Robert Mureșan a semnat cu Ducati

Campion european BMU și campion național en titre, Robert Mureșan face o mutare puțin neașteptată pentru 2018. După câteva sezoane petrecute în șaua unei motociclete BMW, pilotul arădean face o tranziție către Ducati.

Pentru 2018, Robert a optat pentru modelul Panigale 1199, alături de care, va încerca să atace campionatul național, campionatul european BMU, dar și câteva etape de campionat mondial la Superbike, la clasa Superstock 1000.

În vârstă de 26 de ani, palmaresul lui Robert Mureșan este unul impresionant. Pe lângă multiplele distincții naționale și mondiale, Robi este singurul pilot român participant în campionatul mondial de motociclism viteză.

El a concurat la clasa 125 cmc în perioada 2006-2008, alături de nume sonore precum Gabor Talmacsi sau Marc Marquez, actualul campion mondial al clasei MotoGP.

 

Foto – Robert Mureșan

Ducati launched their 2018 MotoGP bike

In an online presentation, Ducati launched their 2018 MotoGP bike. Factory riders, Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo and Michele Pirro, their test rider, were present at the event held in Italy.

Ducati GP18 is their sixteenth MotoGP bike. The italian team based in Bologna made their MotoGP debut in 2003. Their best performance came in 2007, when they won both the constructors and riders championship, with Casey Stoner.

Last season, Ducati finished third in the constructors championship. Andrea Dovizioso won all of the six races Ducati has managed to win in 2017 and finished runner up to Marc Marquez.

The new MotoGP season will start at Losail, Qatar in March 18.

 

Photo – BikeSportNews

Jason Anderson wins at Houston

Jason Anderson is the new championship leader after the Houston win.

The weekend started with 2 important moments, both of them before the Last Chance Qualifying:

-> Eli Tomac decided to withdraw from the rest of the round due to big pains at the shoulder on which he felt last week in Anaheim;

-> Marvin Musquin crashed also on his left shoulder and he was put out from the rest of the night.

The Main Event started with Justin Barcia taking the holeshot, while his teammate Cooper Webb collided in the first turn with Jeremy Martin, both of them returning in the race.

Ken Roczen also had a good start and took the lead before the end of the first lap. However, a fired-up Jason Anderson came from behind and overtook the Honda rider for his first victory of the season.

Barcia wasn’t thanked only with 3rd place and got very close to Kenny, with whom he had a great battle until the finish line. However, Roczen finished 2nd, his first podium since his comeback while Barcia got his 2nd 3rd place in a row.

Cole Seely and Weston Peick completed the top 5, while Broc Tickle and Josh Grant finished 7th and 8th, the last 2 being the best positioned KTM and Kawasaki.

With a 2nd place and a victory in the first 2 rounds, Anderson leads with 49 points, 7 over Roczen and Barcia. Seely and Peick are also tied with 36 points.

The Supercross world championship will return next week for the 2nd and last time this year on Angel Stadium, in Anaheim.

 

Photo – Supercross

Alberto Puig announced as new Team Manager for Repsol Honda

In a press statement released this afternoon, Alberto Puig was the new Team Manager at Repsol Honda. The spanish former rider will fill the job left at the of 2017 by Livio Suppo.

Aged 51, Alberto Puig has a long standing relationship with Honda and his joy was obvious in his own words:

I’m very grateful to HRC for this opportunity they have given me with the Repsol Honda Team. I’ve been with Honda for the last 25 years of my professional career, first as a rider, then as a team manager in the smaller classes, and lately as a coach for many of the Asian riders Honda have around the world. To have the chance to be in this position in one of the most successful teams in the MotoGP championship is a very big honour for me, so I can only focus on giving my best back to Honda and on trying to help them to achieve their goals. I’m sure our riders will be ready when the time comes, and we as a team will also be ready to once again fight for the title, with humility but also with great determination.

Puig will start his new job at the first winter test which will take place between January 24-26 at Sepang, in Malaysia.

 

Photo – Motorpasion Moto

Jasikonis and Petrov to race for Honda Redmoto Team

Arminas Jasikonis and Petar Petrov will be teammates at Honda Redmoto Team.

Last year, Jasikonis was riding for Suzuki, along with he gained 1 GP podium, in Portugal. However, after Stefan Everts announced unexpectedly the retirement of the factory support, Arminas’s status was unknown until today.

On the other side, Petrov will promote to the upper category, after lots of season in MX2, where he rode for the japanese “Big 4”. Our neighbour has achieved by now some race podiums and top10 finishes in the overall classification.

 

Photo – BRMX

Malcolm Stewart to fill in for Justin Bogle at Houston

Injured before the start of the season, Justin Bogle missed Anaheim 1, the season opener. After a medical check, he announced that he will not be able to recover in time to race at Houston.

Therefore, Team JGR Autotrader has announced that Malcolm Stewart will replace him at the second round of the season and will probably at the next few rounds.

Aged 25, Malcolm Stewart has won the 2016 250 East championship and has stepped up in the premiere class without any notable results. James Stewart’s younger brother was left without a ride for 2018 and therefore was available to replace Bogle.

Malcolm Stewart can be watched Saturday night in the second Main Event of the season at Houston.

 

Photo – Malcolm Stewart

Casey Stoner to test at Sepang for Ducati

Ducati has announced today that Casey Stoner will test for the italian team at Sepang. The test will be a private one and will be held between 24-26 January.

Stoner, aged 32, won two MotoGP world championships in 2007 and 2011. He shocked the motorcycling world when he announced his retirement in 2012, at only 27 years old.

So far, Stoner has refused to say whether he will race with a wild card or not this season. Since his 2016 comeback to Ducati he did not race and it is highly unlikely for that to happen in the near future.

The new MotoGP season will start in March at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar.

 

Photo – Ducati Press

Marvin Musquin wins season opener at Anaheim

The inaugural round of the 2018 Monster Energy Supercross World Championship took place in front of a sell out Angel Stadium at Anaheim. The race day started with a huge surprise.

Coming back a year long absence, Ken Roczen set the fastest lap in the practice session. The two heat races were very disputed. In the end, Jason Anderson and Justin Barcia won the two races. On the other hand, Dean Wilson had to retire from the whole event after a heavy crash and a shoulder injury.

The Main Event started pretty well for Eli Tomac. Firstly, he took the holeshot and then he managed to open up a confortable gap ahead of Justin Barcia and the others.

Unfortunately, his fairy tale season start was to be soon forgotten. In  a dramatic scenario, Eli Tomac lost the control of the bike and fell hard and injured his shoulder. As a consequence, he had to abandon the race.

Following Tomac’s misfortune, Justin Barcia was unexpectedly leading the Main Event. Sadly for him, his joy was short lived as he was passed by both Marvin Musquin and Jason Anderson.

After Musquin and Anderson made their move on Barcia, the race tempo slowed down. In the end, Musquin made his famous win move as he crossed the finish line first. Jason Anderson did well in the season and finished second, while Justin Barcia completed an unexpected podium for the Yamaha factory team.

Comeback kid, Ken Roczen, had an uneventful night and finished fourth ahead of the likes of Weiston Peick, Cole Seely, Jeremy Martin, Blake Baggett or Broc Tickle.

On the other hand, Chad Reed’s night was awful. With his new CR22 private team, he managed to finish only 15th. The 2004 and 2008 champion declared before the race that this was first serious outing with his new Husqvarna bike.

Given the fact that this was the first round of the season, the championship standings is the same as the Anaheim standings. Therefore, Marvin Musquin leads the championship with 26 points and is followed by Jason Anderson, 23 points, and Justin Barcia, with 20.

The next round will take place next Saturday at Houston.

 

Photo – Supercross

Ryan Villopoto signs for Yamaha

After an entire career spent with Kawasaki, Ryan Villopoto has decided to part his ways with the green team. In a press announcement made this morning at Anaheim, Villopoto was announced as the new member of the Yamaha team.

Aged 29, Ryan Villopoto, raced his entire pro career for Kawasaki. Alongside the green team, he won ten professional titles and three MXoN wins for USA. In 2015, he also participated in MXGP, where he won one round before announcing his retirement following an injury.

It is unknown yet whether Villopoto will make a full comeback with Yamaha. Most likely he will race in demonstrative events like he did in October with Kawasaki in the two stroke event at the Red Bull Straight Rhythm.

The new Supercross season will start tonight at Anaheim.

 

Photo – Pro Motocross

Another year, another champion

For the American motorsport lovers, the new calendaristic year starts with the Supercross World Championship.

WHAT HAPPENED IN 2017?

As we remember, Kenny Roczen was starting the season with 2 categorical wins in Anaheim and San Diego, but the return to Angel Stadium brought him a heavy crash which ended his 2017 and threatened his career.

Ryan Dungey profited by this thing and won the third round after 2 2nd places. It seemed that his road to the title will be easy. It wasn’t like: Eli Tomac won 9 races, but the lack of consistency brought him the runner-up spot at the end.

Both Tomac and Marvin Musquin won their first races in Supercross, the last one being the fourth frenchmen to do so. 4 was also the number of winners last year: Jason Anderson gained his only victory in the Las Vegas finale, while Dungey claimed 4th place, enough to become a 4-time Supercross World Champion.

WHAT’S NEW FOR 2018?

Speaking of Ryan, the “Minnesota Arrow” announced in May 2017 that he’ll end his racing career shortly after winning his 3rd crown in a row for KTM. Broc Tickle will be, at least for now, Musquin’s lieutenant.

Another rider to follow from the austrian manufacturer is Blake Baggett, the last year’s big surprise in AMA, who will stay with Rocky Mountain team, but with official support.

The main contender is however: Eli Tomac, the last year’s runner-up and 450 MX Champion. Eli has renewed his contract with Kawasaki and his teammate will be the same: Josh Grant.

Everybody’s asking: “How will Roczen do?”. The HRC rider will return to action on the track where he won at the first visit and ended his entire year 2 weeks later. He suffered 11 surgeries at the brutal-injured arm, but just as brutal he trained to get back to his well-known pace. Cole Seely will complete the Honda Factory duo.

Another man to follow from Honda is Jeremy Martin, who will ride only for the first few rounds at the 450 category, after it was initially announced that he’ll make a full season with GEICO Honda. In his only race from 2017, Jeremy gained a fantastic 2nd place in Daytona, Tomac been the only one who beat him.

The only former Supercross World Champion on the grid is Chad Reed. After ending his contract with Yamaha, he’ll start the new season as the only rider for his own team: CR22, riding a private Husqvarna. His seat at the japanese team will be taken by Justin Barcia and he’ll be Cooper Webb’s partner, another rider to watch.

Speaking of Husqvarna, Dean Wilson will make a full season with the factory team, after impressive results. He’ll make a duo to follow with Jason Anderson.

After RCH closed the gates last year, Autotrader Yoshimura will be the new Suzuki factory-backed team. Weston Pecik and Justin Bogle will be their riders. However, Justin will miss the first rounds due to an injury.

Beside the riders, there will also be some changes in the calendar: Detroit, Toronto and East Rutherford will take a break and they’ll be replaced by Houston, Tampa and Foxborough. The Atlanta round will be held in the Mercedes-Benz Arena, after the demolition of the Dome.

The full schedule is below:

January 6: Angel Stadium, Anaheim
January 13: NRG Stadium, Houston
January 20: Angel Stadium, Anaheim
January 27: University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Ariz.
February 3: Oakland Alameda Coliseum, Oakland, Calif.
February 10: Petco Park, San Diego
February 17: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
February 24: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa
March 3: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta
March 10: Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach
March 17: The Dome at America’s Center, St. Louis
March 24: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis
April 7: CenturyLink Field, Seattle
April 14: US Bank Stadium, Minneapolis
April 21: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
April 28: Rice-Eccles Stadium, Salt Lake City
May 5: Sam Boyd Stadium, Las Vegas.

Is it gonna be Tomac’s moment? Will Musquin come with a reply? What can we expect from Roczen or Reed? We might get some answers in less than 2 days.

 

Photo – Transworld Motocross