahmi Khairuddin looks set to move to the secondary Ajo team. There could yet be more to come as a whole host of talented young Malaysian riders have impressed in wild-card and replacement rides this season, getting one foot in the door for a World Championship seat.

Valencia qualifying reports online now!

It’s the final race weekend of 2013 and Valencia is buzzing. The t.v. shows that the Ricardo Tormo circuit was filled – and it’s only qualifying day!

Moto3 delivered with it’s qualifying session, perfectly setting up the three way battle for the title to decide who wins the championship, while Espargaro looked easy as the pressure was off and the title in his hands in Moto2.

Want more?

Brief support class round up as usual is available at Paddock Chatter. for Detailed Moto3 and Moto2 reports on crash.net just click and follow the links, and why not comment, share, like or tweet to connect with other motorsport fans while you are there? Ah, go on!

MotoGP: Aleix Espargaro’s pink Valencia A-Team helmet (it’s very pink!)

The lovely readers of this blog can be sorted into three types:

  • News readers interested in the Moto2 and Moto3 classes (the primary purpose of the blog)
  • F1 crossover chat – people who love motorsport really are passionate about it in all it’s forms, you lovely lot!
  • The helmet art fanatics, they’re not going to be hanging in the Tate Gallery anytime soon but boy are some of them interesting!

Valencia always has a lot of helmet action, sorry in advance to everyone else, but there will be lots of helmet art news/appreciation this weekend!

Second up for scrutiny is Aleix Espargaro’s extra pink helmet.

If you need someone to win the CRT title, and no-one else can help you, maybe you can hire the A-41 Team! Espargaro shows us his A-team inspired pink lid, image via artist Urydesigns on Instagram, who also features in the photo, editorial use only, under the fair use act.

If you need someone to win the CRT title, and no-one else can help you, maybe you can hire the A-41 Team! Espargaro shows us his A-team inspired pink lid, image via artist Urydesigns on Instagram, who also features in the photo, editorial use only, under the fair use act.

Aleix’s regular Shark lid is very pink anyway, but has taken away the giant 41 for an A-Team theme. The image was revealed by Oriol Gene of Ury Designs, you can also see it on Twitter by visiting @urydesigns.

All the angles! Image via Mierdaset's twitter account (yes I did spell that right, it's a parody account! Apologies for saying poo in Spanish, but they are the only people to show it in full! Details as above.

All the angles! Image via Mierdaset’s twitter account (yes I did spell that right, it’s a parody account! Apologies for saying poo in Spanish, but they are the only people to show it in full!) Details as above.

The rest of the helmet deals with what the A-41 team is A for Aleix; A for Aspar ; A for ART/Aprillia.

It is also a touching tribute not just to the team and factory he is leaving to move to NGM Forward racing’s Yamaha package next season (a nice reference and help point for his Tech3 Yamaha bound brother Pol) but also a means to celebrate being CRT champion and a thank you to his fans, having reached the milestone of 100,000 likes on Facebook. There’s a 44 on there too for his brother.

A touching tribute of a helmet for the Valencia round then!