Secret MotoGP Testing Reveals Hidden Insights, or Possible Chemical Imbalance | Last Page

The Blunder from Down Under

By Jeff Karr, Photography by Bill Berroth

Phillip Island, Feb. 27—
MotoGP is perhaps the ultimate pinnacle of human competition and ingenuity, as wing-footed, leather-swaddled gods race for victory on a cruel and remorseless paved stage. A select few become legends; the rest are reduced to shattered, empty souls. To win is everything; but finding an advantage to make it so? Well nigh impossible. (Sorry to get all Middle English up in your grille, but it’s so rare to have an opportunity to play the Norman card these days).

With strict rules limiting testing time, MotoGP teams are forced to find creative ways to accumulate valuable data that can be leveraged into a slim racetrack advantage. That’s why most teams have extensive covert development programs that operate in remote locations, far away from the many racetracks worldwide monitored around the clock by elite, jack-booted Dorna security squads.

Submitted for your approval, this photo snapped at an un-disclosed Southern Hemisphere location by a sharp-witted Last Page undercover operative. Though details are scarce, the only reasonable conclusion that can be reached is that one team went to the trouble to precisely replicate its top competitors’ bikes to fine-tune their machine’s aerodynamics package. Dimensionally accurate fairings seem to have been placed on identically calibrated lightweight streetbikes, no doubt to find the tiniest aero advantage during hours of precisely measured drafting sessions.

Either that, or some guys in Australia have way too much time on their hands.

By Jeff Karr
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