CAS reject Rossis penalty appeal

CAS reject Rossis penalty appeal

THE Court of Arbitration for Sport have dismissed Valentino Rossi’s appeal of the FIM Race Direction’s penalty decision following an incident with Marc Marquez.

As CAS have thrown out the appeal, Rossi’s penalty points have not been reduced or revoked and he will have to start from the back of the grid at the final round of the season in Valencia whereas his team-mate and t**le rival Jorge Lorenzo will qualify ahead. 

The FIM have released this following statement: ‘On 4 November 2015, a preliminary hearing was held at the headquarters of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne in the matter Valentino Rossi v. the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme. The FIM was represented by its Legal Director, Mr Richard Perret.

‘Following the hearing, the CAS issued an Order dismissing the application for a stay filed by Mr Rossi concerning the decision rendered on 25 October 2015 by the FIM Stewards.

‘The CAS ruling on the request for stay of execution does not prejudge the final award on the merits of the case.

‘In appealing to the CAS against the decision of the FIM Stewards, Mr Rossi seeks annulment or modification of the FIM Stewards’ decision taken at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix in Sepang, in which the FIM Stewards confirmed the 3 penalty points awarded by the Race Direction to Mr Rossi following an incident on Turn 14.

‘The FIM takes note of the ruling of the CAS.

‘As a consequence of this ruling, at the Gran Premi de la Comunitat Valenciana, last race of the FIM World Championship Grand Prix, Mr Rossi will start from the last position on the Grid.’

Rossi’s chances of winning the 2015 MotoGP World Championship are now very slim, but there’s still some racing to be done. 

Video Dont try this at home

Video Dont try this at home

WHEN the weather gets worse and options are limited, there’s only one place to ride – in the house… obviously.

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Cash cow speed cameras back

Cash cow speed cameras back

Specs average speed camera

THE final pretence that speed cameras are intended to increase safety was dropped yesterday when Bedfordshire police and crime commissioner Olly Martin announced intentions to permanently switch on the speed cameras on stretches of the M1 passing through his region.

Complaining of a lack of funding for police in the area, Martin suggests that permanently using speed cameras between J10 and J13, where the M1 crosses his patch, will raise as much as £1 million annually for his force. The cost to motorists would be far higher, since the majority of money will go straight to central government coffers.

At the moment, the cameras on the stretch are only used to enforce variable speed limits, for instance in poor weather or when limits are lowered to relieve congestion.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Martin’s plans are not simply to turn on the cameras but to implement a zero-tolerance agenda, whereby any motorist caught on camera even fractionally over the 70mph limit will be slapped with three points and a £100 fine. Ironically, given the admission that this is about making money rather than road safety, less serious ‘offenders’ may be offered the option of paying £90 for a speed awareness course, thus avoiding the points and fine.

Martin’s justification is that his force, which covers an area with some of the worst gun crime in the country, is financially stretched and only able to provide 169 officers per 100,000 people – far lower than the national average of 232 per 100,000.

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London Fire Brigade launches free first aid training scheme for riders

London Fire Brigade launches free first aid training scheme for riders

Biker Down scheme

IN an effort to reduce the number of riders killed or injured in motorcycle collisions in London, the London Fire Brigade (LFB) has today launched a scheme offering free immediate aid training to motorcyclists.

It’s called Biker Down, and it will teach riders what to do if they arrive at the scene of a motorcycle collision before anyone else. The LFB says that the first person on the scene of a motorcycle accident is often another rider.

Biker Down is free to any rider who lives, rides or studies in London. Sessions will include what to do if you’re first to arrive at a bike accident, along with motorcyclist-specific immediate aid training and safe helmet removal.

Participants will receive a certificate of attendance, an immediate aid kit designed to fit under the seat of a bike and will qualify for a discount to attended the BikeSafe-London riders skills day scheme.

The scheme will be delivered by firefighters and London Ambulance Service motorcycle response paramedics at West Norwood Fire Station on alternate Saturdays or Sundays on the last weekend of every month. More information and how to book a place can be found on the Bike Down page on the London Fire Brigade’s website.

Dave Brown, the LFB’s director of operations said: ‘Biker Down is a unique chance for London’s motorcyclists to spend a few hours learning how to save a life if they are ever unlucky enough to be first on the scene of an incident.’

The London Fire Brigade has said it attended more motorcycle collisions last year compared to the year before – 501, up from 454, with more than 100 riders requiring medical help. Recent figures from Transport from London show that there were 27 fatalities from motorcycle accidents in 2014, up from 22 in 2013.

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Top 10 most popular MotoGPs

Top 10 most popular MotoGPs

YOU only have to go to a MotoGP once to appreciate the difference between being there and watching it on TV.

Whether you prefer the experience comes down to which element of the racing you enjoy. If you want to see every overtake and keep abreast of the entire field then the telly option certainly has its advantages, but even the most expensive sound system can’t replicate the real-life noise of the real thing. Then there are the smells, the shared experience and the different perception of speed that comes with actually being there – it’s easy to understand why millions go to races every year.

But which race is the most popular? The figures tell the story, not only reflecting which races are most favoured by visitors but, by extension, also showing which countries have the most avid MotoGP fans.

In case you’re wondering, a total of 2,473,624 people attended MotoGP events in 2014, although that figure may be inflated since it – like the rest of these numbers – includes the crowds on Fridays and Saturdays (or, in the case of a**en, Thursday and Friday) as well as race day. This is how the figures break down among the ten most popular races.

MotoGP Sepang

10. Sepang, Malaysia: 130,925

Only two MotoGPs outside Europe reach this top 10, and the only eastern one is Sepang in Malaysia. With just under 131,000 attendees over the course of the weekend, it nearly makes it into ninth spot, only to be pipped by a**en.

Assen MotoGP

9. a**en, Netherlands: 131,000

One suspects that the nice, round 131,000 visitors reported for a**en during the 2014 MotoGP weekend has been rounded up or down, and given how close its attendance is to Sepang’s that rounding might have affected its position on this list. Next year it loses its traditional Saturday spot, moving to Sunday instead, and that’s likely to boost its attendance figures significantly.

Indianapolis MotoGP

8. Indianapolis, USA: 132,817

Watching the Indianapolis race on TV you’d be forgiven if you thought it was poorly attended. In reality, that’s because the Indianapolis circuit has permanent seating for an incredible 257,325 people, and gets crowds as big as 400,000 for some events. MotoGP is actually doing pretty well there, it’s just that there’s capacity to cater for twice as many visitors (all on one day) if they decided to come.

Silverstone MotoGP

7. Silverstone, UK: 138,000

We might not have had a champion since the 1977 but there’s still plenty of appetite for MotoGP in the UK. Silverstone might only be a stop-gap circuit for the British GP – the rights until 2019 are actually held by the still-unbuilt Circuit of Wales – but it’s already confirmed that it’s hosting the race again in 2016.

Catalunya MotoGP

6. Barcelona-Catalunya, Spain: 163,045

Well, you knew that there would be at least one Spanish MotoGP on this list, didn’t you? With Spaniards holding all three MotoGP t**les when the 2014 race came along, it’s no surprise that the crowds flooded to every Spanish race.

Le Mans MotoGP

5. Le Mans, France: 178,073

Although Le Mans is still synonymous with the 24 hour car race held there, its history in bike racing isn’t to be sniffed at and it certainly draws the crowds. The 2014 attendance figure shows that it was full to bursting on race day (the one-day capacity is just 100,000).

Valencia MotoGP

4. Valencia, Spain: 197,000

One of the most modern circuits on the calendar, Valencia’s attendance goes some way to showing why Spain hosts so many MotoGP events. Its one-day capacity allows for as many as 150,000 racegoers to be seated in grandstands, and you’d have struggled to find an empty chair there last year.

Sachsenring MotoGP

3. Sachsenring, Germany: 209,408

Germany’s MotoGP attendance is the first on the list to top 200,000, with many of those watchers there on race day to see the bizarre start to the 2014 event, when more than half the field started from the pit lane after swapping bikes to go from wets to slicks at the end of the warm-up lap.

Jerez MotoGP

2. Jerez, Spain: 229,416

Yes, we’re back in Spain again, with Jerez proving to be the bike-mad nation’s favourite GP. In 2014, when these figures were recorded, they were no doubt delighted to see that Marc Marquez remained seemingly unbeatable, despite Rossi starting to show the return to form that he’s built on into 2015.

Brno MotoGP

1. Brno, Czech Republic: 240,695

And the most popular MotoGP is… Brno, in the Czech Republic. And it’s understandable, too, thanks to the circuit’s history (although the current 3.3-mile track is dwarfed by its 11-mile predecessor, itself a contraction of a TT-esque 19-mile road circuit used in the 1930s). Despite its popularity in 2014, the Czech GP faced uncertainty this year, since the event isn’t profitable.

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Lorenzos request for intervention in Rossis CAS appeal is rejected

Lorenzos request for intervention in Rossis CAS appeal is rejected

Team-mates Lorenzo and Rossi are not ‘mates’…

JORGE Lorenzo’s request for intervention in Valentino Rossi’s appeal has been rejected by the Court of Arbitration for Sport. 

Last week it was announced that Italian rider Rossi had taken the FIM to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) after they penalised him for a clash with Marc Marquez in Malaysia. 

It now transpires that Rossi’s Movistar Yamaha team-mate filed a ‘Request for Intervention’ to partake in Rossi’s appeal yesterday, however his intentions have not yet been voiced.

The CAS statement regarding Lorenzo is as follows: ‘Earlier today, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) rejected a Request for Intervention filed by the Spanish MotoGP rider, Jorge Lorenzo.

‘On 2 November 2015, lawyers acting for Jorge Lorenzo filed a Request for Intervention in order to be able to participate on his behalf in the CAS arbitration between Valentino Rossi and the FIM. This afternoon, the CAS informed the parties that Mr Lorenzo’s request was denied. Accordingly, the CAS arbitration will continue between Valentino Rossi and the FIM only.

‘The decision on Mr Rossi’s request to stay the execution of the FIM Steward’s decision is still expected to be issued no later than 6 November 2015.’

Multistrada Link app launched

Multistrada Link app launched

Ducati Multistrada Link app

WE’VE oft been told that ‘there’s an app for that’ and now it seems there’s one to tie your Ducati Multistrada 1200 S to your iPhone and provide it with a host of information about the way you ride.

Multistrada Link, which will also be available on Android soon, is claimed to record and display rider and motorcycle performance, information on your ride and route and – of course – will allow you to share all of this information with disinterested members of your chosen social network.

Yes, stepping the game up from merely boring your friends in the pub with details of you MPG achievements, Multistrada Link will let you do it on Facebook, complete with the evidence to back up your claims.

Actually, it does a whole lot more than that. Here’s what Ducati says about its new app:

“Multistrada Link has a long list of functions: for example, it let users check and update their profiles and motorcycle status (fuel level, riding mode usage percentages, distance ridden) and keeps a log with detailed information on previous rides and routes taken.

Multistrada Link gathers data from the motorcycle before, during and after the ride via Bluetooth technology, which connects the smartphone to the vehicle Controller Area Network (CAN). During the ride, a smartphone with the new Ducati app will record the maximum lean angle and also display real-time lean angles plus the lean angle on the last corner taken. Afterwards, the user can pinpoint on the map where the maximum lean angle was achieved.

In addition to lean angles, Multistrada Link also records maximums and averages for power delivery and speed and displays this data while riding.

At the end of the ride, the app saves all the data and information about the ride and lets the rider update any targets achieved, such as total distance covered or that covered during the single trip, number of routes recorded or consumption thresholds. The rider can thus share all the rewards with friends.

Further, Multistrada Link let users add photos and describe the journey; it also allows to indicate the best riding mode in which to take on the route.”

If that all sounds too good to be true, perhaps there’s a hint as to the firm’s motives in the final line of its description: “After downloading the app to your smartphone, you can log in with the same access details used to enter the Ducati.com website or set up an account from the app via a standard registration form.”

It might well be interesting to be able to review your rides, routes, speeds and lean angles, but can you imagine the potential value to a firm like Ducati of knowing precise details of how its bikes are being used?

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New battery breakthrough could kill the petrol engine

New battery breakthrough could kill the petrol engine

The Victory Empulse TT
The battery powered Victory Empulse TT

SCIENTISTS at Cambridge University have released a paper detailing of a new generation of lithium-air battery that might finally fulfil the electric vehicle dream of being able to match petrol-powered machines in terms of performance, weight and range.

Call us cynical but it seems that we’ve been being told for at least 20 years that we’re on the verge of a battery technology breakthrough that will transform the technology and finally make it a viable rival to the internal combustion engine. Usually, these promises are the result of theories or lab tests with the inevitable proviso that the consumer versions of the technology will still be ‘a decade away.’

So it’s no surprise that the new Cambridge technology is… a decade away from the consumer market.

Cynicism put to one side, the actual technology of the latest research is interesting. Lithium-air batteries – which create voltage by reacting oxygen from the air with positively-charged lithium ions, forming lithium peroxide and generating electricity in the process – are proven to have impressive outputs. There’s talk that the new one might be 10 times more power-dense than current lithium-ion batteries. But lithium-air cells are notoriously hard to make work, and those that do have proved to be far too unstable for real-world use.

The new Cambridge research solves the stability problems by using a ‘fluffy’ carbon electrode made from graphene. Whatever that means.

But regardless of how it’s done, the result is a battery that has an energy density that’s similar to that of petrol; in other words, a battery the size and weight of your bike’s petrol tank would be able to give it the same performance and range. That’s a Holy Grail in terms of battery performance, and means that the usual provisos (short range, high weight and low performance compared to petrol vehicles) accompanying electric vehicles would no longer need apply.

Unfortunately, while the results are promising, the researchers developing the battery say that a practical version is still a decade away, not least because it only works at certain rates of charge and discharge and at the moment requires pure oxygen rather than simply air to operate.

‘What we’ve achieved is a significant advance for this technology and suggests whole new areas for research – we haven’t solved all the problems inherent to this chemistry, but our results do show routes forward towards a practical device,’ said Professor Clare Grey of Cambridge’s Department of Chemistry, the paper’s senior author.

Dr Tao Liu, also from the Department of Chemistry, and the paper’s first author, said: ‘There’s still a lot of work to do, but what we’ve seen here suggests that there are ways to solve these problems – maybe we’ve just got to look at things a little differently.’

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Source: New battery breakthrough could kill the petrol engine