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Harley-Davidson XR750 from 1980 on Auction

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Back in 1969, the AMA Grand National Championship rules changed enough that the dominant force of the time, Harley-Davidson, had to come up with something new to replace the KR750 it was fielding back then. It ended up unleashing into the world what was to become the series’ most successful motorcycle in history.

XR750 is how it’s called, and it was introduced in 1970 in both flat track and road racing variants. Several big names of the competition rode the model, and managed to earn it 28 of 37 AMA Grand National Championships ran from 1972 to 2008.

Last time we heard anything about the XR750 at an official level was in 2019, when Harley decided to use the Jet Fire Orange, the competition colors deployed by the Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track team back in the day, across the company’s racing hardware. But despite this effort, nothing can match in appeal an original XR750.

We managed to dig one up as it awaits a new buyer on Mecum’s Las Vegas sale at the end of the week. We’re not being told who was its rider back in the day, but that probably matters little for the ones eyeing to buy it.

Sporting the native orange and black of its breed, the bike is ready for the track, it seems, and has even been fitted with new tires, ventilated hubs, rear sprocket and disc, and clean air filters. According to the seller, “track safety inspection looks ok to pass with springs and other updates.”

The engine that powers it is the original 750cc unit, sporting the aluminum heads that replaced the iron ones in 1972,

The motorcycle is presently part of the George Schott collection, but hopes are it will not be for long. There is no estimate as to how much this particular bike is expected to fetch during the auction.

Custom Motorcycle with Three Engines

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by Arun Prakash from https://www.rushlane.com

Custom Motorcycle With 3 Honda CB750 Engines made with the objective of participating in Land Speed Racing.

Once in a while we come across an engineering marvel that makes us wipe our eyes and maybe even scratch our heads. Now, branding the latest case as a marvel would be an outstretch but it surely does make us carry out the last two acts. If you think you have witnessed insane aftermarket modifications that can’t be matched, this one might force you to rethink.

When you see a single motorcycle is powered by three engines, yes you read that right – three engines in one motorcycle, probably can be called MotorsCycle. You can easily judge for yourself the number and kind of mod jobs that would have been carried out. Named ‘The Galaxy’, this behemoth is powered by three bored-out CB750 motors which essentially makes it a 12-cylinder 2,508cc glory.

Idea of Three Engine Motorcycle
This motorcycle is a creation of California-based custom motorcycle builder Mitsuhiro ‘Kiyo’ Kiyonaga who intends to take this monster to Land Speed Racing. Kiyonaga started his aftermarket workshop in Los Angeles in 2013 and his first project ‘Cherry Blossom’ was a custom-built stretched land speed racer that featured a turbocharged Honda CB750 engine housed in a frame built from scratch.

A few years later he followed it up with another 1970s top fuel-style bike but powered by twin motors this time and named it ‘Gekko’. Even though the Galaxy was Kiyo’s pet project which he has dreamt of since his childhood, it was seriously materialised only when his first two motorcycles were acquired by Haas Moto Museum. Work on the bike only started when owner of the museum, approved and officially commissioned the project.

Galaxy- Powertrain specs
Coming to its specification, Galaxy draws its energy from three four-pot motors sourced from F2 large port heads. Each of these engines has been bored-out to 836cc has been completely rebuilt with balanced and lightened crankshafts, performance cams, oversized stainless steel valves and heavy-duty connecting rods. Special care was taken to ensure that each internal configuration was in line with the original spec.

The motors are held by a three-piece chassis that constitute a tubular upper frame, and two huge engine mounting plates that also act as a rigid swingarm. Front half of Galaxy has been integrated into the frame which hides the pump, fuel tank, battery and all other functional components under its skin.

That tail section is a hand-built aluminium piece that can hold up to 9.5 litres of gasoline for the oil-sucking engines. A tiny port found at back is essentially an outlet for the engine breather hose.

The alloy wheels made out of aluminium are a piece of art with holes cut out on the front wheel in order to limit the effect of crosswinds at high speeds. With stretched-out ergonomics, ‘rider triangle’ was carefully calculated that offers impressive control and grip when racing across salt tracks.

The designer claims that every component on the bike has been modified and built by hand without aid of any designing software which deserves high applause. The Galaxy now finds shelter in the same museum as Kiyo’s previous two projects. However, Kiyo is yet to tick off all boxes and that would happen only when he takes to Land Speed Racing.

Harley-Davidson XR750 from 1972 on auction

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

1972 Harley-Davidson XR750 Evel Knievel Is Not Quite the Real Thing, Comes Close

In 2020, Harley-Davidson celebrated the 50th anniversary of the XR750 in style by wrapping the entire racing hardware it fielded, including the team haulers, uniforms, and branded accessories, in the iconic Jet Fire Orange, the competition color used by the Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track team. But other hues are perhaps equally iconic for the model.

The XR750 was introduced as a replacement for the KR750 in 1970, and quickly became the dominant force in the AMA Grand National Championships. In fact, the model is to date the most successful in the competition’s history, having won 28 championships between 1972 and 2008.

The racing two-wheeler was ridden to success by the sport’s big names, including Jay Springsteen, Mark Brelsford, or Cal Rayborn. But an even more prominent name of the age is linked to it: Evel Knievel.

One of the most famous stunt performers in history, Knievel rode the XR750 from 1970 to 1976. On the bike, he set a new world record by making it airborne and literally flying over 19 cars, a stunt that was filmed for his namesake 1971 movie. The record stood for 27 years when it was taken to 20 cars by Bubba Blackwell, also riding an XR750.

Like all stuntmen, Knievel identified himself through several iconic elements, including the colors he used on his rides. And in charge of making his bikes and helmets stand out was his favorite painter, George Sedlak.

The bike you see in the gallery above is not one directly linked to Knievel but is painted as a replica by Sedlak—after the stuntman retired, the painter began working on such projects on request.

This one sports the colors red, white, and blue on the fuel tank, but also things like the bike maker’s name in big letters, stars all over, a golden horseshoe, and even an image of the rider jumping a canyon with a bridge in the background.

We uncovered this one on the lot of motorcycles going under the Mecum hammer at the end of the month in Las Vegas. We are not told who it was originally made for, nor how much it is expected to fetch.

Sam Lowes wins double in Doha

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Lowes holds nerve for brilliant Doha double!

Sam Lowes emerged victorious in a thrilling late duel to win his second Moto2 race in succession while Augusto Fernandez made big strides to score an excellent sixth.

The Losail International Circuit was the scene of a second Moto2 race in as many weeks, and was one where Elf Marc VDS Racing Team riders Sam Lowes and Augusto Fernandez both finished in the top six.

Despite the strong wind, Lowes’ race winning pace was incredible. The Englishman posted a new race record time for the Moto2 class – 39’52.702 – and was over 10 seconds quicker than the race here one week ago.

After making drastic changes to his set-up on Friday, Augusto felt more comfortable in race two. Starting from tenth on the grid, the 23-year old was in the midst of an eight-rider fight for fifth place for the entire race.

He finished the race strongly, and climbed one place on the last lap to finish sixth. To show his improvement over the second weekend of the year, Fernandez’s race time was 11 seconds faster than he managed one week ago.

“I’m getting my confidence back”

“I’m very happy! It seems this set-up direction is the correct one. It has been a really hard two weeks here. We were a bit lost in the test and the first race, changing parts. And we didn’t have so much time to test for the races because of the times of the sessions. It was difficult to turn around the situation. But after a tough start, we got sixth position and sit seventh in the championship. Also, I’m getting my confidence back. The end of the race was so strong. I had good pace and was making 1’59s. I was strong on the brakes and passing a lot of people. We will take all of these positives to Portimao. Step by step we are getting closer.”

Starting from his second pole position of the season, Lowes got a solid start and passed early leader Marco Bezzecchi on the fourth lap of 20.

But this wasn’t straightforward. Lowes faced intense pressure from Remy Gardner through the second half of the race. His lead never exceeded 0.483s but he kept his composure, and posted the fastest time of the race – a 1’58.954 – on the last lap to win by 0.190s.

Lowes’ victory means he is the first rider in Moto2 history to win the opening two races from pole position. What’s more, he becomes the first British rider to win the first two races of the season in the intermediate category since Mike Hailwood did so in 1966!

“I think we saved the best for last”

“We had three weeks here in the desert with very changeable conditions. It was definitely not easy. But I think we saved the best for last! That was really fast race pace – the fastest we’ve had in Qatar in Moto2. I’m really happy with how I approached these two races. I feel I’ve improved in myself and can be more relaxed in the race. I know it’s only the start of the year, but it’s been a really good start. To have somebody behind me all race and not make any mistakes is really important and that will give me a lot of confidence. When I won last year and last week, I had a bigger gap so this was a bit different and I managed fine and felt really comfortable. I’m looking forward to getting to Portugal and being able to ride there with two hands this time! Last year that wasn’t the case. We’ve had a great few weeks, everyone is ready for home and I couldn’t be happier to take 50 points back.”

Lowes storms to season opening victory in the desert

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Sam Lowes crowned a perfect weekend by winning the first Moto2 race of 2021 in Qatar as Augusto Fernandez scored important points and gained valuable experience by finishing 14th.

The 2021 season started in style under the floodlights at the Losail International Circuit with the 20-lap Moto2 race demonstrating the full potential of Sam Lowes, who rode to a brilliant victory.

Sunday evening’s track temperature (23 degrees) was nine degrees lower than qualifying (32 degrees) and the wind had picked up considerably, adding another challenge for team-mates Lowes and Augusto Fernandez.

After a tough qualifying on Saturday, in which he placed 21st, the 23-year old made some drastic changes to bike set-up ahead of the race. He confirmed these improvements on Sunday afternoon by placing eighth in warm-up.

Fernandez was then involved in an epic six-rider fight for eleventh place for the majority of the race. He maintained a strong rhythm until the end, and came home 14th, 17.540s behind the winner.

“I’m happy with what we changed with this bike”

“I’m happy because we did a lot of work all weekend. Yesterday we changed the setting of the bike completely. So today was like a test. We had a quick warm-up, a new setting and then we had to try and understand as many things as possible before the race. Coming from the back of the grid is always difficult so I’m happy with the performance. We have to improve some things, especially in sector three, where I was struggling a lot. But we will analyse everything because I’m happy with what we changed with this bike. If we can improve in sector three, we’ll make a big step. My last two laps of the race were fast – top seven or top eight pace. I can’t wait to start round two to try and improve and have a good weekend!”

Having topped preseason testing, led FP2 and clinched pole position, Lowes started as the pre-race favourite. Despite a turn two crash in the warm-up session, he showed no signs of pressure, making a solid start and taking the lead from Marco Bezzecchi at the start of lap three.

From there, the 30-year old Briton expertly controlled the race, gradually extending his advantage over Remy Gardner to win by 2.26s at the finish. This was Lowes’ seventh win in the Moto2 class and the fourth in his past seven starts.

Lowes becomes the first British rider to win the first race of the season in any grand prix class since Barry Sheene did so in the 1979 Venezuelan Grand Prix!

“Winning the first race is a mega start”

“Honestly, the first one is always difficult because you have all the winter to think about it. Every time you are training, or even if you can’t sleep at night, it’s on your mind! It has a massive build up. Then I crashed in warm-up and the wind was different to the other times we rode during the weekend. All of that added to it! So, I’m really proud of that ride because it was solid. To get pole position and win at the first round starts things off in a good way. My team has done a fantastic job. It was nice to go testing and build a base for the season. Winning the first race is a mega start!”

Motul Set For 2021 MotoGP Campaign With Team Suzuki And Pramac Racing

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from https://www.scoop.co.nz

Motul continues winning partnership with reigning MotoGP champions Team Suzuki- Motul and PRAMAC Racing sign exclusive deal for 2021

The 2020 MotoGP World Championship season was an incredible year, which saw Team Suzuki and Motul claim a clean sweep across the Drivers and Teams Titles. The famed Japanese manufacturer will continue with riders Alex Rins and Joan Mir, a line up that remains unchanged since 2019, with a clear aim of repeating the championship successes in 2021.

Motul will continue as the Official Lubricant Partner of the Suzuki factory team, extending the close working relationship between the two brands that have delivered success at the top flight of motorcycle racing for the past 32 years. This partnership has pinned its hopes on the championship-winning Suzuki GSX-RR, which has seen only minor upgrades due to a MotoGP engine freeze over the winter. The aim is clear for 2021 – to repeat the success of 2020 and achieve back-to-back titles.

Motul also confirms a key technical partnership with PRAMAC Racing for the MotoGP World Championship, inking a three-year deal which will see Motul and PRAMAC Racing competing at the top flight of motorbike racing until 2023. Jorge Martin and Johann Zarco will be leading the charge in 2021, both on the highly competitive Ducati Desmosedici GP bike which scored 5 podium finishes in the hands of PRAMAC Racing during the 2020 season.

This partnership extends away from the race track, where Motul Heavy Duty will be working closely with PRAMAC’s industrial applications in the energy and material handling sector. Motul will provide first fill lubricants at factory level for PowerGen equipment, providing high-performance diesel and gas lubricants to improve mechanical efficiency.

The 2021 MotoGP World Championship season begins this weekend, at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar on the 26-28 of March 2021. The action begins with the two Free Practice sessions on Friday, with Qualifying on Saturday and the Grand Prix on Sunday.

Historic motorcycles poised to visit Laguna Seca raceway

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by Jim Johnson from https://www.montereyherald.com

County board to consider three-year pact for event

A “vintage” motorocycles festival could be officially added to Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca’s “premiere” event schedule this season, serving as a bookend with the popular MotoAmerica Superbike event in July.

The Board of Supervisors are set under its consent agenda Tuesday to consider a three-year deal with the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association for the Monterey Classic MotoFest event at Laguna Seca, running July 16-18 this year.

The proposed agreement, which would take effect retroactive to Jan. 1, would require the AHRMA organization to pay the county $480,000 over the term of the pact through the 2023 racing season. It would last through July 31, 2023.

The county board is also scheduled to consider another retroactive agreement under its consent agenda Tuesday, this one with the Historic Sportscar Racing from Feb. 1-Dec. 31, 2022 for the Pre-Reunion and Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion events set for Aug. 7-8 and Aug. 12-15, respectively.

Raceway spokesman Barry Toepke said the AHRMA has rented the raceway track in the past and the “growing popularity of vintage motorcycles” has offered an opportunity to “celebrate the sport and hobby by creating a larger festival experience and developing a Bike Week following” the GEICO MotoAmerica Superbike Speedfest at Monterey event set for July 9-11.

Toepke said the agreement was initiated in November but the holidays, uncertainty around event dates and whether spectators would be allowed delayed finalization of the proposal.

The organization touts its national and regional motorcycle road racing events ranging from motocross, dirt track and cross country to observed trials competition for historic motorcycles, as well as “alternative” modern racing with zero emissions electric motorcycles.

Raceway management dubbed AHRMA the “preeminent vintage motorcycle organization” in the U.S. and produces events across the nation including the “world-renowned” vintage motorcycle festival at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama, and will ensure a professionally run event and national media coverage.

The proposed new event would be one of six planned major auto racing events for the 2021 season, one fewer than the seven that were scheduled for last season before the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting restrictions forced the postponement and eventual cancellation of all but three major events – all conducted without onsite spectators.

Toepke said raceway officials expect to have spectators this season, noting that Laguna Seca is a large outdoor venue where fans can be scattered around.

Two events on last season’s raceway schedule have been removed from this year’s including the Trans Am Speedfest, which will be conducted April 29-May 2 but is now considered a track rental with a closed paddock and no ticket sales, and the Ferrari Challenge, which will not visit Laguna Seca this year.

Highway 68 Coalition member Mike Weaver has requested the proposed agreements with AHRMA and the Historic Sportscar Racing be withdrawn from the consent agenda and scheduled for a public hearing, arguing that they represent an “unjustified” intensification of use at the raceway and reiterating a request for full environmental review.

Some events, including the Historic Sportscar Racing and MotoAmerica Superbike, have not yet been confirmed by the Board of Supervisors.

Kaspersky becomes sponsor of Aprilia Racing

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from https://www.albawaba.com

Kaspersky has become a sponsor of Aprilia Racing – one of the most successful teams in motorcycle racing history, Partners with Piaggio Group

Kaspersky has become a sponsor of Aprilia Racing – one of the most successful teams in motorcycle racing history. The cybersecurity company’s logos will be placed on the team’s bikes for the entire 2021 season, starting with the first race in Qatar on March 28. The sponsorship comes as part of Kaspersky’s partnership with Aprilia’s parent company Piaggio Group – Europe’s largest scooter and motorcycle manufacturer.

This new sponsorship adds to the cybersecurity vendor’s contribution to motorsport. Kaspersky has been a long-time supporter of talented racers, who the company helps to reach their full potential. The global list of athletes, supported by Kaspersky, includes the first female Emirati racing driver Amna Al Qubaisi, as well as Formula One racer Antonio Giovinazzi.

“Kaspersky is committed to securing the technological progress of the mobility industry and to the development of motorsports. Despite working in different sectors to Piaggio Group and Aprilia, we share the same values of constant improvement, innovation and becoming the best at what we do. I’m sure our partnership will be beneficial for the whole mobility, automotive and motorbike community,” says Alexander Moiseev, CBO of Kaspersky.

Aprilia Racing is the most advanced technological expression of the Piaggio Group – it has won an astonishing 54 world titles, including 28 since the Noale-based manufacturer joined the Piaggio Group in 2005. From its inception, Aprilia Racing has been an extraordinary breeding ground for new talent.

“It is a great honor to have Kaspersky’s name on the Aprilia RS-GP livery this year. Our new partner is a successful name in motorsport and we are sure that MotoGP will represent a wonderful new challenge in this realm. Together, we will be able to enhance talents and honor the true spirit of racing, as both Kaspersky and Aprilia Racing have been able to demonstrate in the course of their history,” says Massimo Rivola, CEO of Aprilia Racing.

The sponsorship of Aprilia is part of Kaspersky’s new partnership with Piaggio Group, which gives one of the world leaders in motorcycle production access to the IT company’s time-proven expertise and the ability to securely use the best of what technology can offer. Kaspersky has long been a household name in automotive cybersecurity – for over a decade it has worked with renowned vehicle manufacturers, as well as developers of connected components.

Indian Motorcycle Racing Wins AFT Opener

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INDIAN MOTORCYCLE racing TAKES BACK-TO-BACK WINS AT VOLUSIA HALF-MILE DOUBLEHEADER

Indian Motorcycle Privateer Brandon Robinson & Wrecking Crew Rider Jared Mees Win Back-to-Back at Volusia Half-Mile I & II, Respectively

MINNEAPOLIS (March 16, 2021) – Indian Motorcycle Racing, presented by Progressive Motorcycle Insurance, jumped out to an early lead in the 2021 American Flat Track (AFT) SuperTwins standings, as Indian Motorcycle Privateer Brandon Robinson and Wrecking Crew Rider Jared Mees secure back-to-back wins at the Volusia Half-Mile doubleheader.

Robinson’s season-opener win at Volusia Half-Mile I marked his third straight victory, dating back to the 2020 season finale doubleheader in Daytona. After winning his semi and getting a start on the front row in the Main, Robinson jumped out to an early lead but was battling with the second-place rider throughout the race. In his third season as an Indian Motorcycle privateer, the win marks Robinson’s fifth victory aboard the Indian FTR750.

“Despite being injured for the bulk of the 2020 season, Brandon finished the year with incredible momentum, so it was truly exciting to see him pick up right where he left off and reach the top of the box,” said Gary Gray, Vice President – Racing, Technology & Service for Indian Motorcycle. “Having swept the Volusia Half-Mile doubleheader last year, Jared entered round two with fierce determination to secure the win and garner the all-important points at a track he’s exceptionally comfortable and confident on.”

On Saturday, Mees won his semi and was able to return to the front row for the Main. Though, it was Wrecking Crew teammate and defending SuperTwins Champion Briar Bauman who captured the holeshot. After leading eight laps, Bauman was unable to hold on, as Mees made his pass and gained separation with every lap – ultimately cruising comfortably to his 54th career win. The victory also marked his 34th career win aboard the Indian FTR750, a race bike he won two Grand National Championships with in 2017 and 2018.

Following the doubleheader at Volusia Speedway Park, Mees sits atop the leaderboard with 42 points. Robinson is closely behind with 39 points, while Bauman’s fourth and second-place finishes keep him within striking distance with 35 total points.

The 2021 AFT season continues on May 1 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway for the Atlanta Super TT. For more information on Indian Motorcycle Racing and the Indian Wrecking Crew, visit IndianMotorcycle.com or follow along on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.

Pirelli and Brandon Paasch Emerge Triumphant in the Daytona 200

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Tyler O’Hara Grabs Podium Position with DIABLO™ Superbike Slicks

DAYTONA, Fla. (March 14, 2021) – Pirelli Tire North America returned to the winner’s circle once again at the 79th running of the Daytona 200, claiming three out of the top four positions in the 57-lap shootout. TSE Racing’s Brandon Paasch has come close to victory at the speedway previously, but 2021 marked the year that the 19-year old would get the job done, piloting his Yamaha YZF-R6 to victory by 0.031 of a second. Tyler O’Hara used an impressive late race charge to take the final step of the podium in third aboard his Floyd’s of Leadville Kawasaki Ninja® ZX™-6R.

“It feels so good to get the job done here in Daytona,” said Paasch. “This has been a goal of mine for a long time, and to finally check this off the list, just feels amazing! My Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike slicks worked incredible all day, especially towards the end of the race when it really counted, allowing me to chip away at the lead and make the pass for the win.”

Both Paasch’s YZF-R6 and O’Hara’s ZX-6R relied on the performance of Pirelli’s DIABLO™ Superbike SC1 120/70-17 front tire and DIABLO™ Superbike Daytona 190/60-17 rear tire to handle the challenges of the high-banked 3.51-mile course.

“I let the leaders get away from me a little bit there in the beginning laps,” said O’Hara. “I just never gave up though, and my Pirelli tires were working awesome. I’m so stoked to be up here on the podium, but to be honest, I really wanted to get that top step of the podium.”

Paasch’s relentless efforts saw him make up a six-second gap in the final stages of the race, including using the traction of his Pirelli slicks to get a drive and make the pass for the lead to take the victory on the final lap. O’Hara narrowly edged out fellow Pirelli rider Michael Barnes in a drag race to the checkered flag, finishing third and fourth, respectively. Geoff May would race to a hard-fought seventh and Ryan Jones carded a top-10 in ninth.

“What a way to make a return to the Daytona 200,” said Oscar Solis, road racing manager, Pirelli. “All weekend long our guys were competitive at the front of the field. Brandon [Paasch] been trying for this win the past few year’s, so to see him succeed and accomplish his goal is something that everyone at Pirelli is proud of. The pace that the guys were able to maintain with the DIABLO™ Superbike range showcases not only their performance, but durability, especially in a endurance-style format like we had today.”

RESULTS

Daytona 200 – Daytona, Florida

March 13, 2021

  1. Brandon Paasch
  2. Sean Kelly
  3. Tyler O’Hara
  4. Michael Barnes
  5. Danny Eslick
  6. Rocco Landers
  7. Geoff May
  8. Teagg Hobbs
  9. Ryan Jones
  10. Max Flinders

For more information about the complete line of Pirelli motorcycle tires, please visit Pirelli.com