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GP Week : Issue 23
>>Moto GPnews umber of starts final round in Argentina. He had knocked champion-elect Tetsuya Harada off on the last lap to gain the point he needed. The crown was his only after his protest against disqualification was upheld. Capirossi has ridden factory Yamaha, Honda, Ducati and now Suzuki machines in the premier class. Most of his nine wins came on the Ducati. When told about the milestone, he admitted that he hadn’t been counting, preferring to take it race by race, adding: “I think there are a few guys from the old days who might have done more races, as they used to race two or three different bikes at every meeting. “My next target will be 300 – but really the only important thing to me is that I am still competitive, and fighting with the best guys,” he said. Honda’s MotoGP clone expected next year AFTER almost ten years of waiting, and apparently timed to coincide with the company’s 60th birthday celebrations next year, Honda’s MotoGP street-bike clone has finally broken cover. The world’s first production V5 will not, however, be a supersports model. The new model will be a continuation of the sports-tourer VFR range, with shaft rather than chain drive. And there will also be a companion touring model, with full bodywork and luggage. Leaked news of the forthcoming model confirmed that Honda have resisted a super-sporting GP replica. Instead they will use the V5 engine to highlight a showpiece of new technology. Reports suggest that the bike will have a radical no-frame construction, with the engine serving as the main stressed member, with sub-assemblies attached front and rear. Other technical high points include a sophisticated electronic ABS system said to give much better feel than existing systems, and a F1-style push- button gear shift. “Variable cylinder management” will The 2009 launch date means fans will have had to wait almost eight years for the unique sound of the V5 motor, introduced for the all-conquering first MotoGP Honda RC211V of 2002. With a 72-degree vee angle, the “V4-plus-one” design required no extra balance shaft to quell vibration, and had naturally syncopated power intervals. Images used in GPWEEK are shot by the photo-artists at Sutton Images. Posters available of any shot – CLICK HERE for more information Interested in Aussie V8 Supercars? CLICK HERE to access Australasian Motorsport eNews ... 15