MotoGP: The Art of Braking a 220mph-plus Grand Prix Bike


This weekend the Grand Prix de France at Le Mans features at least three corners that will strain the acute judgement of a MotoGP rider’s most prized asset in his arsenal of capabilities: braking.

Halting a 220mph-plus motorcycle either to register a lap-time to touch the 1 min 32 second circuit record or to make a overtaking move – in a year where parity in MotoGP is at a new high – is predictably difficult.

At Le Mans almost 30 seconds of the lap is spent on the brakes: one of the highest ratios of the 19-round series. At Turn 9, into the Chemin aux Boefs chicane, racers scrub off nearly 120mph of speed in less than five seconds, clocking 1.5 G in the process.

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