Cormac Shoots The Qatar 2 Test: A Closer Look At Tech Development

WP carbon fiber forks are the order of the day. Note the rotary steering damper attached to the left triple clamp beside the fork leg

Lorenzo Savadori is still mostly test rider. Note the huge front aero wing, and the front wheel cover aimed at reducing drag from turbulence from the front wheel

Aero was a major focus in Qatar. Fabio Quartararo tested a new front mudguard aimed at reducing drag

For comparison, the old, minimalist front mudguard just shields the front of the forks

Jack Miller spent most of his time on the 2021 aero, identifiable by the lower ducts, aimed at reducing drag. Also visible, just in front of the spoiler: the small piston activating the holeshot/shapeshifter device

Contrast the location of Suzuki's variable exhaust valve. Only visible when the fairling lowers are off, and much further forward compared to the Ducati, for example.

The shapeshifter and holeshot devices are forcing a redesign of the under seat tanks. Space has to be made for the rear wheel when the suspension is dropped

Secrecy prevails at tests. Sheets stuffed into empty spaces to prevent prying long lenses

Sylvain Guintoli's Suzuki GSX-RR is where the development happens. The fact that it is indistinguishable from the 2020 bikes tells you there isn't much room for improvement

From anniversary livery to test bike, with bits in between. Cal Crutchlow on one of the Yamaha test bikes. The fact that the tank cover and seat upper is in the special anniversary livery tells you those parts, at least, have not been changed

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Nice pic of Jack Miller with ALL the aero!

Somebody at KTM uses a thumb rear brake. Is that Dani Pedrosa's bike, looks like a 2 on the top triple clamp, or Lecuona 27?

Can't be Lecuona if it is the Red Bull livery eh?

At risk of sounding dumb, did Aprilia have a salad box last year? My brain says no, but I may have forced it out do to repulsion (yuck!)


I have racing on the brain. Hard to wait this final week...see you all soon in our virtual Qatar grandstands! Anyone want to bet against Miller having holeshat that first corner entry? Think Marc will turn a wheel FP (I do)? Think he'll race (I don't)? 

In my heart, I await Round 3. It gets "real" there. And, here comes The Marc...

Ta Shrink, right you are. "Ankles" Pedrosa I guess. Still getting my head around who is who & what the motorcycles look like.

One more week.

Last year the rear bodywork on the prila was beautiful, tapered & sharp. Angular but not boxy. Too sleek to call it a salad box.

I'm obsessed with racing, got some good national superbike racing last weekend, that will keep me going until fp1 on Friday.

Hope Jack Miller does get off to a great start in MotoGp 2021. No bets just yet.

Marc will have a go. As soon as he can, fp4 maybe? When there is rubber down & not too much sand. Don't expect Marc to race in Qatar 1 Barwa GP. If Marc Marquez believes he can do it he will have a big go! More likely Qatar 2 Tissot Gp.

The season starts at Jerez, meaning Portimão Portugal. It's going to be awesome!