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N/A | National KTM RC16 - MotoGp 2017

Discussion in 'Racing, Motorsports, and Track Days' at netrider.net.au started by GeorgeO, Jun 12, 2016.

  1. I would LOVE for the KTM to be up to speed and challenging for some points in the first year.

    Test success in Jerez: Kallio sheds some awaited light to KTM test progress
    Mika Kallio has been a mysterious man lately, commenting scarcely on the KTM RC16 test project and keeping his focus on development work. Finally today, after a two-day test in Jerez, the rider can happily confirm good news on positive test progress.

    -The bike feels clearly better now, the lap times are starting to drop to suitable readings and riding is starting to feel good, a relaxed Kallio commented straight out of the track.

    -Upon bike development in general, our biggest challenges have clearly revolved around the chassis and how to find a suitable stiffness. These issues have been present at every track and hindered progress somewhat, Kallio analysed. Last week in Brno we were able to improve the chassis dramatically and when the advantage stayed on the Jerez track as well, we were able to confirm permanent progress.

    -When the bike became more responsive, we started to experiment with different swing arms and front- and rear suspension solutions. This resulted in steady increase of trust towards the bike, so I could push more and ride on the limits. I can say that now we reached the big step we have been waiting for all spring and I am happy about that, Kallio continued.

    KTM:s MotoGP-team has one more private test ahead, before taking part to the official tests in Red Bull Ring, Austria, in July. Even though the actual launch event of the new RC16-bike takes place in August along with the Austria GP, the attention of media and the racing world will focus on KTM’s public debut in the upcoming July tests. Kallio and his crew have a few days to top up their game in Mugello before they come out with the new bike and they have confidence these two upcoming test days will prepare them for the showdown.

    -There is still a long way to be able to challenge the top teams, but as lap times go, we are now already there among the runner-up teams. We still have a lot of time on our test calendar, so I am positive there is still time for progress. In the Mugello tests we will be joined by Aprilia, so it will be interesting to compare times with a current MotoGP-team, Kallio stated.

    Wild card race in Valencia coming up

    Mika Kallio will start on the grid in the MotoGP season finale in Valencia on 11-13th of November. KTM has gained a permission for joining the race with one bike and Kallio, having worked hard, is happy to take on the well-deserved chance to race. He thanks his team for good work so far and looks forward to the season highlight already.

    -All in all KTM has done a marvellous job by putting together a competitive crew with a good team spirit. It is tough finding good employees for new teams as the competition is fierce, but we are now more than 35 people on the road testing, another 35 or more participate to the development based in the factory in Austria and there are still crew members incoming. I am happy of the progress and steps made so far, the team has deserved this and it is good for their motivation.

    -In addition to team satisfaction, I am glad to see that I can clock competitive lap times on a MotoGP-bike and I am happy that I can challenge current riders. This keeps my motivation up as a test rider and even though I would have liked that race rider spot I now lost to Smith and Espargaro, I have good plans for the future and the main thing is that I am able to compete in the lap times and demonstrate both the bike’s and my own potential in Valencia, a determined Kallio finished.
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  2. Is that a tube / trellis frame ?
    Should be interesting.
  3. I Reckon they know a thing or two about trellis frames.

    I wonder what exactly they mean with 'among the runner ups' - do they refer to Aprilia or Ducati (both I can class as runner up?)
  4. thanks for the info georgeO
  5.  Top
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  6. Oh Goody. I sure do love KTM p0rn lots.
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  7. yeah they make a good looking bike and we both must children of the 70's cause if we could afford the orange bike we would both buy one.

    correct ?
  8. My wife says I'm in my orange phase- I still own a little Duke 390, my Kia is orange, my Shark lid is orange, even our new home's front fasade has a huge burnt orange feature pillar.
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  9. well there ya go :)
  10. Wino's linked article - the pics deserve to be posted up in this thread.

    They have claimed on a few occasions that they are already getting more than 270hp out of their new v4. And they already have a seamless gearbox that works.

    I reckon 2017 might just be an interesting year in Motogp


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  11. The much anticipated engine

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  12. Some more p0rn

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  13. I was not sure if it was something you had already posted so I just did the link. And lets not get to carried away, yeah it's a beaut looking bike but it's yet to hit the grid.
  14. The back is way nicer than the front. Hope the rest of the grid gets a look at it...
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  15. Austria MotoGP Test, Day 2: KTM Press Release
    Submitted by Press Release on Thu, 2016-07-21 22:16

    Press releases and photos from KTM after their first communal test with the other MotoGP teams:

    KTM MotoGP Test Spielberg – Great to arrive back home


    MotoGP Test 2016 – Spielberg (AUT)

    Nine months after its initial rollout, the KTM MotoGP Factory Racing Team returned to the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg Austria, to complete the ninth development test in what turned out to be ideal conditions. In addition to the team’s permanent test rider Mika Kallio (FIN), Tom Lüthi (SUI) also delivered an impressive performance on the second KTM RC16 riding with an almost complete field of MotoGP riders.

    Before the MotoGP makes its return to Austria in the middle of August, these privately organized tests that included all but two teams saw riders familiarize themselves with the completely newly asphalted circuit. Teams also had the opportunity to work on setups for the race that takes place immediately after the three-week summer break. It was also the first real opportunity for KTM’s MotoGP Factory Racing Team to settle into the location before the project is introduced to the general public with demo laps and a press conference at its home Grand Prix.

    Pit Beirer (Motorsports Director): “Finally the day has arrived we can measure ourselves directly against our competitors and it was a great feeling. But in principle we are here to continue to improve and we can say clearly that everything is going according to plan. Naturally we’re somewhat slower than the absolute top guys at this point, but the difference is not dramatic and we can see where we have to improve. The fact that we already have our two factory riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro under contract for the next two years already makes me feel very confident lap time whise. We now have four further tests on the program before we ride with Mika Kallio as a wild card in the final race of the season in Valencia, which for us is also another milestone. He and the entire team have delivered a fantastic job in the past half year, and this has been reflected in the results of this test.”

    Mike Leitner (Vice President Onroad): “Fantastic that we’ve now really confirmed that we’re going in the right direction. The test was pure competition because naturally all the teams tried to find a good setup for the Grand Prix. At the end of the second day the times started to drop and this gave us our first real reference. And even though the way to the top will be even harder, on no account do we need to hide. There are many things to do but we know where the bar is set. If someone had told us before the test that we were three seconds behind, we would have taken it well. This achievement is even more praiseworthy in the class where they fight for every tenth of a second. This was an important step that is bound to guarantee that awareness is sharpened throughout the entire company.”

    Sebastian Risse (Technical Director Onroad): “This time we concentrated on three fundamental points. Lap times, how others manage electronics and tires plus normal settings and test work we have been able to do also in the past. Technically we didn’t make as many steps forward, but we made a lot of progress with the lap times. We moved between a deficit of between one and a half and two seconds on both days, which for me was actually less than expected. The next development step will be a big one and we will aim to cleanly integrate all of our experiences into a completely new bike. I hope that with this bike, and the continuous updates we’ll be better equipped for our wildcard entry into the last race of the season, and the subsequent IRTA test.”

    Mika Kallio (Test Rider MotoGP): “I think our performance was better than many expected and the distance between us and the others could have been greater. But we’ve delivered impressive work on the two test days and we notice that the other teams were to some extent also impressed. We didn’t have any technical problems and this meant we could reel off a lot of laps at a high level. Step by step we were able to put in faster laps over both days and on the second day we improved our times by a second over the first. This time the concentration was more on set-up and less on development and that made it easier for me to ride faster times, so my confidence improved lap for lap. With all the other riders on the circuit we clearly saw in which areas we still had to improve. This allowed me to follow some other riders and I understand what is now necessary.”

    Tom Lüthi (Test Rider MotoGP): “Thanks to my physiotherapist I was able to hold it all together as far as my physical condition is concerned. But also the track was new to me and compared to Mugello I had much more to work on the bike. I was gradually able to get used to it and to continually improve. I’m very happy with my performance. We made technical improvements regarding the fork and also the topic of the tires was naturally very interesting for me. Although I haven’t yet found the ideal combination where I can say I can now ride a half a second faster, the interplay between things like the wheelie control, traction control or torque power coming out of the slower corners is extremely interesting. Among other things, for me that means I have to improve before the next test in Misano, but as mentioned, my main focus is still on Moto2 where we recently messed up and want to catch up again.“

    Alex Hofmann (Test Rider MotoGP): “ We have to be honest and say that in this short time we have made a perfect start to the MotoGP project. The laps I put in on the KTM RC16 on the morning of the second day were awesome. The motorcycle is absolutely on the right track. At the moment I see nothing that should put a stop to this. We can be really proud of this first comparison considering that the bike was only rolled out nine months ago. Riders, bikes and teams are working at 100% during the season so to be within two seconds deserves respect. And last but not least the difference to Yamaha and Honda is additionally impressive on what is obviously a Ducati circuit, and this perhaps also explains why a team was already not using a transponder.”

    For the KTM MotoGP Factory Racing Team the second half of the season starts with the public presentation of the project at the Home Grand Prix in the middle of August, before the test number 10 in Misano, directly followed by the next one in Spain.




  16. KTM Technical Director Onroad Sebastian Risse on the Development of the KTM RC16 MotoGP Bike
    Submitted by David Emmett on Tue, 2016-08-16 14:00

    Sebastian Risse is the man behind the KTM RC16 MotoGP bike which was presented on Saturday at the Red Bull Ring. An automotive engineer by training, Risse has been with KTM since 2008. He started out as a crew chief and chassis analyst on KTM's now defunct RC8 Superbike project. When KTM returned to Grand Prix racing in 2012, Risse took charge of the Moto3 project, which has gone on to be the benchmark in the class.

    Risse is currently head of all of KTM's roadracing activities, and has overseen and led development of the RC16 MotoGP bike. That machine has both interesting parallels and major differences with the other machines on the MotoGP grid: the bike uses a 1000cc 90° V4 engine housed in a tubular steel trellis frame, and a fairing that looks like an oversize version of the Moto3 bike's, and sits somewhere between the Honda RC213V and Kalex Moto2 designs. The bike will also use WP suspension, though as WP is a wholly owned subsidiary of KTM, it will basically be a dedicated factory suspension effort.

    After the KTM RC16 was presented, we spoke to Sebastian Risse about the differences and design choices which went into the bike.

    MotoMatters.com: Did you ever consider using aluminum beam frame?

    Sebastian Risse: Already in past projects, like Moto3, of course we were considering it. There we also had the experience from 125 and 250. So it was a decision which was really well thought through. We even had some aluminum frames running, but in the end, it was a conscious decision. We know more about the steel frame, we didn't find any disadvantages, we knew our strong points and can use them, and we know also what to work on to reach the similar level to aluminum.

    MM: No theoretical disadvantages or weight disadvantages?

    SR: For example, the material damping is not the same between aluminum and steel, between those two and carbon fiber, between very different materials, and it's something you need to handle. To say in general, there is an advantage or a disadvantage in weight, this is really hard to say, because the whole bike package depends on this. For example, with a steel frame, it is easier to get the heat away from some areas, where aluminum is closing everything up. So maybe you can save some heat shields and so on. So there are really secondary aspects you can put together.

    MM: It's not just about the frame, it's about the whole of the bike as a package?

    SR: Exactly, yes. It has to work together. For example, from Moto3, we know we are very weight efficient with respect to the stiffness, and it's for sure not a disadvantage with the steel frame.

    MM: Firing order: big bang or screamer?

    SR: We are still doing some investigations about this. Especially now with the electronics, there's not just the mechanical firing order, there's more about it, and you can play a lot with it. We will see what we decide at the very end.

    MM: Aim is to run without a balance shaft, that also implies certain things for the engine configuration and firing order, or else you have to compensate?

    SR: This is true, yes.

    MM: Is the aim to be the most powerful bike on the grid?

    SR: No. Of course, when you are an engine guy, you always dream of this, and that's clear for everybody. But also to have a good understanding of what the total package has to deliver. Sure, in the beginning, let's say in the first season, we will not be always there. Will have brighter moments and more difficult moments, and then to have a strong engine is for sure not bad. But we know about the total balance, and we see that the strongest bike is not winning the championship for some time now, and this of course has to make everybody think. Basically, you see on some race tracks that 5% of the time, you have all throttle bodies full open, so how much can you gain? You can pass people, but you can't make the lap time with engine power.

    MM: Which area still needs the most work on this bike?

    SR: Basically, now looking back, it becomes more clear that there were really phases in the project. For example, in the beginning, you have to make the rider feel comfortable, so work on the ergonomics before they can tell you more about the stiffness and the setting. Then of course you have to get the best out of the setting, out of what you have. And then things like turning, handling of the bike, it's a continuous development process.

    And also it was very helpful now to see where the others are. Because when you're testing on your own, this becomes more and more blurred, and you dream of something that is out of the normal. But we know now quite well what is normal, what the others are doing, that basically everybody has similar boundaries in some aspects, and now we will improve the aspects that on the one hand we are maybe missing against the others, and on the other hand, the areas where we see we are strong and where know how to do it, of course we can go further. We don't have to make the bike which is in no aspect worse than the others, but we can use our strengths.

    MM: Did winglet ban affect you and your plans?

    SR: To look into downforce in general is something which I think since 10 or 15 years people were doing. Already in the 1950s, 1960s you saw even on them. But now whenever you go in the wind tunnel or you do simulations, you look at these aspects also, even if there are no winglets on the bike. The rule for next year is there will be no wings, how this wording will be exactly and how people can work with it, we will see. But basically, the rules are the rules, and we try to get the best out of the package inside of the rules, and that means we are looking at the downforce like we always did in conventional ways.
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  17. Analyzing KTM's RC16 MotoGP Bike - Can it be Competitive?
    Submitted by David Emmett on Tue, 2016-08-30 14:25

    At the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, at the Austrian round of MotoGP, KTM finally officially presented its MotoGP project, the KTM RC16. There had been months of testing, with press releases and photos issued. There had been KTM's participation in the private MotoGP test at the Red Bull Ring in July, alongside the rest of the MotoGP teams. But at the Austrian GP, the fans and media got their first chance to see the bike close up.

    What are we to make of it? First, we should ask what we know about the bike. On their corporate blog, KTM list some specs for the bike(link is external). There are few surprises: 1000cc V4 engine, using pneumatic valves, housed in a tubular steel trellis frame and an aluminum swing arm. Suspension is by WP, while brakes are by Brembo, and exhaust by Akrapovic. Electronics are the spec MotoGP Magneti Marelli ECU.

    Big numbers

    What is slightly more interesting are the numbers for maximum engine revs and horsepower. Like all official numbers on values such as torque, horsepower, and revs, they are not to be trusted, but these both seem highly inaccurate. KTM claims the RC16 makes 250hp. It certainly makes that, and probably 10% more, given that most MotoGP engines are believed to make somewhere between 260 and 275 horsepower.

    Reports from the track said that the KTM was not short of top speed, though test rider Mika Kallio told a group of reporters that he believed they were still down a little on the Ducati. "On the engine side, we are on the good level," the Finnish test rider told us. "There is still room to improve, at the moment the Ducati is still the fastest bike on the straight, so we are not there, but we are close to the other bikes." Those who saw the speeds through the speed traps reported KTM as being very fast indeed, though no one would be drawn into revealing actual speeds.

    19,000 RPM?

    Where does that horsepower come from? On the corporate blog, KTM report the maximum revs as being 19,000 RPM. If that number is accurate, it is insanely high: MotoGP adopted the engine bore limit of 81mm precisely to limit engine speeds, after the manufacturers rejected a mandatory rev limit. Conventional engineering wisdom had it that reliable engines would not be able to rev much above 16,000 RPM, as engine speeds above that would place too much stress on pistons and conrods, causing them to fall apart. A mean piston speed (MPS)(link is external) of 26 m/s was believed to be a fairly firm limit.

    That has not turned out to be the case. The bikes were soon revving well up towards 17,000 RPM, and making further inroads into the laws of physics. According to our research, the Ducatis can rev to 18,000 RPM, the Hondas to 17,750 RPM, the Yamahas to 17,250 RPM (with satellite bikes having engine limits set several hundred RPM below the max revs of the factory machines). Ducati was already achieving an MPS of 29.1 m/s, a seemingly impossibly high number. If KTM really are revving to 19,000 RPM, that would be an MPS of 30.7 m/s, which is up in drag engine territory. Dragsters have to cover around 1200 meters between engine rebuilds. MotoGP bikes have to hang together for close to 2000 kilometers.

    How do KTM – or Ducati, Honda, and Yamaha, for that matter – achieve such engine speeds? MPS – mean piston speed – is a rough approximation, but it is not an accurate reflection of the stresses placed on the engine. What matters is the amount of acceleration and deceleration which the piston and connecting rod undergo as they slow down for bottom and top dead center, then speed up again towards the middle of the stroke. The weight of components such as pistons, wrist pins and conrods is a factor here, as force is acceleration times mass, and force is stress.

    Clearly, the factories are working to find clever ways of reducing stress, which will include lighter weight components, paying close attention to mass distribution, the location of the wrist pin, and smoothing the transition between acceleration and deceleration as much as possible. What they are doing is impossible to know, nor how they are doing it. But the lessons learned will at some point pass down into production vehicles, though we may have to wait a few years to find out.

    A V4, for sure

    What we do know about the engine is layout of the engine. Though KTM Technical Director Sebastian Risse was cagey when asked directly what layout the engine used, he tacitly acknowledged it was a 90° V4. When I put it to him that the aim of running the bike without a balance shaft had implications for engine design, he replied, "This is true, yes." Not an admission as such, but as close as you might expect from a factory engineer.

    The engine firing order is also not yet fixed. When asked whether the engine would have a big bang (cylinders firing together) or screamer (each cylinder firing separately) firing order, Risse answered that KTM had not yet made up their minds. "We are still doing some investigations about this," Risse said. "Especially now with the electronics, there's not just the mechanical firing order, there's more about it, and you can play a lot with it." What he is implying is that although two pistons may reach TDC at the same time, the charges in the cylinders can be ignited a degree or so apart. That can help smooth the power delivery, and reduce the load placed on the crankshaft.

    Hard to hide chassis and suspension

    While we may never know details of the engine internals, there are a couple of things which KTM cannot hide. The two biggest differences between the KTM and the other bikes on the grid are the suspension and the chassis. KTM will be the only bike on the grid to use WP suspension rather than the Öhlins used by everyone else. And it is the only bike on the grid to choose a tubular steel frame over an aluminum beam frame.

    Will this be a disadvantage for KTM over the rest of the field? After all, the other factories are all using the same suspension and chassis design for a reason, right? And Ducati dropped the trellis frame, for a carbon fiber frameless design, and then swapped that for an aluminum beam frame, and now they are starting to become competitive.

    In an informal conversation, a senior member of a rival factory was impressed by the way the bike looked during the test. "The bike doesn't move at all in the corners," they said. "It's much more stable than we expected." The fact that the KTM RC16 was a second off the Yamahas, and 1.9 seconds off the fastest Ducati, proved it was already a competitive package. Mika Kallio was just five hundredths of a second behind Ducati test rider Michele Pirro.

    Full factory WP

    Choosing WP over Öhlins is a logical choice for KTM. WP is a subsidiary of KTM, and the two have worked closely in every motorcycle racing discipline they have been involved in. WP supply the factory KTM machines in Moto3, and will be the official name of KTM's Moto2 project. They have gained a lot of experience in Moto2 – so much so that some teams using WP in Moto2 have started referring to the Ajo squad as the "WP factory Moto2 team" – which will be applicable in MotoGP.

    Above all, KTM will have the full support of WP. "This will be a full factory effort," one source close to KTM told me privately. The two factories are just a short cycle ride away in Mattighofen, Austria, so communication is extremely direct. Updates will be fast and frequent.

    Will a trellis work?

    Pol Espargaro, who will race for KTM in MotoGP next season, was more concerned about the trellis frame. "We need to check if the tubular chassis works," he told us at Barcelona. "If the tubular chassis is not working we will struggle so much. I prefer a slow bike that is good in the corners than a fast bike on the straight and impossible to manage. I think [the chassis] will be harder than we are used to do with Yamaha. It’s a different system."

    So far, the performance of the KTM RC16 has not given much cause for concern, though there are still areas that need work. "We need to improve the rear grip somehow on the exit," Mika Kallio told us at the launch. "We have a lot of power in the engine, but on the exit side, we can't really use everything, all of the potential. So we need to find some way to do this. Everyone can see Ducati are really good on that side."

    But a lack of rear grip is not unique to the KTM. Both Maverick Viñales and Aleix Espargaro have complained of exactly the same thing, especially once temperatures rise. The Honda suffers even worse problems, either spinning the rear wheel or wanting to wheelie out of corners. The Yamaha is much better, but still lacks grip compared to the Ducati.

    The Ducati gets a lot of its advantage from its aerodynamics, however. The vast array of winglets make a big difference in keeping the front wheel down and providing drive to the rear wheel. Those winglets are banned from next year, so the difference between the KTM and the Ducati could be much smaller in 2017. With KTM currently working hard on a bike without winglets, they may well get an advantage. Sources familiar with the situation report that Ducati have been testing without winglets for next year, and suffering real problems with wheelie. Part of their advantage will be gone.

    The problem is adapting

    The tubular steel frame will pose a set of challenges for both Pol Espargaro and current and future teammate Bradley Smith when they switch to KTM. Having spent all their lives racing an aluminum beam frame, they have an intimate understanding of how that frame feels and responds. A trellis frame, such as the KTM RC16 uses, responds differently.

    I asked Mika Kallio if he could feel the difference with the tubular steel frame. "Yes," he responded. "Also for the rider, it was not easy to jump to this bike. It gives you a different feeling, this frame, and I needed to learn first how I felt with this bike, and then I needed to make a lot of laps to see exactly how to give the right comments on which way we need to go on the development. It has also been a big challenge for me, to learn the bike and this feeling that this frame gives."

    Would it take Espargaro and Smith some time to get to grips with the different frame? "I believe it will take a few laps more to understand, but there's no problem, anyway. We have been testing many different kind of frames, about the stiffness and that kind of thing, and there were some interesting things that we could find."

    Why throw away what you know?

    The reason for choosing a tubular steel frame over an aluminum beam frame was simple: KTM has a vast amount of knowledge and experience with this kind of frame, which they would be throwing away if they went with an aluminum chassis. "KTM has a lot of history with this tubular frame," Kallio said. "I think they know what they are doing, so I believe that there is something how we can be better than the competitors. Like we saw in the other races in the past, Ducati was using a same kind of tubular frame and they were fast. So I don't see any problem why we can't be OK with that."

    The fear of using a tubular steel frame was that the many different components and welds would make it difficult to produce two identical frames. Kallio told us he had never noticed that problem. "I was impressed that all the bikes that I tested, I felt different, and then if there were two similar frames, I couldn't feel the difference between the bikes."

    That is not to say that KTM did not consider an aluminum beam frame. "Already in past projects, like Moto3, of course we were considering it," KTM Technical Director Sebastian Risse told me. "There we also had the experience from 125 and 250. So it was a decision which was really well thought through. We even had some aluminum frames running, but in the end, it was a conscious decision. We know more about the steel frame, we didn't find any disadvantages, we knew our strong points and can use them, and we know also what to work on to reach the similar level to aluminum."

    Winning by being different?

    Can the KTM RC16 be a competitive package in MotoGP? Given the Austrian company's approach and success in other areas, there is no reason they will not succeed in the premier class. They have dominated almost every series they have entered, first in off-road disciplines, and now in road racing. As KTM continues to grow, they have the budget and the knowhow to build competitive motorcycles. They have the backing of Red Bull, and a healthy balance sheet to invest.

    KTM wants to make a mark as the premier European sports motorcycle brand. Success in MotoGP has become a cornerstone of that objective. They have learned from previous failed projects, and from success in Moto3. They are doing so while trying to retain their identity, sticking to steel tubular frames and WP suspension rather than just copying others. That, in itself, is to be applauded.
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