2009

MotoGP 2009: Biggest under-achievers

MotoGP 2009: Biggest under-achievers

In 2007, Suzuki had been the major surprise of the first 800cc campaign, yet had struggled to emulate its impressive form in 2008. This year though was to be an even bleaker campaign for the Japanese...

MotoGP 2009: Biggest disappointment

MotoGP 2009: Biggest disappointment

Kawasaki’s withdrawal was a massive disappointment, while Andrea Dovizioso’s failure to capture no other podium apart from his British GP win on a factory Honda rider raised questions about his...

MotoGP 2009: Unluckiest rider

MotoGP 2009: Unluckiest rider

Nicky Hayden was taken out at the first corner in three races and Marco Melandri and John Hopkins thought they had rock solid deals with Kawasaki until the Japanese factory quit in early...

MotoGP 2009: Most promising rider

MotoGP 2009: Most promising rider

Spies’ record-breaking rookie season in World Superbikes, in which he ended with a 50 per cent winning record, meant he was the hottest property in world racing in 2009.  His outstanding...

MotoGP 2009: Best race

MotoGP 2009: Best race

It's already being hailed as the greatest last lap in history and one of the most thrilling MotoGP races witnessed in living memory. And there is no doubt that June’s unforgettable Catalunya race will...

MotoGP 2009: Best ride

MotoGP 2009: Best ride

Marco Melandri’s brilliant second on the unfancied Hayate (a re-branded factory Kawasaki ZX-RR) in a rain-hit Le Mans clash struck a blow for the underdog, as did Dovizioso’s maiden win at Donington...

MotoGP 2009: Best bike

MotoGP 2009: Best bike

At the end of the first year of the 800cc era in 2007, Valentino Rossi was so disgusted by the woeful performance of Yamaha’s YZR-M1 that he threatened to quit unless the in-line four-cylinder was...

MotoGP 2009: Best rider

MotoGP 2009: Best rider

Valentino Rossi might have won the least number of races ever in a season in which he won a world title, and uncharacteristically the Italian legend crashed in three races to prove he is human after...

MotoGP 2009: Best Brit

MotoGP 2009: Best Brit

Not since the heady days of late legend Barry Sheene have British fans witnessed home talent enjoying as much success in Grand Prix racing as Bradley Smith did in 2009. It was a year in which the...

Engineer defection no concern to Valentino Rossi

Engineer defection no concern to Valentino Rossi

Valentino Rossi has brushed off the impact of two key Yamaha engineers defecting to Honda in 2010. Christian Battagglia and Andrea Zugna will move to HRC with intimate knowledge of the YZR-M1 that...

Valentino Rossi expects big threat from Ben Spies

Valentino Rossi expects big threat from Ben Spies

Reigning world champion Valentino Rossi has told MCN he expects new Yamaha recruit Ben Spies to pose a major threat in the 2010 MotoGP series. The Italian was impressed with Spies’ eye-catching...

Ben Spies looking forward to Colin Edwards partnership

Ben Spies looking forward to Colin Edwards partnership

Ben Spies reckons Yamaha team-mate Colin Edwards will be an invaluable ally in helping the reigning World Superbike champion be an instant success in MotoGP next season. Spies and Edwards will form an...

Marco Melandri looking for stable future

Marco Melandri looking for stable future

Marco Melandri is hoping he can impress in 2010 to secure a long-term future with the Gresini Honda squad. The Italian has endured a torrid time in MotoGP recently having been released from a factory...

Jorge Lorenzo satisfied with single tyre rule

Jorge Lorenzo satisfied with single tyre rule

MotoGP runner-up Jorge Lorenzo reckons the single tyre rule was a big benefit for world championship racing in 2009. Lorenzo, who won four races on board the factory Fiat Yamaha YZR-M1 last season,...

Hiroshi Aoyama beats Marco Simoncelli in Sepang

Hiroshi Aoyama beats Marco Simoncelli in Sepang

Reigning 250GP world champion Hiroshi Aoyama has finished close to a second faster than highly-rated Italian Marco Simoncelli during a special rookies test in Sepang. Aoyama, who beat Simoncelli in a...

Young guns threaten Valentino Rossi’s record bid

Young guns threaten Valentino Rossi’s record bid

Valentino Rossi believes the emergence of a new wave of hot young MotoGP talent will make it harder for him to beat Giacomo Agostini’s all-time winning record. Italian legend Agostini won 122 races in...

Red Bull Rookies top two clinch 125GP switch

The rivalry that blazed all the way to the final lap of the last Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup race of 2009 will be repeated in 2010 after Jakub Kornfeil and Sturla Fagerhaug signed 125GP deals. Kornfeil, the 16-year-old Czech rider who won the Rookies Cup by just 2 points, has signed for Racing Team Germany, cementing a relationship with team owner/manager Dirk Heidolf that started back in June. "I...

Jerry Burgess expects Casey Stoner backlash

Jerry Burgess expects Casey Stoner backlash

Valentino Rossi’s crew chief Jerry Burgess says he is anticipating a backlash from Aussie Casey Stoner in 2010. Stoner, who won the first ever 800cc title in 2007, had a torrid last season and a major...

No more money to transform Honda’s fortunes

No more money to transform Honda’s fortunes

Honda will not spend more money to try and claim a rare MotoGP world championship victory in 2010. Severely affected by the impact of the global economic crisis, Honda will have no budget increase to...

Cal Crutchlow’s World Supersport boss to Fiat Yamaha?

Cal Crutchlow’s World Supersport boss to Fiat Yamaha?

Wilco Zeelenberg, boss of Cal Crutchlow’s 2009 World Supersport championship-winning squad, is poised to run Jorge Lorenzo’s factory Yamaha MotoGP squad next season, MCN understands. Fiat Yamaha has...

Casey Stoner targets title challenge in 2010

Casey Stoner targets title challenge in 2010

Free from the mystery illness that wrecked his 2009 MotoGP world title bid, Casey Stoner is determined to mount a stronger challenge for premier class glory next season. Stoner’s title challenge last...

Nicky Hayden opens new Ducati showroom in India

Nicky Hayden opens new Ducati showroom in India

Nicky Hayden took time out from his winter training schedule and 2010 preparations last week to open Ducati’s second showroom in India. The Kentucky rider opened the new store in Guragon and is the...

Yamaha confirm 2011 talks with Valentino Rossi

Yamaha confirm 2011 talks with Valentino Rossi

Yamaha has confirmed talks have started to keep nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi beyond the 2010 MotoGP world championship. With endless speculation linking the 30-year-old with a big money...

Nicky Hayden excited about 1000cc MotoGP switch

Nicky Hayden excited about 1000cc MotoGP switch

Nicky Hayden is ecstatic that MotoGP will revert back to a 1000cc format from the start of the 2012 world championship campaign. The American believes the new rule, which will allow prototype 1000cc...

Alex de Angelis signs Moto2 deal

Alex de Angelis signs Moto2 deal

Alex de Angelis may not have been able to clinch a MotoGP deal with the Scot squad for 2010, but the San Marino rider has signed for the Italian team to ride in the new Moto2 600cc four-stroke...

MotoGP goes 1000cc from 2012

MotoGP goes 1000cc from 2012

FIM President Vito Ippolito and Dorna Sports CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta confirm today that MotoGP will run to a new 1000cc engine capacity for the 2012 season. Following talks between MotoGP’s governing...

MotoGP poised to confirm 1000cc switch

MotoGP poised to confirm 1000cc switch

MotoGP bosses are expected to approve a switch to a 1000cc capacity limit at crunch meetings in Switzerland tomorrow (Friday). Facing mounting pressure to slash costs and stop plummeting grid numbers,...

Ex-Kawasaki MotoGP boss unveils Moto2 plan

Ex-Kawasaki MotoGP boss unveils Moto2 plan

Former factory Kawasaki MotoGP boss Michael Bartholemy has confirmed he will run a team in the new Moto2 world championship as part of an ambitious Belgian motorsport project. As was first reported by...

Honda chassis is major weak point, says HRC boss

Honda chassis is major weak point, says HRC boss

Honda boss Shuhei Nakamoto has admitted that this year’s factory chassis was the major weak point of the 2009 RC212V. Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso complained throughout last season of problems...

Kevin Schwantz: Suzuki wrong not to sign Ben Spies

Kevin Schwantz: Suzuki wrong not to sign Ben Spies

Kevin Schwantz reckons Suzuki made an appalling error of judgement in not signing Ben Spies for its factory MotoGP squad in 2009. The Texan legend says Suzuki management must regret letting Spies move...

Ben Spies: Adapting to Bridgestone quickly is vital

Ben Spies: Adapting to Bridgestone quickly is vital

Reigning World Superbike champion Ben Spies has admitted his hopes of challenging for regular top six finishes in next year’s MotoGP world championship will depend on how quickly he can adapt to...

Jorge Lorenzo confident in Yamaha future

Jorge Lorenzo confident in Yamaha future

Jorge Lorenzo has dismissed fears that Valentino Rossi’s influence will see him bombed out of Yamaha’s factory Yamaha at the end of 2010. World champion Rossi and highly rated Spaniard Lorenzo will...

Colin Edwards expects strong challenge from Ben Spies

Colin Edwards expects strong challenge from Ben Spies

Colin Edwards has told MCN that he expects a strong challenge from new Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team-mate Ben Spies in next year’s MotoGP world championship. Spies will join fellow Texan Edwards in Herve...

Valentino Rossi fears engine restrictions will hurt MotoGP

Valentino Rossi fears engine restrictions will hurt MotoGP

Valentino Rossi fears cost-cutting engine restrictions in 2010 will further damage MotoGP as a spectacle. Rossi and his MotoGP rivals will only be able to use six engines for the entire 18-race world...

Honda boss eyes Andrea Dovizioso improvement

Honda boss eyes Andrea Dovizioso improvement

Honda has warned Andrea Dovizioso his performances must improve in 2010. Aside from a brilliant wet weather victory at Donington Park, Dovizioso’s factory Honda debut campaign was largely...

Exclusive pics: Tech 3 Moto2 bike on track

Exclusive pics: Tech 3 Moto2 bike on track

The Tech 3 team has given its new Moto2 bike its eagerly awaited track debut in France, as these MCN exclusive pictures show. Designed by Colin Edwards’ crew chief Guy Coulon and James Toseland’s...