The New 1000cc Engine in the MotoGP


When the change from 800 to 1000cc for the MotoGP was announced a lot of people, who should know better, hailed a return to the days of the first, sliding, tire-smoking 990cc's. That won't happen. The sophistication of modern electronics, needed to last the 21 liters fuel allowed, will see to that. However, we may see some deviation from the one-line only racing of the unlamented 800cc's thanks to the torque giving a little more flexibility in that it may be possible to square the corner off and fire out rather than rely totally on corner speed.

However, these differences will be small. Top speeds will be faster, lap records will continue to be broken and Casey Stoner and Jorge Lorenzo will continue to be fastest.
There is, however, one unknown that may affect things; the new Bridgestone tire. The things we've heard about have been perfect, supernatural even, in the way they last a race. However, they bit when cold and if you let it cool down – as just about every rider on the grid discovered. So, at those same riders' request, things have changed for this year. MotoGP will use a tire that acts like tires used to. That is, they're going to be perfect for three or four laps then drop off considerably and stay at that level for most of the race. Those who have been particularly heavy-handed or didn't get set up right may have even more trouble in the closing laps. Remember Jerez last year? Conditions conspired to reduce tires to chewing gum and lots of riders crashed. Not one complained about the tires. The party line was clear; we'd rather deal with worn tires at the end of a race than crash on the first corner that uses a different side of the tire from the previous two.

So will racing become a little more unpredictable? I say yes, but only a bit.
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