Motorcycles are inherently dangerous and riders are only allowed so much protection from the gear that we choose to place on our bodies. Dainese has always been an innovator when it comes to motorcycle safety. They were the first to incorporate back protectors into the leather pajamas that early motorcycle racers wore in the late 70's, and more recently they were the first to dream up the incorporation of airbags into jackets and race suits in 1995 and then implement them for testing in 2000.
As is the way when you have a good idea, others latch on like a bunch of lampreys and suck the life right out of it. There is a bit of a legal battle over the patents of the use of airbags in motorcycle gear. Alpinestars and Dainese are currently engaged in a he-said-she-said over the patents. Dainese holds several patents and had issued a cease and desist to certain German retailers of Alpinestars Tech-Air systems. AStars tried to get ahead of the news publicly by issuing a statement to the press essentially stating that the cease and disist had been issued, but not a legal action. Thus leaving readers to infer that they had done nothing legally wrong.
Dainese, this morning, offered a formal response to this statement setting the record straight. There were two injunctions levied against AStars in the German court stating that the Tech-Air systems infringe upon two of the Dainese European patents. There is an additional lawsuit seeking damages and the halt of commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Germany.
There are very similar injunctions and law suits in Italy as well. Dainese has left these statements to stand on their own in an effort to halt the childish finger pointing. They instead cited that they would discuss the situation in "appropriate venues," of which I assume the public press is not one.
In doing some research, the earliest time stamp that I could find on the Alpinestars Tech-Air system was this page on the Alpinestars website (that didn't work terribly well) detailing a Jorge Lorenzo crash at Laguna Seca in 2011. The notes on the page discussed the use of data logging suits being used in 2003 and how those were implemented into the development of the air system, but no other dates. In 2011, the suits were used in the Moto GP season and went on sale in the month of July of that same year in Europe. This is several months after the D-Air system became available from Dainese (see timeline below).
To me, Dainese has a lot of legal ground to stand on and seeing that they are handling this in the courtroom and not on a public stage, I think they are making the right moves. What do you think?