October 20, 2006 The goal was quite simply to finish the race for the first-time MotoGP team Ilmor SRT, but the Sultan of Slide, Garry McCoy, went one better putting in a consistent performance to bring the team its first Championship point. Given that it was the first 800cc capacity bike (built for 2007 regs), it suggests the 800cc MotoGP series next year might be even closer again. It’s a long way from challenging for the win, but such an impressive first up showing suggests the fledgling team will be a lot further up the field by the time the 2007 championship begins next year.
October 11, 2006 A completely new MotoGP machine is set to be unveiled tomorrow and although it doesn’t have the name of a well known motorcycle manufacturer behind it, there’s some quiet money being wagered that the new team will make a significant mark. MotoGP’s newest team, Ilmor, will unveil the X3 at the Estoril circuit in Portugal prior to the Portuguese MotoGP round at which the bike will compete for the first time. Though it is not expected to be competitive in its first race, the 800cc V4 with air valve springs is designed for the 2007 MotoGP rules, where it is expected to be highly competitive. The project is the brain child of the Swiss engineer Mario Illien (Ilmor) and Eskil Suter. Illien is better known for his many four-wheeled achievements in Formula One and Indy racing, his engine designs have won two F1 championship titles with McLaren-Mercedes plus the Indy 500 race 11 times.