Saturday, June 30, 2007

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Hardware: Supermoto Catch Cans

These days, just about every supermoto track whether amateur or pro requires some kind of supermoto catch can to be mounted to the bike when out on the track. If your track doesn't, it really should. Your off-road bike has fluid run-off and overflow tubes that run out and drip from the bike. In the dirt, there's not much of a hazard concern. On supermoto pavement that fluid can cause a crash and/or a fire and we've seen more than one crash and fireball caused by no or improper installation of a fluid catch device on the track. Little can ruin your race day more than having your bike or you catch on fire. A suitable catch can system is among the top 10 things on your supermoto parts list.

There are 3 readily available commercial catch cans on the market today for supermoto bikes. I should say that there are 4, but we're excluding the home-made Redbull or Rockstar can.

The first catch system that hit the market that we know of is the Supermoto Engineering Catch Can. Not really a can at all, the SME Catch system incorporates an aluminum anodized canister with 4 to 5 holes where your carb and other lines are secured. The part can then be mounted to your bike or left hanging. A larger reservoir tube extends out the other end of the canister and is often mounted to your swing arm or subframe.

UFO Plastics have had what they call a "hydraulic reservoir" on the market in Europe for a few years. The UFO Catch Can is made of plastic and mounts to the front your engine cage, out of the way and clean. Hoses, tubes and mounting hardware are provided for common bike applications.

Graves Motorsports recently created their own version of the Supermoto Catch Can in an all aluminum system with a large reservoir that tucks in behind the carberator. Graves tends to make parts made specifically for Yamahas, but this kit will mount to other brands of bikes as well.

All of these systems work well. The Supermoto Engineering Catch Can is probably th emost flexible and compact though some riders complain that the reservoir tube can be a little on the small side. Any of these systems will fill up after one race, so you'll need to empty them frequently or they'll leak.

All of these systems are available and in stock at Motostrano.com.

AMA: Behind the Scenes Photos Team Rockstar

Recent photos from Miller Motorsports Park in the paddock with Team Rockstar Supermoto.







Monday, June 25, 2007

AMA: Miller Motorsports Wes Rowe Photos


It was hot as hell out in Salt Lake for Team Ball of Fire this past weekend. So hot that even Ward's weekend was dampened by the heat. In spite of our rig going up in a ball of flames on the way to the race, Team Rockstar Motostrano still managed to put on a great Supermoto show this weekend. Our boy Micky Dymond kicked a$% too.

Here's some fresh prints from the Wes Rowe Nikon artillery:







www.motostrano.com

Friday, June 22, 2007

Illegal UK Track Can Stay

A racetrack at the centre of a long-running planning dispute has won a reprieve.

Planners wanted the track, at WildTracks off-road activity park near Newmarket, to be ripped up because they had not given permission for it.

People living near the track, which lies between Chippenham and Kennett, complained about noise levels.

But Ruth Kelly, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, has ruled that the track can stay. She has imposed noise limits and other conditions intended to cut disturbance to villagers.

Her ruling follows a public inquiry held earlier in the year.

As well as being allowed to keep the track, used mainly for kart racing, WildTracks can keep earth banks round part of the track.

In her findings, Ms Kelly said: "A balance can be struck in all the circumstances between the enjoyment of participants in the outdoor events and minimising nuisance to others."

Conditions include a ban on Supermoto motorcycle racing and car "drifting" - where cars do tyre-squealing manoeuvres.

Time limits and noise limits have been set on use of the track, built nearly four years ago.

AMA: Team Ball of Fire

Motostrano has been sponsoring pro Supermoto riders since the re-birth of Supermoto in the USA 5 years ago. Back in 2003, I can distinctly recall what a boot strap effort it was, working with Vertemati and our star rider Leo "Pucho" Bagnis who was always in the top five and got on the podium in Columbus. No sponsors, no high end trailer, we paid our way to the podium with dollars and lots of hard work. It got just a little easier as the years accrued. We've had the opportunity to work with some great names, including World Champion Gerald Delepine (on Pole at Irwindale and damn fast in Vegas), Johnny Murphree, Travis Marks (always in the top ten) and now the crew of Cary Hart. In those times, Motostrano camped under its own tent, worked out of a pick-up and trailer (a luxury item), brought in all the gear, the bikes and the riders. One of our motto's has always been that we race what we sell.

We've always kind of been one of the underdog teams in AMA Supermoto too. We've never had any factory or any other big sponsorship and we've pretty much had to pay our own way for everything. We'll hook up often last minute with a wild card rider that will sneak up on all the fast guys and wind up on the podium. Max Gazzaratta was a great example of this, causing plenty of "Who the F*%K was that" comments on the track while being passed by Max. We've had a few podiums in our past and we've always been in the top ten in team points and often top five.

This year, all the elements of the universe alligned in just the right way to build a larger-than-that team effort. Motostrano's name positioned strategically with some big names from the MX world: Cary Hart, Rockstar Energy Drink, Tyler Evans. Good stuff when you're a small little retail store. Motostrano plunked down some heavy cash for the team. We drew in some heavy sponsorship too in the way of Supermoto wheels supplied by Alpina, the maker of the trickest tubeless spoked wheels around; and brakes from our partners at Moto-Master. Bikes were lined up, tires from Dunlop and all the rest of the stuff (sliders and catch cans from Supermoto Engineering) that goes into creating a mobile race set-up ready to conquer the world.

Once you get involved with some big time names- dudes that are used to the jetset mx lifestyle of big sponsorship, supercross and the 'action sports' business, it's not all peaches and cream, that's all I can say. Just two races into it, it seems to me that "The Show" can often overshadow the competitive aspect of things and suddenly the low-budget rider effort, that lone guy with his girlfriend helping out, camped out at the far end of the pits with no logo on his canopy, no stickers on his bike, his bike propped up on a center stand with a grungy old gas can standing next to it, next to an old Toyota truck, looks really appealing. And that guy is a hell of a lot more appreciative if you give him a discount on some brake pads or a tire groover, so he can have a slightly better chance of keeping up with the fast guys.

Don't get me wrong, it's really cool to see all the attention the Rockstar camp gets in the pits from fans and to have our name "associated" with that gives a certain sense of satisfaction, if there is an association.

Well, our big plans for 2007 literally seemed to have burned up in a great ball of fire on I-15 this year. As I read the news story forwarded to me from John Tai Wednesday morning, it took a few minutes for the info to really sink in, before I realized that the article was telling me that all 8 fully modified race motorcycles, 8 sets of Alpina Supermoto wheels, a gob load of slicks, tire warmers, wheel stands, riding gear, canopies, bike stands, tire groovers and all the rest of the items that go into a race rig just disappeared off the face of the planet.

You feel a little cheated at first, almost like having your stuff stolen by some a$$hole out of your van. Suddenly that big presence at the track, the marketing machine of parts and photos and logos, just went away.

In a true display of how generous and thoughtful a lot of people involved in US Supermoto are - there was no shortage of offers to help out with gear and parts to help get the team back on track. This I think is also a sign of how well Cary Hart and the rest of the team are thought of in the pits.

As I look at it all a few days later, I'm thinking this is really a kind of cleansing phenomenon. No one was hurt. Back up bikes have been arranged, spare parts have been borrowed. Perhaps this will bring the team back to a more grass-roots energy that is really so much more appealing than the high end rockstar approach, to me at least. The show... or... The Race, will go on.

We'll see.

More Bikinis at the Track Supermoto

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Hardware: Akrapovic Releases Aprilia SXV Exhaust


Akrapovic has released a new Full Race and Street exhaust system for the Akrapovic SXV 450 and 550 motorcycles. The exhaust will retail $1028.00 and will be available for shipping in the fall at www.motostrano.com

According to the company, "The Akrapovic Racing and hexagonal muffler Evolution are their top systems for this model, and are designed for riders who know how to get the most out of them. Their advantages can be clearly seen from the dyno measurements and clearly felt on the racetrack." The muffler comes equipped with an approved spark arrester.

Power & Torque: "These systems allow the motor to breathe fully throughout
the rpm range. The most noticeable improvements are the bike’s stronger and
quicker response from low revs right up to the top end and the overrev range, where the power increase is extreme. The already powerful motorcycle gains in
power, but the power application is smoother, making the bike’s brute force
easier to control ‡ just what you need for enduro racing. The Akrapovic Racing
and Evolution exhaust systems also deliver a major increase in torque
throughout the entire rpm range, especially in the lower mid-range and the top
of the range."

The muffler for the Akrapovic Evolution system is the unique Hexagonal
offroad design muffler, while the Racing features the oval offroad design. The
conical header tube is stainless steel (Racing) or titanium (Evolution). It is attached to the conical SS/titanium link pipe with a sleeve joint secured with asilicon-shielded spring. The link pipe is attached to the muffler in the same manner. The inlet cap is titanium, while the outlet cap for both versions is carbon fiber. The muffler outer sleeve is made of titanium (Evolution) or stainless steel (Racing). There is also an option available with a combination of Racing tubes and Evolution muffler. The system is attached to the bike using Akrapovic carbon-fiber clamps. The system includes an approved spark arrester, which is indicated with a laser engraving on the muffler.

The exhaust will retail $1028.00 and will be available for shipping in the fall at www.motostrano.com

Bikinis at the Track


Recent shot from a Bikini Contest at Infineon Raceway.
Photo by Wes Rowe

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Hardware: Supermoto Brakes Explained

supermoto brakes

In the dirt, off-road bikes generally don't need much in the way of brake upgrades. Or if you're like me, where braking in the dirt means just falling off the bike, who needs brakes? The fastest MX bikes in the business will rarely have any real upgrade parts beyond something like a wave rotor, sticky pads and a brake line. But take that same bike and give it seventeens and road-rubber and the rules start to change real fast.

First, a bike that was built by the OEM to have more use out of the rear brake system is reversed, with greater braking power needed right up front for precise steering and maximum stopping power. Now, that little single or dual piston caliper and 220mm vented brake rotor up front just won't cut it.

A look at a complete supermoto brakes system can be broken down into the various parts of the brake system and in order of importance:

Supermoto Brake Rotor
Brake Pads
Supermoto Brake Caliper
Brake Line
Master Cylinder
Brake Fluid

Supermoto Brake Rotors. The stock rotors on most OEM MX bikes are low end, heavy stainless steel products mostly stamped out in Taiwan for the oems. Since your supermoto is going to be relying on the front brake for most of its stopping power, the rotor size needs to be increased both in overall diameter and thickness. This larger rotor is there to give a greater contact patch for the caliper and pads and dissipate heat quicker, giving you consistent stopping power all through your race or ride. Virtually all except one of the aftermarket Supermoto rotors made uses a wave or wavelike design at the outer ring of the rotor to simultaneously cool quicker and grab more. Motomaster, Brembo, Braking, EBC, use a wave like design with Bering er being the exception, which uses a solid smoothed iron rotor.

All of the upgrade supermoto brake rotors available are a full-floating design. This means that the outer rings are loosely connected rather than solidly with rotor buttons, allowing both to self-center in the caliper, reduce drag and stay cooler.

Upgrading your bike's front rotor is the first step in a supermoto brake upgrade. For street duty, it's common to just stop there and this is perfectly fine for most types of street riding. If you're going to use your stock caliper with a 320mm rotor, you'll need an adaptor to accommodate the now much larger rotor. Motomaster and EBC both offer great street "kits", a rotor and adaptor, that provide the right rotor and caliper relocator bracket to mount up to your wheel and caliper with no spacing issues. The street kits will perform fine for most types of sportsman or non-pro racing duty as well. Just realize that towards the end of the race your brakes will start to fade as they heat up and lose power. Still, if you're used to the little MX rotor on your bike, you'll notice a lot more stopping power on your SM bike with a new 320mm rotor installed.

As a side note- once you get this rotor installed on your bike, you'll notice that removing and installing your front wheel just got a lot harder. If you happen to be running a 16.5 inch front rim on your bike, depending on the caliper you have, clearance will be an issue and more time will be needed to angel your wheel in place without scuffing up your rim. Same goes for the rear for that matter and it's one of those things you'll need to live with if you're going to live with Supermoto, though some caliper makers (namely Motomaster) have designed their calipers to compensate for this less clearance by making a caliper design that is more compact.

Brake Pads. With your new rotor bolted up, along with that relocator, your next order of business should be Brake pads. A simple and comparatively inexpensive upgrade, you'll want to look at and test out a few kinds of sintered or HH brake pads. These pads give higher rates of friction and depending on which rotor you go with will have varying results. We recommend testing out 2 or 3 types of pads to compare the feel of each. Changing out your brake pads after a ride or two is quick and easy and doing this comparison research will give you the ability to set your bike up with the right amount of feel and power.

Brake Line. Another low cost upgrade involves your brake line. Your stock brake line is really a reinforced hose that wasn't designed for much use in the front. This hose will expand during heavy use and will noticeably rob braking power away. The solution is to get a stainless steel braided line, which is essentially a hose wrapped in braided stainless steel to create a barrier from expanding under the pressure of your hydraulic brake system.

Calipers. For the average street rider, or low budget racer, this is where most riders stop in a brake system upgrade. If you want real brakes, the next part to look at is going to be your brake caliper, the clamp that bites down on that rotor and will do a lot of the work of slowing your bike down. Your stock caliper, again, is a light duty deal that was designed for the most part to be used in conjunction with your rear brake once in a while. They're generally made out of cast aluminum with 2 small pistons inside and don't dissipate heat very well at all.

Upgraded supermoto calipers are typically a 4 piston design, with 4 large pistons clamping down on those brake pads all at the same time. Calipers like Motomaster or Brembo are generally CNC machined for weight savings and better at heat distribution, and they're easier to clean. Beringer is one of the few brake companies offering a 6 piston brake system for supermoto. Beringer is also a pioneer in this because they're calipers are all designed as solid unit, rather than a modular caliper and bracket design. Most calipers, Motomaster and Brembo included use a single caliper design, with the actual mounting points designed as a bracket. I don't know of there's any real structural advantage to this, but we assume that the modular design creates more stress on the individual parts, not to mention, more opportunity to have something improperly torqued during installation. Nevertheless, we feel that the Motomaster system really offers the best bang for the buck, in a tried and tested system, with easy parts availability and excellent stopping power. Brembo brakes, on the other hand is one of the few companies to follow the lead of modern sport bikes by implementing a radial mount design, giving the brake caliper a more solid mounting set-up to the fork.

Master Cylinder. Like the rest of your MX bike's brake system, your master cylinder just wasn't designed for the high stress, as well as increased fluid volume needed of your brake system. A hydraulic master cylinder is really a sealed pump that pushes down air-tight fluid through your line with pressure to move and release your calipers pistons onto the pad. Your larger pistons now could use some extra pressure getting them to stop that greater mass and the whole thing needs to act more efficiently and cooler. Your stock master cylinder will actually work in a pinch on most calipers. The Braking caliper for instance basically requires a new master cylinder or almost no pressure will come to the caliper.

The makers of upgraded master cylinders all come to the table with pretty much the same intent. Better materials used than stock, larger fluid capacity, better feel on the lever, lighter weight. Magura, Brembo and Beringer offer high end master cylinders in the 13 to 16mm range for Supermoto. Anything larger than 16mm is really not going to be applicable to your supermoto. 20mm master cylinders are designed for streetbikes using two 4 piston calipers up front. Your bike is nearly half the weight and has half the pistons in the brake system. Brembo and Magura are the most commonly used, with Beringer and ISR really kicking it up a notch with a more compact system.

Fluid. You'll need to invest in some high quality DOT 4 or even DOT 5 brake fluid for your new brake system. We recommend Motul RBF600. It has a high boiling point and cools quickly. It's very important to keep your brake system as cool as possible, since heat is really the enemy of a brake system and the fluid in your brake lines will literally boil if all the parts aren't working correctly.

The above outlines the main points for upgrading your MX bike to Supermoto Race or street duty. Note, that it is very rare that you'll need to do much with your rear brake system. Your rear brake is going to be used a lot less than the parts were designed for. You'll use the back break to assist with backing in and very hard braking. There are no real supermoto specific caliper upgrades and the most you'll want to look at here is a rear brake rotor and better compound pads.

AMA: Miller Motorsports Preview

HONDA SUMMIT OF SPEED HOLDS SUPERMOTO CHALLENGE
Local Rider Cassidy Anderson Looks to Continue His Hometown Success

PICKERINGTON, Ohio (June 19, 2007) – AMA Supermoto slides into Miller Motorsports Park, a state-of-the-art, multi-configurational road racing circuit located in Tooele, Utah this weekend, June 23, for The Plaza Cycle AMA Supermoto Challenge, round three of the 10-round AMA Supermoto Championship. The event is part of the Honda Summit of Speed weekend and joins the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited for three days of non-stop motorcycle racing action.

Supermoto is one of the fastest growing forms of professional motorcycle racing. Supermoto racers combine skills from a variety of racing styles. Track layouts are unique, as they feature both right and left hand turns on paved and dirt surfaces. Track designs include the Parts Unlimited Urbancross which requires broad racing skills. Combined, these elements make this sport one of the most thrilling disciplines of motorcycle racing for both spectators and racers.

This will be the second year the AMA Supermoto Championship has visited the Miller Motorsports facility. In 2006 Honda’s Jeff Ward and Yamaha’s Doug Henry split race wins in the Supermoto class doubleheader, while Husqvarna’s David Baffeleuf scored the win in the Supermoto Unlimited class, and Honda’s Cassidy Anderson of Provo, Utah ran away with the Supermoto Lites win.

Anderson, who resides in nearby Provo, has moved up to the premier class and is currently sitting in 11th place in the AMA Red Bull Supermoto class standings. At the season opener in St Louis, Anderson finished a credible third place. However, Anderson crashed while leading in round two and ended up near the rear of the field.

Anderson hopes to rebound in Utah. ”I feel confident going into the race this weekend,” said Anderson earlier this week. ”I have always ridden well at Miller in local races and at last year’s AMA event. I have been testing and training at the track. I had some bad luck at the last week race, but I am looking forward to regrouping and battling for the win on Saturday.”

”It is great to have a race this close to home. After traveling on the road for so long it is nice to be able to wake up at my own house and drive to the track,” continued Anderson, “This track is really like a second home to me. I am excited and glad that all my friends and family can have the opportunity to come and support me (while) racing.”

Troy Lee Designs Honda rider Jeff Ward leads the AMA Red Bull Supermoto premier class championship over Graves Yamaha’s Mark Burkhart by only 4 points. Both riders have scored wins so far this season.

Factory Aprilia Rip It Energy Racing’s Ben Carlson hopes to continue his winning ways in the AMA PPG Supermoto Unlimited class presented by M&R Products. Carlson, the 2006 class champion has a 15-point lead over Robert Loire of Salem, Wis., and Josh Chisum from Bakersifeld, Calif., both tied with 35 points.

Brandon Currie is looking for his third straight win this season on his Graves Yamaha in the AMA Hot Wheels Supermoto Lites class Championship. Currie from Anaheim, Calif., heads into this weekends event with a 6-point lead over Troy Lee Designs Honda rider David Pingree.

For real-time, live timing & scoring, and complete results log onto www.amasupermoto.com.

For more racing information and ticket information please visit the website www.millermotorsportspark.com.

WHAT: Round Three of the AMA Supermoto Championship
WHERE: Miller Motorsports Park is located in Tooele, Utah, 25 minutes from downtown Salt Lake City, Utah.
WHEN: Saturday, June 23, 2007.
COURSE: 0.89 miles (approx), with a main straight approaching 900 feet in length and 30 feet in width, and a technical dirt loop.
2006 WINNERS: AMA Supermoto: Jeff Ward (Honda) and Doug Henry (Yamaha). AMA Supermoto Unlimited: David Baffeleuf (Husqvarna). AMA Supermoto Lites: Cassidy Anderson (Honda).
SCHEDULE: Friday — Promoter Practice, 2:00-6:00 pm. Saturday — Timed Practice begins at 10:00 am. Heats and Last Chance Qualifiers go from 1:00pm until 2:30 pm. Opening Ceremonies begin at 5:45 pm with final events beginning at 6:45 pm.

About AMA Racing

AMA Racing is the competition arm of the American Motorcyclist Association and is the leading sanctioning body for motorcycle sport in the United States. Its professional properties include the Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Series, the AMA Toyota Motocross Championship presented by FMF, the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited, the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship, the AMA Supermoto Championship and the AMA Pro ATV Championship. In amateur and pro-am competition, AMA Racing sanctions over 4000 events in 24 different disciplines and supports over 110 thousand active members. For more information about professional racing, visit www.amaproracing.com. Accredited media outlets can also access an on line Press Room at www.amaproracing.com/pressroom. For amateur racing information visit www.amadirectlink.com/amrace/amasports.asp.

www.motostrano.com

AMA: Hart will race in Utah, Despite I-15 Fire

Hart will race in Utah, despite I-15 fire
By Lya Wodraska
The Salt Lake Tribune
Article Last Updated: 06/20/2007 04:03:36 PM MDT

Posted: 3:56 PM- Motocross star Carey Hart plans to race in Utah this weekend, even after nine of his bikes were destroyed in a fire on Interstate 15.
Hart has acquired back-up motorcycles and his team is working to get them shipped to Utah in time for Friday's practice at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele.
"He's still gonna go," Hart's agent, Steve Astethen, said Wednesday. "His sponsors are going to have to work hard. We've got everybody working full time to get everything together."
The fire broke out Tuesday evening in a 35-foot semi-trailer belonging to Hart & Huntington Tattoo Co., a Las Vegas tattoo shop co-owned by Hart. Losses on the bikes and equipment - which belonged to Hart, team manager Doni Wanat and racers Tyler Evans and Travis Marks - is estimated at $300,000.
The fire was ruled an accident. Salt Lake City Fire investigators said the fire started in the trailer, but they could not determine exactly where because of the fire damage. The fire snarled traffic for two hours Tuesday night, closing I-15's northbound on-ramps at 1300 South and 2100 South. The driver, who was uninjured, safely uncoupled the truck from the trailer.
Hart and his racing team are slated to compete in the Plaza Cycle AMA Supermoto Challenge, part of a weekend event at Miller Motorsports Park. The Supermoto event gets underway Saturday with practices for Supermoto, Supermoto Lites and Supermoto Unlimited beginning at 10 a.m. followed by heat races at 1 p.m. The main event is set for 5:45 p.m., following an autograph session.
It's only the second time Hart, famous as a freestyle motocross rider, has raced in Supermoto, a hybrid of asphalt and dirt racing. "He just does it for fun, more than anything," Astheten said. "His teammates are better than he is."
Hart became the first to complete a backflip aboard a 250cc motorcycle, a trick known as the "Hart Attack." He retired from freestyle racing after an injury, Astethen said.
Hart's celebrity extends beyond racing. He and his Las Vegas tattoo parlor, Hart & Huntington in the Palms Casino Resort, are featured in the reality series "Inked" on the A&E network. Hart was one of residents of VH1's "The Surreal Life" in 2005. He has been married to the rock star Pink since January 2006

www.motostrano.com

AMA: Fire Destroys Rockstar H&H Motostrano Race Rig


Source: KSL.COM

There was a big fire Tuesday night on I-15. The fire could be seen for miles, and it destroyed some very expensive toys that belong to the husband of a famous woman.

You've probably heard of Pink, and if you haven't, your kids have. She's a rock star who is married to Carey Hart, a freestyle motocross legend in town this weekend for a big race. Tuesday evening he lost hundreds of thousands of dollars of equipment in a fire on I-15.

The semi truck was headed to the Larry H. Miller raceway. Inside the semi were eight bikes, several gallons of gas, gear parts, accessories, and a four-wheeler worth $300,000.

Dennis McKone, with Salt Lake City Fire, said, "It's totally destroyed, all the motorcycles and everything inside."

Hart is also the star of the reality show 'Inked', filmed on location at the tattoo parlor he owns in Las Vegas, Hart and Huntington Tattoo Company. But Carey Hart may be most known for who his married to, Pink.


She's released four albums and won a Grammy for best female rock vocal. The two married last year after meeting at the X Games.

Hart was coming to Utah to race in the Honda Summit of Speed Race this weekend. His semi was heading to Tooele when the trouble began.

Edward McGinley, with Hart and Huntington Racing, said, "A kid pulled up next to me and told me there was a fire."

So the driver pulled over, tried to get a fire extinguisher to put the flames out, but realized it was more then he could handle. "I pretty much didn't want to lose everything, so I pulled the 5th wheel and pulled out from under it," McGinley said.

By then fire crews had arrived, but there was little they could do, everything was ruined. The driver isn't focusing on that, though; he says he's grateful no one was hurt, and this won't stop Hart from racing this weekend.

McGinley said, "We got a pretty good group of guys and we'll figure something out, we're going to try and race."

The freeway was shut down for several hours and opened back up around 9 p.m. Investigators are still determining the cause of the fire.

Monday, June 18, 2007

NASMOTO: Dave Arnold Race Report

NASMOTO OHIO GRAND PRIX

SMX 450 1st place
SMX 250 2nd place.

I made a last minute decision to head to Ohio for some practice at the
Nasmoto race in Circleville. In the 250 Paul Allison was smooth and error
free winning the 250 final with me on his tail and in the 450 final I
holeshot from the second row and led for 4 laps until I left the door open
in the dirt section allowing local rider Andrew Hyder to jump into the lead.

Hyder led until receiving the 2 laps to go signal which apparently he
mistook for the white flag. Believing he was getting the checkers Hyder
pulled a victory wheelie while the white flag was waiving and then shut off,

I kept it pinned and shot by, led the last lap and took the win.

Ah sometimes it's good to be the wily old vet.

My hats off to the kid though, he was pretty damn fast on his hometown
practice track and he rode a clean race as did Paul Allison in the 250.

Burkhart was there to support his friend who was the promoter, rode practice

but chose not to race.

Thanks for your support.

DA.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Hardware: New Supermoto Kit From Motostrano.com

Motostrano recently released a new Supermoto Kit to compliment its existing conversion kit options for Supermoto customers. The new kit, Quick Switch Kit Race, provides budding supermoto racers and track day goers a complete Supermoto set-up that allows for easy installing and un-installing of supermoto parts for the rider who wants to easily switch between the two modes with one bike.

This kit was developed with riders with one bike in mind, those who frequently ride in the dirt and want to use their same bike on local Supermoto Tracks. The kit includes industry-leading wheels made up of Excel Rims, Buchanan Spokes and Talon hubs and Dunlop race slicks (for closed circuit track use only). The brake set-up includes a Moto-Master racing kit with 320mm rotor, 4 piston caliper, a stainless steel brake lilne and Brembo 13mm radial style master cylinder. This set-up allows the rider to install or remove the brake set-up as a complete system, without requiring brake bleeding during the install. Further, the brake kit is made up of best-in-class race-grade products used by the top Supermoto racers in US and World Supermoto championships.

"It's a collection of parts that past customers have asked for quite often," said Motostrano owner Joe Witherspoon. "We decided to pre-package the parts to give customers this option or even the idea of the option when planning their Supermoto build-out."

Flying Lizard unveils custom livery for Le Mans 24

Flying Lizard Motorsports unveiled today a custom livery for the team's No. 80 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. The design, created by Troy Lee Designs, depicts the team's familiar Flying Lizard image brought to life in full color across the Porsche's curves. The livery will be run at only one race: this weekend's 24 Heures du Mans, June 16-17 at the Circuit de la Sarthe in Le Mans, France.
Image
(c) Flying Lizard Motorsports
The team offered the first glimpse of the new No. 80 today at its scrutineering appointment. Scrutineering is the formal technical inspection by the ACO of each car competing at Le Mans. It is held in historic downtown Le Mans. The livery, which had been kept hidden in the team's garage, was displayed before and after technical inspection to the thousands of sports car fans attending the event.

Seth Neiman commented on the project, "Racing at Le Mans is one of the best parts of our season and each year we try to bring a little something special to this great event. This year we've chosen to add to the spectacle with a special livery -- let's hope the Lizard brings us luck!"
On site in Le Mans for the event, Troy Lee reflected on designing the car, "I started by thinking about the Lizard's character and looked to the color and texture of real lizards for inspiration. I think a racecar should be colorful and interesting and look like it's travelling 200 mph even while it is standing still. The Porsche is a pretty aggressive car with a high and wide profile -- it was a perfect surface on which to bring the Lizard to life."

Based in Corona, California, Troy Lee has built a significant portfolio of custom designs for all things racing: from his roots in motocross helmet, bike and gear design to race cars, production autos and even Hot Wheels. The design for Flying Lizard is the first time he has worked with an ALMS team. Currently a professional motocross and Supermoto racer himself, Troy has been a major proponent of motocross and an important part of the resurgence of Supermoto racing in the U.S. The Team TLD/Honda professional AMA Supermoto team won both the Supermoto and the Supermoto Lites championships in 2006. For more see www.troyleedesigns.com.

This weekend, Lizard drivers Johannes van Overbeek, Joerg Bergmeister and Seth Neiman will pilot the No. 80 Porsche in the team's third consecutive 24 Heures du Mans. van Overbeek and Bergmeister are partners in the team's No. 45 Porsche, which competes in the American Le Mans Series. Now at the halfway point of the ALMS season, the duo is currently second in the drivers championship, just 14 points behind Risi Ferrari Mika Salo and Jaime Melo, who will also be competing at Le Mans in the No. 97 Ferrari.

Flying Lizard will also offer a limited edition set of merchandise commemorating the custom livery. The gear is available on-site at Le Mans at the Flying Lizard retail store in the vendor village and online at www.lizardms.com/store/4.html

Following the Lizards during Le Mans Race Week
The 24 Heures du Mans begins on Saturday June 16 at 3 p.m. CET (6 a.m. PT). Follow the Lizards' progress:

* Listen to team radio transmission at www.lizardms.com/radio.htm
* View images at www.lizardms.com/gallery/index.html
* Read the team blog at lizardms.blogspot.com
* Listen to Radio Le Mans, available at 91.2 FM locally in Le Mans and streamed online at www.radiolemans.com
* Watch MotorsTV in Europe, and SpeedTV in North America. MotorsTV will air week-long coverage and SPEED coverage begins at 5:30 a.m. PT on June 16.

About Flying Lizard Motorsports
Founded in 2003, the Sonoma, Calif-based Flying Lizard team is competing in its fourth season of sports car racing with the American Le Mans Series (ALMS). In 2007, the team again fields two Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs -- the No. 44 and the No. 45 -- in the 12-race ALMS season.

The Flying Lizard squad has finished in the top three in the ALMS drivers' and team championships in every season to date. In 2006, Johannes van Overbeek was second in the ALMS GT2 drivers' championship and the team finished third. In 2005, van Overbeek was third in the ALMS GT2 drivers' championship and the team finished in third. In 2004, in their inaugural year, Johannes and the team finished in second place. Flying Lizard has completed two contests at the historic 24 Heures du Mans, finishing fourth in GT2 in 2006 and third in 2005.

Friday, June 8, 2007

AMA: Supermoto Quotes from Raceway Park

AMA Supermoto

Mark Burkhart: “The weekend was great up until an hour before our race, then we had to put the rain tires on. All race I was really just trying not to crash, There was mud on the pavement all over the track. It was a good race though. I have a lot of respect for Ward. We both raced clean out there, and I hope we put on a great show for the fans watching in the rain.”

Jeff Ward: "I felt alright at the start, it was really muddy in the dirt. I pushed too hard at the beginning and wore my tire out. The track was really tipsy in the rain, I rode smart thinking of the championship; it was just too easy to make a small mistake an go down."

Troy Herfoss: "I want to win so bad. In the qualifiers I was able to follow Jeff around, pick up on his lines, and keep him in check. I did not get a great jump on the start but I was able to move into third. The Dunlop tires worked great in these wet conditions. I want to thank everyone at HMC KTM"

Supermoto Unlimited

Ben Carlson: “Hats off to Aprilia, this team’s hard work is unbelievable. The track seemed to get a little bit slicker each lap, and luckily I was able to get a comfortable lead where I could keep the bike in the driest line”.

Kurt Nicoll: "That was scary out there. I was scared the whole time I rode, the track was so slick and getting wetter each lap. I tried giving it a little more towards the end and I was sliding around in most of the corners."

John Lewis: "I was having fun. on the start Kurt (Nicoll) made everyone go everyone wide so I got a bad start. It was kind of hard to pass, you had to be patient and move in on the opportunity. In the rain the tires we used worked amazing. Being my hometown race in this series, I want to thank all my friends and family would come out to watch, Thanks"

Supermoto Lites

Brandon Currie: “Fortunately the rain held off, so the decision to stick with slick tires paid off. That was a good race. Pingree kept me honest. I want to thank everyone at Yamaha and all my family and everyone that is here supporting me.”

David Pingree: "I rode well; you can't make any mistakes out there. The track was good. It was kind of tough to really make up time. It wasn't raining hard enough to make a difference yet, but its only going to get slipperier out there."

Matt Abbott: "That track is awesome. I was really nervous at the start. I figured it would just start pouring rain during the race and get messy. The whole race team is working awesome together, Thanks to them and my family for everything."

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

GEARTALK: Alpinestars Factory Tour




I recently had the amazing opportunity to visit the Alpinestars headquarters in Asolo, Italy, just outside of Venice for an in-depth tour of their facilities. My guide, one of the true power managers of the Motorsports industry, Scott Link, North American Sales Manager and some one I look to as a mentor for Motostrano on many levels.

As owner of one of the leading Alpinestars dealers in the USA, I was eager from the onset to see up close the behind the scenes stuff of what goes on at Alpinestars. Along with the tour of HQ Astars, we would take drive down to MOTOP at Mugello to see their operation in action at the top 2-wheel racing event in the world.

The combination of up-close discussion of the product and a visit to Moto GP to see how racers interact with the Alpinestars product and how Alpinestars interacts with the racing environment was an amazing experience that I personally won't forget and one that will heavily influence how Motostrano promotes the Alpinestars brand over other brands for many years to come.

Alpinestars is serious about protection and racing. There's a lot of companies making stuff for motorcyclists these days. Most of them don't bother to test their products before sending them out to riders and racers and even more companies simply copy the work of others resulting in an inferior product using dated technology. No other clothing manufacturer offers the breadth of product, combined with indepth research into how their products work both on their users and in their extensive testing lab. Consider, for a second, what you know about brands like Dainese, Spidi, ICON, AGV Sport, Joe Rocket and other motorcycle clothing companies- compared to the Alpinestars protection army, these companies appear to be like small little shell companies, creeping along year after year with different designs and very little unique product development.

The other important point that I walked away with was the fact that in the USA Alpinestars works somewhat indirectly with its customer base via their main distributor, Parts Unlimited.
This indirect sales entity naturally doesn't quite give you the face to face information you get from working with the company directly. Seeing the Alpinestars mulisha in action in their own territory and in their own environment shows you just how large the company is and information flow seems to be much clearer and energetic. Alpinestars has a Southern California office and Alpinestars operates its own racer services program that shows up onsite at most major racing events around the country. Still, nothing, however, prepared me for the enormous attention to detail, passion for racing and huge reach of the company all around the globe that you get from seeing the company acting directly in its own grounds.

Alpinestars is a 40 year old company and with that it has an enormous encyclopedia of experience and knowledge that it puts into each and every one of its products. Corporate culture is very family like and extremely racing driven. The company is very aggressive with its brand positioning and constantly adapting, almost to the point of being a little too far ahead of the rest of the world at times. The minds behind the company, including Gabriele Mazzorolo, are constantly pushing the envelope in rider and racer protection on all levels.

One of the more interesting parts of the Astars HQ is their testing lab. Nearly every aspect of their product can be tested before and after the product has been developed. This means that materials can be beaten, stretched, rubbed down, sunk, burned, blasted with radiation and sanded for hours, with each test monitored and measured with precise medical-grade equipment, custom made for the task. They even have one test, where 10 beautiful naked women pass around a leather racing suit and rub it on themselves to make sure it can withstand any kind of torture for the rider destined for a podium... ok, well maybe that was in my fantasy the other night, but a good idea for a test nonetheless that I would personally offer my services to develop.

Alpinestars operates out of 3 huge locations based in Italy. There's the headquarters, the distribution warehouses and the alpinestars outlet. With offices also in California, Japan and China, Alpinestars is truly a multi-national organization. The Alpinestars racer services organization travels the complete MOTOGP circuit giving the company a presence at even the most remote stops along the MOTOGP tour.

I can't stress enough how much effort goes into research, testing and data collection on all aspects of the Alpinestars product. One example- after each race, the Alpinestars race services group must provide a detailed account of any kind of modifications or product failures that occur at the track. Rider feedback is documented and sent back to the development team for team review. Product changes are made as necessary and the product is improved over time. This translates into amazing benefits for the consumer that you just can't get from other brands.

After the onsite exploration of the Astars headquarters in Osolo, I was taken to the track at Mugello where I got to see the Alpinestars entourage in full force in the pits. Honestly, when you compare the Alpinestars presence at the track to other brands, it's like Goliath and David. Astars is situated front and center in the pits, between the tire companies, the main rider semi trucks and the rider RVs. No other clothing manufacturer has any real presence at MotoGP by comparison and the Alpinestars Mobile Racer Services and Hospitality rig is a site to see.

At the Alpinestars Hospitality, the top riders and racers in the world come to hang out, eat, relax and do business. Over the course of two days, I saw Michael Schumacher, Randy Mammola, Casey Stoner, Nicky Hayden, Carlos Checa, Dani Pedrosa and others all come into the lounge. And then of course there was Cameron Beaubier and JD Beach, to young Yankees who were there to race in the RedBull Rookies 125 cup.

Alpinestars is a constantly growing brand and force in world motorsports. It will be interesting to watch the company grow even further over the next years. I left Italy with the sound notion that by focusing on the Alpinestars product, Motostrano is offering the world a premier product that will serve to protect our customers in this sport, using the best technologies available.