All posts by mcnews

REPORT: Sam Lowes leads Rinaldi on Day 1 at Cremona as heavy rain curtails afternoon running

Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) was the fastest rider on the opening day of testing at the Cremona Circuit, taking advantage of the best conditions of the day to post the best time on Thursday. With sunny skies greeting the field in the morning, it looked like an ideal day for testing but, during the lunch break, heavy rain fell which disrupted the afternoon’s proceedings.

SAM LOWES TOP, LECUONA THIRD: a good return to the bike for the #7

Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing) was fast out of the blocks on Day 1, utilising his recent track day experience at the circuit to post rapid times with the #21 the first to break into the 1’30s barrier. However, he finished the day 0.155s slower than Lowes after the Brit set a rapid 1’29.976s to claim top spot, while the #14 also racked up the most laps with 76 under his belt in just four hours. Rinaldi was one of two WorldSBK riders to test Cremona in the wet, completing 20 laps and posting a 1’39.413s for his fastest time in the afternoon, around nine seconds slower than his dry-weather pace. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) rounded out the top three as he looked to get back to full fitness, setting a 1’30.510s for P3 although he did just over half the laps his teammate completed.

THREE RIDERS, HALF A TENTH: little to separate Vierge, Redding and Rabat

It was a good day for Honda with Lecuona’s teammate, Xavi Vierge, in fourth. He was two tenths slower than Lecuona after setting a 1’30.751s and racked up 60 laps compared to Lecuona’s 36. Scott Redding (Bonovo Action BMW) was the lead BMW rider as he claimed fifth, just 0.030s back from the #97 directly ahead. Across his two bikes, the #45 completed 31 laps. Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) rounded out the top sixth as he set a 1’30.801s and the #53 was also the first rider to venture out onto the wet track in the afternoon session, roughly an hour into it. In the wet afternoon running, Rabat racked up 45 laps – the most of anybody in the red-flagged session – with a best of 1’42.408s.

ROUNDING OUT THE FIELD: Gerloff, Mackenzie, Iannone and Norrodin

With the Racing – Ducati, GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team and Pata Prometeon Yamaha squads opting to test only on Friday, the WorldSBK field was down to 10 for Thursday’s action. Garrett Gerloff (Bonovo Action BMW) claimed seventh with a 1’30.881s, exactly a tenth behind his teammate, with Andrea Iannone (Team GoEleven) in eighth and three tenths back from the American. The #29 was one of the last riders to head out on track this morning with just 32 laps completed, which included an off-track excursion at Turn 7 in the morning. The PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda duo of Tarran Mackenzie and Adam Norrodin were ninth and tenth respectively.


In WorldSSP, five riders took to the track. Adrian Huertas ( Racing WorldSSP Team) led the way with a 1’32.619s to take top spot, with Can Oncu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) in second. Huertas had a technical issue in the afternoon which briefly brought out the red flags, with the #99 the only WorldSSP rider to test in the wet. Oncu in second had new material to test on his ZX-6R machine and his fastest time was a 1’33.925s. Kaito Toba (PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda) was third with a 1’34.845s ahead of teammate Khairul Idham Bin Pawi in fourth. Ivan Goi – standing in at QJMOTOR Factory Race for Raffaele De Rosa – rounded out the WorldSSP field after setting a 1’37.422s.

The top six in WorldSBK from Day 1 at Cremona, click here for the morning results here and see the afternoon results here:

1. Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) 1’29.976s, 76 laps

2. Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing) +0.155s, 67 laps

3. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) +0.534s, 36 laps

4. Xavi Vierge (Team HRC) +0.775s, 60 laps

5. Scott Redding (Bonovo Action BMW) +0.805s, 31 laps

6. Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +0.825s, 121 laps

Follow all the WorldSBK action throughout 2024 using the WorldSBK VideoPass!


Rinaldi revels at Cremona with P2: “Good start… immediately had a good feeling!”

As the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship made its way to Cremona, Italy for a two-day test, there were several impressive performances on display. One of the most notable was that of Team Motocorsa Racing’s Michael Ruben Rinaldi, who showed his speed and potential by leading for the large majority of Day 1 of WorldSBK’s first test at the Italian circuit.

A beautiful, sunny morning in Cremona saw several riders take to the track for the first time since its renovation, with Rinaldi and rival Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) immediately the two fastest riders on the track. Rinaldi led for the majority of the morning session, increasingly improving his time before eventually pitting with an hour remaining of the session. He would ultimately be second only to Marc VDS Ducati’s Lowes.

Rinaldi would ultimately post a time of 1’30.131s. Speaking about the track and the test, Rinaldi said: “I really like the track. I was able to try the track last week so I could avoid some laps with the WorldSBK bike to understand the track, which allowed us to immediately have a good feeling with the bike. Today, there aren’t all the riders, so I expect tomorrow to see our real level at this track. It’s been a good start. It’s a really strange layout, it’s not usual. The setup surprised me because it was okay for this track. It was strange because I did my best lap time with the SC0 not the SCX. Maybe, tomorrow, we’ll fix that to be faster with the softer tyre. This afternoon, we had the opportunity to test in the wet and I was quite surprised that the grip offered us. Some laps in the wet helped us to have a good feeling maybe for Donington or Magny-Cours. It was a good start.”

In this afternoon’s session, which was inhibited by rain, the riders were faced with a wet surface. Despite posting a time of around 10 seconds slower than the morning session, Rinaldi was extremely positive. Rinaldi was one of two WorldSBK riders who ventured out into the wet, the other being Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing). The #21 completed 20 laps in the wet, with a best time of 1’39.413s.

Speaking about his experience of testing in the wet, Rinaldi said: “I really liked it in the wet. Usually, I don’t feel so good in the wet! The bike doesn’t always give me good feelings, but I went out and immediately had a good feeling. The bike was functioning okay in the wet. Nothing to try in these conditions. Today’s enough, hopefully tomorrow we have a full day of dry running, so we’ll focus on that.”

Make sure to follow WorldSBK throughout the 2024 season using the WorldSBK VideoPass!


"Very positive for us" – Lecuona happy after Day 1 at Cremona after taking P3

The Cremona Circuit hosted the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship field for testing this week, with Thursday marking the first WorldSBK track action at the Italian circuit. One rider on track was Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) who made his return from injury, completing 36 laps on Day 1 in the morning before the rain fell as he finished in third place behind Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) and Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing).


Lecuona hasn’t been on a bike since a crash in FP3 at Assen which ruled him out of the remainder of the Dutch Round after he was diagnosed with knee pain and knee functional impairment with the injury also having an impact on his training. After getting half-a-day’s running under his belt, the Spaniard spoke about how he was feeling on the CBR01000RR-R as he finished ahead of teammate Xavi Vierge in the morning, with neither going out in the rain.


Providing an update on his injury, Lecuona said: “I feel quite good. I still don’t feel 100% ready on the knee. I have some hard things inside the knee, and I’ve already checked it with the doctor, and I’ll check it again after Misano. It’s not dangerous but it’s not very comfortable. Overall, I feel quite good. It’s been a lot of time without the bike, even at home I couldn’t ride; I focused on the physical performance. I didn’t have the chance to be on the bike. I’m quite happy about the feeling on the bike.”


Lecuona and HRC opted to only complete the morning session after rain fell during the lunch break, with Lecuona completing 36 laps and Vierge 60. Lecuona’s best time was a 1’30.131s as he lapped around half-a-second slower than pacesetter Lowes, with Vierge another two tenths back from the one-time podium finisher. Despite limited running due to rain, Honda had a good day with strong pace as they look to recover from a disappointing start to 2024.


Reviewing the test, Lecuona added: “It’s not whether I like the track or not. I like the back straight because you can rest. On the main straight it’s impossible. It was fun but very physical. I learnt a lot. We worked a little bit on the bike, trying just the Assen setup. We didn’t want to change properly. I started to feel comfortable on the bike and we started to understand a few things that we changed on the bike so that’s very positive for us.”


Follow all the action from WorldSBK in 2024 using the WorldSBK VideoPass!


LIVE COVERAGE: Minute by minute coverage from Cremona’s WorldSBK test

The Cremona Circuit in Italy is preparing for its first MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship round later this year and, to prepare, is hosting a two-day test for around half of the WorldSBK field as well as a few riders from WorldSSP. You can read a preview of the test HERE as well as follow live timing right HERE as teams, riders and manufacturers get their first taste of the recently renovated venue. All times stated are in Local Time (UTC+2).

09:26 – More riders are taking to the track, with Xavi Vierge (Team HRC), Tarran Mackenzie (PETRONAS MIE Honda Racing) and Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) testing now.

09:21 – Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing) is out on track. A reminder he, along with Nicolo Bulega ( Racing – Ducati), completed a track day on the Panigale V4 S last week.

09:15 – Some information to bring you from our journalist on the ground – neither Pata Prometeon Yamaha with Jonathan Rea and Andrea Locatelli, nor GYTR GRT Yanaha WorldSBK Team with Remy Gardner and Dominique Aegeter, will test today. They’ll be on track on Friday.

09:07 – The first rider out on track is Kawasaki Puccetti Racing’s Tito Rabat on his ZX-10RR.

09:00 – The green flags wave to signal the start of the session.


PREVIEW: Cremona prepares for first WorldSBK action with two-day test

The next MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship round takes place in June, but teams and riders are taking advantage of a break in the race action to head to the Cremona Circuit for a two-day test ahead of the track’s scheduled debut on the calendar later this season. All five manufacturers are represented at the test which takes place on Thursday and Friday this week, with 15 riders from WorldSBK and a handful from WorldSSP joining the test.

CREMONA’S FIRST ACTION: a first taste of WorldSBK

The Italian venue recently underwent some renovations which included work on parts of the 3.768km-long circuit with a focus on Turns 11, 12 and 13 as well as work on facilities and entrances. The test this week will be the first time most riders will experience the Italian venue, although Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing) and Nicolo Bulega ( Racing – Ducati) took advantage of a track day last week to understand the circuit.

DUCATI WELL REPRESENTED: Bautista, Bulega, Independents and a test team

The Racing – Ducati outfit will have three riders at the track, with Alvaro Bautista and teammate Bulega present. The Ducati squad will also have a test team there to maximise their efforts at Cremona. Elsewhere, Team Motocorsa Racing – the organisers of the test – will have Michael Ruben Rinaldi as he looks to bounce back from what he’s described as the toughest season for him in WorldSBK. Sam Lowes (ELF Marc VDS Racing Team) and Andrea Iannone (Team GoEleven) will also test following strong starts to their respective rookie campaigns. Ducati will also have Adrian Huertas ( Racing WorldSSP Team) from WorldSSP at the test.

FOUR YAMAHA BIKES: GRT Yamaha joins Pata Prometeon Yamaha

Factory teams will be at the test although not all of them. Jonathan Rea (Pata Prometeon Yamaha) and teammate Andrea Locatelli will be there for Yamaha as they prepare for the Italian Round at Cremona, and Yamaha will have four bikes there. The Pata Prometeon Yamaha riders will be joined by Remy Gardner (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team), fresh from his maiden podium at Assen, and teammate Dominique Aegerter.

A BUSY TEST FOR HONDA: Lecuona back from injury alongside Vierge

After a difficult start to 2024, Honda will be hoping the Cremona test will give them a boost ahead of the Emilia-Romagna Round. Iker Lecuona (Team HRC) will make his return from injury, after missing the Dutch Round through injury, as he looks to kickstart what’s been a challenging season for the #7. Teammate Xavi Vierge will also be there, alongside PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda duo Tarran Mackenzie and Adam Norrodin. There will also be two British Superbike Honda riders there, with Tommy Bridewell and Andrew Irwin present, as well as the two WorldSSP MIE Honda riders of Kaito Toba and Khairul Idham Bin Pawi.

TWO BIKES FOR BMW, ONE FOR KAWASAKI: Redding, Gerloff for BMW, Rabat for Kawasaki

BMW will only have two bikes on track, with the ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team duo of Toprak Razgatlioglu and Michael van der Mark not testing. Instead, the German manufacturer’s data collection will come from Bonovo Action BMW, who have their rider line-up of Scott Redding and Garrett Gerloff. Elsewhere, Kawasaki will be represented by Independent outfit Kawasaki Puccetti Racing and Tito Rabat, with the Spaniard set to test some new configurations and work on setup. Can Oncu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), fresh from his British Supersport win, will test material on the chassis on his ZX-6R machine. Raffaele De Rosa (QJMOTOR Factory Racing) will also be there on his QJMOTOR SRK 800 RR as the Chinese manufacturer gathers data following their WorldSSP debut this season.

Follow all the action throughout 2024 using the WorldSBK VideoPass!


BAUTISTA FUTURE LATEST: “I still feel young… I don’t have the feeling to say ‘I’ll stop’…”

It’s what a motorcycle racer has known all of their life; from the first steps onto a track with pocket bikes to voyages into World Championships, falling down to rising high, clinching wins, titles, fans and emotions. To end it all and finish the dream is a complicated subject. In a career that has gone on for more than two decades, bringing three World Championships, 75 World Championship race wins and over 130 podiums, it’s the question Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) faces. To pack it all in despite still being a race winner and current Championship leader, or to extend his current contract with Ducati into 2025, where he’ll start the season aged 40. Few race beyond, even fewer succeed with titles but with racing being a hobby and a way of life, the reigning double WorldSBK Champion needs no motivation… he just needs to decide whether to roll the dice on more time or not.

Reflecting on the duration of his World Championship career, Bautista reminisced: “I think in that time, I can’t believe that I kept racing for more than 20 years and winning in my last years. When I started in 2003 as a World Championship rider, it was a dream come true. I watched the races in TV with my father as a child. In that moment, I didn’t think ‘I want to be a rider and race many years’, I’d just started racing. From that moment, the dream of my life was complete. After that, I won the title in 2006 and then I went to 250cc and MotoGP™, racing against the best riders in the world. I came to WorldSBK, a new Championship but I won two titles. It’s still like the first day of school; I have the same motivations, ambitions, I work on myself to be a better rider every time. I’m not tired of racing. It’s strange because it’s been many years in a high level of competition but I still feel young.”

CHANGING MOTIVATIONS: “I feel like I’m racing because I’m enjoying; I want to race, it’s like a hobby”

Talking about motivation, how different factors have changed over the years and how he “doesn’t have” it right now, the reigning double World Champion said: “The motivations are different after every year. In every moment, especially in MotoGP™ when I didn’t have the best bike, I tried to achieve the maximum. If I can’t win a race because of the bike, team or whatever, it was about trying to achieve the best result and do the best for me. Before, I was more focused on myself but now, it’s a different story. I don’t know if it’s because I have family, my age or because I have more experience but I see things in a different way.

“I feel less pressure than in MotoGP™; I feel like I am racing because I’m enjoying and I want to race. It’s like a hobby, not like my work. When you do things like it’s a hobby, it’s because you want to. When you want to, you don’t need motivation because you’re doing it as you want to do it and you like doing it. Right now, I don’t feel like I have a motivation because I’m enjoying it, so I like it and do it. I don’t need motivation. It’s really, really nice to share the races with family, friends, my daughters, so it’s a different situation. With experience and age, I see things in a different way.”

DIFFERENT TO OTHERS: “I want to be competitive so I need to work more”

After a dominant start to 2023 and winning in big battles at the end, does new motivation come from beating new opposition? “Winning is always nice! To battle is always nice too. I started last year by winning many races and also the whole year, it wasn’t like I had everything under control but more or less like ‘if I do this, this and this, I can win the race’, as I knew the rivals really well. However, this year is different. The riders are different, the level is different, I started with the physical problem and this year, I don’t know why but I feel more motivation and more eagerness to work harder to be better. I feel the level is higher so if I want to be competitive now, I have to work harder – but it’s not a ‘motivation’, it’s because I want to be competitive so I need to work more. It’s not like other riders where if they win and if they face difficulties, think that ‘I’ve done many years so I’ll stay at home, I don’t need to keep working and trying to improve my ways’; for me it’s different. That’s what happening this year with all the changes; it has given me more confidence in my work to try and reach the best performance.”

INJURY AND AGE: “In Spain, we say ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’”

“Maybe when you’re younger, you recover sooner but it’s true that for me, I’d never had an injury like this in the past,” said the 39-year-old, who suffered a preseason testing crash and thus was injured throughout testing and Round 1. “Fortunately, the injuries I had before were like broken bones or something like that where it is easy to recover. It’s a new kind of injury for me but in Spain, we say ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’, so after this injury, I felt better because I had to work in another area of my body or in a different way. This injury made me feel like I’m improving myself and I discovered a new area where I can improve to be better. In the end, I took the positive thing of the injury.”

FAMILY MAN: “Family is very important… but at the moment, my feeling is that they enjoy my world”

“In the end, family is very important; especially now, as my daughters are bigger and they understand more about my life, work and travels. But at the moment, my feeling is that they enjoy my world a lot. It’s always a big pleasure for me to keep racing and enjoying the time with them. However, it’s not only the family. I’ve been many years at a high level of competition, the age and there start to be more factors outside of the family that can effect my future. There’s new rivals too but fortunately, I have good support from my family and friends and that’s important to keep me focused on racing.”

AS IT STANDS, CONTINUE OR STOP? “I keep racing because I enjoy it and because I’m doing my best, but right now…”

Championship leader despite having less wins than arch-rival Toprak Razgatlioglu (ROKiT BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team), Bautista is surprised to be there, confirming the feeling hasn’t quite been recovered fully: “If you’d told me at the beginning of the season, before the first race and after the winter where my feeling with my bike and myself was not the best, that I’d be leading the Championship after Round 3, I’d not be able to believe it. It’s been a good surprise to lead the Championship after a strange weekend in Australia and the tricky conditions at Assen, where I struggled before in the cold and wet. Right now, I want to have a good feeling with the bike; it’s not the same feeling as last year so before thinking about the future, I want to recover the feeling and the feeling of being 100% at my best. Right now, I feel like we are 85% or 90%. I keep racing because I enjoy it and because I’m doing my best but right now, I don’t think we’re in our best so first of all, I want to recover this feeling. Then, I’ll think about the future.”

“After the Cremona and Misano tests, I hope to work on the bike and change the things I wanted to in the races but for example, at Assen, we couldn’t try anything. I’ll try to make tests that I wanted to do and between them, I hope to get the feeling back and arrive for the Misano races at my best. Then, I’ll see how my performance is comparing against the race.”

HERE TO STAY? “I don’t have the feeling to say ‘I’ll stop’…

Talking about whether it’s difficult to contemplate ending what he’s known his whole life, Bautista was clear in not having that feeling… yet: “I don’t know as at the moment, I don’t have the feeling to say ‘I stop’. I’m just focused on recovering the feeling and enjoying it. I don’t feel pressure or that it’s my work, just relaxed and that it’s my hobby. I want to enjoy my hobby. The moment I wake up in the morning and don’t think, ‘I want to be a better rider’, I will stop. At the moment, I want to be better to enjoy the bike.”

EVERY SECOND LIVE: watch all the action from 2024 and beyond with the WorldSBK VideoPass!


Bulega, Rinaldi on Cremona: “Technical circuit, have to be very precise… base setup needs to be adjusted”

With the Cremona Circuit set to make its MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship debut later this year, a couple of riders took advantage of a track day to get to know the recently renovated circuit. Nicolo Bulega ( Racing – Ducati) and Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team Motocorsa Racing) hit the Italian venue on their road version of the Panigale V4 to prepare for this week’s test at the same venue.

The pair were able to get plenty of laps under their belt with rookie Bulega and five-time race winner Rinaldi utilising the street bike to understand Cremona’s intricacies following recent work on the circuit, which included lengthening it. With mileage under their belt at the Italian venue, both were able to give their first thoughts on the track ahead of the WorldSBK test later this week, which will mark the first track action for the Championship at the circuit.

Explaining why he opted to use a track day at the circuit ahead of the test, reigning World Supersport Champion Bulega said: “This is the standard bike and there’s a big difference to my race bike. I like the track. It’s a very technical circuit, you have to be very precise. It’s a good layout. I hope to be competitive everywhere, not only at Cremona! I came here just to learn the track with the standard bike. We’ll come here with the official bike, so I wanted to have a day of testing, go on the track and when I already know the bike with the official bike.”

Although Rinaldi has some experience of the venue, it came almost a decade ago and before the improvements were made. He explained that this is one reason why he came to the circuit to do a track day alongside fellow Ducati rider Bulega, as he adapted to the revised layout. He also gave his first impressions of the circuit, believing it’ll be “different” for WorldSBK.

Five-time race winner Rinaldi said: “The track has changed. I was here about eight years ago and they’ve made some improvements. It’s not such a fast track so it’s important for us to have a good test because the base setup for everybody needs to be adjusted. It’ll be something different for the Championship.”

Follow all the action from WorldSBK in 2024 using the WorldSBK VideoPass!


Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 Tire Review

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
We review the new Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires, which offer improved stability, handling, braking distances, and mileage versus the S22. (Photos courtesy Bridgestone)

When choosing a motorcycle tire, what do you look for? The answer varies from person to person. For my street riding, I prioritize longevity, grip, and price. Due to its versatility and reliability, Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S22 tires have been my trusted companion on the streets, during spirited canyon rides, and even on the racetrack. Given my extensive experience with the S22, I was excited to try the new Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires.

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires have updated compounds and a new tread pattern (front tire on left, rear tire on right).

Building on the solid foundation of the S22, Bridgestone’s goals in developing the S23 were “improved handling precision, maximum stability, and incredible grip, even in wet conditions” as well as better mileage. The S23 tires maintain the same shape and MS-Belt construction as the S22 but feature new compounds and a new tread pattern.

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires on the Buell Hammerhead 1190

The updated compounds offer increased grip thanks to additional carbon and a newly developed “grip improver” that makes it easier for the tire to follow the road surface. The front shoulder and rear edge of the S23 also has optimized resin components for better grip at high lean angles.

Compared to the S22, the new tread pattern has a higher land-sea ratio (more rubber, fewer grooves) and higher pattern stiffness, contributing to improved handling, dry/wet traction, and feedback. Bridgestone’s proprietary Pulse Groove technology was added to the rear tire, improving water drainage and grip in wet conditions.

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires use the same shape and MS-Belt construction as the S22, but with a new tread pattern and different compounds.

Bridgestone’s testing has shown faster dry and wet lap times, shorter braking distances, and improved mileage for the S23 compared to the S22.

For a real-world test of the new Hypersport S23s, Bridgestone hosted a press launch in Encinitas, California. There was a variety of sporty motorcycles on hand, allowing me to evaluate the tires on several motorcycles, including the Suzuki GSX-S1000, Indian FTR1200, and Buell Hammerhead 1190.

Related: Suzuki GSX-S1000 Road Test Review

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires on the Suzuki GSX-S1000

Starting our ride on city streets and backroads aboard the S23-shod Suzuki, a sense of familiarity washed over me. The transition from the S22 to its successor felt seamless, like greeting an old friend. As we navigated the initial turns, the inherent stability afforded by the S23 became immediately evident, instilling confidence in every lean and maneuver.

On our way to lunch in the mountain town of Julian, I put the S23s through their paces, eager to gauge their responsiveness and grip. Despite my deliberate attempts to upset the tires, they maintained their hold on the road surface. Even when I pushed the limits, accelerating out of corners a little too fast, the S23s exhibited reassuring grip even as the TC light flashed, indicating some rear wheel slip.

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
The Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 rear tire features Pulse Groove technology for better water dispersion.

After lunch, we descended from the mountains to the desert on the tightly winding roads of Banner Grade (CA Route 78), a perfect playground to test the tires’ responsiveness in the sort of twisties where most riders will put them to use. Negotiating each curve, I found my confidence bolstered by the stability and predictability of the S23s.

The ultimate test awaited us as Keith Culver, an instructor from Yamaha Champions Riding School, led our group down Engineers Road, a narrow, unpainted byway full of abrupt transitions and tight technical corners. Despite the demanding terrain, I was impressed by the front tire’s ability to maintain grip under hard, downhill braking.

Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tire review
Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires on the Indian FTR1200

On the sunny day of our test, we didn’t have an opportunity to evaluate the wet handling characteristics of the S23s. Nor did we evaluate them on a racetrack. For what it’s worth, the Yamaha Champions Riding School runs S23s on its fleet of Yamaha sportbikes.

Related: A Cruiser Guy Goes to Yamaha ChampSchool

After a full day of thrashing three different bikes shod with Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 tires, I can confidently say that they exceed the excellent standards set by the S22s. They offer confident grip, reassuring stability, and outstanding handling on a variety of roads. The ZR17 tires are available in one front (120/70) and five rear (160/60, 180/55, 190/50, 190/55, and 200/55) sizes starting at $249.49.

The post Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S23 Tire Review appeared first on Rider Magazine.


2024 MV Agusta Enduro Veloce Video Review

The MV Agusta Enduro Veloce marks the Italian brand’s entrance into the adventure-touring market, competing against bikes like the Ducati Multistrada V2, Triumph Tiger 900, and BMW F 900 GS. The Enduro Veloce is powered by a 931cc inline-Triple that delivers 124 hp and 75.2 lb-ft of torque. It has 8.3 inches of wheel travel front and rear, 9 inches of ground clearance, a 34.3-inch seat height, and Brembo brakes, as well as a sophisticated electronics suite.

To test the Enduro Veloce, we traveled to the Mediterranean island of Sardinia, where we logged miles on the island’s best routes to get a taste of what the Enduro Veloce has to offer. By the end of the day, we were impressed with the bike’s nimble handling, engine performance, and artistry.

Read our full review of the 2024 MV Agusta Enduro Veloce

2024 MV Agusta Enduro Veloce review

2024 MV Agusta Enduro Veloce Specs

  • Base Price: $22,998
  • Warranty: 4 yrs., unltd. miles
  • Website:
  • Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse inline-Triple, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl.
  • Displacement: 931cc
  • Bore x Stroke: 81.0 x 60.2mm
  • Horsepower: 124 hp @ 10,000 rpm (factory claim)
  • Torque: 75.2 lb-ft @ 7,000 rpm (factory claim)
  • Transmission: 6-speed, hydraulically actuated slip/assist wet clutch
  • Final Drive: Chain
  • Frame: High-tensile steel double cradle
  • Wheelbase: 63.4 in.
  • Rake/Trail: NA/4.6 in.
  • Seat Height: 33.5/34.3 in.
  • Suspension, Front: 48mm inverted fork, fully adj., 8.3 in. travel
  • Rear: Single shock, fully adj., 8.3 in. travel
  • Brakes, Front: Dual 320mm discs w/ 4-piston radial monoblock calipers & ABS
  • Rear: Single 265mm disc w/ 2-piston caliper & ABS
  • Wheels, Front: Spoked tubeless, 21 x 2.15 in.
  • Rear: Spoked tubeless, 18 x 4.0 in.
  • Tires, Front: 90/90-21
  • Rear: 150/70-18
  • Ground Clearance: 9.1 in.
  • Dry Weight: 494 lb (factory claim)
  • Fuel Capacity: 5.3 gal.

Gear Up

The post 2024 MV Agusta Enduro Veloce Video Review appeared first on Rider Magazine.