Electric Motorcycles Return to Sonoma for West Coast Moto Jam
Infineon Raceway set the standard in 2010, hosting the first-ever zero-carbon motorcycle race on American soil at the West Coast Moto Jam.
The Sonoma Valley facility, as part of its new Accelerating Sustainable Performance program, will again bring electric motorcycles to the racetrack with the first round of the TTXGP North American Championship at the West Coast Moto Jam, May 11-15.
There will be racing in two divisions: Formula GP, which was featured in Sonoma in 2010, and the new Formula 75 class, which limits the amount of stored energy to 7.5KwH and the maximum weight to 440 pounds. Practice will take place on Friday and Saturday, with two main events scheduled for Sunday, May 15.
Shawn Higbee took the checkers in last year’s historical TTXGP main event in Sonoma, followed by Michael Barnes. Barnes would go on to win every other event on the schedule en route to the 2010 TTXGP North American Championship. Barnes rides for Lightning Motors.
“Our bikes this year will make last year’s effort seem like a Sunday afternoon leisurely ride,” said Richard Hatfield, Lightning Motors team manager and motorcycle builder.
Mission Motors, based in San Francisco, will make the racing debut of its new factory bike, the Mission R, which features an advanced MissionEVT electric powertrain that packs 14KwH and 141 horsepower. It can reach a top speed of 160 mph in a single gear.
Another team to keep an eye on is Brammo, which won the inaugural TTXGP race at the Isle of Man in 2009. Brammo took the year off in 2010.
“Having taken a year’s hiatus, we’re anxious and excited to get back into the thick of racing. There’s nothing that pushes development of technology quite like racing,” said Brian Wismann, director of product development for Brammo.
The TTXGP North American Championship will feature four events in 2011. Following Sonoma, the series visits New Hampshire Motor Speedway (June 17-18), Portland International Raceway (July 16-17) and Virginia International Raceway (Aug. 12-14).
The West Coast Moto Jam will feature five days of two-wheel excitement, headlined by the AMA Pro Road Racing Championship. The weekend will also feature Supermoto USA, flat track and AHRMA National Motocross. For more information about the West Coast Moto Jam or to purchase tickets, call 800-870-RACE (7223) or visit infineonraceway.com/ama.