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RennMotorrad is the blog to keep up to date with news and commentary about BMW's racing efforts in World Superbike and MotoAmerica, as well as following events in MotoGP. Local racers running BMWs will also get some love - let us know who you are! Opinions stated in this blog are those of the author and do not reflect policies, positions or practices of BMW Motorcycle Owners of America, BMW Motorrad, BMW NA, BMW AG, or any other organization or corporation.

 

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Top tags: S1000RR  WSBK  Racing  MotoGP  F1  Althea  motorsport  Torres  AltheaBMW  Assen  crash  De Rosa  Haas  IOMTT  Isle of Man  JordiTorres  Melandri  N8  Netherlands  Nicky Hayden  Reiterberger  S100RR  WERA  World Superbike 

Lewis Hamilton's poor launch costs him again

Posted By Chase Hinderstein, Monday, May 16, 2016

Lewis Hamilton is one of the best overall drivers on the F1 track these days. Sure his Merc is part of the equation, but he's gotten it done in other rides and has a well rounded game. Others point to Alonzo, who is severely handicapped this year in a sub-par McLaren, while excitement builds and builds for the teen sensation Max Verstappen. Regardless, Hamilton is among the best. However, I continue to say that his weakness is his initial launch off the line.

This has allowed others to overtake him when the lights go out in previous years, and it's more evident this season, when clutch rules were changed to make the initial launch more challenging, a rule modification I believe was intended on reeling in the dominant Hamilton.

Yesterday at the Spanish Grand Prix, Hamilton's slight hesitation cost him again. After taking the pole, Lewis was initially overtaken by his teammate and rival Nico Rosberg. However, Rosberg slipped into the wrong engine mode and Hamilton was ready to charge to the front after turn 3. Hamilton dove to the right to pass as turn 4 approached and Nico, perhaps full of Hubris, pushed far right to close the door on Hamilton. While Nico did have position at that point, the race line was to the far left and this move was only to block his one true rival. 

Hamilton was forced onto the grass inside the track, lost the car and spun back into Rosberg's Merc, which had begun to slow to make turn 4 from the inside. 

This amazing spectacle led to a very enjoyable race, where the Ferraris and Red Bulls sparred for the rest of the days. Max Verstappen because the youngest driver ever to win a F1 race, while Ferrari took the rest of the podium. What's more amazing is that Verstappen had been elevated to the Red Bull seat just this previous week, while the dubious Kyvat had been demoted to the Toro Rosso team. 

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A good weekend for BMW in Imola

Posted By Chase Hinderstein, Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The World Superbike Championship at Imola this past weekend showed additional progress for BMW, while the haves continue to dominate the podium.

After a bizarre and dangerous crash during the warm up lap of race 1 on Saturday, the rest of the race went without much drama. Rea tried to put up a good challenge to the new dominant power of Chaz Davies on the Ducati. However the Northern Irish rider could not continue to battle with the Welshman, as his tires wore down later in the race and he did well to hold off his teammate, Tom Sykes, to hang on to second place.

Jordi Torres qualified 6th on his Althea S1000RR BMW and showed great pace throughout to finish 4th. I hope that soon he may challenge for a podium, without the need for rain or a dnf from the typical trio. It's really great to watch him as he gains comfort race by race on the bike. It may not be perfectly suited for him. Torres is almost 6' and he appears to climb around the frame while putting the bike deftly through the turns. In comparison, his teammate Markus Reiterberger is far more elegant on his RR but he just can't maintain the same pace. Reiterberger qualified 8th and still managed good points with a 13th place finish. 

Reiterberger is of similar size but is far more elegant as he carves turn after turn in a smooth clean fashion that's lovely to behold. However, perhaps it's better to be a bit ugly if it's got more pace.

Race 2 on Sunday had similar results on the podium, while the Torres and Reiterberger finished 7th and 12th respectively. Worth noting was the pace of Leon Camier, alone on his MV Agusta team. The company is challenged but a new engine has brought much more speed for Leon and he finshed 6th and 5th between the two races. If MV cannot improve, his name could be mentioned for bigger rides, but he does turn 30 this year.

Two big moments worth viewing.

A major save for Johnny Rea shows that you should never give up on that throttle!

  

And also a great demonstration of form from Chaz Davies, as he positions himself for an upcoming left hander, while still over and completing a right hander. It's not easy to fight your body over that way.


Tags:  MotoGP  motorsport  Racing  S1000RR  WSBK 

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"He seemed rather upset about that"

Posted By Chase Hinderstein, Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Two weeks after Seb Vettel admonished Russia Red Bull racer  Daniil Kvyat publicly for his irresponsible driving, the young driver may sought revenge. 

This past weekend in Sochi Russia, the Ferrari driver got rear ended by Kvyat entering turn 2 of the race and for good measure, it appears that he lined him up and finished him off with another rear ender before turn 3. It's certainly not clear that there was intention, but the consecutive hits against a driver who he's already at odd with raises the specter that he might be that reckless. 

Kyvat was given a 10 second stop and go penalty, while Vettel was unable to return. The incident kept both cars from the points. 

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It Works for Gillette - Jerez Update

Posted By Chase Hinderstein, Monday, April 25, 2016

A fresh quick update on the arms race that is the winglets of MotoGP. Since it works for the sales over at Gillette razors, the folks at Honda are now trying to address this weekend's shortcomings for Marc Marquez by adding more wings to his bike! Yamaha has 2 winglets, which Rossi just adopted and rode to victory, Ducati has 4 winglets, and now Honda has 6 Winglets!​. Where will the madness end?

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Jerez gives Rossi Wing[let]s

Posted By Chase Hinderstein, Monday, April 25, 2016

Many racing series are plagued at various times by predictable outcomes. The same one, two, or three racers winning week after week. While that hasn't been the case in a very competitive MotoGP field for last year or this season so far, the dominant powers did control the race from the start, and I didn't mind one bit. 

I may be saying this because I'm one of the millions that support Valentino Rossi, but also because at least in the initial laps, Jerez showed some awesome racing and challenges from the major parties, all which looked initially to be closely matched. 

Lorenzo took a few good stabs at Rossi, who led from the start at pole position. Marquez kept regular pressure on Lorenzo, who has a turn at Jerez dedicated to his name. Maverick Viñales lurked behind the lead group on his Suzuki, looking forward to his premier ride in 2017 where he'll be in the mix for the championship, and Dani Pedrosa lingered nearby, ready to pick up any pieces if the leaders faltered.

 However, Lorenzo soon faded. He had gambled on a softer tire compound, which should have given him superior pace early on but it deteriorated as the race wore on. He did hang in for a frustrated 2nd, almost 5 seconds ahead of Marquez who also left his best in the 1st half of the race.

 What's notable is that Rossi took the pole then ultimately went on to a dominating victory, after making the switch this week to a bike that included the winglets on the front end. Some of this decision may have come from the search for stability after crashing in a previous contest or just a better feel after trying both options earlier in the week in practice. Most impressive this week was the lack of trouble in the pack from front end slippage. Word had been that troubles with the Michelin tires would be reduced once the competition moved onto the European tracks and so far it looked good in Spain at Jerez. 

The big news to note, although it was the worst kept secret and about a week old at this point, is that Jorge Lorenzo has officially signed to ride with Ducati in 2017. While this information isn't fresh, the impact on other riders remains to be seen, as we start silly season unusually early this year. I'm looking for Maverick Vinales to join Rossi at Yamaha and finish no worse than third next year. 

Another impressive sight at Jerez was the attendance. This scenic area of Southern Spain brought in over 100,000 fans on Sunday and the image of the motorcycle parking lot was stunning.

This coming weekend has MotoAmerica and World Superbike on BeinTV, and a great way to have breakfast before a ride, F1 live from Russia on CNBC at 7:30am

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