For 2015 Alpinestars officially labeled its new Pikes Drystar jacket as sport-touring apparel. But what is sport-touring? Is it riding fast on a saddlebag-equipped Suzuki V-Strom 1000 in the above photo, or is it spending a long weekend aboard a Kawasaki Z1000 (luggage options available) in the photo below? My mind’s eye says the Pikes jacket is appropriate for either, and looks good doing both.
If your fiscal power of gift giving exceeds our previous $0-$50, $50-$100, and $100-$250 Holiday Gift Guides, we want to be your friend. For the platinum crowd, John Burns is providing the above $500 Gift Guide next week, and I’d like to preemptively befriend those folks, too. The following is more than just some random gift guide, it’s my personal Christmas wish list, so I put more effort into this than I would for a gift guide I didn’t stand to benefit from. I hope my current and future family and friends are paying attention.
Comfortable shoes. It’s the foremost important aspect of enjoying any large consumer or trade show. Comfortable Shoe Editor, Troy Siahaan, and I had this exact conversation the morning of attending media day at Long Beach IMS. We both rode to the show, but whereas he brought sneakers to change into, I put a new pair of Bates Adrenalin Riding Boots to the ultimate comfort test by wearing them all day during the show (the most comfortable riding boots I’ve ever owned, I might add – full review coming soon).
With our heads in the moto-sand, we were unaware lithium jump starters existed until Weego’s motorcycle-specific press release arrived. Now on our radar, the Weego piqued both our interest and disbelief. A smartphone-sized device that can turn over, not only a dead motorcycle, but also automotive engines up to 4.6L! Nah … really?
We’re entering the period of moto-hibernation, when, with a wag of her finger, Mother Nature says to many motorcyclists to put away their toys until Spring. And just when we most need a distraction to keep cabin fever at bay MotoGP, WSBK and pretty much all forms of motorcycle racing competed in their season finales. Seems that if someone were to begin some kind of winter racing series it’d be successful simply from a lack of competition.
From unawares of MotoGP’s existence when we first met to near religious devoutness now, my wife, Maria, has become a verifiable MotoGP junkie. She knows the racer’s names, what bikes they ride, teams they ride for, tracks they ride at, and the countries hosting the rounds. Unsurprisingly, she’s enamored with the charismatic, nine-time world champion, Valentino Rossi. The curly light brown hair, blue eyes, adorable accent, charisma, intellect, racing talent, win record, fame, riches all conspire to send her heart aflutter. His finishing position oftentimes dictates how good or bad a Sunday afternoon I’m going to have. And then Sepang happened and she’s been in a tailspin ever since.
If you’ve been reading or watching MO sportbike reviews/videos in the last three years, you’ve certainly witnessed me wearing Rev’It Stingray leathers – the white with red and black highlights color scheme is both attractive and hard to miss. The Stingray has been my go-to one-piece leather suit for so long I’m loathe to retire it, but I was informed that earlier this year Rev’It discontinued this particular style. So, before I get too far behind current fashions, it’s time give my Stingray a farewell salute.
Thursday’s media day at AIMExpo was an all-day indoor marathon of product and model announcements. We scrambled to bring you the news in text, photo and video formats as quickly as we could. Our 2015 AIMExpo – Live Updates From Orlando posts included news from Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha and Zero, as well as Bell, Schuberth, Sena and Shoei. If you missed the DT-07 concept flattracker from Yamaha or the new smart helmet from Sena, make sure to check out those items.
To build a better anything, removing the weakest link is a great place to begin. That’s exactly what Alpinestars did with its new-for-2016 SuperTouring Gore-Tex boot. To improve the boot’s weatherability the zipper was taken out of the equation. With no entry point, fording a fairly deep water crossing is about the only way your tootsies are gonna get wet inside these boots.
For a company oftentimes accused of soullessness in an industry built upon an altar of passion, Honda’s been the epicenter of controversy since word of the RC213V-S and its corresponding price tag became public knowledge. Judging by the comments to the RC213V-S Review, the Video Review, and our ever-colorful Youtube commenters, it seems as though some can justify the bike’s valuation while many others cannot.
Hard braking into a corner, rear wheel skipping across the pavement trying to come around one side or the other, release a little brake pressure, tip it in, pass a couple riders before the apex then begin accelerating toward the next corner. I didn’t do this during the press intro for the Honda RC213V-S at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia Spain, but having now piloted a bike similar to the one Marc Marquez rides in the heat of MotoGP combat provides insight into how the two-time Grand Prix champ manages to make the impossible seem like child’s play.
It’s a good time to be a motorcyclist. OEMs keep ratcheting up the amount of standard or optional technologies available on modern motorcycles. In just the last handful of years we’ve come to expect ABS, traction control, ride modes and slipper clutches as standard equipment. Cruise control is almost ubiquitous, and electronically adjustable suspension is gaining ground quickly. Five of the nine bikes in our Epic Sport-Adventure Shootout are equipped with semi-active suspension, one has electronically adjustable suspension, while only three are bereft of the technology.
Outer space carries no sound. If George Lucas hadn’t bent interstellar rules and added sound effects, Star Wars would cease to be a sci-fi masterpiece. Imagine a silently exploding Death Star with a subtitled “Bang!,” Han Solo mouthing “pwew, pwew, pwew” for the Millennium Falcon’s laser guns, and TIE Fighters screaming by without making whatever that super cool sound is they make.
I hate being the nihilistic voice of MO, but when it comes to the state of American talent at world-level motorcycle road racing, we’re f*#ked. If the swirling rumors of Nicky Hayden’s departure from MotoGP come to pass, it’ll be the first time since 1977 America’s been absent from competing at the world’s highest level of two-wheel racing. Truly sad – especially considering the U.S. hosts two MotoGP rounds.