In a race of speed and adrenaline, the physical challenge placed on riders is often taken to the next level on individual tracks. Challenging turns and corners give some tracks a name for being notoriously brutal on the rider’s physical and mental capabilities. Let’s take a closer look at some of these famous tracks.
Twin Ring Motegi
This Japan-based ring is considered to be the hardest braking circuit in the world. Brembo, an Italian manufacturer of brakes in the bike industry, invested some time in researching the amount of force that bikers experience when riders are breaking under normal MotoGP circumstances. The average power that they are experiencing varies between 1.1 – 1.2G, and when effects go to about 1.4G, it is considered as an ordinary high maximum deceleration. On Motegi, racers experience these most stringent racing circumstances with excessive and constant pressure on their breaks, even to such a degree that their breaks sometimes get hot red.
This German track is home to Turn 11 or also known as the Waterfall. The corner is not only blind and situated on a downhill section, but also crazy fast and off-camber. It is often tackled at speeds of up to 300kph. A real challenge to the strength of both man and their machines. An added twist to the troubles delivered by this turn is the fact that it is right-handed which follows right after several left-handed turns.
Circuit of the Americas
Based in the United States this track present riders with a massive elevation. The Laguna Seca is no longer in use by MotoGP, but it used to send drivers up to the Corkscrew which went along with an elevation from a mere 18 metres to 137 metres over the length of the track. This is totalling the height of an entire 11-storey building.
Losail International Circuit
Mugello circuit in Italy used to have the title as the one delivering the fastest speeds in MotoGP when Andrea Iannone reached speeds up to almost 350 kilometres per hour in 2014 on a Ducati. This all changed recently when the Losail International Circuit in Qatar was home to the record speed of 350.5 kilometres per hour. Marc Marquez set the record speed in 2015.
Sepang International Circuit
Last but still worthy of note is this track based in Malaysia. Home to the highest G force ever recorded on a track. Given it was during an accident when Lori Baz had a crash in Sepang during a 2016 pre-season test run. Because when F-16 fighter pilots are up in the air, there are some brief periods during which they experience forces of as much as 9G’s. When Lori Baz’s shoulder hit the deck on this day in 2016, his shoulder did it with an impact of 29.9G. Making Sepang top of the list of highest forces reached. All of these tracks demand courage and nerve to be able to achieve the extraordinary from mere humans and their machines.