Photos

Mon, 2019-02-18 15:51
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The Ducati Panigale V4R looked menacing in the hands of Alvaro Bautista on the first day of the test at Jerez


New team, new color scheme, more support from HRC. But will it be enough for Leon Camier?


Old team, new teammate. Leon Haslam joins Jonathan Rea for 2019


Anti-wheelie, but pro-motion


The tradition of German-speaking Yamaha riders in WorldSSP continues. Swiss rider Randy Krummenacher replaces Sandro Cortese, who moves up to WorldsBK


Michael van der Mark, voted Rotterdam Sportsman of the Year, has seen his teammate make a step forward in 2019. There is work still to do


A change of capacity for Maria Herrera: the Yamaha YZF-R6 has more weight and more power than a WorldSSP300 bike, and Herrera is still adapting


Toprak the Turkish Terror will hope to challenge the KRT Kawasakis this year, and will hope to teach journalists to spell his last name correctly


Best thing about WorldSBK is that they don't hide their bikes away behind the modesty screens like the MotoGP teams do


Downloading data from Rob Hartog's Kawasaki ZX-6R


Tom Toparis aiming to make Australian fans proud at Phillip Island


Chaz Davies was a faller on Monday


Sacrilege: A BMW with symmetrical headlights. Markus Reiterberger looked solid on Monday, while teammate Tom Sykes was positively impressive


Bautista, the bike


Bautista, the rider, and his crew chief Giulio Nava, formerly with Aprilia in MotoGP


Mickey letting it all hang out


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If you'd like a print of one of Andrew Gosling's shots, then send Andrew an email and he'll be happy to help.

Thu, 2019-02-14 11:33
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Here at last, after the delay caused by Jorge Lorenzo breaking his scaphoid just before the team launch: The 2019 Repsol Honda MotoGP livery shots


Shot in Spain, the photos used a 2018 model Honda RC213V, as the lack of a carbon cover just behind the headstock betrays


The show bikes also used the cheaper (though this is a relative term) gold-covered aluminum Ohlins forks, rather than the carbon ones being raced


The sign of a successful sponsor partnership is not having to change your livery every year. That's how it reaches iconic status


Seventh year in a row in the Repsol colors for Marc Marquez. Expect other factories to spend the second half of 2019 throwing money at him to try to lure him away


Jorge Lorenzo gambles on another switch. Can he become a member of a very elite group of riders who has won a premier class race on three different makes of MotoGP machine?


If you'd like to have desktop-sized versions of the fantastic photos which appear on the site, you can become a site supporter and take out a subscription. A subscription will also give you access to the many in-depth and exclusive articles we produce for MotoMatters.com site supporters. The more readers who join our growing band of site supporters, the better we can make MotoMatters.com, and the more readers will get out of the website.

Tue, 2019-02-12 18:27
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The 2019 Red Bull KTM livery, much like the 2018 color scheme


In contrast, a brand new color scheme for a brand new proposition: the Red Bull Tech3 KTM team colors


Boss man: Pol Espargaro stays for 2 more years, provides stability to the program


Johann Zarco has been brought in to challenge for the title. First he has to understand and adapt to the KTM RC16


Miguel Oliveira was up to speed quickly at the Sepang MotoGP test


Hafizh Syahrin enters his second season in MotoGP, switching bikes along with the team


If you'd like to have desktop-sized versions of the fantastic photos which appear on the site, you can become a site supporter and take out a subscription. A subscription will also give you access to the many in-depth and exclusive articles we produce for MotoMatters.com site supporters. The more readers who join our growing band of site supporters, the better we can make MotoMatters.com, and the more readers will get out of the website.

Tue, 2019-02-12 18:24
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KTM launched their 2019 MotoGP campaign at their factory in Mattighofen, Austria today. They introduced the Red Bull Factory MotoGP team, and the Red Bull Tech3 satellite squad. They issued the following press release after the launch:


2019 MotoGP is Go! Red Bull KTM race teams show new colours in Austrian unveiling

KTM’s best, largest and most ambitious assault on MotoGP Grand Prix racing was unveiled a short distance from the factory in Mattighofen, Austria this afternoon. Riders and staff from Red bull KTM Factory Racing and Red Bull KTM Tech3 were introduced by KTM management as part of the company’s most comprehensive line-up to face the FIM World Championship.

2019 has started brightly for the ‘orange’ brigade with success at the Dakar, in Supercross arenas, on the French beach sand and in national motocross circles. Now it is the turn of the asphalt crew to quickly spin the wheels.

For the first time the KTM Race department drew their MotoGP force together not only to unveil the Red Bull colours for the 2019 campaign but to graphically illustrate the strong path through to the pinnacle of Grand Prix that begins with the Red Bull Rookie Cup, progresses to Moto3, Moto2 and to the premier class. After two impressive seasons in MotoGP where the manufacturer grasped their first points, first top ten finishes and ended the second term with their maiden podium trophy in Valencia, the effort is now doubled with the experienced Red Bull KTM Tech3 unit placing another two RC16s on the grid.

KTM were proud to highlight their Grand Prix structure and the potential for 2019 but it was arguably the presence of the athletes themselves and the new liveries on the race bikes that also caught the eye.

Red Bull KTM will count on a total of 3 world championships and a grand total of 39 victories among their four-rider roster from Spain, France, Portugal and Malaysia with a haul of 92 Grand Prix podiums shared between them.

Pol Espargaro (28 in June) will begin his third season with the factory RC16 and his sixth in the premier class. He is joined for the first time by fellow former Moto2 World Champion Johann Zarco (29 in July) – the most successful Frenchman in Grand Prix history. Red Bull KTM Tech 3 field the promise of Hafizh Syahrin (25 in May and the first Malaysian to compete in the premier class and now set for his second MotoGP year) and Miguel Oliveira: another ‘first’ for his country – Portugal – in MotoGP and the recently-turned 24 year old rookie is the first rider to have come up the Moto3 and Moto2 KTM ladder. MotoGP is backed up by the rapid test team duo of Mika Kallio and Dani Pedrosa.

Pol Espargaro: “We have a big target in front of us this year and I think we are in a good place. Johann has integrated into the team well and already looks fast. It means that we are set for the season. I thought Miguel was very fast at the test and that was surprising for a rookie and I know Hafizh is working really hard. All the info the Tech3 guys can bring will be helpful for me, the team and all the engineers. I know, from my experience, that Tech3 are good for helping and teaching the riders, and also improving the bike. 2019 will be about improvement: nobody is perfect and I learn something every year. I think with Johann as a teammate hopefully I can learn from him and apply it to myself to be a better rider and a better worker. I just want to give the best of myself in 2019 and the most I can to the team.”

Johann Zarco: “I’m happy to be here, and this is my first factory team presentation! I discovered Mattighofen and the KTM factory for the first time in January and I was very impressed. After a few tests now I am very happy: I feel that the people in the team trust me and it’s nice to feel that confidence. We’ve done some good work so the motivation is high. Even when we make big improvements at a test we still see that we have a lot to do and have steps to make. It helps to move forward. I believe in what we can do. I would say I am a fast rider so I can give good information and I am very proud to be part of this story in KTM.”

Miguel Oliveira: “I’m very happy with the new colours, the bike is amazing. The look of everything is just incredible, quite different from what we are used to. It’s such a nice project, that KTM and Red Bull got together; to have two factory teams on the grid is something pretty unique and it shows clearly that KTM wants to try and dominate this class and road racing in general. I’m just really proud and I feel privileged to be a part of this project.”

Hafizh Syahrin: “I’m really excited about the new livery. I think it’s truly different than everything else on the track. I can’t wait to be on track with this bike in Qatar. It looks amazing and I guess even more so under the floodlights in the desert. I’m very delighted about this look and can’t wait to get the season started!”

Mike Leitner, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “2019 is our third season in MotoGP and it is already a milestone thanks to the presence of Tech3 and a new rider in our factory team. It will be very challenging but we hope we can continue the road to the top. We’ll have some bumps on the road but we have worked well in the winter and should be able to look forward to some positive moments this season. I really hope the partnership with Tech3 will give us essential information to improve our MotoGP bike and the total KTM package in order to make the next step in positions and race results.”

Herve Poncharal, Red Bull KTM Tech3 Team Manager: “It’s been great to show the world our new livery. I saw the colours for the first time at the end of December I couldn’t believe it: this is such a cool bike. For sure, the most important for a racing bike is to be fast and we are working on that. The test we had in Sepang a few days ago was very interesting. But if the bike can be fast and good-looking, it’s a big bonus. Therefore, we are more than proud to have shown what our livery will finally be and I can’t wait to see it under the floodlights in Qatar because it will look even more amazing. Hopefully, we can see these bikes with this livery in strong positions.”

Pit Beirer, KTM Motorsport Director: “For us this is another very special moment in our racing story and it’s a milestone for us to have that structure in place. Our road race project has been building consistently since 2012 in terms of structure, confidence and people. I would say we have an amazing ‘path’ in place where you can go from a Rookies bike through all the categories to a MotoGP bike. In the premier class two motorcycles is not enough to be able to develop technology up until the highest level so having a second team in the MotoGP gives us an amazing feeling that our system is in place. We will work with this programme and that doesn't only mean young riders and trying to get them through but also the bikes for each category with a strong in-house line-up and effort. That's why today is very special.”

Stefan Pierer, CEO KTM Group: “Racing is the core content of our DNA. That means forced innovation every week or every two weeks. We see on the TV or the internet how many tenths of a second are missing and that really drives us to do everything what we can in the end to touch the top of the podium. That's our philosophy and that has driven us to success over the last thirty years but in this racing world we are still beginners: this is our third year. This is a five year programme and by the end we want to see podiums and for the upcoming racing season I’d like to see single digit results; that's realistic because we are still collecting data and we miss all the experience of our competitors. For 2019 – in gambler’s speak – it’s ‘all in’.”

The MotoGP line-up will travel to Qatar for the last three-day dial-in test on February 23rd and just two weeks before the nineteen round season begins at Losail.

Mon, 2019-02-11 09:21
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This selection of photos from the Sepang test were taken by Colm O'Brien, a photographer who works with CormacGP's Cormac Ryan Meenan. You can follow him on Instagram at @colmobri.
After every race, MotoMatters.com will be publishing a selection of Tom Morsellino's photos of MotoGP bikes, together with extensive technical explanations of the details by Peter Bom. MotoMatters.com subscribers will get access to the full resolution photos, which they can download and study in detail, and all of Peter's technical explanations of the photos. Readers who do not support the site will be limited to the 800x600 resolution photos, and an explanation of two photos.


Valentino Rossi's Yamaha M1
David Emmett: The Yamaha M1 barely seems to change from year to year. In recent seasons, even the livery has remained almost identical. Yamaha's philosophy is one of evolution and refinement, and that is not always obvious from the outside. Despite the lack of outward change, there are some major changes to the 2019 Yamaha M1. Yamaha is continuing along the path of moving weight to the rear of the bike, and the bike has new chassis parts (including a new frame) to help with tire life. The biggest changes have been on the electronics side, optimizing the Magneti Marelli spec ECU software.


Marc Márquez' 2019 Honda RC213V prototype
David Emmett: Honda had a couple of variants of their 2019 bikes at Sepang. This is the bike referred to as 'the prototype' or 'the black bike', for obvious reasons. Key identifying detail for the 2019 bike is the black cover close to the headstock (and below the Honda tank badge). That contains various wires and minor electronics components which have been moved out from under the tank cover, to make room for larger airbox and direct air intake. Honda are playing with exhaust systems, and this bike has the older, squared-off tailpipe on the top exhaust. The newer version has a tapered cone on the exhaust. The carbon swingarm is a telltale giveaway that this is Marc Márquez' bike.


Danilo Petrucci's Ducati Desmosedici GP19


Hafizh Syahrin's KTM RC16


Aleix Espargaro's Aprilia RS-GP


Getting ready to start Cal Crutchlow's Honda RC213V


Aprilia's engine starter


KTM's engine starter


If you would like access to the full-size versions of these technical photos and all of Peter Bom's explanations, as well as desktop-size versions of the other fantastic photos which appear on the site, you can become a site supporter and take out a subscription. A subscription will also give you access to the many in-depth and exclusive articles we produce for MotoMatters.com site supporters. The more readers who join our growing band of site supporters, the better we can make MotoMatters.com, and the more readers will get out of the website.

If you would like to buy a copy of one of thes photos, you can email Thomas Morsellino

Mon, 2019-02-04 14:22
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2019 - more black, less white, same blue


If you'd like to have desktop-sized versions of the fantastic photos which appear on the site, you can become a site supporter and take out a subscription. A subscription will also give you access to the many in-depth and exclusive articles we produce for MotoMatters.com site supporters. The more readers who join our growing band of site supporters, the better we can make MotoMatters.com, and the more readers will get out of the website.

Mon, 2019-02-04 14:18
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The factory Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team issued the following press release after the launch of their 2019 color scheme in Jakarta today:


MONSTER ENERGY YAMAHA MOTOGP TURN THEIR ’BEAST MODE ON‘ IN INDONESIA


Jakarta (Indonesia), 4th February 2019

The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team unveiled its 2019 colour scheme and structure today at the Four Seasons Hotel Jakarta, Indonesia, causing great excitement. The launch event‘s theme “Beast Mode On” echoes the new title sponsorship deal between Yamaha and Monster Energy, as well as the team‘s mindset ahead of the official 2019 IRTA MotoGP preseason test in Sepang, Malaysia, held in two days‘ time.

The highly anticipated Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team Launch event took place today at the Four Seasons Hotel Jakarta in Indonesia. Yamaha‘s newly named Factory Racing MotoGP team proudly presented its brand-new livery, that reflects Yamaha‘s long-term global alliance with the team‘s new title sponsor, Monster Energy Company.

The multiple year title sponsor agreement was signed last summer and came natural, as Monster Energy sponsors multiple Yamaha teams (the Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP team since 2013) and riders (including Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales) in various racing classes.

Monster Energy and Yamaha‘s mutual passion for racing was evident today when the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team announced that they will be turning their “Beast Mode On” for the 2019 MotoGP World Championship challenge.

At the start of the event, Yamaha Motor Racing President and Senior General Manager of Motorsports Section, Kouichi Tsuji was was joined on stage by Yamaha Motor Racing Managing Director, Lin Jarvis, and Monster Energy Company‘s Vice President of Sports Marketing, Mitch Covington.

Following the introduction speech by Executive Officer at Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd. and President of PT. Yamaha Indonesia Motor Manufacturing, Minoru Morimoto, the three representatives were being interviewed by Masters of Ceremonies Lucy Wiryono and Dylan Gray. The management shared their excitement to start this new chapter, as they discussed the team‘s dedication towards the 2019 preparations and the new Yamaha structure, with Hiroshi Itou recently joining Motorsport Development Division as General Manager, and Takahiro Sumi becoming the new MotoGP Group Leader.

Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales soon joined the talk show. They made it clear that they can‘t wait to get back into action at the official 2019 IRTA MotoGP preseason test held in Sepang, Malaysia, in two days‘ time.

Valentino is famously Yamaha‘s most successful rider. This will be his 14th season with the manufacturer since he first joined the factory team in 2004, and there is no sign of him slowing down. The nine-time World Champion is as eager as ever to score GP victories, as he enters a seventh consecutive year with Yamaha since his return in 2013.

Maverick joined the Factory Yamaha crew in 2017 after gaining two years of experience in the premier class and was quick to make a name for himself. He ultimately took third place in the rider standings in his first season with Yamaha. Though the 2018 season proved to be tough, the Spaniard kept his motivation high and won the race at Phillip Island. He finished the season in fourth place overall, just five points behind his teammate in third position.

A video message from Monster Energy Company Chairman and CEO Rodney Sacks introduced the team launch‘s pièce de résistance: the unveiling of the brand-new bike livery. Valentino and Maverick were given the honour and they proudly presented the 2019 Yamaha YZR-M1. Its colour scheme has completely changed, with the team‘s M1 sporting a ’Monster Energy black‘-to-’Yamaha Factory Racing blue‘ gradient, including subtle blue stripes that add further dynamic to the sleek design. This perfect blend between Yamaha‘s aesthetic and Monster Energy‘s instantly recognisable claw branding is also represented in the new Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team logo, as well as the new team gear and leathers modelled by Valentino and Maverick.

Besides the prominent Monster Energy branding, the team is also pleased to announce that throughout the 2019 racing season the bike will continue to feature the slogans of Yamaha Indonesia Motor Manufacturing, Yamaha Motor Vietnam Co., Ltd., Yamaha Motor Philippines, Inc., and Thai Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.

Furthermore, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP, is delighted to confirm the continuation of its relationship with numerous sponsors and partners, including:

TITLE SPONSOR
Monster Energy Corporation - www.monsterenergy.com

OFFICIAL SPONSORS
JXTG Energy (ENEOS) - www.noe.jxtg-group.co.jp
Semakin di Depan - www.yamaha-motor.co.id
Yamalube - www.yamalube.com
Akrapovič - www.akrapovic.com
Yamaha Philippines - www.yamaha-motor.com.ph
Yamaha Vietnam - www.yamaha-motor.com.vn
Thai Yamaha Motor - www.yamaha-motor.co.th
Cradle - www.cradle-cfd.com
Blue Core - www.yamaha-motor.co.id
Oakley - www.oakley.com
Descente - www.descente.com
Alpinestars - www.alpinestars.com
Abarth - www.abarth.com
Blu Cru - www.yamaha-racing.com
Gilles Tooling - www.gillestooling.com
Racing Boy - www.racingboy.com.my
Furukawa Electrics - www.furukawa.co.jp
Cromax - www.cromax.com
Magneti Marelli - www.magnetimarelli.com
D.I.D. - www.did-daido.co.jp
NGK Spark Plugs - www.ngksparkplugs.com
BMC Air Filters - www.bmcairfilters.com
2D - www.2d-datarecording.com
Beta Tools - www.beta-tools.it
Yamaha Corporation (Yamaha Music) - www.yamaha.com
Michelin - www.michelin.com

OFFICIAL REGIONAL SPONSOR
Pont Grup - www.pontgrup.com

PREMIUM SUPPLIERS
Peltor - www.peltorcomms.3m.com
Saucony - www.saucony.com

OFFICIAL SUPPLIERS
Bric‘s - www.brics.it
Named Sport - www.namedsport.com

Lastly, the team continues to support Yamaha‘s bLU cRU programme, encouraging a younger generation of on-road riders to follow their dream to become the next MotoGP star. Rossi and Viñales continue to be ambassadors of the programme and will serve as role models for the riders in lower classes.

KOUICHI TSUJI
SENIOR GENERAL MANAGER OF MOTORSPORTS SECTION, YAMAHA MOTOR CO., LTD

“We are delighted to officially start our journey with our new title sponsor, Monster Energy. Though a completely different brand from Yamaha, we share a great racing heritage, also in the MotoGP championship. This year marks an important step, with Yamaha undergoing various structural changes. In a way the new livery reflects this. Though the changes run much deeper than a new colour scheme, I felt a great sense of excitement and motivation from everybody present when we unveiled this year‘s bike and the new team logo here in Jakarta. This is crucial. We need that drive and eagerness to fuel the urge to win as we prepare for the 2019 MotoGP championship, making sure we‘re not just competing at the highest level of racing, we‘re winning. >From this moment on we begin a new season, with the entire team firing on all cylinders. We want to give our extremely talented riders, Valentino and Maverick, the tools they need to get the results they crave and deserve. I‘m sure that with the support of our sponsors, partners, and fans, we can fight for race wins again.”

LIN JARVIS
MANAGING DIRECTOR, YAMAHA MOTOR RACING

“This year the Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP team‘s package is different from previous years, so it seemed only fitting to hold a special launch event to mark this fresh start. The team travelled to Indonesia this time. The country‘s market is very important for the Yamaha Motor Group, and the fans‘ and local media‘s great passion for MotoGP further adds to its appeal. Its central location in Asia and close vicinity to the first official test, held in Malaysia the day after tomorrow, made it a perfect location for the Team Launch. Yamaha and Monster Energy have been collaborating for many years. We are proud to have them as an official sponsor of the Yamaha Factory MotoGP Team since 2013, and now we will be working even closer together as we step up the global alliance between the two brands and they take on the title sponsor role. Monster Energy is known for giving its audience the full experience of whatever makes them passionate, which is also what we strive after at Yamaha. During the upcoming season we aim to leave a strong impression throughout the entire MotoGP season, and we very much look forward to sharing this next chapter with race fans, giving them a thoroughly enjoyable season. We‘ve revealed our new team logo and livery today. The new design, especially the black-toblue gradient on the bike, visualises the partnership between Monster Energy and Yamaha. Now the work really begins with the upcoming preseason test in Sepang. The entire team, the riders, and I‘m sure the fans are impatient to see some MotoGP action again.”

RODNEY SACKS
CHAIRMAN AND CEO, MONSTER ENERGY COMPANY

“After more than a decade of passionately supporting riders, teams and as a title sponsor of two of MotoGP‘s most iconic races we are proud to now call ourselves title partner of the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team. We look forward to the next chapter of our adventure with real excitement and we wish the Yamaha team, plus everyone behind their outstanding racing effort, the very best for the 2019 season.”

MITCH COVINGTON
VICE PRESIDENT OF SPORTS MARKETING, MONSTER ENERGY COMPANY

“The start of this new era for Monster Energy and Yamaha‘s global racing program marks an exciting moment for us both. In MotoGP we now build on the six year partnership we have forged with Yamaha Factory Racing and the ten years we have been racing with Valentino. With Maverick, Valentino and the many dedicated members Yamaha‘s MotoGP racing squad wearing our colours, we count ourselves in great company.”

MASSIMO MEREGALLI
TEAM DIRECTOR

“First of all, I would like to apologise for not being able to attend the team launch event today. I would have liked to be there as it is a significant milestone - the team start a new journey with Monster Energy. With the very important Sepang Test starting in just two days, I chose to be in Sepang working with Sumi-san and the YMC staff, as well as our team staff – several of which are new for 2019 – to be best prepared for the start of the new season. Like I said, we‘re starting afresh and there is always a sense of excitement that comes with new beginnings. I‘m sure the entire crew, as well as the riders, can‘t wait to get back into action. We already laid the foundation for the 2019 preparation during the tests in Valencia and Jerez at the end of last year. The upcoming week will be very important, because we will use the test in Sepang to confirm the choices we made. It will be a crucial first stepping stone to success in 2019.”

VALENTINO ROSSI

“The team presentation is always an event that I enjoy. It is the first time that we can show off our full package for the new season and, most importantly, this event signals that the start of the preseason is close! I‘ve taken a bit of time to relax and train these last couple of months, but, like the fans, I‘ve mostly been looking forward to starting the new season. The upcoming test in Sepang is very important, because it‘s the first opportunity for the team to get together to try everything Yamaha has been working on over the winter. Our performance improved towards the end of last season, but we want and need to make some more big steps, so we need to get to work. I‘m happy that Monster Energy is joining our team in a new role this year. They have been Yamaha‘s and my sponsor for a long time, so we know each other well and we share the same passion for racing, which is important. I‘m sincerely looking forward to the new season and to riding again, I want to get back aboard my M1! I feel as good and determined as ever, nothing changed in that area, and I believe that, with some hard work, we can improve upon last year and be back on top.”

MAVERICK VIÑALES

“We are here in Jakarta to start the new season. This year‘s team presentation was very special, because there are many changes compared to last year. The most noticeable of course are the new team colours and the bike livery. As soon as I saw it, I couldn‘t help but feel excited to start the new season. It will be a completely fresh start for all of us: new title sponsor, new team colours, and for me a new rider number. It all came together very nicely, so now all we have to do is get the preseason underway! The winter months were a good opportunity to prepare for 2019 season. I had some time to relax and reflect, but a good part was spent training, so I‘m ready to start riding my M1 again. We ended last year‘s season stronger than we started, so it will be important to keep that momentum going as we prepare for the first race in Qatar in April. Our first chance to see where we stand is at the Sepang Test in a few days‘ time. I‘m looking forward to it, because I have high expectations for this year. My motivation hasn‘t changed, and I plan on going all out this season – ’Beast Mode On‘!”

Sun, 2019-02-03 13:19
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If you'd like to have desktop-sized versions of the fantastic photos which appear on the site, you can become a site supporter and take out a subscription. A subscription will also give you access to the many in-depth and exclusive articles we produce for MotoMatters.com site supporters. The more readers who join our growing band of site supporters, the better we can make MotoMatters.com, and the more readers will get out of the website.

Fri, 2019-02-01 12:27
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Marc Marquez has returned to training on a motorcycle for the first time since having surgery on his shoulder in December last year. To mark the occasion, the Repsol Honda team issued the following press release, containing a video of Marquez riding and explaining what he found easy and difficult on the bike. The press release appears below:


Marquez rides again

The 2019 pre-season has been different to any other before it for reigning MotoGP™ World Champion Marc Marquez after a substantial shoulder operation in early December.

Surgery was performed by Dr. Xavier Mir, Dr. Victor Marlet and Dr. Teresa Marlet at the Hospital Universitari Dexeus in order to resolve a recurring dislocation of Marc Marquez’s left shoulder. The issue had persisted throughout the 2018 season, and the winter break was deemed the only time possible to operate on the Repsol Honda Team rider. With recovery predicted to take multiple months, Marquez and his team set about building a plan to strength the shoulder and prepare for the Sepang Test on February 6 – 8.

Hours of work with his physiotherapist Carlos J. García and highly targeted training in the gym became Marquez’s new winter routine. But, the seven time World Champion kept his focus, pushing to be as fit as possible for Malaysia.

The goal of returning to racing his Honda RC213V remained his motivation throughout and each week offered a new milestone. First, being able to use his shoulder in every day life, ride a mountain bike and then return to training with motorbikes. A practice bike would be the shoulder’s first test of 2019 and on January 29 – just under two months after his operation – Marquez was back.

With some trepidation, Marquez rolled onto a track in Alcarràs, near his home in Cervera, to see if the shoulder was ready for the demands of a bike.

“I needed this!” beamed Marquez after his first run. “I touched my elbow on the ground! Riders in general need to have their minds clear. At least on the trip to Malaysia, which is 14 hours long, I will be thinking I have ridden a bike, got on the brakes, felt the throttle and the clutch. We have done a few laps that have helped me to see where things are. This week we have to work on it. It was pretty much what I expected, the large force under braking – especially left-handers, where I have to support my left shoulder was problematic. That is where we have to continue working, have patience in Malaysia and get to March at full fitness.”

Now the attention turns to the Sepang Test on February 6 – 8 when Marc Marquez and the Honda RC213V will meet again as they prepare to defend the Triple Crown.

Fri, 2019-01-25 15:56
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Thomas Morsellino is a French freelance journalist and photographer, with keen eye for the technical details of MotoGP bikes. You may have seen some of his work on Twitter, where he runs the @Off_Bikes account. After every race, MotoMatters.com will be publishing a selection of Tom's photos of MotoGP bikes, together with extensive technical explanations of the details by Peter Bom. MotoMatters.com subscribers will get access to the full resolution photos, which they can download and study in detail, and all of Peter's technical explanations of the photos. Readers who do not support the site will be limited to the 800x600 resolution photos, and an explanation of two photos.


Clutch cable on the Honda RC213V
David Emmett: Honda are one of the only factories to still use cable-operated clutches rather than hydraulic clutches. Cable clutches are lighter, simpler, and given that the clutch is only used once during the race (at the start), any benefits a hydraulic clutch might have are barely a factor.


Ducati GP19 (Alvaro Bautista) with the parallelogram torque arm system
David Emmett: For a full explanation of what Ducati might be trying to achieve with this, read Peter Bom's full analysis.


KTM RC16


Suzuki GSX-RR (Sylvain Guintoli) with a front brake lever sensor


Andrea Iannone’s RS-GP, note the brake pedal not hidden behind the chassis as before.


Rear tire temperature sensors on the Yamaha YZR-M1


Behind the Yamaha YZR-M1 fairing


2019 Honda RC213V


Ducati GP19 chassis


Velcro on Marc Marquez’ RC213V seat


Ducati’s salad box, almost open!


Ducati’s tail aero


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