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Wednesday 17 February 2021

News Briefs


Triggered by Volkswagen Audi Group CEO Herbert Diess' own remarks late last year about electrification and long-term brand fit, it would appear that, for now at least, the rumors that Ducati (and Lamborghini) were on the block, have been nixed again! The VAG Board stated in December that "there is agreement on the Board that Lamborghini and Ducati will remain part of the Volkswagen Group."

Motorcycle and car racing is to have a new home in Missouri with the all-new Ozarks International Raceway currently under construction in Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri. Scheduled to open in late summer 2021, it will include a 3.87 mile, five configuration asphalt-paved track with up to 19 different turns, a dirt tri-oval, a truck off-road track, trail and rally courses, with a 58-bay car garage complex in converted old turkey barns.

H-D Tier 1 brake components vendor Brembo (Italy) has completed its acquisition of aftermarket brake pads and discs manufacturer SBS Friction (Denmark). The transaction has entailed a consideration of 224 million Danish Kroner, equal to approximately € 30.1m, which will be paid using available cash; enterprise value is 300 million Danish Kroner, equal to about
€ 40.3m. Brembo says that the acquisition is in line with its "new mission" to become "a respected solution provider."

MIC has announced the election of Nicole Allen (Akrapovic), Jeff Brown (EagleRider) and Tim Calhoun (Quin Design Helmets) to two-year terms on the MIC Board of Directors. Brown and Calhoun were re-elected for a second term on the 12-member board, and newly-elected Allen will take the seat vacated by Andy Leisner (formerly with publisher Bonnier Corp., now with EV start-up Volcon, Tx).

The AMA announced the members of its Safe-to-Race Task Force as their 2020 'Motorcyclists of the Year' in recognition of "their contribution to uniting the motorcycle competition industry and providing the expertise and guidelines that got America competing again during the coronavirus pandemic." The group developed the guidelines and practices that paved the way for the return of motorcycle racing in 2020.

The AMA has followed the lead set in other global race markets, taking a virtual leap with the award of a sanction for the AMA eSports National Championship. Under a multi-year agreement as an AMA-chartered promoter, INIT ESPORTS will organize and promote the AMA-sanctioned two-wheel eSports competition. To be released soon, the AMA-sanctioned esports calendar will include two-wheel video game competitions of varying sizes and scope, culminating in an annual national championship that will award AMA National No. 1 plates to class champions as early as 2021.

K&K Promotions, Inc., operated by famed motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel's son Kelly, owner of the intellectual property rights of his father's name, heritage and estate, has filed a lawsuit in federal court against The Walt Disney Company, Pixar, and other Disney-related entities, alleging trademark infringement and violations of K&K's rights of publicity. The dispute centers on a "Toy Story 4" character that is said to infringe on the daredevil motorcyclist's trademark and its own Evel Knievel Stunt Cycle toy.

BMW Motorrad has posted the second-best annual sales figures in its history despite the challenges of a year in which COVID-19 turned the world inside out. They delivered 169,272 motorcycles and scooters to customers worldwide (+3.4%); 39,673 units in Q4 (+3.8%). The company launched thirteen new models for 2020 and consolidated its position as one of the fastest growing motorcycle manufacturers in the world.

Sources: AMD, IDN, FT, Reuters, PSB, MPN, B&B, BDN, MCN, AP, Bloomberg, MSNW, Electrek,,,