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[Motogp] - Back to 990cc?

Discussion in 'Racing, Motorsports, and Track Days' started by CamKawa, Nov 7, 2009.

  1. Interesting... will going back to 990cc give the desired results? After all Dorna completely misread the change in bike performance when they moved to 800cc. Will this be another stuff up?

    Who thinks they should go back to 990cc? I wouldn't mind it.


  2. With the bikes deveoping too much horsepower now, and only two or three riders actually able to extract their potential, why would they make it worse? Let's have 500cc four-strokes and turn off the electronic crap and see who can REALLY ride!
  3. I really don't buy this 990cc making it all better idea.

    The 2 strokes by now would be fully electronically controlled. The KTM 250 effort had quite a lot of electronics, as does the Aprilia. The 500's would be at the same point, if not further along with their added prestige. It's the electronics that has makes it expensive. If you look at the line of engineers who are staring at screens in a Motogp garage, you can see where the effort is being expended. It's easy to make a powerful engine, but making one that can be ridden quickly is extremely hard. Just ask Suzuki, Kawasaki or the Aprilia engineers.

    If we had 990's we still have bikes that cost a fortune to design and build. They would be insanely fast and look after their tyres as well as you could expect. All that would change would be the top speed down the straights (higher) and the possibility of different lines out of corners where the engines greater torque can be used to get drive.

    Remember that what was amazing about the 990's was the fact that in the beginning they made more power than the tyres could deal with. Coupled with early electronics this meant that it took riders of supreme skill control them. At the end of the race, when the tyres were shot, only a great rider could still set fast laps. That's what made the top guys good and allowed them to overtake the merely good riders towards the end of the race. Now the tyres have overcome the power and the electronics have made it so that the bike adapts it power delivery as the race goes on and the available traction diminishes.

    But if you ban electronics, you'll have Motogp bikes using lower technology than road bikes. Perhaps ban rider aids such as GPS assisted mapping that modifies the engine map depending on where you are on the circuit or mid corner? That would at least mean that the electronics would be being used to advance road bikes (isn't that what racing is supposed to do?).

    Nup, I think Dorna have left the door wide open and the engineers have well and truly bolted. Too late to put the genie back in the bottle (and any other cliche you can think of).
  4. Yeah, I agree.

    90% of the "Let's go back to the 990's" fuss is being generated by the Americans who see that the 800cc formula is speciafically designed to advantage the Euro-riders who have come up through the ranks of 125, 250 racing, and to DIS advantage the American riders who, by and large, have come up through Supersport and Superbikes.

    As such the argument goes that the 990's slide about more and so advantage the American (although they disguise the blatant jingoism by referring to them as "non-European") riders, whereas the 800's respond better to the "high corner speed and classic line" racers that are typically European because of their previous racing experience.

    Hang around any American forum and you'll find this tripe being peddled all day, every day. I don't buy it.
  5. Would this depend on more electronic aids?

    How about a greater capacity, few rider aids. ie. less technology.

    Yes, I know that GP racing is a prototype class. But even with F1, which is probably the pinnacle of such racing, technology is still limited. And does it need to be prototype, anyway? Don't draw from production bikes, but don't place an emphasis on the "prototype" concept.

    Thing is, with a 990 it doesnt' need to be as highly stressed or tuned as an 800 needs to be.

    Plus, the 990s sounded WAY better than the current bikes, which to me, sound more like 2 strokes of old, what with their high pitched screams, rather than the lower pitched growls that the bikes, particularly the Ducatis, used to produce.

    I would suggest that this has always been the case, whether it be 500s, 990s, 800s or even Superbikes. You'll always have your top 1 or 2 percenters (out of the top 1 or 2 percenters of racers world-wide) leading the pack. Just look at the points table for this year, and the gap between Stoner who missed a number of races and Rossi who DNF'ed a few, and the rest of the field.

    Who knows, lower tuned/stressed 990s may be cheaper to produce, tune and race than the current bikes. Certainly, it can't be more expensive, can it? Given that they barely have enough teams and bikes to field a grid now, something needs to be done.

    I have a t-shirt from the 97 AGP. It has all the riders and teams from that year's championship. Only Repsol Honda remains. I don't know if the current Yamaha teams were around then as the team names (Rainey Marlboro and Red Bull) were different. And there were 24 riders in that year's championship.

    In 2017 how many of the current teams will be stilll around? In fact, how many will be there next year?

    So, return to the 990. See how it goes. If nothing else we'll have better sounding bikes, hey?
  6. This is an engineer led sport. As such they will push whatever boundaries there are.

    F1 is a sport where results are contrived. In F1, Mercedes are being asked to re-tune their engine for next year to make it less dominant. This is because no teams are allowed to develop their engines under the current set of rules. So here we have F1, the self styled pinnacle of motorsport penalising an engine supplier for making a good engine? That's the last thing we need in Motogp.

    Anyway, I don't remember close racing with the 500's. The cream will always rise to the top and the dominance of the Honda under Doohan, Criville and then Rossi was a result of an awesome team, bike and riders. The first years of Motogp produced great racing, but that was more or less because everyone was starting from the same clean sheet. But it still rewards those teams that had both the budget and the top riders. We saw bikes sliding as they were all coming to terms with the new rules. I think that the 990's, if they were still around would also be one line bikes as the electronics would still have evolved to a point where they can be ridden pretty much flat out for most of the race. The fact that 4 riders continue to win is mainly because they are supreme talents, but when you listen to Rossi and other speak, they bemoan the fact that old crafts such as tyre management are no longer as essential as they were.

    But as I said, the horse has bolted and it will be difficult to dumb down the sport. Perhaps the best thing to do would be to relax the rules, not add to them. Allow any amount of tyres, as much fuel as you can carry and as many gizmo's that you can find. That way the extremely restrictive rules we currently have that drive development costs up may be reduced.

    One of the rules that is a real pain is the fuel limit. By limiting the fuel to an artificial limit, the bike has to adjust its fuel use during the race. It does this with GPS and other aids, changing the fuel delivery mid corner and at certain points of the circuit. The engineers now map each corner, each straight for the best power/fuel combination.

    The engine rule for next year won't reduce costs. It will just add to them. You want to win races, you need a powerful engine. But the engine has to last 3 races. Easy way to make the engine last a long time is to lower the revs, but that limits power and speed. The other option is to use ever more exotic and expensive materials. Guess what the engineers would like to do? And when you have a championship at stake, you can hardly blame them. Meanwhile, Suzuki or other cash strapped teams will lower their rev limit and diminish even more their chances of winning a race (in the dry).

    Motogp, like F1, is in danger of disappearing within it's own corporate hospitality tent.
  7. In an enviro-strangled world, despite the miniscule amount of fuel used in motor-sport, you are never going to see a relaxation of the fuel limits......
  8. You know, I'd watch this. I was watching some motorsport races from the 60s the other night, and it was genuinely more entertaining. You see the drivers come out of a tight bend, the car starts to shake, and THEY have to make it stop. Its drivers controlling machines, when the machines are simply that... Machines.
  9. But does anyone know or care what they are now? Quietly dropping the rule wouldn't raise the eyebrow of even the most fanatical greenie.
  10. Well I do, not even counting the Transatlantic Match Races or Daytona or the AMA Superbike Series (which had the likes of Roberts, Mamola and co. all on 500 strokers) and just sticking to the world championships how about Sheene v Roberts, Roberts v Hennen, Luchinelli v Roberts v Mamola, Spencer v Roberts, Spencer v Lawson v Mamola, Lawson v Gardner v Rainey v Schwantz v Doohan. Except for Doohans dominant period the 500's history is full of close racing, often just man on man but a dicing pack is what 125's and production bike racing is for. The best season long duels have all come from the 500's.

    I believe there were two significant evens which were detrimental to motorcycle racing and we are now paying the price for and it's too late to fix.

    1. The introduction of the 'Superbike'. This class immediately appealed to the masses rather than the purists and with the 4 stroke being an easier bike to race you saw large and growing grids while the 2 stroke grids got smaller and were steadily reducing each year. The writing was on the wall way back then. All of a sudden it was about money rather than racing.

    2. Getting rid of the 500 two-stroke. It is common knowledge these days that racing a grand prix 2 stroke to the limit was a skill that not every racer had. Throughout Europe you had hundreds of thousands of real racing fans who wanted to see the best riders on these machines and would turn up anywhere to see it. As for traction control on a stroker? Rossis traction control is in his right wrist, just where it should be.

    Now the arguments I hear are regarding road bike sales and the lack of relevance the 2 stroke has. The 2 stroke is no less relevant to the every day commuter than these 4 stroke prototypes firing around the GP scene. So they have similar electronics? So what. It's only the badge on the tank that matters. I say reduce the performance of these production sports bikes anyway, which are available to everyone out there. Who needs a roadbike with similar performance to a racebike and that can do 300 km/h? That is insane. Slow the things down I say. In the 4 wheel world at least the high performance stuff is out of the price range of being affordable and even then you are protected by the vehicle in the event of a crash. Sure the top end bikes are not cheap but everyone can afford a bike that they are only capable of riding to 40% of its potential. I'm sorry but I fail to see the sense in that.

    The other argument has been closeness of racing, well I think this season has shown us the racing isn't getting any closer nor is it likely to in the near future.

    Dorna have finally f'ed it up beyond repair.

    I do however have a solution. Scrap MotoGP altogether, leave the 125's & 250's as 2 strokes and make World Superbikes the premier class and just call it the World Motorcycle Championships. The best rider will still win and both sides will be satisfied.
  11. There must surely be some scope for some lateral thinking; what about two different engine capacity classes? In F1 there have been a couple of formulae that have allowed a certain capacity for normally-aspirated engines, and a different capacity for forced induction. And what about scrapping the limit on the number of cylinders any given capacity class can have; I'd love to hear a six-cylinder 600, or a V8 800/990??

    The big problem is costs, but they're trying to constrain it in the wrong place; as cejay has wryly noted, the real costs are in the hospitality tent. Add to that the back-room political deals; it's not building bikes where all the money goes. How many billions have been wasted building tracks for no-one to attend?
  12. So why was the Indianapolis MotoGP empty?? They waiting for the 990cc to pack it out????

    FWIW, the traction control would be more for safety, but be happy for them to turn it off to see who the best racer is
  13. Well the 250's are scrapped

    And agree with all on the Superbikes - a $100K Aussie Superbike was lappping close to the slowest GP bikes ](*,)
  14. The 125's are only a few seconds off the Motogp bikes. It's the nature of the circuit and what it rewards.
  15. But doesn't a 125cc still costs around $1mill a year -just to lease :shock:

    Would be great to see the best riders racing "production" bikes, with a real link to the bike you can buy/test ride :cool:
  16. No. That's the 250 RS Aprilia's.
  17. What would be great about that? If you can't ride the bike to it's potential, like every commuter or track day rider can't, then there's no relevance in having a direct link at all.

    Just accept that racing bikes are and always have been built for one purpose. If you want to experience it, take up the sport.
  18. All this guff about big fields and close racing "back then" is just that. Look at any of the videos of the day and you'll find that, while there MAY have been 33 bikes on the grid instead of the present 16 or 17, only a half a dozen of them were in any ways competitive and the riders on the "works" bikes would clear off into the distance and often lap the "privateers", just like it would happen today if private riders could actually get onto the grid.
  19. Hell, just watch forgotten era racing. Real bikes built buy real people, in real race with decent costs involved, stuff your average joe can afford.

    - boingk
  20. bring back the real gpbikes............500 2 strokes