We at MotoGPMatters.com are very excited about electric motorcycle races, as we wrote just a couple of weeks ago on the subject of the TTXGP. Oil is an incredibly useful resource - almost every object in your home is made using at least some parts made from it - and burning the stuff seems like sacrilege, however satisfying the resulting noise and smell may be. The day is drawing near that oil will become too expensive to burn, and some form of alternative energy supply will have to be found. Racing, in the form of a motorcycle race for electric machines, can help bring that day closer.
Evidently, the FIM agrees. For today, the International Motorcycling Federation announced that they will sanction a race series for electric motorcycles in 2010. The move has been prompted by the success of the TTXGP race which took place during the week of the TT on the Isle of Man, where the winning entry lapped the historic Mountain course at an average of over 87 miles per hour, and three other entries lapped at over 70 miles per hour.
The advent of a series for electric motorcycles was inevitable, as prototypes are only a few years away from hitting mass production. Once that happens, and if they manage to sell enough units, the subject of homolgation for the World Superbike series would have been raised, and the FIM would have been faced with the problem of working out how to compare them with the existing four-stroke Superbikes. By creating a separate series for electric bikes, that problem is neatly sidestepped. And if the rules are similar to those for the TTXGP, this could be the most open motorcycle racing class currently running, and a real hotbed of innovation.
If you are interested in seeing some of the designs which prompted the FIM to take such a radical step, then the TTXGP website has a gallery of all of the entrants to the race, which you can find here.
The text of the FIM press release follows:
The FIM creates a new Series for Electric Motorcycles in 2010
Following the success of the TTXGP race held on the Isle of Man on June 12, the FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme) has decided to create a FIM Series for electric bikes in 2010. This new FIM Series will be run inside the Road Racing Grand Prix Commission, a great and innovative project led by Mr Azhar Hussain a UK Entrepreneur founder of the TTXGP. The FIM Series for electric bikes will provide an international platform for the development of electric bikes and the technology behind them to be tested in an exciting and challenging way. It aims at driving low-carbon technological innovation forward, to demonstrate that clean-emission transport technologies have matured and can be fun, fast and exciting.
FIM President Vito Ippolito
“I am very happy to with this new Series, the future of the sport depends on our capacity as well as that of the manufacturers to innovate quickly. We are convinced that very shortly the motorcycle World Championships will be accessible to non-polluting engines as far as gas and sound emissions are concerned. Now that this important decision is taken, we have to work on rules and calendar to be ready to compete in 2010”
TTXGP Founder Azhar Hussain
“With the success of the TTXGP on the Isle of Man, we have shown that zero carbon technology is ready to deliver the thrills and passion for both spectators and riders. In partnership with the FIM, we are taking the next step and proud to be pushing new frontiers in motorsports technology both on and off the track. Competition improves the breed, so we hope this new championship will come to be seen as a milestone event in bringing new transportation technology to the world beyond motorcycling. We invite the best and the brightest in the world to join the global championship and be with us at the dawn of the next generation of motorsports”