2014 Silverstone Moto2 PreviewTwo riders continue to make the headlines in the 2014 Moto2 Championship – Marc VDS Racing Team’s Tito Rabat and Mika Kallio.
Last weekend at Brno, the Spaniard Rabat was able to hold off his Finnish teammate for the second time, giving the team another 1-2 finish. Kallio put in quite the performance at the Czech Republic Grand Prix. Though crashing in qualifying in warm up, he was able to battle to second from sixth, earning much-needed points.Due to these two dueling like this throughout the season, they both have a substantial point lead on the Moto2 grid. Heading into this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone, Rabat has 208 points – 12 ahead of Kallio. The next closest rider is Paginas Amarillas HP 40’s Maverick Vinales, who is 58 points behind Tabat.Last year, Rabat and Kallio finished fourth and sixth at Silverstone, respectively, but it’s doubtful this will occur again.Elsewhere, Sandro Cortese travels to England fresh from his first podium finish in the intermediate category, while manufacturers Suter and Kalex are now locked together on 30 race wins apiece.Who will be first to hit 31? Arguably Kalex is the favorite, having won three of the four Moto2™ races to have been staged at Silverstone since 2010. Perhaps local fans will be hoping for Speed Up success, though, as that could signal a home victory for Sam Lowes who crashed out of a podium position at Brno. Incidentally, it is Moto2 that has delivered one of only two home Grand Prix successes at Silverstone, when Scott Redding triumphed in glorious fashion last year.Could a 25th birthday provide winning motivation for Xavier Simeon as the Belgian looks to return to the podium for the first time since Argentina? He is not the only rider hunting for a return to the top, as the likes of Paginas Amarillas HP 40 pairing Maverick Viñales and Luis Salom are keen for a return to the rostrum, as are Switzerland’s Tom Luthi and Dominique Aegerter who at Brno put on a spectacular show with their battle for fourth position. And what of Anthony West? Bearing in mind the events of Assen, the Australian would encourage a British rain shower…At Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2, a familiar surname will return to the World Championship in the form of Mamola. On this occasion it is Dakota Mamola, son of 13-time Grand Prix winner Randy, covering for Nico Terol who will miss the race due to physical problems which have arisen from premature muscle fatigue. Mamola has been competing this season in the Moto2™ ranks of the FIM CEV Repsol championship, while Terol hopes to make a full recuperation as soon as possible.A late addition to the event entry list, Ulsterman Jeremy McWilliams will make a one-off Grand Prix return at the ripe age of 50 as a Moto2 wild-card riding Brough Superior’s exotic carbon prototype designed by Taylor Made Racing.The first Moto2 practice at Silverstone starts at 10:55 a.m. local time (GMT +1) on Friday, while Sunday’s race starts at the earlier time of 11:20 a.m. local time.
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.