by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 152
We’ve all heard stories of trucks being sent down impassable roads by sat-nav instructions, or of people ending at the wrong destination because they’d keyed something in wrong. You don’t expect it to affect grand prix racing. Estoril proved that it does – and posed new questions about the reliance of modern MotoGP bikes on electronic aids. To many they have ruined the riding, though even the strongest opponents among the racers (Stoner being one) admit that the bikes would be all but impossible and certainly very dangerous without at least basic rider aids. Nicky Hayden’s race threw a new light on the issue. Like the other bikes, the Ducati uses extensive electronics in an extremely sophisticated way – not only real-time but also real-place. The parameters of horsepower and traction control are adjusted to suit individual corner and surfaces. Trouble was, at Estoril Nicky’s bike thought it was somewhere else. “The bike didn’t know where it was on the track,” he explained. “I was getting lap times on the back straightaway instead of over the line, and when I was in Turn 1, the bike thought I was in Turn 5. “On some straightaways I had no power because it thought I was in the chicane. It was quite dangerous, especially at the last corner. I was opening the throttle and the weight would change then all of a sudden I would lose power and almost lose the front. “The main problem was engine braking which I was using a lot on the downhill corners. Then where I needed engine braking I didn’t have it” The cause, according to Rossi’s crew chief Jerry Burgess, was some magnetic or electronic trigger on the track. “We had a bit of similar trouble in practice,” he admitted. To some it was a powerful argument for banning electronics. To others an important lesson: the systems must be improved to avoid it happening again. At least then Hayden’s woes will have a positive outcome. SAT-NAV AND MOTOGP MAKE UNEASY BEDFELLOWS 31 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: MOTOGP >>> ESTORIL