Thank you all for making our first year at the Speedworx Superbike Service retail store such a fantastic one so far!
It was our vision to be able to provide our customers with the best products coupled with great real world product knowledge all at the best prices possible. We couldn’t have done it without all your support!
We are proud to be having our first SPEEDWORX MID SEASON SALE starting today until Saturday August 6th!
Here are some of some of the fantastic products and prices we have on sale!
REPLICA RETAIL- $1159.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $1119.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
MATTE RETAIL- $959.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
SOLID RETAIL- $939.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
REPLICA RETAIL- $839.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $789.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
MATTE RETAIL- $659.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
SOLID RETAIL- $639.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE! GT AIR
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $899.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
MATTE RETAIL- $769.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
SOLID RETAIL- $729.99 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- TOO LOW TO ADVERTISE!
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $1262.52 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $1136.27
SOLID RETAIL- $1075.68 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $968.11 SIGNET Q
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $970.92 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $699.06
SOLID RETAIL- $808.92 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $582.42 VECTOR2
REPLICA RETAIL- $830.52 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $747.47
GRAPHIC RETAIL- $819.72 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $737.75
SOLID RETAIL- $636.12 SPEEDWORX MIDSEASON SALE PRICE- $572.51
From Greater Toronto Area Motorcycle forum. Link: here
St.Onge Recreation is looking for a Sales Associate specializing in dirt bikes to join our Team in a fun fast paced industry. Whether you have years of experience in the business, or are fresh to the industry; were seeking individuals that consider themselves top performers and have the drive to succeed in their careers! The ideal candidate has a general sales background, is a hard working and professional individual looking to make a career change, or a recent college graduate looking to pursue a career in sales. We offer training and management support with an EXCELLENT compensation plan and benefits. We provide a professional, positive, and fun work environment while priding ourselves in being dedicated to deliver exceptional customer service and satisfaction.
OMVIC licensed or able to obtain OMVIC License
Sales experience is preferred but not mandatory.
Strong customer relations and communication skills.
Strong computer skills.
Valid drivers license with a clean report.
Must be punctual and work flexible hours.
Must have a positive attitude.
The staff here at MO has much in common with you. As motorcycle enthusiasts of the first order, we’re endlessly intrigued by all the new developments in the two-wheeled world. And now it’s time again for our annual rollout of what we believe is the best in motorcycling.
As usual, our Best Of awards, or MOBOs, are announced each August, so our first category will be revealed this Monday, August 1. Not coincidentally, that’s the cutoff date we use for motorcycles to be included in our balloting – if a bike isn’t yet available at dealers and for testing on home soil before August, it fails to meet the cut for the current year’s MOBO voting. We chose this timeframe because there is usually a bit of a lull in new-bike introductions during the summer.
Each of our 15 categories includes a winner and an honorable mention, so we’ve got no less than 30 honorees to award. You’ll see our Best Product on Monday, followed by our selection for Best Technology. From Wednesday on it’ll be all motorbikes, beginning with the Best Electric category, then Best Scooter and our newest classification, Best Lightweight/Entry-Level, that we first included last year.
A new category winner will be revealed each day, even through the weekends, until we reach the climax of our Motorcycle of the Year award that will be posted on Monday, August 15. Stay tuned with us daily as we call out the best and brightest of motorcycling in 2016!
As temperatures rose at the Suzuka International Circuit in Japan today, the Yoshimura and Kagayama Suzuki teams upped their pace to finish well-in the top-10 ready for tomorrow’s all-important qualifying sessions for the 39th Coca-Cola Zero Suzuka 8-Hour World Endurance Championship third round on Sunday.
Following initial practice sessions yesterday, Yoshimura Suzuki Shell Advance (third in Thursday’s free practice) put-in the fifth-fastest time today with a combined time of 2’08.248 aboard their GSX-R1000 with riders Takuya Tsuda, Josh Brookes and Noriyuki Haga.
Eighth overall is Team KAGAYAMA SUZUKI riders Yukio Kagayama, Ryuichi Kiyonari and Naomichi Uramoto (2’08.474); and ninth on the timesheets, Moto Map SUPPLY’s Josh Waters, former Suzuki MotoGP rider Nobuatsu Aoki and Yoshihiro Konno (2’09.227).
Defending Endurance World Champions, Suzuki Endurance Racing Team, (SERT) currently sits 17th with a time of 2’09.928, but are looking for more in tomorrow’s final sessions.
“I rode slower than I thought because the condition is considerably different from a test. Still, the average of three of us is high, and putting all this together, I think it is far from a bad position. I’m looking forward to the final, and I would like to ride well in the Top-10 Trial tomorrow.”
“I had some trouble with the conditions that were considerably-different from a test. But I think that the balance of the whole machine is good, but it is not able to give the performance with the tyre for the road-surface condition well. However, I understand the solution to it, so I think it is not a big problem: It keeps me on my toes because the Suzuka 8-Hours is a long stretch and I have to focus on the final qualifying, but I still have no image of the race at all.”
“I think I will be able to perform well in the race, because my team has the solution to some issues I have at the moment, but no big deal. Maybe, Takuya and Nori will ride in the Top-10 Trial tomorrow, so I would like to concentrate and focus on the race.”
“I checked the machine that is for Suzuka 8-Hour, choose tyres yesterday, and everything is going well. There is a limit of tyres, so our team made the direction with management that we make Kiyonari’s feeling: I’m grateful for his work. He understands my ideas and helps my challenge that a young rider like Uramoto is growing and improving here. I am very happy and enjoying the race week with the good atmosphere in our team.”
“We are improving our machine all the time, but to be honest, I am surprised with the other team’s time scores. Our team’s work-flow is right and going well, I think. Anyway, I have to do what I can, so I will more focus on working hard.”
“The feeling of the first outing was good, but I slipped-off, but then I got a better feeling and I could ride with the good rhythm in this morning’s free practice. The qualifiers were both with the used tyres, but I just want to do my best for our team.”
“There was a limit of tyres, so Josh and I planned to attack and that was going well.
Nobuatsu Aoki gave us some good advice and it enabled us to put it together early, which led to a good result.”
“This team has the job of tyre development and testing in a real race environment, so there are some difficult tasks…but, the potential is improving: It seems that we will show it and this will be proof of our job. Our Suzuki machine is good and we are positive about the race.”
“The conditions were different from the test, and the slow machines caused a traffic jam in many places. But the performance of the Suzuki is good, and I was able to attack with confidence. I enjoy the race because my team-mates are the best, and the atmosphere of the team is good. I hope to give a good performance in the Top-10 Trial tomorrow.”
“I was disappointed at today’s session a little because I couldn’t get clear laps with the traffic jam on the course. The tyre grip is also not good. But, we are the Champion team and our GSX-R1000 Suzuki is good. We must get as many points as possible and, of course, we aim at a winner’s platform.”
“Today I was able to raise confidence, but because I crashed by a slight mistake, I lost a bit, but I got my confidence back. I ran with a race tyre 1n the second session and I have got a good feeling for the race now.”
“The track conditions are different from the test, so I was perplexed. There are lots of bikes on the course. It troubles me a little and I need more time riding, so I would like to spend more time tomorrow doing this before the race.”
Friday Overall Combined Qualifying: 1 Yamaha Factory Racing Team (Yamaha) 2’06.908, 2 Musashi RT Harc-Pro (Honda) 2’07.026, 3 Team Green (Kawasaki) 2’07.563, 4 YART (Yamaha) 2’08.239, 5 Yoshimura Suzuki Shell Advance – Tsuda, Brookes, Haga – (Suzuki GSX-R1000) 2’08.248, 6 FCC TSR Honda (Honda) 2’08.403, 7 TOHO Racing (Honda) 2’08.426, 8 Team KAGAYAMA – Kagayama, Uramoto, Kiyonari – (Suzuki GSX-R1000) 2’08.474,9 Moto Map SUPPLY – Waters, Aoki, Konno – (Suzuki GSX-R1000) 2’09.227, 10 Team JP Dogfighting Australia (Yamaha) 2’09.269. 17 SERT – Philippe, Delhalle, Masson – (Suzuki GSX-R1000) 2’09.928.
There are some retro designs that deserve a comeback. This is not one of them…
Covers were thrown off the RM-Z450 and RM-Z250 factory race bikes this afternoon at Lommel to reveal a special dedicated livery with which Team Suzuki World MXGP & MX2 will tackle the Grand Prix of Belgium this weekend.
Suzuki went retro and back to the year of 1992 for the 14th round of the 2016 FIM Motocross World Championship at the team’s home event staged at the notorious, sandy circuit. General Manager Stefan Everts – the former multi World Champion in control of the works set-up for almost one year, and with the brand that he grasped the first of his record 10 crowns – helped unveil the ‘jazzy’ new look along with riders Kevin Strijbos, Arminas Jasikonis, Jeremy Seewer, Brian Hsu and Bas Vaessen to a gathering of team partners, sponsors, friends and the international press.
“This is our first home GP and we wanted to create something that people would like and talk about,” says Everts. “I’m honoured in a way that we made a group decision to pick that memorable ’92 design from my riding days; I don’t think it was easy to miss! I want to give a big thanks for everyone that pulled together to get it done and that includes the gear brands and people like Blackbird, Shift, Suomy, IXS and Shoei. I hope the fans think it is something nice.”
The bikes are not the only elements of Team Suzuki to be graced with the new scheme: The riders in the MXGP, MX2 and EMX classes also have appropriately coloured and styled riding attire to complete the look.
“It’s pretty cool and something different, which is the important thing,” said Strijbos. “I’ve ridden my home Grand Prix many times but this is a first for me and it’s great that the guys have put the extra effort in to make it happen.”
The American Motorcyclist Association has entered into a partnership with Evans Waterless Coolant to provide discounts to AMA members on Evans products.
In addition, Evans Waterless Coolant products will be offered as prizes in the AMA Membership Sweepstakes.
“We are always seeking new ways to add value to an AMA membership,” said AMA Chief Operations Officer Jeff Massey. “Evans Waterless Coolant produces and distributes high-quality products, and like all AMA member benefits, our agreement ensures AMA members receive the best products at the best price.”
The Evans Waterless Coolant member benefit includes a 20 percent manufacturer rebate on as many as eight half-gallon bottles of Evans Waterless Powersports Coolant bought at motorcycle shops and Evans Waterless Coolant dealers. An AMA member discount code is required.
“After 25 years of being an AMA member myself, I’m delighted to get the AMA and Evans Waterless Coolant connected via the AMA Member Benefits program,” said John Light, Evans Powersports director. “Neither our coolant nor the AMA will leave you stranded on the side of the road.”
Press Release from AMA: The American Motorcyclist Association welcomes new AMA Off-Road Racing Manager Erek Kudla, who most recently served as director for the AMA National Hare and Hound Championship and the AMA West Hare Scrambles Championship Series.
In his new role at AMA headquarters in Pickerington, Ohio, Kudla will be responsible for supporting and growing all AMA-sanctioned off-road racing in America. His duties include organizer assistance, rules enforcement, event management and competitor relations.
“Off-road racing has been my life for as long as I can remember,” said Kudla, who competes in the 250 A class in hare and hound, enduro and cross country. “My experience as a promoter and organizer, as well as a racer, gives me a well-rounded understanding of what’s needed to expand off-road racing in America not just for the current generation, but the next generation of racers, as well.”
In addition to helping elevate off-road racing, Kudla’s immediate plans include chasing the 2017 AMA Vet A title in the AMA National Enduro Championship Series.
Kudla was born in Michigan, where his family was involved in enduros with the Twin Bay Trail Riders. Part of a military family, Kudla moved around the country as he grew older, eventually landing in Oxnard, Calif., in 1994. Once in Southern California, the family joined the AMA District 37 Ventura County Motorcycle Club and, at 11 years old, Kudla began working checkpoints for the club.
After a stint as a band manager and performer, Kudla returned to active competition in 2006, competing in the AMA Hare and Hound National Championship Series. He finished second in 250 B in 2007 and fifth in 250A in 2008 and 2009.
In 2009, Kudla became a referee for the VCMC and two years later helped create the Western Checkpoint Enduro Championship, an AMA Featured Series. That same year, he became responsible for the AMA Hare and Hound National Championship Series and the AMA West Hare Scrambles Championship for the National Hare and Hound Association, the AMA’s promoting partner for the series.
“For me, my role as the AMA off-road racing manager is the pinnacle of the sport,” Kudla said. “I will work hard every day here at the AMA to project my enthusiasm and love for off-road racing.”
Press Release from BMW: Sarah Schilke, National Marketing Manager, BMW Motorrad USA, will be among a panel of leaders representing a broad cross-section of women in the motorcycle industry at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip’s 2016 Biker Belles symposium, Tuesday, August 9. Other industry trailblazers taking seats on the panel, moderated by Marilyn Stemp of the Sturgis Rider Daily and Iron Trader News, include moto-journalist and Iron Lillies co-founder Leticia Cline, Perewitz Cycle Fab’s Jody Perewitz and land-speed record-holder Karlee Cobb. The Sturgis Buffalo Chip organizers chose this group of panelists due to their influence in the industry and their leading roles in helping to shape the future of motorcycling.
“I look forward to participating in this unique event alongside such notable industry veterans,” observed Ms. Schilke. “It’s an honor to represent BMW for its ongoing commitment to women and motorcycling.”
Following a ride through the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota, the panel will discuss the theme “Two-Wheeled Transformation” while guests enjoy a catered lunch at The Lodge at Deadwood. The event was created to raise awareness of the passion, diversity and spirit of women in motorcycling and to raise funds for local worthy charities.
2016 Biker Belles Schedule – Tuesday, August 9
8:30 a.m. – Registration at the Buffalo Chip’s CrossRoads and an opportunity to meet antique motorcycle racer Brittney Olsen.
9:30 a.m. – Guided ride through the picturesque Black Hills led by Ride Captain and safety expert Vicki Roberts Sanfelipo.
11:00 a.m. – Registration opens at The Lodge at Deadwood for those not participating in the ride.
11:30 a.m. – Riders arrive at The Lodge at Deadwood for a catered lunch, a pampering at the “Comfort Zone” by Team Diva, a silent auction, uplifting songs and stories by Iron Cowgirl Missy and an inspiring program.
12:30 p.m. – The symposium, “Two-Wheeled Transformation.” Filmmaker Michelle Carpenter will offer a preview of her new documentary, “Klocked: Women with Horsepower,” the story of land speed record-holder Laura Klock and her daughters, Erika and Karlee Cobb.
1:45 p.m. – All participants will gather for inclusion in the Biker Belles official group photo.
How To Register
Participants are asked to make a $60 contribution to join the festivities, 100 percent of which directly benefits two South Dakota charities for women-related causes: Helping with Horsepower and the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum & Hall of Fame. For reservations, visit www.BikerBelles.com or phone (605) 347-9000.
It’s been a couple years since we posted our Top 10 Honda Sportbikes list. There always exists subjectivity in such a list, but since the Honda topic was generally well-received, revisiting the idea, this time showcasing Yamaha sportbikes, seemed apropos. Like the Honda list, we’re keeping this one limited to street-legal models available stateside (except one, sue us).
Like Honda, Yamaha owns a colorful history of important sporty motorcycles – more than a single Top 10 list can include. Narrowing down such a cornucopia of two-wheel performance is a difficult task, but we’re certain that if you feel we omitted a bike more deserving than one of the 10 selected here, you’ll certainly let us know in the comments section below.
It’s more than a little ironic that Yamaha, the company that ushered in the modern era of four-stroke dirtbikes and contributed to the sounding of the death knell for two-stroke motorcycles, has recently unleashed the best new two-smoker we’ve ridden in a long time. The YZ250X is the company’s first two-stroke off-road racer in nearly two decades, and it’s a winner right out of the crate.
Yamaha has been hard on the gas when it comes to producing intriguing off-road-specific motorcycle models during the past two years, and off-road fans have been introduced to some truly great machines.
Yamaha began its recent domination in 2015 when it surprised cross-country racing fans with the amazing YZ250FX, a bike so good that it earned an honorable mention in our Best Dirtbike of 2015 honors. But Yamaha didn’t stop there. It also released a long-anticipated, WR250F, boasting the company’s latest motocross engine technology in the form of its fuel-injected, rearward-inclined four-stroke Single.
For 2016, Yamaha has been even more aggressive, releasing two all-new off-road four-strokes based on the YZ450F: the WR450F and YZ450FX. These models were logical next steps in Yamaha’s retooling of its off-road arsenal.
The 2016 YZ250X was probably less of a priority for Yamaha, at least from a numbers standpoint, but the product of their efforts is one of the most entertaining bikes we’ve ridden in a long time. The 250X is a dream come true for Japanese off-road dirtbike fans who still prefer the sweet smell of premix.
The YZ250X builds on a Yamaha legacy of high-performance two-strokes that dates all the way back to 1961 when the company released its YDS2C two-stroke twin “with scrambler kit.” The YDS2C was the first Japanese-built off-road racer to be available in a dealer’s showroom, and it was followed by a string of successful two-stroke off-road models, including the legendary DT-1 250 enduro. It has been a while since Yamaha released its last – and previous best – two-stroke off-road racer, the YZWR (aka the WR250Z), which enjoyed a long production run from 1989 to 1998. The YZWR was discontinued just as the four-stroke boom took over the dirtbike world.
Developing the YZ250X all these years later was a piece of cake for Yamaha, which remains as the only Japanese OEM to carry the two-stroke torch in motocross. With the state-of-the-art YZ250 already in the family, all Yamaha needed to do was make some tweaks to the platform to bring the YZ250X to light.
The YZ250X’s 249cc two-stroke Single features the same bore and stroke as the YZ250, but it has a slightly lower compression ratio, milder ignition timing and more off-road friendly power valve settings. The X’s pipe is also redesigned to provide better ground clearance.
The YZ250X’s 249cc two-stroke Single features the same 66.4mm × 72.0mm bore and stroke as the YZ250, but it has a slightly lower compression ratio and milder ignition timing in its new CDI unit that soften its initial hit while extending it over a broader rev range. The X’s pipe is also redesigned to provide better ground clearance, and its powervalve settings have been re-tuned to open more broadly and gradually than the motocross version, which helps low-end power while also giving the YZ250X plenty of mid-range thrust and top-end screamability.
While Yamaha claims that the YZ250X is designed for GNCC-style closed-course competition through the woods, we couldn’t resist putting our test bike through its paces at our favorite local desert spot, which offers a mix of vision-blurring high-speed terrain, deep whoops and sand as well as technical rock sections and single-track terrain – everything necessary to put the X to the test. It should be noted, however, that the YZ250X does not come equipped with a U.S. Forestry-approved spark arrestor, so you’ll need to add one to avoid being hassled by “the G” while riding on public land.
The YZ250X’s engine starts easily, and once warmed up it impressed us immediately, with a smooth low-end bark that transitions seamlessly into a silky mid-range and a warp-drive top-end. Carburetion through its 38mm Keihin PWK carburetor is crisp and clean, thanks to a throttle position sensor that is designed to help tailor the air/fuel mix throughout the rev range – almost like fuel-injection, but not quite. It gives the X excellent throttle response regardless of what gear you’re in or where you are in the powerband. Everyone from our national Hare & Hound-caliber experts to rank novices raved about the Yamaha motor. It’s smooth as silk yet oozes power everywhere, and it revs to the moon. It’s easy to ride fast and can make you feel like an off-road hero, which only adds to the fun factor for riders of all skill levels.
The YZ250X’s engine and wide-ratio five-speed gearbox are equally at home in rocky technical sections like this one or in high-speed terrain. There’s always a gear for the task at hand, and tractable power is always plentiful.
The YZ250 and YZ250X both feature five-speed transmissions and 14/50 final drive ratios, but the YZ250X’s five-speed is a wide-ratio unit designed to be more effective in everything from tight woods sections to wide-open terrain. The first two gears are the same on both models, but from there the X’s transmission differs, with a slightly lower third gear ratio than the YZ but with much taller fourth and fifth gear ratios. Yamaha says that fourth gear is effectively the same as making the final drive a 14/48 while fifth gear is like dropping to a 14/43 – or about the closest you can come to light speed in wide-open terrain. The X’s shifting action is smooth and precise, even though we found many instances where the combination of the X’s broad power and the breadth of its gearing allowed us to just keep it in third gear or fourth gear and not shift at all. The engine had no trouble taking up the slack in a wide range of trail conditions. The transmission is a perfect fit for off-road use.
Fourth and fifth gears in the YZ250X’s transmission are best left for warp-speed off-road riding.
And although you’ll hardly need to touch it once underway, the YZ250X’s cable-operated clutch features a light pull and easy modulation, proving that a hydraulically actuated clutch isn’t a necessity in the off-road world. The only real advantage is that a hydraulic unit will automatically take up the slack at the lever as the clutch plates wear, but Yamaha has fitted the X with the same “works-style” lever barrel adjuster found on the YZ, which makes for easy, on-the-fly clutch-play adjustment. The light pull comes courtesy of clutch springs that are 10% lighter than the YZ’s.
As you can see here, the YZ250X also uses Yamaha’s backbone-style aluminum frame. The motocross-derived chassis works well in almost all off-road situations but gets just a tad squirmy at top speed.
About the only place where the YZ250X’s motocross heritage shows is in its backbone-style aluminum chassis, which shares the same geometry as the YZ250. It also works well in the off-road environment, as it steers with precision and is generally very stable at most speeds. However, our expert testers noticed a slight tendency for the X to squirm when pinned at ultra-high speeds. It’s far from scary, and it’s something that an aftermarket steering stabilizer would remedy, but it is noticeable. Beyond that, the X’s chassis feels light and flickable, making it a blast to ride when snaking through rocky, technical terrain.
The YZ250X’s handling prowess is enhanced by its fully adjustable KYB spring-type fork with speed-sensitive damping up front and fully adjustable KYB piggyback shock out back. The X gets the same front and rear spring rates as the YZ, but Yamaha revised the valving shim stacks to give the suspension a more progressive feel for off-road terrain. That helps it deliver a smooth 11.8 inches of front wheel travel and 12.4 inches of rear wheel travel with reduced deflection in small bumps or rocks. The suspension definitely feels softer than its YZ counterpart at higher speeds, although pounding endless strings of desert-style whoops failed to elicit a negative comment from our testers. The setup does an excellent job of maintaining control without bottoming while retaining a comfortable ride. That’s a real benefit in long off-road races.
The YZ250X is also very comfortable to ride for the long haul, something we were happy to learn during our day in the desert. Its YZ-bred ergonomics are slim and its seat, pegs and bar position aid in its roomy overall feel whether seated or standing.
The YZ250X’s brake components are identical to the YZ250’s. Nissin calipers clamp wave-style rotors measuring 250mm up front and 245mm out back. While we mostly found the brakes to be powerful enough to slow the speedy YZ250X, one tester felt that the rear brake is a touch on the sensitive side, but that’s nothing that a pad change wouldn’t fix.
Yamaha delivered an excellent off-road racer in the YZ250X, but there are a few areas that drew complaints. For an off-road racebike like the 250X, we think it’s a faux pas to deliver it without including a factory skid plate and hand guards. We would also like to see the YZ250X delivered with a spark arrestor for its factory muffler so that the bike can easily be converted for riding on public land. And while the X also features large-capacity radiators with 10-row cores to optimize engine cooling, we believe that riders in the Eastern part of the U.S. would appreciate a fan system to further aid cooling in the slow and often muddy conditions in their neck of the woods.
An 18-inch rear wheel and Dunlop AT81 off-road tires, front and rear, are standard equipment on the YZ250X (Yay!). A skid plate and hand guards are not (Boo!).
On the other hand, Yamaha made the right moves by adding an 18-inch rear wheel and a 2.1-gallon fuel tank to the X. The Dunlop Geomax AT81-shod wheel is practically an off-road requirement as it allows the fitment of a tire with more sidewall, which flexes more for better traction in soft terrain and rocks while also doing a better job of guarding against flat tires. The front and rear AT81s are an excellent tire choice, delivering consistent traction over a wide range of surfaces from sheer rock faces to deep sand. The fuel cell obviously extends range, although our whiny desert brigade naturally wanted to see an even larger-capacity tank.
But even without all of that stuff, the YZ250X is truly a bargain-priced off-road stormer. At $7,390 it is a lot less expensive than its main rival, the KTM 250 XC, which retails for $8699. If you’re a potential buyer who has the budget for either, then you can certainly afford to add a skid plate, hand guards and other accessories to tailor the YZ250X to your needs, and maybe even have some change left afterward. If not, the YZ250X’s performance will still get you in the game. So, build it as you go.
And that’s something we seriously would consider, because we dig the Yamaha YZ250X in a big, big way. Its engine flat rips while delivering that zingy two-stroke siren song, its suspension is dialed-in for off-road racing right out of the crate, and its handling and ergonomics all but guarantee that you can pick your way through technical sections or pile on the miles in comfort. Whether you ride in tight woods or across expansive desert terrain, the YZ250X is one awesome off-road motorcycle.
Dubbed The Greatest of All Time, or simply, the GOAT, Valentino Rossi is a living legend in the world of MotoGP. Fans can’t get enough of him, and frankly, neither can we. Thankfully, Rossi is also sponsored by Monster Energy drinks, who have funded the making of a five-part series entitled: Valentino Rossi: The Doctor. In this, the fifth – and final – episode of the series (you can catch episode 1 here, episode 2 here, episode 3 here, and episode 4 here), we take a look at Valentino’s legacy. His success on the track has afforded him the opportunity to thrive in business, but he also understands that what he’s achieved should also be carried forward by the next generation. This video shows how he hopes to make that happen. Check out Monster’s description of the video below, then keep scrolling to view the episode.
The fifth and final episode of ‘Valentino Rossi: The Doctor Series’; a collection of clips created to prize away some of the layers of one of the most famous and best-loved motorsport athletes of the modern age; a man that everybody sees everybody enjoys but perhaps few really know. ‘The Boss’ carries a double meaning. Rossi is not only the top dog in the premier class of MotoGP and has existed in that sphere since 2000 but he also heads up a hefty business sprawl of merchandise and distribution. ‘VR46’ has a stylish and functional HQ near Tavullia and is the base for an enterprise that also looks after many other interests. We speak to the people running a busy parallel existence for Valentino and find out how the Italian is creating a legacy and an empire designed to last when the chequered flag has long since dropped.
Reigning World Endurance Champions Suzuki Endurance Racing Team along with Yoshimura Suzuki Shell Advance and Team Kagayama are on track and ready for Japan’s most-prestigious race, the 39th Coca-Cola Zero Suzuka 8-Hours World Endurance race this weekend.
Following two pre-Suzuka tests – the second at which SERT riders Vincent Philippe, Anthony Delhalle and Etienne Masson attended to get their GSX-R1000 set up for the demanding race – the 14-time World Champions are aiming to improve upon their third place in the series. The French team currently lies seven points behind series leaders after two rounds, Team April Moto Motors Events, comprising Gregg Black, Gregory Fastre and Alex Cudlin.
With possibly the strongest field ever in the Suzuka 8-Hour, Yoshimura Shell Advance – Takuya Tsuda, Josh Brookes and Noriyuki Haga – are looking strong following two positive pre-race tests: The #12 GSX-R1000 topped the timesheets in the opening test with Tsuda and Haga, and in the second, with Brookes – focused on different set-up options that they hope will put them on the top-step of the podium in Sunday’s race.
Team Kagayama Suzuki’s Yukio Kagayama, Ryuichi Kiyonari and Naomichi Uramoto are also upbeat after featuring in the top-three in the tests and are also slated as contenders for victory, but the opposition is strong; with 2015 race winners Yamaha Factory Racing Team, Musashi RT Harc-Pro and F.C.C. TSR Honda all in the running to stop them.
A total of 56 World Endurance and 12 Superstock-class riders begin initial testing today before qualifying starts tomorrow (Friday) and the final shakedown on Saturday before Sunday’s race-start at 11:30hrs local time.
You can follow the action on Team Suzuki Racing Facebook and Twitter pages along with live timing and coverage on the FIM Endurance website: HERE
Brittney Olsen was born to ride and race. Today, her motorcycle of choice is a board track racer and she rides it well. Brittney is keeping the history of the sport front and center with 20th Century Racing.
The vintage motorcycle racing scene is alive and well and will be well represented at the 76th Sturgis Bike Week and she tells us all about it!
Brian Bell has spent the last several years promotingHooligan and Super Hooligan motorcycle racing. The idea was to get people out of the grandstands and on their motorcycles on the track. Others have been drawn in to the sport who have never seen flat track before. They are taking Super Hooligans to the famed Buffalo Chip in Sturgis on a specially built track in the heart of the arena at the Chip!
2016 promises to be the best ever for flat track motorcycle racing with all of the above, plus White Plates promoting the Steve Nace All Star National Flat Track Series! If you are attending the 76th Sturgis Bike Week, we hope this show provides you with useful and valuable information!
This edition of Talking Motorcycles with Barry Boone is powered by Crosley Brands!
Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A., today announced the “Beaubier Superbike Championship R1 Bodywork Sweepstakes.”
In a random drawing from all entries received, Yamaha will select one winner who will receive the authentic, race-spec bodywork–in iconic yellow-and-black Yamaha 60th Anniversary livery–from defending 2015 MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Cameron Beaubier’s Yamaha YZF-R1, as used by Cameron himself after the final round of the 2015 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship, which took place at New Jersey Motorsports Park last September. The special Yamaha Factory Racing bodywork is in “as-raced” condition and has been personally autographed by Cameron.
“I was very proud to race my R1 Superbike in the 60th Anniversary livery last year at New Jersey Motorsports Park, when I clinched the 2015 MotoAmerica Superbike Championship,” Cameron said. “And I’m just as proud to know that this special race-spec bodywork is going to a lucky fan. The fans are the ones who make all this possible for me, and the fact that Yamaha is giving away the actual bodywork from my Superbike, and with both my signature and the big #1 that I earned at New Jersey on it, really makes me happy! Good luck to everyone who enters. I hope you win!”
Even though the byline already indicates it, we’ll go ahead and mention it again: the following is a press release, and not an endorsement from Motorcycle.com.
Total performance lubricant manufacturer, Bel-Ray, today announced the launch of its all-new Racing Brake Fluid, the highest performing motorcycle brake fluid ever offered by the brand.
Formulated for use in high performance braking systems in a wide range of motorcycles on and off-road as well as on the track, Bel-Ray’s Racing Brake Fluid features a dry boiling point of 580° F (304° C). This makes it ideal for applications where extreme heat and high load braking are commonplace, and fluid breakdown is a key concern, such as with road racing, Motocross/Supercross and adventure motorcycling. Its high oxidation resistance ensures the fluid will maintain its performance under long term use.
The Racing Brake Fluid’s performance goes beyond its dry boiling point, with a wet boiling point rating of 410° F (210° C). This helps provide riders with consistent braking performance and peace of mind that the fluid will function in any condition, even when high levels of water contamination occur.
“We couldn’t be more proud to bring our Racing Brake Fluid to market,” said Andrew Hodges, Bel-Ray’s R&D Product Line Manager. “It doesn’t matter if you’re riding or racing, stopping is just as important as going fast. When riders use Bel-Ray Racing Brake Fluid, they know they will always have peak braking performance.”
Bel-Ray Racing Brake Fluid is designed for use in all hydraulic motorcycle braking systems requiring a DOT 3, 4 or 5.1 brake fluid, and is compatible with the seals used in those braking systems. Racing Brake Fluid should not be used in systems requiring mineral-based fluids (LHM).
Bel-Ray’s Racing Brake Fluid is available in 355 ML bottles from powersports retailers globally and online. For more information on this product, Bel-Ray’s complete line of powersports lubricants and service products, or to find the nearest Bel-Ray approved retailer, please visit www.belray.com or call 732-938-2421.
Revolutionary frame builder Jeff Cole, AMA road racing legend Miguel Duhamel and desert racer Jack Johnson will be inducted into the American Motorcyclist Association Hall of Fame at a ceremony to be held in Orlando, Fla., this October.
“Jack Johnson, Jeff Cole and of course the amazing Miguel Duhamel represent the passion, focus and talent that drives motorcyclists to the competitive arena,” said Ken Ford, a member of the AMA board of directors and chairman of the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation board. “Competition breeds success, not just for the individual and his or her team, but all motorcyclists as we benefit from technological advances discovered through racing.”
The 2016 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held during the American International Motorcycle Expo, which runs Oct. 13-16 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
Jeff Cole was not just a brilliant fabricator, but he could translate rider feedback, whether highly technical or casual commentary, into geometric expression. In many ways, his revolutionary frame designs changed the racing landscape by accomplishing what was previously thought impossible.
C&J racing frames recorded countless AMA Grand National victories and championships since 1970, including 20 AMA Grand National Championships in a 22-year span. His designs also proved to be successful in road racing, motocross, international enduro and desert racing.
Miguel Duhamel was the AMA road racing paddock’s most dominant rider in the 1990s and early 2000s. The charismatic Canadian, who was as fast as he was popular with fans, lit up the record books throughout an era that saw some of the fiercest competition ever in the AMA road racing ranks.
At the height of his career, Duhamel was the winningest AMA Superbike racer in history with 32 class wins. He captured the Superbike crown in 1995, won the Daytona 200 five times, took five AMA Supersport titles and two AMA Formula Xtreme titles on his way to amassing 86 career AMA wins. His 40-plus AMA Supersport victories are a record-more than three times the number of the next person on the list. He is the only AMA road racer to compete for five different factories.
Jack Johnson won his first Nevada State Championship title in desert racing at age 10, but his formal career launched a decade later. Johnson was first overall in the 1973 Mint 250, 1975 Mint 400, 1976 Mint 400, 1978 Cherry Creek Hare and Hound and in the 1979 Baja 500, where he was also first in the solo “Iron Man” class.
Johnson also won first overall at the Baja 1000 with Larry Roeseler in 1978, 1979 and 1980, and in 1982 with Al Baker. He consistently won his class in the Baja 1000 from 2001 through 2007. He also was a two-time International Six Days Enduro medalist, winning gold in 1981.
Cole, Duhamel and Johnson, all from competition categories, join motorcycling enthusiast and pioneer Gloria Struck and dirt-track racer Ronnie Jones in the Class of 2016. Struck and Jones belong to the well-qualified category, which recognizes candidates whose accomplishments transcend the traditional competition and non-competition categories. The non-competition members of the Class of 2016 will be announced shortly.
The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame induction ceremony is open to the public and, for the third consecutive year, takes place in conjunction with AIMExpo. AIMExpo brings together consumers, dealers, manufacturers, and the world press in one location for global product launches, demo rides, motorcycling seminars, and much more.
Suzuki World MXGP Team Manager Stefan Everts talks home MXGP, assesses the season so far; chats evolution in the GP paddock; and announces a special Suzuki presentation tomorrow (Friday).
The Grand Prix of Belgium and the 13th round of 2016 MXGP heads into the sand of Lommel for the third year in a row and represents an eagerly anticipated home fixture for Team Suzuki World MXGP with their workshop and HQ mere kilometres away from the venue.
Lommel is revered and feared for the physical and technical demands of the sand, even if the track is well known to most of the Grand Prix collective due to it popularity for training and testing.
For General Manager Stefan Everts and his international crew, this weekend will be a memorable event both for the location, the nationality and the timing of the Grand Prix as the former 10-times World Champion nears almost one year in charge of the Suzuki Factory racing effort. “Of course we are excited for this Grand Prix perhaps more than any other,” he explained while putting the finishing touches to a presentation and surprise the team will host on Friday evening in the paddock. “Lommel has always been a special place and is so close for us and where we do a lot of work. It will be tough for the riders and has always been a place for the specialists, but the whole team is looking forward to going there and we will have something unique to show the fans; something I think they will like to share with their friends and on their social media.”
2016 and the first term of Everts’ stewardship of the Suzuki motocross wing has been through peaks and troughs; Jeremy Seewer is second in the MX2 world championship with eight podium finishes and is currently in the best form of his short career while Bas Vaessen has evolved to the point of being an EMX250 European Championship race winner. In the MXGP class, however, injuries to Ben Townley and Kevin Strijbos means it has been a frustrating time in the category that Everts used to haunt.
“Overall it has been very difficult but on one side it has also been really nice with what Jeremy has achieved so far in MX2 and the amount of progress Bas has made has been something really nice to see,” the Belgian concurred. “In MXGP it hasn’t been so easy, even if in GRP we are learning every day and discovering new things all the time. Our efforts haven’t shone in the results but there has been a lot happening behind the scenes and I’m happy. “
Everts is almost a decade into retirement and since he ripped the last tear-off from his goggles at the end of the 2006 season. The 43-year-old has waded through a deep pool of learning and experience since climbing the other side of a Grand Prix fence; from a team co-ordinator, tester, pioneer of fresh racing technology, rider coach and mentor; and now Team Manager and much more in yellow colours.
“I knew it wouldn’t be easy and the really good times might be months or even a year away but I took this challenge and I gave myself time to get things under control,” he reveals. “I’m not in a super-rush and didn’t ever expect to be going for the world championship in our first season; I think that level is something we have to build up to. Each season is long and it has been a tough time but we are pushing though; it is hard to have patience sometimes!
“Going through all those different periods has been nice and a real spread of things to do and to learn,” he continues. “I’m in good health and so is my family, so what more could you wish for? I still love racing and still enjoy coming to grands prix. I have a good feeling when I look back in the past; motocross is our passion.”
Everts can be frequently spotted around a Grand Prix circuit and the Suzuki trucks, awnings and impressive hospitality unit with wife Kelly, two children and father Harry in tow. His work at Suzuki means a real family effort as everybody pitches in. The record holder for wins and titles also is also trim and still looks like he could put a 450 through its paces at GP speed. How much is the yellow ’72’ turning wheels in anger?
“I don’t ride enough!” he admits. “Or that I have enough time! When I’m not on a bike then I still like to go to the track and watch and offer some words of advice to the guys. I find just being there sometimes is important. I was testing for two days after Mantova [Grand Prix of Lombardia and round 11 of MXGP] and my riding was good; my technique was still there and I had the feeling again of when I was racing. I enjoyed those two days. However, I’m past forty now and I’m starting to feel that!”
With Strijbos set for just his second Grand Prix since returning from a problematic left wrist and Arminas Jasikonis braced for his second appearance on the RM-Z450, the odds are long for Suzuki toasting victory at Lommel. The squad will, however, have high hopes for Seewer once more with the Swiss defending a sizeable gap over third place in the MX2 standings and Vaessen will bring his sand acumen to the fore: 2016 might not be the year for Everts and co to uncork champagne in pursuit of that elusive first triumph but with the winning mentality such a part of his fabric, it won’t be long before the champion gets that particular juice flowing again.
“Every victory has a different feeling,” he says. “Sometimes you have wins that feel unbelievably good and some others where you know you weren’t riding well. For me it has been quite a while since I had that feeling with a rider. When we manage the first one here it is going to be really special, a relief and something that brings a lot of emotion. I hope for it and I dream about it. Perhaps it seems far at the moment, but then it can also be just around the corner and that’s one of the great things about all and any sport and racing; I always say things change very quickly in ice hockey but also in motocross!”
The weather forecast for the weekend predicts warm temperatures but also showers.
The Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team finalized its line-up for the 2017 WorldSBK Championship, confirming Chaz Davies and signing an agreement with Marco Melandri. Chaz and Marco have already been teammates in the past with great results, their common goal is to fight for the victory at each round and aim at the Riders’ and Manufacturers’ world titles.
Chaz Davies, 29, is currently in the middle of his third season with Ducati and, thus far, has secured 9 wins and 32 podiums overall on the Panigale R, showing constant progress and winning the hearts of many Ducati fans.
“I’m extremely happy to renew my professional relationship with Ducati for two more seasons,” Davies said. “The continuity element is really important in our job, and so far we’ve made great strides and got progressively closer to our goal. Now we can fight for the win practically on every track, and I’m confident we can make further improvements. Moreover, to race for Ducati is something special: everything is done with heart and passion, you really feel part of a family and have a direct connection between the production and racing. It’s going to be exciting.”
Thirty-four-year-old Melandri, on the other hand, will return to the production-based series, where he has claimed 19 wins and 49 overall podiums in 100 races.
“I’m really excited to come back to racing, it’s a dream come true,” Melandri stated. “I always said I was only interested in a top bike and top team, and I could not have asked for more. I kept following WorldSBK closely, and I’m confident the Panigale R can perfectly suit my riding style. We’ll just have to take one step at a time, but the potential is surely high. I know it won’t be easy to get back up to speed, but I have all the time to step on the bike, do laps and make sure I’m ready for the first test: to this end, I will skip the holidays to train on a street version of the Panigale R.”
The 2016 championship will mark Davide Giugliano’s last season within the Aruba.it Racing – Ducati team. In three years with the squad, the Italian rider has shown great speed and resilience, taking 10 podiums so far despite being sidelined for most of 2015 with two serious injuries. Ducati and Aruba.it would like to thank Davide for his efforts, wishing him all the best for his future career and reiterating their commitment to give him the best possible tools to achieve his first WorldSBK win.
“I had a great time with Ducati,” said Giugliano. “I learned a lot and was given a wealth of experience to draw upon, which is really important for a young rider. We also faced some difficult times, especially last year when I was badly injured, but we’ve always stayed close. We decided to take different paths, but our relationship remains strong: I’m still young, so we may rejoin forces in the future. I sincerely wish Melandri the best and would like to thank everyone in Ducati, especially Paolo Ciabatti, and Aruba.it for all their support. It’s been a great journey, which has yielded great results despite the fact that we would have liked to do more, but I’ll give my best until the end of the season to achieve bigger goals.”
Luigi Dall’Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager: “Chaz Davies has become a key member of the Ducati family, so we’re happy to announce that he will ride with us for two more years. Chaz has shown great progress and we’re confident he can take our bike to even higher grounds. In 2017, he will ride alongside Marco Melandri, who took upon the challenge with great enthusiasm. Marco is a talented rider, he has already achieved prestigious results in WorldSBK and we’re confident that the year spent without racing has not undermined his qualities. We’re obviously sad for Davide Giugliano, who will part ways with us at the end of the year, and we wish him nothing but the best. Davide proved to have great competitiveness, taking many podiums and fastest laps, and has given a crucial input towards the development of the WorldSBK-spec Panigale R. We would like to thank him and guarantee we will give him all our support until the last race to help him achieve the results he deserves.”
Stefano Cecconi, Aruba S.p.A. CEO and Team Principal: “Given that the riders’ choice is among the most important and difficult to make, as the available seats are always less than what we would ideally offer, we had to resort to our ambition and courage while taking all the necessary time to finalize the 2017 line-up. Chaz has shown he can fight for the victory each round. Davide is a young and fast rider, who can become even more competitive, so I hope it’s a ‘see you again’ and not a ‘farewell’ between us. Marco’s resume speaks for itself and puts more pressure, at any rate positive, on us: we want to help him achieve the result that, surely not due to a lack in talent, has eluded him in WorldSBK so far.”
Even if you’re wearing fully-perforated or mesh riding gear, you’re going to get hot while riding in summer heat. The minimized airflow inside of less-than-fully-vented leather or textile jackets and pants only exacerbates the problem. However, no matter what protective gear you have on, your body will sweat during higher temperatures. The trick is getting air to flow over the sweat and cool your body through evaporation. Rev’It’s Oxygen Shirtand Pants aim to move moisture away from the rider’s body for a cooler, more pleasant ride.
The Oxygen Shirt and Pants are base layers meant to be worn against the skin. For optimal effect, they should be snug but not overly tight. While moisture wicking clothing is nothing new, the stitching techniques and variable weaves used in the Oxygen’s construction do assist in the evaporation of moisture. For example, the chest features a “3D airvent zone” which is woven in such a way as to allow perspiration to evaporate quickly. Being in a prime location for ventilation via a zipper or jacket perforations makes it fairly obvious when air hits moisture at speed. For those who say they get the same effect with a cotton t-shirt, the difference is that the Oxygen’s 93% polyaramide content allows the shirt/pants to dry much quicker than cotton, maximizing the effect without leaving you wet for extended periods.
Three different weaves: ribs on shoulders, a more open weave in the arm pit, and the chest’s 3D airvent zone. Also, note the seam’s flat stitching which is located and structured to allow a snug fit and reduce irritation.
Rev’It uses a variety of weaves to increase the surface area of the Oxygen garments, thus promoting evaporation. As with the chest, the shirt’s back receives what the manufacturer dubs a “climate control unit.” To my eye, it simply looks like a different weaving pattern, roughly the size of a back protector, that creates more space for air movement. Various patterns are also found on the underarms and the backs of the knees where moisture tends to collect when in a riding position. While I’m certain the names for the different sections are marketing speak, I recognize that different areas will benefit from evaporative assistance since airflow is limited in the underarms and on the back beneath armor. Finally, Rev’it states that special ribs on the elbows, shoulders, and knees also help to keep those areas warmer in cold weather by providing an insulating layer of air – a claim that I was unable to check during SoCal spring and summer riding.
Those who read my review of the Rev’It Replica Jacket and GT-R Pants may remember that I had a problem with the pants abrading my knees on a long day in the saddle. The Oxygen Pants prevented this from happening by allowing the fabrics to rub against each other instead of the GT-R’s lining irritating my skin. Additionally, the slipperiness of the Oxygen gear made it easier to don and doff my leathers when I was sweaty.
While I can’t claim the ribs help keep my joints warmer in cold weather, the additional layer did eliminate the friction issue I had with the knees in my leathers.
Speaking of sweat, our recent rides to and from the L.A. Basin to Laguna Seca illustrated how much a good base layer can improve my comfort on long, hot days. Yes, at a stop, I still felt my temperature rise and the perspiration flow, but at the end of the day, my shirt was considerably drier than a cotton t-shirt would’ve been. Similarly, in the almost completely closed environment of my crotch, the Oxygen Pants made a huge difference. Anyone who’s ever ridden with cotton boxer briefs under leathers for an entire summer day can attest to how the cotton will be literally dripping with sweat at the end. The wicking capability of the Oxygen Pants left my nether regions drier than with regular underwear and prevented the indignity of butt rash. (TMI, I know.) I’m sure my companions were grateful for the antibacterial finish on the Oxygens. After two full days of desert riding, the clothes had minimal body odor – a win for anyone who sat near me at meals.
My only complaint about the Oxygen Shirt and Pants is that they run a little large. Perhaps I should’ve noticed the “normal fit” listing on the Rev’It website. Since the size 54 Rev’It Replica Jacket I tested has a “race fit” and is quite snug in the arms, I ordered an XL in the Oxygen gear. The fit was a little looser than I would’ve liked. So, if your size is on the bottom limit of the scale (XL is for Euro sizes 54-56), you may want to go down a size with the Oxygens. The Rev’It Oxygen Shirt retails for $70 in sizes M (46-48), L (50-52), XL (54-56), XXL (58-62) and the Rev’It Oxygen Pants for $55, both of which are prices comparable to wicking activewear I own and other motorcycle-specific wicking base layers I’ve researched online.
Motorcycling celebrities, new models, demo rides, custom bikes revealed, performance demonstrations, special owners events
MINNEAPOLIS — July 28, 2016 — Victory Motorcycles® has a jam-packed schedule of high octane offerings during the 76thSturgis Motorcycle Rally, August 8-14, including new-for-2017 motorcycles and demo rides, custom bikes and performance demonstrations by Zach Ness, Rick Fairless, Red Bull athlete Aaron Colton and others, including Tony Carbajal and Joe “Vertical” Dryden plus exclusive events for Victory owners, with special events featuring “The Gunny” R. Lee Ermey and much more.
“Everybody knows that the Black Hills motorcycle rally in Sturgis is the biggest party in the world,” says Victory Motorcycles General Manager Rod Krois. “This year we are proud to deliver all the performance and excitement that Victory motorcycles deliver to our customers every day, and we invite all riders to experience modern American muscle for themselves.”
Below are highlights of the action Victory Motorcycles, America’s most innovative and aggressive motorcycle manufacturer, has planned at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Motorcycle enthusiasts are invited to join us, burn some gas and enjoy the party in Sturgis and the Black Hills.
Victory on Display(3rd Street & Lazelle Street, Sturgis, S.D.)
9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Aug. 6-13
Stop by Victory Motorcycles’ display on Lazelle Street beginning Saturday Aug. 6 to see the entire line of 2017 Victory motorcycles, make a run on dueling dynos, check out stunt shows, custom bike display and new Made For Victory accessories, slip in to a Slingshot, or pick up some apparel you forgot to pack.
9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Aug. 6-13; Last Ride Leaves at 4:30 p.m.
Rally attendees will have a chance to ride the entire line of 2017 Victory Motorcycles, including the Victory Octane, High-Ball, Magnum X-1 and Cross Country Tour, as well as ride models outfitted with the new “Made For Victory By S&S®” Stage 2 Kit.
Rice Victory Motorcycles(301 Cambell St., Rapid City, S.D.)
9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Daily
Looking for apparel or Made For Victory accessories? Need parts or service? Planning a new motorcycle purchase? Roll over to Rice Victory Motorcycles in Rapid City to fulfill those needs, enjoy some BBQ and demo the latest Victory models. Visit with The Gunny on Wednesday afternoon, and pick up exclusive branded IAVA and Victory items. Rice Victory is also the exclusive location for your official Sturgis 76th Victory Owners Patch.
Vet Together in Partnership with IAVA(South Dakota Air & Space Museum, 2890 Rushmore Dr., Ellsworth AFB, SD 57706)
3 p.m.-4:30 p.m., Aug. 8
Join The Gunny and fellow veterans in a VetTogether. Driven by a growing member base, VetTogethers help build camaraderie between veterans and their supporters within a community by fostering a stronger peer network and keeping conversations going with monthly events. Attendees will receive an exclusive IAVA/Victory Swag Bag. Sign up for the VetTogether HERE.
Aaron Colton Stunt Show & Red Bull Party with Custom Reveals(3rd Street & Lazelle Street, Sturgis, S.D.)
1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Aug. 9
Stop by Victory’s Lazelle Street location from 1-3 p.m. for a “wheelie” good time with Red Bull athlete Aaron Colton showcasing his talent for stunt riding, Arlen Ness and The Gunny, and awesome custom bike reveals by Zach Ness, Rick Fairless and Scott Kietzmann.
Exclusive Events for Victory Owners (Sturgis Dragway, 20523 State Highway 79)
2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Aug. 11
Calling all Victory owners: You’re invited to the official 2016 Sturgis Victory Motorcycle Owner’s Event. It’s going to be a full throttle day starting at 2 p.m. at the Sturgis Dragway, where you’ll have the opportunity to rip down the 1/8-mile track to compete for the quickest time. When not white-knuckling it down the track, catch a world-class Victory Motorcycle stunt show with Tony Carbajal and Joe Dryden, meet the Victory Motorcycles NHRA Drag Team of Matt & Angie Smith, and talk with Zach Ness, Rick Fairless and Aaron Colton, among others. Once the dragway festivities conclude, owners will enjoy an escorted ride to the legendary Sturgis Buffalo Chip for a catered reception. All Victory Owners who pre-register are guaranteed a ticket to a performance by award-winning country singer Miranda Lambert at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip that evening. This is the owner’s event you don’t want to miss! Sign up HERE.
Rub & Buff Complimentary Bike Wash for Victory Motorcycle Owners(Polaris Spearfish Paint Facility, 125 Industrial Drive, Spearfish, S.D.)
11 a.m. – 2 p.m., Aug. 12
It’s grasshopper season in South Dakota, so stop by the Polaris Spearfish Paint Facility from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday Aug. 12 to get your bike detailed to look like it just rolled off the production line. Victory owners must pre-register HERE for the Rub & Buff.
Victory Motorcycles designs, engineers, manufactures and markets a full line of cruisers, baggers and touring motorcycles. Every Victory model delivers industry-leading performance, comfort, style, storage and reliability. The first Victory was produced on the Fourth of July, 1998, in Spirit Lake, Iowa, where every Victory motorcycle continues to be produced today. Information about Victory motorcycles, apparel and accessories is available at www.victorymotorcycles.com and on Facebook at facebook.com/VictoryMotorcycles
ABOUT POLARIS® INDUSTRIES
Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII) is a global powersports leader with annual 2015 sales of $4.7 billion. Polaris fuels the passion of riders, workers and outdoor enthusiasts with our RANGER®, RZR® and POLARIS GENERAL™ side-by-side off-road vehicles; our SPORTSMAN® and POLARIS ACE® all-terrain off-road vehicles; VICTORY® and INDIAN MOTORCYCLE® midsize and heavyweight motorcycles; SLINGSHOT® moto-roadsters; and Polaris RMK®, INDY®, SWITCHBACK® and RUSH® snowmobiles. Polaris enhances the riding experience with parts, garments and accessories sold under multiple recognizable brands, and has a growing presence in adjacent markets globally with products including military and commercial off-road vehicles, quadricycles, and electricvehicles. www.polaris.com
The painful truth about motorcycles, that most riders are forced to acknowledge at some point, is that two wheels are inherently less stable than four. So, when things go pear-shaped, it can happen in a hurry. In every get-off, the first concern is for the well-being of the rider. Next, the bike gets a thorough look-over. If you’re lucky, it’s ridable. In less-than-ideal circumstances, you’ll need to find a way to get your bike hauled back home.
VerticalScope’s VP of Sales, Jason Brilant, has lived a variation of this scenario first-hand. While riding on a rural highway in the Allegheny National Forest, he encountered gravel on the road and low-sided his 2012 Ducati Monster 1100 EVO at about 50-60 mph and slid into a grassy ditch. Jason and his bike were banged up but not badly broken, and he was able to ride his cosmetically injured Duc the 220 miles back to his Toronto home. Functionally, the only impairment was a broken gear-shift lever that eventually and painfully wore its way through his boot during the ride home.
Brilant’s Monster 1100 EVO before its forced beautification project.
Once back at home, Brilant realized that, while his Monster was basically functionally sound, the cosmetic damage presented him with a pair of options: return the bike to stock or use this unfortunate situation to personalize his bike through the use of aftermarket parts.
The decision was clear once he itemized the list of damaged parts: headlight, left turn signal, left side tank cover, shifter lever, clutch lever, left bar-end mirror, left grip, instrument cover, left-side exhaust canister, and mild frame scraping. In the end, the only damaged component that was returned to stock was the broken shift lever.
Left: Imagine riding home after a crash and being forced to shift with your heel for hours. Right: Although the damage isn’t tremendous, getting the headlight back in original condition would’ve cost $700.
Starting with the bodywork, the Monster received custom tank and fender set from a forum member on Ducatimonster.org for $670. Ducati replacement parts would’ve totalled $1,174. (Don’t forget to check out forums when repairing crash damage, particularly if you’re looking for OEM parts. Often, owners will remove these items when a bike is being customized or converted for track use.) Since they are custom painted OEM parts, the replacement was a simple bolt-on. The seat cover also displays a snazzy number plate design along with the dark grey pearl blue metallic. (Yeah, it looks black in the photos though it’s said to be really cool in person.) The Bestem USA front fender ($159) is carbon fiber – because Ducatis and carbon fiber go together like MO editors and Batdorf & Bronson coffee. Speaking of carbon fiber, the damaged left silencer ($435) for the Spark Exhaust Technology exhaust was replaced, too.
The Evotech Crash Bobbins are elegant in their simplicity.
The borked clutch lever was updated with an aftermarket item off the rack in Brilant’s local dealership, as was the brake lever. Rizoma Reverse Retro aluminum oval bar-end mirrors ($110) and Rizoma Sport aluminum and rubber grips ($65) finished the hand-control upgrades. The frame strangely ended up scraped on both sides, and the dings need to be sanded and repainted with a Color Rite Aerosol Complete Repair Package ($80) that is color-matched to Ducati red. After a close inspection of the damage and thorough review of the kit’s instructions, Brilant thinks this part of the repair may be beyond his skill set, so he’s trying to find a friend with experience in paint repairs to help him do it right the first time.
Evotech’s Front Fork Spindle Bobbins (left) and Crash Bobbins (right) should protect the Monster if it finds itself sliding across the pavement, again.
In an effort to minimize damage in any future tip over, Brilant installed a set of Evotech Ducati Monster 1100 EVO Crash Bobbins ($106) through the frame. A relatively easy process of swapping the OE engine mount rod with the longer Evotech item has only one tricky part. The engine must be supported with a jack (a small bottle jack will suffice) to keep it from shifting in the frame as one rod is replaced with the other one. With a support under the engine, the exchange is as easy as sliding the stock one out part way, then pushing it clear as the new, longer one slips into place. Once there is 3.5 in. showing on both ends of the rod, the assorted spacers, sliders, and washers are torqued down.
Since the Monster has a hollow front axle, installing the Ducati Monster 1100 EVO Front Fork Spindle Bobbins ($44) is as simple sliding the threaded rod through the axle, assembling the parts in the appropriate position, and torquing the nuts in place. In the event of a future mishap, these two parts should help to minimize the damage to Brilant’s Duc in a slide.
The wiring from the original headlight (left) had to be adapted to the LSL headlight (right).
With the OEM replacement headlight and headlight frame tipping the scales at more than $700, Brilant made the executive decision to push his Monster’s headlight in the direction of a more traditionally roadster style round housing. His sorties on the web resulted in the choice of a LSL Headlight ($95) and the properly-sized LSL Headlight Brackets ($175) for his 1100’s fork tubes – both from Spiegler Performance Parts. Ordering the headlight itself was easy, but getting the right size clamps for the headlight bracket requires accurate measurements of the fork tubes at the point that the headlight will be mounted. In the case of the 1100 EVO, the clamps needed to be 50mm and 52mm to account for the widening of the fork tubes as they approached the lower triple clamp.
Fitting the LSL headlight and brackets to the Monster. Note how the fork tubes narrow towards the top (left), requiring different sized clamps.
(left) When modifying the wiring harness, always solder the connections and protect with heat shrink for durability. (right) The resistors required for the Rizoma LED turn signals are grouped together tucked away out of sight.
While physically mounting the headlight is bolt-on easy, once the right clamps are ordered, the wiring required a little detective work. While having a copy of the factory service manual’s wiring diagram can provide a map of what wires go where, any modification of a motorcycle’s wiring is a perfect time to practice measuring (and testing) twice and cutting once. In addition to grafting the headlight’s wiring into the new shell, the Duc’s front turn signals were being swapped from OEM incandescent units to small, sexy, and very bright Rizoma Zero aluminum-housed LED signals ($54 each). The front signals simply bolted to the hole in the LSL Headlight Bracket, and the resistors necessary to trick the Ducati into thinking it still had filaments in its turn signals were hidden behind the headlight shell.
Details count: The Rizoma Zero turn signals have a protective cover for where the wires exit the mount. The signal fits the LSL bracket like they were from the same manufacturer.
With the OEM headlight nacelle removed, a set of Sato Racing universal brackets were used to mount gauge cluster.
According to Brilant, the unique headlight has garnered lots of compliments about its looks and questions about the source for the parts from other Ducatisti. Well, now the secret’s out.
The end result of Brilant’s Pennsylvania mishap is a Ducati Monster 1100 EVO that not only looks like it has never been crashed, but it also carries some of its owner’s personal flair. All-in-all, an attractive result of one very bad day.
Arminas Jasikonis had been racing the German ADAC championship when he caught the eye of Team Suzuki World MXGP General Manager Stefan Everts, looking for a replacement rider for the injured Ben Townley. Here, the Lithuanian tells his story, from the time his MX career began to his first weeks with the Suzuki factory team.
I started motocross when I was just four years old; actually I got a bike for my birthday that year. The first ride was not such a good one, I was scared of the bike, but after a couple of weeks I was going crazy for it and I just wanted to ride. At that time, I still had training wheels so I could not fall over and of course all I did was ride my bike. It had always been my dad’s dream to race motocross, but we were not a rich family and it was not working for him. So after some time, he made some money and got me a small bike. In 2001, I rode my first race when I was just five years old.
When I was 12, I made the move to Estonia, where I was living and training with Avo Leok. I went to school there for a year to learn Russian, but I always wanted to become a pro motocross rider. So I entered the 85cc European Championship. It was a good first season for me. Unfortunately, at the end of it I broke my leg. However, I still managed to finish third overall that year. Then after two more years of training in Estonia, we moved to Belgium.
Now I have been living in Belgium for three years, training professionally and trying to get to the top. I just wanted to make it to the top. When my manager told me that Stefan Everts was interested in me, I could not believe it, it was crazy! It was all finally happening for me. I could not believe it until I rode the first time with the Suzuki RM-Z450. Then it became a reality, I was a Suzuki Factory rider.
Little by little, training by training, I became very impressed with the bike. It’s so light and powerful at the same time and the suspension really works. I could not believe it. It was such a big difference for me. My weeks with the team have been good so far, everyone is really nice and truly professional. For the first time, I’m working with so many people around me, guys for the suspension, for the engine, … but, I actually don’t need many changes. I’m so happy with the Suzuki RM-Z450 and haven’t got anything to complain about.
My first MXGP race under the Suzuki was at the MXGP of Czech Republic. I’m now really looking forward to this weekend’s race at Lommel. I’m excited and I, for sure, want to do well.
Press Release from Triumph: Triumph Motorcycles America is expanding the Racing Partners Purchase Program to now include model year 2016 Daytona 675Rs, now available for purchase at a reduced price for participation in any national amateur or professionally sanctioned race series.
The Triumph Daytona 675R, with its powerful triple motor, is the ultimate showroom to track motorcycle. The Öhlins TTX rear suspension and NIX30 fork cartridges, paired with Brembo Monobloc calipers and a Triumph quick-shifter standard, create a bike that’s ready to take on the fiercest competition on the track with minimal changes needed.
The expanded Racing Partners Purchase Program will now offer model year 2016 Daytona 675Rs for $10,750. With the purchase of a motorcycle through this program, Triumph parts will be offered at special pricing of 50% off retail.
Triumph’s Performance Bonus Fund will still be available to the top performing Triumph riders. Racers accepted into the Triumph Racing Partners Purchase Program and competing in MotoAmerica or any Amateur National Series will be eligible to receive the following MotoAmerica Amateur National Series will be eligible to receive the following contingency bonus:
1st $10,000 1 st $125
2nd $3,000 2 nd $75
3rd $1,500 3 rd $50
Pole Position $1,000
Race Start $400
With the purchase of a Triumph Daytona 675R through this program, competitors will also be eligible to ‘Race for Free’. Racers competing in any Amateur National Road Racing series will receive reimbursement of their race entries during the 2016 season.
As a stipulation of the expanded program, a purchase of a Triumph Daytona 675R will be required for acceptance. To be considered, please send a racing resume to email@example.com. The application period for this program will end September 30, 2016.
After his struggles at Aprilia in MotoGP resulted in his separation from the team last year, Marco Melandri has found himself a new gig. He will race as Chaz Davies teammate next year on the Aruba.it Racing Ducati team. Melandri is a former 250cc GP World champ who has excellent, natural speed, but has been known […]... Click Here for Article
Press Release from Harley-Davidson: Harley-Davidson, Inc. (NYSE:HOG) second-quarter 2016 diluted earnings per share increased 7.6 percent to $1.55 compared to diluted EPS of $1.44 in the same period in 2015. Net income was $280.4 million on consolidated revenue of $1.86 billion compared to net income of $299.8 million on consolidated revenue of $1.82 billion in last year’s second quarter.
Harley-Davidson worldwide retail motorcycle sales in the second quarter were down 1.9 percent on weak U.S. industry results. Harley-Davidson retail motorcycle sales in the U.S. were down 5.2 percent compared to the year-ago quarter, with the overall U.S. industry down 8.6 percent for the same period. Harley-Davidson U.S. market share for the quarter was 49.5 percent, an increase of 2.0 points over the same period in 2015. International retail sales increased by 4.3 percent over the prior year quarter.
“We are pleased with our ability to gain market share in the U.S.,” said Matt Levatich, President and Chief Executive Officer, Harley-Davidson, Inc. “Competitiveness in the U.S. remains intense, and our demand-driving investments are showing traction.”
Through six months, Harley-Davidson’s 2016 net income was $530.9 million on consolidated revenue of $3.61 billion compared to six-month 2015 net income of $569.7 million on consolidated revenue of $3.50 billion. Six-month 2016 diluted EPS was $2.91, up 7.4 percent from $2.71 in the year-ago period. Worldwide retail motorcycle sales were down 0.6 percent from the same period in 2015. International sales were up 4.4 percent, offset by a 3.4 percent decline in U.S. retail sales.
Given market softness in the U.S., the continued competitive environment and global economic uncertainty, the company is taking the precautionary step of lowering its full-year shipment guidance. The company now expects to ship 264,000 to 269,000 motorcycles to dealers worldwide in 2016. This action is consistent with the company’s long-standing commitment to manage supply in line with demand.
“While our investments to grow product awareness and ridership globally are beginning to take hold in a number of markets, current conditions in the U.S. and economic headwinds in other parts of the world combine to raise caution for us as we continue to focus our strategy to drive demand and deliver strong returns to shareholders,” said Levatich.
Retail Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Sales
Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) Region
Asia Pacific Region
Retail sales in EMEA were up 8.2 percent in the second quarter and 8.4 percent for the first six months behind a strong reception to the new 2016 motorcycle models and increased demand driving investments. Asia Pacific retail sales were up 0.8 percent in the quarter and up 3.4 percent for the first six months compared to 2015. Canada retail sales grew 2.0 percent in the quarter and 7.2 percent for the first six months versus a year ago as the market continued to respond favorably to the company’s transition to direct distribution.
Motorcycles and Related Products Segment Results
$ in thousands
Motorcycle Shipments (vehicles)
Parts & Accessories
Gross Margin Percent
Operating Margin Percent
Revenue from motorcycles and related products was up versus the prior quarter behind increased motorcycle shipments. Operating margin as a percent of revenue decreased versus the prior year primarily as a result of lower than expected gross margin driven by unfavorable mix, currency and manufacturing expenses.
Financial Services Segment Results
$ in thousands
Financial services operating income was higher in the second quarter compared to the year ago period driven by a $9.3 million gain generated from a full securitization.
Harley-Davidson is revising its full-year guidance for motorcycle shipments and now expects to ship 264,000 to 269,000 motorcycles to dealers worldwide in 2016, which is approximately down 1 percent to up 1 percent from 2015. The company had previously provided full-year shipment guidance of 269,000 to 274,000 motorcycles. In the third quarter, the company expects to ship 48,500 to 53,500 motorcyclescompared to 53,472 motorcycles shipped in the year-ago period. The company now expects full-year 2016 operating margin of approximately 15 to 16 percent for the Motorcycles segment, compared to prior guidance of 16 to 17 percent. The company continues to expect 2016 capital expenditures for Harley-Davidson, Inc. of $255 million to $275 million.
Income Tax Rate
For the first half of 2016, Harley-Davidson’s effective tax rate was 32.7 percent compared to 34.9 percent in 2015. The lower rate is due to the successful closure of various tax audits. The company now expects its full-year 2016 effective tax rate will be approximately 33 percent.
Cash and marketable securities totaled $869.7 million at the end of the second quarter, compared to $1.30 billion in the year-ago quarter. During the first six months of 2016, Harley-Davidson generated $456.3 million of cash from operating activities compared to $613.9 million for the same period in 2015.
The company paid a cash dividend of $0.35 per share for the second quarter for a total of $0.70 for the first six months of 2016. On a discretionary basis, the company repurchased 2.6 million shares of Harley-Davidson common stock for $118.9 million. In the second quarter of 2016, there were approximately 181.3 million weighted-average diluted shares outstanding, compared to approximately 208.6 million shares in the year-ago quarter. At the end of the second quarter, 23.0 million shares remained on board-approved share repurchase authorizations.
Press Release from Mustang: Once again, motorcyclists are beginning to converge on the Black Hills of South Dakota for the annual Sturgis Rally. From Mustang’s huge rally rig at Black Hills Harley-Davidson to their two billboards on I-90 to their factory reps at the J&P Cycles store on Lazelle in the heart of downtown Sturgis, Mustang will be all through the Black Hills during this year’s rally.
Stop by one of Mustang’s two locations where you can check out Mustang’s incredible selection of seat styles for Harley-Davidson, Indian, Victory, Kawasaki, Triumph, Can-Am, Honda, Ducati, BMW, Yamaha and Suzuki.
August 3-13: Mustang Factory reps at J&P Cycles Store 1650 Lazelle Street, downtown Sturgis
Not only will Mustang’s factory-trained reps help you try seats on your bike for the best fit for both you and your passenger but, after you select your perfect replacement seat, they will mount it for you for free. Finally, living up to Mustang’s #1 rating in customer service, they will ship your old seat back home for you for free while you ride the Black Hills!
Plus, Mustang is a proud sponsor of the following “must see” events:
The RSD Crew is going big for Sturgis. We’ll be Super Hooligan racing at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip with Indian Motorcycle®, stocking parts and apparel at the RSD Moto Shed at Black Hills HD and cooling off in the Pool with Bell Helmets and the launch of our new XDIAVEL Ducati at the Pappy Hoel Campground.
Opening Wednesday August 3rd, the RSD MotoShed at Black Hills Harley Davidson will feature the best of RSD bikes, parts and apparel from Turbine Air Cleaners to Bell Helmets, leather Colt Vests to Boss Seats and everything in between for your bike and body. The RSD MotoShed is in place to take care of bike customization with an onsite product installer working every day of the rally.
Starting Sunday evening August 7th the latest custom RSD Indian Scout will be showcased at Michael Lichter’s Skin & Bones Motorcycle and Art Exhibit at the Buffalo Chip near the East Gate. Observe a harmonious marriage of inner power and outer beauty while you take a walk through this one-time collection of tattoo-inspired motorcycles and art on display throughout the week. You’ll be able to closely examine each of their works as they sit atop elevated pedestals that offer an unencumbered view from every angle.
Tuesday afternoon you are invited to come cool off at the Bell Helmet Pool Party with your friends and Carey Hart, while Ducati launches the RSD XDIAVEL. Bikini contest, charity raffle for the “Good Ride” and prizes from 1-5pm at The Pappy Hoel Campground & Pool.
Wednesday we’ll be throwing down the fire and pulling out all the stops to headline the Moto Stampede with Super Hooligan flat track racing before Reverend Horton Heat and Five Finger Death Punch take the stage at the Buffalo Chip. Race classes for the evening include Run What Ya Brung, Vintage, Hand Shifter, Super Hooligan and a purse paying Pro Single/DTX. The races, sponsored by Indian Motorcycle, bring back the excitement and surprise of traditional heritage racing with the added punch of music and drag racing. The newly built dirt flat track at the Buffalo Chip circles the infield between the Wolfman Jack Stage and the Top Shelf Bar bringing racing action to center stage with prime VIP viewing. The riders are scheduled to take to the track Aug. 10 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. All brands of bikes are welcome to race. Watch the RSD & Indian Super Hooligan Tour Video! Interested in joining the racing and action? For more information and to register click HERE or go tohttp://www.rolandsands.com/blog/673/sturgis-moto-stampede.
RSD MotoShed Location
Black Hills Harley Davidson
I-90 Exit 55
Rapid City, SD
Wed Aug 3 – Sat Aug 13, Open 8am-6pm
Michael Lichter’s Skin & Bones Motorcycle & Art Exhibit
Roland Sands Design is a motorcycle, product and apparel company that has its roots in racing, custom bike building and design. Our inspiration comes from a high performance background that blends the love of two wheels with the desire to create unique products. We live the two wheeled life and our crew is a diverse collection of road racers, off-road, dirt track, super moto and custom bike builders and riders. It’s this diversity that allows us to work with the best in the industry on a wide variety of projects. Follow all bike builds, new products and the life and times of the Roland Sands Design crew at www.rolandsands.com.
Kawasaki is recalling 2016 Z125 Pro models because of potential oil leakage from the rear shock absorber. The recall affects 1,282 units manufactured before June 9, 2016.
According to documents released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the rear shock may not have sufficient sealing due to the use of an improper grease during the manufacturing process. This may cause oil to leak from the shock during operation, reducing suspension performance and increasing the risk of a crash.
The problem was first reported in April by a Japanese distributor. Kawasaki examined units in its warehouses in Thailand and discovered signs of oil on the piston rod of the shock absorber on some units. Kawasaki then reached out to the shock supplier requesting an investigation.
In May, the supplier reported oil may have accumulated outside of the oil seal and added an oil wiping step into its assembly process. This was not good enough for Kawasaki which discovered another Z125 model that still had signs of oil on the shock even after the new process. A second investigation from the supplier in June discovered a grease used in the manufacturing process affected the oil seal. The supplier switched to a different grease which eliminated the problem. On July 1, Kawasaki initiated recall procedures.
Kawasaki dealers will inspect recalled units and replace the rear shock absorbers.
Harley-Davidson is recalling 27,232 model year 2016 touring, Softail and CVO motorcycles because of a problem that can prevent the clutch from disengaging after being parked for an extended period of time. If this sounds familiar it’s because Harley-Davidson has had similar clutch master cylinder recalls in 2015 and 2014. It’s an annual tradition that Harley-Davidson is hoping to put a stop to.
The latest recall affects the 2016 Electra Glide Ultra Classic, Electra Glide Ultra Classic Low, Ultra Limited, Ultra Limited Low, Street Glide, Street Glide Special, CVO Street Glide, Road Glide, Road Glide Special, Road Glide Ultra, Police Electra Glide, Fat Boy S, Softail Slim S and CVO Softail Pro Street Breakout.
According to documents released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a chemical reaction in the sealed clutch system may generate gas bubbles that can prevent the clutch from disengaging. Owners of affected motorcycles may notice a large amount of clutch lever free play when trying to disengage the clutch for the first time after the bike had been sitting parked for a while.
The problem was first noticed in May after a regular follow-up on the 2015 recall. While reviewing the data, Harley-Davidson’s Recall Investigation Committee noticed a spike in clutch-related warranty claims for 2016 models. These models used clutch components that were supposed to have been subjected to various processes to avoid the repeat of the previous issues. In June, an investigation discovered those processes may not have been effective. On June 17, Harley-Davidson began the recall process for 2016 models.
Harley-Davidson notes motorcycles that had undergone the previous recall in 2015 are fine; the remedy for that recall used an entirely different process using distilled water to wash out debris, an isopropyl alcohol spray, system bleed and rebuild kit was used on models in the field.
The recall affects models produced from July 17, 2015 to March 31, 2016. Motorcycles built April 1 and beyond use clutch master cylinders that were treated to an ultrasonic washing process that should eliminate the chemicals that are reacting and generating gas bubbles.
Harley-Davidson dealers will inspect recalled motorcycles for gas in the clutch master cylinder. If gas is found, dealers will flush the clutch system and rebuild the clutch master cylinder
Why do you love your motorcycle? You do love your motorcycle, don’t you? Otherwise you’d get rid of it and find something else, right? Even for those of you with many bikes in your stable, there’s one bike that you really adore. That adoration may not be deserved or rational (or even explicable), but it’s real, and it’s probably based on one thing that bike does better than any other. Its superpower.
As I slither through the second decade of my moto-journalism career, I’ve tested more motorcycles than I can remember riding. In fact, when Trizzle reposts one of my stories I wrote when I was the captain of the tempest-tossed ship that was MO, it’s like I’m reading them for the first time. I’m surprised at how little I remember of these models, but I’m unsurprised at how the OEM representatives in the stories are so cheerfully certain of how very, very special that particular model is. “The 2006 FZ-1 will change the standard-motorcycle market as we know it! From this day forward, let us shout from the ramparts and proclaim our great victory! The FZ1 is here! The FZ1 is here! THE FZ1 IS HERE!”
Yes, it has a superpower. No, really.
Ten years down the road, all I remember is that some communications-department underling unwittingly authorized an open bar at the hosting hotel, funding my graduate-level research in exotic single-malt scotches. “Glargmoragie? That sounds delicious! I’ll try one of those, too!” The complex fragrances and flavors of those $25-a-glass scotches still linger in my brain’s pleasure centers. The nature of the FZ1 I rode? All I remember is the snatchy off-idle throttle response and feeling unusually sluggish that morning.
But don’t be sad, Yamaha fans. The media event for the FZ-09 was more memorable than the hospitality, even if Yamaha’s press guy was careful about letting me talk to the bartender unsupervised (“So what’s the oldest you have? Anything from the 19th century?”). That bike has a superpower: it’s got an unmatched character-per-dollar ratio and a half-crazed hooligan edge. It’s not for everybody, but when people like the FZ-09, they really like it.
Motorcycles need not be exciting or edgy to have a superpower. Honda‘s 599 is as bland a commuter as can be, but people loved those things, maybe because it was sort of rare in the U.S.A., but likely because it’s so companionable, like a small, floppy dog that just likes being around its owner, no matter where he’s going. “Oh boy!” it says, tongue lolling, “we’re going to ride to work in the rain! Again!”
If you are a sexy cutie And you got a big ole booty Come on baby, come on dance With too much booty in yo’ pants —Soundmaster T
Sometimes, though, a superpower really is just super power. Why do so many people love their ‘Busas and ZX-14Rs? Why did people fall all over themselves to buy a Kawasaki H2, plunking down $25,000 sight unseen? Because those bikes are really, really fast, way faster than any mentally stable individual needs for street (or racetrack, for 99.99% of us mortals) riding. As the Grateful Dead said, “Too much of everything is just enough,” and let’s not forget that Joseph Stalin may or may not have coined the phrase, “quantity has a quality all its own.”
But not every superbike is loved just for being super-powerful. The third generation of crushingly powerful liter-class superbikes that started cropping up in the mid aughts, like the ZX-10R and the GSX-R1000, offered reliable performance previously only available to World Superbike and MotoGP riders for the price of a base-model Nissan Sentra. But that performance came with a price – a reputation for being, let’s say, challenging to ride. Is the 2004 ZX-10R’s superpower that it accelerates like an F-18? Nah, lots of motorcycles do that. The superpower is that it makes you feel like a superhero every time you complete a trackday or Sunday ride without calling an insurance adjuster. “Good kitty,” I say before I board a second-gen GSX-R1000, its intake whining menacingly. “Nice kitty. No highsides today, kitty.”
Even cruisers and touring machines have superpowers. Riding behind a competent (if loopy) rider on a Gold Wing reminds me of one of those Jerry Springer episodes where a morbidly obese woman starts twerking with a small man. Other than requiring more room to maneuver, both woman and ‘Wing go just as well on the dance floor or twisty road as their svelter cousins. And don’t tell me you’ve never had a surprise dice session with a Harley rider that made you stop, pull over and make sure your tires were properly inflated.
If Gabe can wheelie it, anybody can.
But we know the superpower that some rides have. Nobody buys a show-stopping custom Harley or MV Agusta (the kind that comes with a wristwatch) because it’s practical, reliable or even remotely rideable. They buy them because they attract attention, in other words, a ______-magnet, where you can fill in the blank with a word that was once only used to describe cats. I’m pretty sure I have never owned such a vehicle, two or four-wheeled variety, although a homeless woman with a remarkably long mole hair did once ask me for a ride on my 1982 Yamaha Maxim 550.
Which brings us to my motorcycle, a Suzuki SV650. Its superpower? I can ride it to my heart’s content without guilty feelings about spending money I should be stuffing into my kid’s college fund. I’m uninterested in the p-magnetic aspects of a chromed and clattering Harley or a sonic-booming sportbike. Similarly, you’re uninterested in the Ant-Man-like humility of my SV. But at least now you know why I wear Suzuki Underoos.
Is this Sean Alexander?
Gabe Ets-Hokin von Sacher-Masoch is an Austrian writer and journalist, who gained renown for his romantic stories of Galician life. The term masochism is derived from his name.
Word all over the worldwide web is that augmented-reality helmet startup Skully will be closing its doors and leaving its investors, 50-some employees, and 3,000 pre-orderers on the hook. TechCrunch reports Skully’s CEO walked away from the Silicon Valley company 11 days ago after a buy-out deal fell through, and Skully’s owners have reportedly determined that shuttering the company is the best way to proceed. More to come…