Moto Unplugged


Nakano: "Reduce electronics"

Electronics, of course, are a huge part of modern racing no matter how many wheels the vehicle has. Traction control magic, it is claimed by many, is taking rider skill out of the equation.

In Formula One car racing, the organizers have decided to strictly control the amount of "driver aids" in the cars, and there’s a growing grumble from some top riders to do the same with motorcycles.

Valentino Rossi has been noisily in favour of cutting back electronics for some time, although to some extent you can consider his complaints just whining because he hasn’t had the best package. He calls Casey Stoner "the first of the traction control" generation, but since Stoner quite handily spanked his bottom last season you have to take that with a large grain of salt.

Shinya Nakano, however, recently spoke out in much the same vein. The Japanese racer, who came to Moto GP stardom with Kawasaki and is currently with the Gresini Honda team, has been around long enough to have ridden 500 cc two-strokes, the 990 cc four-strokes, and now the 800 cc Moto GP four-strokes. He said, "Electronics help a lot now. I know the 500, 990 and 800 and now these bikes are a lot easier to ride. They are not easy, but you have more electronic control to help. You can see in the box (pits) now, there are so many electronics engineers."

He added, "Maybe it would be interesting to reduce like in Formula One. It is trying to find the balance, but I think less rider aids would be better. I agree with Valentino, we need some help but maybe we can reduce it a little bit."


  1. It seems that you are suggesting that Rossi hasn’t ridden 500cc two-strokes, or the 990cc and 800cc four strokes. Didn’t Rossi win a championship or two on the 500’s and 990’s, not to mention 125’s and 250’s ?

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