In MCN this week you can see Yamaha’s experimental M1 MotoGP bike with twin-shock rear-suspension, breaking 20 years of single-shock racing tradition. Plus we have the first ride of the 2003 GSX-R, the all-new KTM Adventurer, and a free 16-page pull-out World Superbike Guide.
Twin rear shocks are usually associated with retro bikes, customs, and bikes built to a budget. But Yamaha claims twin shocks allow the bike to keep more of its weight low and central, as well as allowing the exhaust to take a simpler route, aiding aerodynamics.
The shocks were built by Ohlins to Yamaha’s specifications, and Ohlins believe they are probably the most expensive in MotoGP. The system may improve traction and tyre life by reducing chatter, the rapid oscillation of the wheels seen typically under heavy braking. Yamaha have patented their system which includes damper rods attached to the frame. It’s too early to say whether the system will be seen on new sports bikes. See full details in MCN
You get a 16-page pull-out guide to World Superbikes. We speak to Hodgson, Toseland and Walker before the season kicks off on Sunday. You ‘ll see how the Suzuki GSX-R1000 is being prepared for the 2003 season and get the latest news from the Foggy Petronas team as we speak to Carl Fogarty, Troy Corser and James Haydon. Plus, how Ten Kate turn a CBR600RR into a Supersport racer, a guide to all the tracks, a look at the rest of the grid, and inside info on the Supersport contenders from a man who really knows: Jamie Whitham. All this, and your last chance to get the full list of riders for the Fantasy Road Race competition. (You can enter at www.mcnfrr.com.)
The product section reveals the first all-new Chris Walker replica lid for three years, shows you the top huggers, and gives you the chance to win a Blue Flame endcan.
You’ll find the latest news on the Kawasaki ZZ-R1200, the Fischer MR1000, and what is really happening to Riossi dealers. There’s the custom monkey bike which folds up to beat the congestion charge and the bike parking crisis hitting London.
There’s news from Chinese bike builders Jialing and Zongshen, producing bikes to rival the big manufacturers, rumours of a new Aprilia, and a bizarre production three-wheeler. There’s also an £83,000 custom cruiser, and Rio Ferdinand and Tatu on bikes.
Read tests of the new Honda SCV100 Lead and Pantheon 125 scooters, and the first test of the new KTM 950 Adventure, a bike with serious off-road capability, as well as performing on the Tarmac.
The What’s On section features the MCN Pound Day. A full day of racing at Brands Hatch, featuring 24 races, for only £1. You’ll need the coupon in MCN this week to take advantage of the deal, though. You can also find out about the Hawkstone International Motocross, and the fantastic sport of radio-controlled bike racing. There’s also information on the Scottish Motorcycle Show, and 20 things to do at the TT.
And find out why Colin Edwards is impressing everyone on the Aprilia RS3, how Kato went faster than Rossi and why Barros thinks the Yamaha M1 can match Honda this year.
The MCN-backed Yamaha R6 race series is launched and we have all the details. The winner of the 13-round series will win a top-flight British Superbike ride worth £100,000, and with riders aged 16-22, it’s likely to reveal the stars of tomorrow.
You’ll also read about Honda’s plans for a Supermoto, the threat to the British Motocross GP, how to get four bikes for the price of one, and become an expert on the Kawasaki KLX300R.
It’s all in this weeks Motor Cycle News, out February 26.