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A look at the Ricardo Tormo circuit

A look at the Ricardo Tormo circuit

A look at the Ricardo Tormo circuit

The Ricardo Tormo circuit features a seemingly never ending burst of tight corners, connected by short straights. The long penultimate looping left-hander and the fast entry to turn one contrast violently with the otherwise geometric flip-flop chicanes and slow speed corners of the infield.

More suitable for the smaller classes, Valencia is an awesome challenge in its own way for any MotoGP rider; an intense exercise in concentration and preparation, as the track can easily catch out the unwary, especially in the frequently wet conditions of a winter's afternoon in early November.

The continual stop-start nature of Valencia means that suspension setting must offer the correct balance between beneficial weight transfer, which aids alternately front and rear grip, and firm enough settings for spring rates and compression damping, to prevent the machine oscillating as the power is turned on and off.

With short but highly loaded periods of front end grip required throughout a lap, and with a lot of corner entries with the brakes still applied, the balance between agility and stability has to fall on the side of greater manoeuvrability.

Nonetheless the bike has to be planted enough not to lose corner speed through the quick penultimate corner, which runs over the brow of a hill, or induce tail hopping under hard braking from 300km/h.

Instantaneous and yet linear throttle response is a highly desired commodity at Valencia, its point and squirt nature demanding a combination of controlled throttle openings on the many low speed corner exits, with a clean and crisp power off nature required on entry.

The relatively low gearing of Valencia exacerbates the potential for highsides even further, as most of the lap is spent in second gear, with an entire three-corner complex taken in first gear. Nonetheless, most crashes come from a loss of front grip on the high number of downhill corner entries.


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