The Honda Rider's Club of America (HRCA) announced today that tickets for its special hospitality area at the 2007 Red Bull USGP at Laguna Seca are going fast. Only current card-carrying HRCA Members are eligible to purchase the exclusive Turn 5 Chalet tickets.
Naked SportBike, All Dressed Up
Does it surprise one for a moment that the champion of streetfighters comes from the country that originated hooliganism? That English heritage dates back to the 19th century, and is both a mark and a badge. While we decidedly pass on the destructive behavior, getting a little rowdy with the throttle inevitably seems to come with the territory when riding this particular high-performance motorcycle.
Google "Hayabusa custom", and 12,000 hits will be your reward. Given the well-tilled condition of that particular soil, how would you craft a revolutionary take on the Suzuki racer that would blow the mind and scorch the eyeballs of even the most jaded Custom Sportbike fiend? If you were McCoy Motorsports of Pikeville, Ky., you'd take six months, spend a quarter-of-a-million dollars and hand-build this mandible melting Suzuki Hayabusa Twin-Turbo Phoenix. (Click image to enlarge)
John Ethell may not garner the same level of name recognition around the beer tents as racers such as Miguel Duhamel, Jake Zemke or Josh Hayes, but the engine-building virtuoso and undisputed master of the Honda racing mill is universally lionized in the paddock. Throughout his remarkable 18-year career, Ethell has earned the respect and friendship of the riders who have racked up countless victories atop his powerful motors.
Well, this one almost slipped by us. When Kawasaki announced the new-for-'07 Vulcan 900 Custom, it's safe to say that there wasn't a staff-wide arm wrestling sudden-death tournament to determine who got to ride it first. But, at Kawasaki's urging that I was really missing something, I skeptically agreed to give the 900 Custom a shot. Really, how exciting could a sub-liter metric cruiser be?
Suzuki's GSX-R lineup changed the world upon its debut. Well, the motorcycling world anyway. Launched (literally) in 1985/86, the first year saw the debut of a blue-and-white 750cc machine. Radically different from anything up until then, it matched a stunningly light weight with a high horsepower engine and a racer's ergonomics. In 1987, Suzuki brought forth a sibling--the 1100cc version complete with electronic anti-dive suspension and even more power.
Chalk one up for the power of the Internet. After learning I'd be the lucky long term tester of a 2007 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14, I immediately logged on to the manufacturer's website to become better acquainted with my options before embarking upon what will hopefully be a beautiful relationship with the “it” bike of speed fanatics everywhere. Months ago, I enjoyed quality time with a “Passion Red” 2006 ZX-14, which led me to wonder what sort of styling cues might befit its extraordinary performance capabilities.
It has been said that 20 percent of all the art ever created is in Italy. The country overflows with legendary beauty. From the spellbinding Sistine Chapel to da Vinci's The Last Supper; from Michelangelo's David to the Leaning Tower of Pisa; Italy stirs the imagination with its timeless creations.