2019 has seen the most significant change in the FIM Moto2TM World Championship since its inception a decade ago.
The switch to Triumph power has lowered lap times by over a second at most circuits, with the torque of the triple-cylinder engine boosting corner exit speeds. Another contributor to the searing pace has been the introduction of new Dunlop tyres, including a wider rear tyre, which have been used in action since May’s Spanish GP.
Wider, Faster, Longer
At the opening three races, Dunlop used the 2018 spec 195mm width rear tyre before switching to the 200mm spec at Jerez.
Simon Betney, Event Leader, stated: ‘On like for like compounds, we immediately saw a half-second a lap improvement at most circuits with the wider tyre. More importantly, we saw big gains in consistency and durability, despite the power and torque increase. At Brno, the total GP was 32 seconds faster than in 2018, with average lap times 1.8s faster. At Silverstone, compared to the last race there two years ago, we saw a 40 second faster race time’’
More significantly, the new Dunlop range has shown enduring performance, with riders setting fastest laps towards the end of the race. At the British GP, the new lap record was set on the penultimate lap.
Alex Marquez has taken five wins so far this year, more than any other rider, and praised Dunlop: ‘When I tried the wider rear at Aragon last year it was immediately better. It gave me more feeling on corner entry. The work Dunlop has also done on the front tyre has made the balance better and gives me more confidence. Dunlop has done a good job.’
More development to come
At many circuits, Dunlop has chosen harder compound tyres than in 2018 as they learn about the dynamics of the latest Moto2TM bikes. However, the recent test at Red Bull Ring gave a hint of Dunlop’s 2020 plans.
Stephen Bickley, Senior Race Engineer, explained: ‘We tested new constructions and compounds, and increased our focus on front tyre development too. The performance of the Moto2 rear is now at a very high level, and as we develop it further we want to ensure the 2020 front complements it to ensure the right balance and handling for riders. We have evolved our Carcass Tension Control System construction and Heat Control Technology compound with the aim of further increasing cornering speeds in 2020.’
Stephen also explained how the Moto2TM development can also help Dunlop’s general hypersport tyre development: ‘Moto2 bikes are advanced prototypes ridden by some of the best riders in the world. They stop, steer and handle at a level that’s higher than any production derived racer and it allows Dunlop to really test technologies at a very demanding level.’
The next Moto2TM Grand Prix is at (Misano 15th Sep) and the next time teams will have the opportunity to test Dunlop’s latest specifications will be post-season during winter testing.
Dunlop Forever Forward Ranking
The Dunlop Forever Forward league recognises the riders who, across the year, have gained the most positions between the start and finish of each race. Riders from the Moto2 and Moto3 categories are eligible.
Top Ten Ranking after British Grand Prix.
Dennis FOGGIA Moto3 83
Jakub KORNFEIL Moto3 69
Darryn BINDER Moto3 66
Enea BASTIANINI Moto2 66
Tetsuta NAGASHIMA Moto2 66
Joe ROBERTS Moto2 65
Dominique AEGERTER . Moto2 64
Philipp OETTL Moto2 61
Celestino VIETTI Moto3 60
Lukas TULOVIC Moto2 59
PR by Reeves Public Relations agency in Birmingham and Newcastle