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MotoGP™ rights holder Dorna Sports SL is set to release a feature-length documentary reviewing Marc Marquez’s first season in MotoGP™, in which he emerged as the best newcomer of 2013 in spectacular style.
After one of the most exciting MotoGP™ campaigns in recent years, Bridgestone Motorsport Manager Hiroshi Yamada looks back on the highlights from this season and gives a brief glimpse of the world’s largest tyre manufacturer’s approach to 2014.
Paul Bird Motorsport has announced that it will be contesting the MotoGP™ World Championship with Michael Laverty in 2014 on Aprilia machinery, with the Ulsterman joined by Australian Broc Parkes.
Dorna Sports has launched a promotional campaign for the GSeries BPA 2014, with participation in its premier class (4RM) with two cars; in each of the six races of the season, the vehicles will be piloted by MotoGP™ personalities.
Edition #19 of Ride Through Magazine is now available via motogp.com, including an end of year reflection on the championship triumphs of Marc Marquez, Pol Espargaro and Maverick Viñales in the three respective categories.
Valentino Rossi’s return to Yamaha Factory Racing was big news at the start of 2013. The campaign would yield a single victory at Assen and the nine-time World Champion now aims for much more next season, although the Italian has been extremely saddened by recent events.
The official calendar has been revealed for the inaugural season of the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup next year.
In his first season as Team Principal with Repsol Honda Team, the final result could not have been much better for Livio Suppo as the Riders’, Teams’ and Manufacturers’ titles were all sewn up. The Italian reviews his memorable 2013 year.
The first edition of Madrid Motor Days will be underway between Friday 20 December and Sunday 5 January, showcasing a range of unique vehicles and an extensive programme of activities at the Feria de Madrid. During the show, numerous famous MotoGP™ faces will be attracting the crowds.
In the latest Post-season Catch-up, we hear from Ducati Team’s Paolo Ciabatti. The MotoGP Project Director discusses the change of direction within the Italian squad as well as Cal Crutchlow joining Andrea Dovizioso from the start of 2014.
Tom Sykes got a warm, standing ovation yesterday at the "Caschi d'Oro", the annual awards ceremony organised by Italian weekly magazine Motosprint. During the event, which took place last night at the Ebe Strignani theatre in Imola, Italy, Sykes received the "Casco d'Oro" (golden helmet) trophy for the eni FIM Superbike World Championship title won this year - the first of his career.
A well-deserved award for a memorable year, as Sykes states: "Last year I lost the Championship for just half a point, and it was a big blow for me! 2013, on the other hand, was the perfect year, I've World Champion and fulfilled a lifetime dream, I brought Kawasaki to the top after 20 years and I also became a father!"
Click here to look at Tom Sykes' WSBK statistics.
WorldSBK.com caught up with Dutch rider Michael van der Mark, who is getting ready to face his second season in the Supersport World Championship, once again with Team Pata Honda. The 21 year old from Gouda, a city located halfway between Rotterdam and Utrecht, has had a remarkable rookie year in the series and he is looking forward to further improve his results in 2014.
Fourth place in the standings in your rookie WSS year was not a bad result. What do you think of your 2013?
"For sure 2013 was much better than expected. We started really well with two podiums but we knew it would be more difficult during the season. But after all we are really happy with how 2013 went."
It was not an easy season as you had to face injuries, that affected your performance in a lot of rounds. What's your fitness condition now?
"My fitness condition is much better now. After the Italian Round at Monza it took a long time before I could do some running again, due to my broken foot. In Magny-Cours I also had a small fracture in my thumb. I managed recover pretty well, though, and I'm ready for next season."
How was last week's test? What did you work on mostly? What's still to be improved?
"The test went really well. In Aragon we found good improvements which also worked really good in Jerez. We still need to work a bit more on the rear grip."
How good is to stay in the same team with the same team-mate? How well do you get along with Lorenzo?
"It's really good to stay in the same team, because after one learning year we will be one step ahead in each race weekend. I'm really happy with Lorenzo, we are good friends and he built speed upon speed during the season, which is really good for both of us."
What's your target for next year? Are you going to take the challenge to Sofuoglu?
"For the coming year we want to fight for the win in each race and also be title contenders. For sure Kenan will be our main rival but if you continue to improve we can bridge the gap."
How are you going to spend the testing ban period?
"I'll be working on my fitness in order to be 100% ready right from the start. I also work sometimes as truck driver in my father's company."
Niccolò Canepa underwent surgery yesterday at the San Martino hospital in Genova to remove plates and screws that were inserted in 2012 following a heavy crash at the Nurburgring, in which he suffered multiple fractures in his right tibia and fibula. The operation lasted two hours and was performed by Surgeon Federico Santolini.
"I got two plates and twenty screws removed" said Niccolò Canepa "from my right leg that were put in place by German doctors last year after my crash ad Nurburgring. It was already planned in advance and this was the right time to do it. I think I will start training in a week, even though we haven't made a rehabilitation programme yet."
The plans for Canepa's future are currently being finalised and an official announcement is expected within the next two weeks.
"I signed the deal with Team Lorini two weeks ago, few days before flying to Jerez for testing" said Riccardo Russo. "I felt immediately comfortable on the Honda, it's a much smoother bike compared to the one I rode last year and I was able to be pretty quick straight away. I'm very confident for 2014 and I would like to thank the team, sponsors and Honda Italy for the opportunity."
"We're extremely pleased to welcome Riccardo in our team" said Team Manager Livio Lorini. "He's one of the best prospects in our Country and I'm sure he'll do well next year. He showed his potential already last week at Jerez by improving the pace he set during the race weekend. We fully believe in his choice and we would like to thank Honda Italy for the support and for making it happen."
Team Lorini will soon reveal the rider chosen to join Riccardo Russo in the team for 2014 World Supersport campaign.
The Barni Racing Team Ducati continued last week its preparation to the 2014 FIM Superstock 1000 Cup by performing a three-day test at Jerez. Leandro Mercado had his first chance, before the testing ban, to ride the Ducati 1199 Panigale and he managed to lap with a consistently good pace on the Andalusian track.
This test was also an important benchmark for the Italian squad to choose the rider that will join Mercado next year. Fabio Massei and Ondrej Jezek took in turns to test the twin-cylinder machine and both managed to show some good lap-times. The final choice on the second Barni Racing Team rider will be made official soon.
Leandro Mercado: "The test went well, it's been a positive three days. I'm happy with the team as they made sure I could enter this new challenge the best possible way. For me it's a completely new machine, there's a lot to learn but I immediately felt at ease onboard the Panigale. I think we did a good job and found a pretty solid set-up to start working on. I can't wait for the 2014 to start."
Marco Barnabò - Team Manager: "I'm very happy of the results we got at Jerez, it's been a positive test at every level. We come back from Spain in a positive mood and we're ready to work hard for 2014. Leandro has shown great confidence despite being its first time on the bike and he was quick straight away. I was also impressed by the potential of Fabio Massei and Ondrej Jezek, they gave us good feedback on both technical and riding sides."
New signing for Ducati Superbike Team Davide Giugliano had a successful test - the third of the post-season - last week at Jerez, that gave him further confidence for 2014. The 24 year old Italian, who tried the 1199 Panigale for the first time two years ago, when it was still under development, has given positive feedback to his crew about the work done so far and he's looking forward to get back on track, once the compulsory testing ban will draw to a close.
"The test went really well" Giugliano told WorldSBK.com "we are working hard and we are eager to do more. We tried different strategies and new parts, we focused a lot on the electronics and the overall feeling with the bike. We did a lot of laps and gathered a lot of data, the synergy with my track engineer Luca Ferraccioli and my electronics technician Luca Minelli - who are the two confirmed on my side of the garage - is already excellent, as well as with every other team member. We found a good base for the bike to build on."
"We were quite competitive at Jerez but also at Aragon, where Chaz especially proved we can be very fast" he continued. "I reckon we can do well and I'm sure Ducati and Feel Racing will put the data gathered to good use during the winter. I can't wait to get back on track and to see where we're at once the testing ban will draw to a close."
The fourth annual FIM Gala Awards Ceremony was held yesterday in a crowded "Salle des Etoiles" at the Sporting Monte-Carlo and broadcasted around the globe. All 2013 World Champions of each FIM discipline received a well-deserved trophy and standing ovation for their masterful performances in the season.
Getting on the prestigious stage for the first time was reigning Superbike World Champion Tom Sykes, who was joined at the event by Ichiro Yoda, Kawasaki Racing Plan Manager and Biel Roda, KRT PR & Marketing Manager, two key figures in this year's successful effort of Kawasaki and their official squad. Sam Lowes also took part to the awards ceremony as the 2013 World Supersport title winner.
FIM President Vito Ippolito stated: "It was great to be able to host the fourth edition of the FIM Gala Ceremony in Monte-Carlo and for a second year in a row. The setting was once again a fitting place to celebrate our latest group of FIM World Champions and to share this special occasion with millions of TV viewers around the globe. I want to thank the riders, teams and the whole motorcycling family for supporting this very important event when collectively once again we have shown the World the great spirit that exists within motorcycling."
South African motorcycle racing fans are in for a special treat next year when WSBK should return to South Africa after a break of three years.
South Africa appears on the provisional calendar for the 2014 eni FIM World Superbike Championship with a round scheduled to be held at Phakisa Freeway in the Free State, on October 19.
"We have signed a Terms of Contract short-form agreement with Dorna, the WSBK Promoters, and will enter into a long-form agreement subject to certain conditions being met - said Anthony Lauter of GAS Sports, who are organisers of this event. "We still need to secure the necessary financial guarantees required by Dorna and the Phakisa Freeway must first pass an FIM circuit inspection. We're confident we will meet these conditions. The race weekend programme will also include World Supersport series and several top South African riders can be expected to be seen in action."
Adrian Scholtz, CEO, Operations, Motorsport South Africa: "MSA warmly welcomes the news that the FIM World Superbike Championship could be returning to South African shores in 2014 and extends its congratulations and appreciation to the promoter, GAS Sports. It has been a few years since world championship motorsport was last seen on a South African race circuit and the event will be a welcome shot in the arm for local motorsport."
Javier Alonso, WSBK Executive Director: "We are delighted to come back to South Africa at Phakisa Freeway where we had very good experiences in the past. We are therefore confident about the succes of the event bearing in mind the existing culture and passion for motorcycling in South Africa. We are planning to visit the Circuit in the following days together with the FIM representatives in order to move forward with the homologation, contractual and event preparation procedures."
About GAS Sports
GAS Sports have a wealth of experience in the establishment, promotion, commercial and events management and broadcast production of international and national motorsport events and other major sporting events in South Africa and abroad.For further information please contact Peter Burroughes:Peter Burroughes CommunicationsE-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Last Wednesday 27 November, at the Dorna offices in Barcelona, a meeting was held between the WSBK management, in the person of Javier Alonso - Championship Executive Director - and SIAS, (Società incremento automobilismo e sport), the company who manages Monza Circuit, represented by Federico Bendinelli.
Due to the Circuit's great interest in hosting the series, the two parties have agreed to schedule an inspection of the circuit by the end of the year, to highlight any possible modifications required to the track, in order to obtain an FIM homologation renewal.The goal is to make possible the return of the Italian venue to the WSBK calendar already in 2015.
The 91 year old "Temple of Speed" is the third oldest permanent racetrack in the world, and the oldest Italian circuit which played a major role in the history of WSBK, with 22 rounds and 43 races held.
Former World Superbike racer and GP race winner, Doriano Romboni passed away today afternoon at the Santa Maria Goretti hospital in Latina, Italy, after suffering an accident at the Sic Supermoto Day, a race in the memory of Marco Simoncelli held at the 'Sagittario' International Circuit, at Latina.
Reports indicate that Romboni was struck by another rider after suffering a crash in the second practice session of the Sic Supermoto Day, before being immediately evacuated by helicopter to intensive care. Despite the best efforts of the staff at the hospital, Romboni succumbed to his injuries later in the afternoon.
The Sporting Commission of the FMI (Italian Motorcycling Federation) has decided to cancel the Sic Supermoto Day event.
"After the fatal incident that led to the death of Doriano Romboni - said FMI President Paolo Sesti - the cancellation of the event is the right and proper decision in respect of Doriano and his family, with which we share this sad moment. In Doriano we lost a valuable rider, a person of great worth and an esteemed technician, who was loved and appreciated by the motorcycle racing community."
Romboni was born in Lerici (La Spezia), Italy, on 8 December 1968 and his debut was in 1989 in 125cc GP series, from which he passed onto 250cc and then to 500cc.
Doriano has been racing in WSBK for three seasons, 1999, 2000 and 2004, after which he retired - and also raced in the Italian Superbike, in 2003.
In 2012 he became Sporting Director at Puccetti Racing Team Kawasaki, in the Italian CIV Supersport and STK600, same team participating in the World and European series. Last season he was nominated as FMI (Italian Motorcycling Federation) Technical Representative for the same team, to guide and help Riccardo Russo.
WorldSBK.com and everyone at Dorna WSBK Organization wish to pass on our deepest condolences to the Doriano's family and friends.