Rev limit best way to cut cost and performance of MotoGP prototypes

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A rev limit is the most effective way of reducing costs and cutting the gulf in performance between the factory prototypes and new 1000cc production-based CRT machines in MotoGP.

That’s the view of former Technical Director Mike Webb, who is now MotoGP’s Race Director in 2012.

A rev ceiling of around 14,500 to 15,000rpm is currently under discussion to bring the high-revving prototypes closer to the rpm used on most existing production engines tuned for racing like the BMW S1000RR motor being used by Colin Edwards this season.

And Webb told MCN: “This is a personal opinion but I think a rev limit is inevitable and it's the single easiest cost saver and performance limiter.

"At the moment we're relying on fuel capacity as a performance limit. But the factories are getting very, very good at running lean engines, so we've got extremely fast motorcycles.

"The factories will still make the best and fastest motorcycles but it helps the privateers to get somewhere a little bit closer and levels the playing field. I think we need a rev limit.”

Yamaha boss Lin Jarvis denied specific discussions about a rev limit were part of the on going cost-cutting plans.

He told MCN: “If you want to reduce costs then one way could be simply to reduce the rpm but that will impact on each manufacturer in a different way depending on the technology they use.

"We need to wait a while to see whether that will be introduced or not and what the level will be.”

Honda boss Shuhei Nakamoto though played down the performance impact a rev limit would have and when asked by MCN he said: “If we had to drop our rev limit down to 14000, the maximum loss in the lap time would be 0.1s. It makes no difference.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt