Dakar Lightning Strike
The 38th edition of the Dakar Rally began on Monday in Asuncion, Paraguay. The iconic event will travel through three countries in South America—Paraguay, Bolivia, and Argentina—with the finish scheduled in Buenos Aires on January 14. There are plenty of challenges for the bikes, trucks, ATVs, and whatever hell else they run there—lightning apparently being one. According to Motosport.com, Slovakian rider Ivan Jakes was struck by lightning during the third stage. And get this—he still finished the stage in 15th! Wow. More from the report:
He later spent some time in a Jujuy hospital, where he underwent checks and was cleared to resume competition today.
Doctors said Jakes' bike saved his life, as it conducted the electricity through the rider and into the ground.
"Thank God he didn't put his feet on the ground, because it would have been like a ground wire," a member from his team said.
Group in Maryland Oppose Nitro Circus Event
According to the Capital Gazette some ass hats in Maryland are trying to block Travis Pastrana and his Nitro Circus Tour from performing in front of his hometown crowd. Per the report, Nitro Circus applied for a permit for a July show at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, only to have a community near the stadium object with “the board of directors for the Admiral Heights Improvement Association voted unanimously to recommend the event not be permitted at the stadium.” Further, in a letter to Pantelides and Paone, the board cited the following as objectionable:
- The production is designed to be loud.
- Heavy metal rock music is played throughout.
- Cannon blasting and unmuffled motorcycle engines create more noise.
- The show includes pyrotechnics.
- There's loud commentary from a prominent public address system.
What a joke. Remember, the stadium also hosts Navy football games and other events. You can read the entire story here.
Pastrana posted the following on his Facebook page. Hopefully this works out for TP and crew.
A few uninformed residents voted unanimously to deny Nitro Circus from having a show in my hometown of Annapolis. The residents in charge of making decisions for their community went on YouTube to analyze Nitro Circus Live and without any factual information, decided it would be "EXTREMELY disruptive." They cited that events like ours don't give much back to the local communities. This is really disappointing after everything nitro and myself have personally done over the past 16 years to talk and read to young students at schools. The support we've given to local athletics. The support and donations to injured vets and terminally ill children. We do these things because we want to and never expect a thank you, but I think it is EXTREMELY disappointing that we may not be able to put on a show in our home town in front of our family, friends and fans because a few individuals didn't bother to do any real research before shutting down something that would be such a positive impact on the local community. I also think it is EXTREMELY disappointing that people who live next to the Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium which regularly holds events with 30,000+ fans thinks that 8 to 10 thousand of our fans would cause more of a disturbance. Feel free to write into the Capital Gazette if you have been to a Nitro Circus Event and let them know what we are about and the experience you had there. Thanks.
MAG Merging Online Retail Stores
The Motorsport Aftermarket Group (MAG) is reportedly merging its two online stores—Motorcycle Superstore and J&P Cycles—according to a report by Powersports Business. According to the report, Motorcycle-Superstore.com traffic will eventually be directed to JPCycles.com in 2017. More from Asphalt and Rubber:
This development is hot on the heels of the news about Anthony Bucci stepping down as CEO of RevZilla, showing that there is a great deal of flux in the online motorcycle retail space.
The closing of Motorcycle-Superstore is also timely to the demise of Motorcycle USA – the once media component to Motorcycle-Superstore, which MAG closed down in February 2016. That deal also saw MAG sell Cycle News to Powersport Media.
It’s not clear why MAG is closing down Motorcycle-Superstore, though one can hazard a guess that the consolidation is for cost purposes. Having to online retail spaces with minimal differences between them likely seemed like suspect decision-making.
Marquez at Superprestigio
Late last year, current MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez won the Superprestigio, a flat track event held in Barcelona, Spain. The fourth edition saw Marquez win the event over MotoAmerica’s Tony Elias and 2013 American Flat Track Champion Brad Baker, a former winner of the event. Marquez recently released a cool video of his win on his YouTube page.
Circuit of Wales Growing
Circuit of Wales, a motor racing circuit and technology park in Blaenau Gwent, which has had some problems this past year, announced this week a deal with the sports company Extreme to develop action sport facilities, music venues, and hotels next to its motorsport circuit. Crash.net reports that the hope is the partnership will help the circuit become a “365-day venue” which will include mountain bike trails, BMX park, indoor skiing, trampolining, skatepark, surf park, Virtual Reality Zone, live music stages plus two hotels, and a campsite. More from Crash.net:
In October, the Circuit of Wales secured a potential of £100 million from a private banking firm Kleinwort Benson which was hailed as 'the last piece of funding' required by the banking group's managing director Nigel Spray. Extreme is backed by the same private banking firm but will not be funding any of the building work.
In November, the Welsh Audit Office confirmed it was investigating how public money was spent in connection to the Circuit of Wales project regarding a £2 million development grant and underwriting £7.35 million bank loan in 2014.
However, reports emerged last month that the Circuit of Wales is 'close' to finalising a new submission to the Welsh Assembly.
The Circuit of Wales project is set to be financially backed by insurance giants Aviva who are potentially lined up to cover to new funding plan changes.