Need a quick hit of motorcycle news, but don't have a lot of time? Don't worry, RideApart has got you. Welcome to Speed Reads, our new roundup of bite-sized stories we thought you might find interesting. We'll skip the long-winded intro and get right to the good stuff.

Yamaha To Revive World Technician Grand Prix In 2025

Yamaha World Technician Grand Prix

Back in 2002, Yamaha established the World Technician Grand Prix to test the skills and knowledge of its thousands of trained motorcycle technicians around the world. It was held every two years until the global pandemic, which probably won't surprise you. 

Technicians compete in different ways, and awards are given for different classes of machinery. In the past, there have been sportbike winners, as well as commuter class winners. Good technicians who can service all types of Yamaha machinery are encouraged and rewarded for their service.

The most recent Yamaha WTGP was held in 2018, but Yamaha plans to revive the series in 2025. To get to the World level, though, technicians must first compete at the national level. More information will follow, but expect Yamaha technician national championships to resume in the coming months.

Benelli Motorcycles Changes Distribution In US Market

Benelli at EICMA 2023

Up until recently, Benelli was distributed in the US by SSR, which also sells its own-brand bikes and recently began distributing QJ Motor products in the US, as well. However, Keeway America, which is a subsidiary of the global Keeway Group, announced on November 27, 2023 that it has now assumed distribution of Benelli motorcycles in the US market.

Keeway, which primarily sells small scooters and motorcycles in Europe, will also bring its own-brand lineup to the US later in 2024. It's not yet clear whether Keeway will offer those bikes and scooters at Benelli dealers, or whether they will exist in different dealerships. 

The 2024 Benelli lineup should begin arriving in the US in Q1 of 2024, says Keeway America, which is located in Frisco, Texas. More information will be available in the coming months.

Watch Marc Márquez Take His First Ducati GP23 Laps

We'd love to embed the video here for you to watch, but unfortunately Dorna doesn't go for that sort of thing (even though it's on YouTube and counts as a view against its main view count for statistical purposes).

In any case, you should still click the link above and watch the video, which is just over three minutes long. What's extra cool if you're a big nerd like us is that there's absolutely zero commentary or non-track noises to interrupt the experience.

Get your best headphones out and revel in the sweet, sweet music of that engine as you take in the still very new, very strange sight of Marc Márquez aboard a Ducati. Is that the tiniest of smiles we see on Gigi Dall'Igna's face in the background?

Emilia Romagna Region Opens Online Flood Reimbursement Platform For Local Residents

Emilia Romagna, Italy

Back in May, 2023, the Emilia Romagna region of Italy was hit with devastating rain and subsequent flooding. It's home to Italy's internationally famous Motor Valley region, where you'll find Ducati, Energica, Ferrari, Lamborghini, and more of Italy's finest automotive companies. Both Ducati and Aprilia went on to donate money and host fundraising events to assist the beleaguered region later in the year.

If you're a resident of Emilia Romagna, the regional government has now announced that its flood reimbursements online platform is now open for applications. More specifically, around 27 million Euros have been earmarked to help repair and/or replace flood damaged motorcycles and cars in the region. 

Those with vehicles that were scrapped due to severe damage may also be eligible for funds, as long as they have proper documentation of the scrappage. Up to 700 Euros are available for motorcycles or mopeds, while between 3,000 and 5,000 Euros are available for cars (depending on environmental classification). 

Requests must be made by December 31, 2024, but affected residents are encouraged to apply sooner rather than later, because the funds may run out before that date. We'll include the link in our Sources to apply. 

Applicants must have appropriate Italian digital identification credentials via Spid, Cie, or Cns. 

Yamaha Is Crafting Limited Edition 1/6 Scale SR400 Tanks

If you, like me, get a special warm feeling in your heart when you see miniatures, then you're going to absolutely love what Yamaha is doing right now. If you miss the SR400, you'll love it even more.

After making that bike for 43 years, Yamaha decided to call it quits. Then, as the company says, enough fans expressed sadness about their favorite bike coming to an end that Team Blue decided to commemorate it with a tiny tank you can keep close to your heart. 

How to make it, though? Plastic wouldn't do. No, no, Yamaha instead decided to use the same SPCE steel plate that it used when crafting the full-size version that actually sat on production bikes. From there, it replicated the same processes that it had originally used to make the production tanks, only on an extremely tiny scale.

You can see it all in the video. Don't worry if you can't speak or read Japanese, because the video doesn't have any spoken (or written) words. It's all production line, all the time, and it'll put a smile on your face for sure.

Unfortunately for fans outside of Japan, it seems likely that the limited edition collectible will only be offered in Japan. Thankfully, watching the video is absolutely free anywhere in the world.

Like your news in bite-size form? Be sure to check back each weekday for more. Happy reading and riding!

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