Haga looked a lot better than he has races pass.........he didnt seem to slip as much as the race goes on.......he was slipping and sliding all the way around though, visibly moreso than any other riders......
That's because Dunlops suck. Despite that, someone needs to reign Haga in, because he has ridden like an ass this year. Elbowing Bayliss, he took out Hayden at Laguna Seca, now he screws over Hodgson. FIM needs to do something.
Can you imagine him and Xaus on the same team next year? I hope Aprilia is prepared for a lot of crashes.
Clearly Dunlop have not kept up this year, but there are a bunch of other Dunlop riders out there (Hodgson, Toseland, BBoz, eg) who do not seem to slide as much as Haga. I think his riding style is a lot harder on the rear tire than most riders out there. Damn entertaining to watch him though. For the first half of the season, he was the main reason to watch, as a Bayliss, Edwards 1-2 finish was preordained.
I could not tell if Haga was at fault in this crash -- clearly he was being held up and was desperately trying to find a way past. I think it is more likely just one of those things. In general, Haga has been riding much better the past several races.
Still gotta wonder (assuming it is true) just what Aprilia are thinking with him and Xaus for next year. At least they should get a lot more camera time than their overall performance would otherwise command.
Great racing!!!! Way more entertaining to watch SBK than F1!! My only gripe was the missed TV coverage of the Bayliss get-off in race 2. Did anyone see it or did NascarTV (whoops, that's Speed Channel- sorry!) miss having a camera on the (then) points leader. Big gaffe!
I think Honda races by reflex, but they do not alyways think of the marketability of a series, either in auto or motorcycle.
Honda, almost more than any other company, thinks of racing as a technical development tool, and always has. They will even change racing engineers in mid season just to train a new crop, regardless of the sucess or failure of a season. Don't misunderstand, they want to win, but their strategy is always long term!
Honda can be a strange company, with a unique corporate culture in motorsports. It's essentialy a company of creative engineers with a vision, and has been since the days of Soichiro Honda.
From what I read, Honda's SBK effort is under direction of Honda Europe, as opposed to Honda Corporate, and it seems that they may look at racing a bit differently from Corporate. At least based on reports, they DO look at it more as a commercial venture. I cannot imagine Soichiro taking such a stance -- it is inconceivable that HE would contemplate pulling out, or even scaling back, under the circumstances.
Can you imagine the irony -- Edwards earns the No 1 plate for Honda and wears it in the front of a Ducati all next season while Honda either sits it out or mounts a half-assed, low budget effort with a no-name rider?!
I agree with your assessment of Honda's corporate culture regarding racing. They race to win, certainly, and they like the favorable PR, but even more they race to become better -- that is why they rotate engineers etc through their race teams. Their production cars or bikes would not be what they are if they farmed out race development to separate teams like so many others do.
Given that, maybe Honda Corporate will step in and overrule Honda Europe. We can hope!
Absolutely right about Laguna Seca -- Hayden clearly lost his front tire while trying to stay ahead of Haga, and Nori had nowhere else to go! I think Haga has gotten a bit of a bad rap. In fact, I was sorta ragging on him during the race yesterday, commenting about his propensity for crashing out, when my wife pointed out that if he is 4th in points (ahead of the great BBoz), he must be finishing a few races! Considering the relatively small Aprilia budget, he ain't doin' half bad.
True, but then, mowing the grass is more entertaining than F1 lately;-)
It is a shame that there wasn't a camera on Bayliss at the time of his crash -- however, in fairness, SpeedTV has nothing to do with that -- the camera feed is provided to them by the organizers (I understand, generally politically driven decision to give the contract to the local - usually state-owned -- TV company) and SpeedTV (and all other carriers in whatever language) provide their own commentary. In Europe, you can flip through the channels and see the same footage in probably 5-6 different languages.
1. He is fast and talented; he has loads of potential if he can learn to become consistent. (Yes, he does crash much too often--someone recently suggested that Aprilia apply the sponsorship decals upside down next season.)
2. He is SPANISH--he may be able to bring a nice sponsorship package to Aprilia.
I noticed the Edwards SP2 was back running a dual exhaust. Some comments have been made about improved power and such. When Team Castrol went to a single exhaust last season it was for supposed "mid-range power increase".
The last few races back with a duals, no contest. I would love to know, what gives?
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