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A lap of the Nelson Piquet circuit

A lap of the Nelson Piquet circuit

A lap of the Nelson Piquet circuit

Lying as it does on reclaimed land, close to the coast, Jacarepagua has a tendency to be bumpy, as the land underneath has subsided since the venue was originally built in 1978. After the ultra-high speed corners of Assen, the rear suspension can now be softened off somewhat, to allow the greater suspension travel needed to handle the stutter bumps and ripples which abound on the Rio tarmac.

Laid out both inside and outside an Indy-style banked oval, the Rio track is infrequently used, leaving it with a low coefficient of friction at the start of the weekend, which improves as each practice session goes by. This throws another factor into an already complex set-up equation, as higher speeds generally require increasingly stiff suspension.

Featuring a lot of longer corners, good machine stability and manoeuvrability are an ideal marriage at Jacarepagua, while the frequent corner exits mean that consistent rear wheel traction is also necessary, to make the most of the available horsepower.

As Rio is at sea level, horsepower output will be as high as anywhere else, but one possible interruption this year will be the weather. The round is taking place in the Brazilian winter months, making day-by-day track conditions an even more unpredictable factor than usual.

Take a lap onboard at the Rio circuit by clicking the link at the top of the page.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2004

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