After a set of four races in Asia and America, the MotoGP arrives in Europe for the 17th edition of the Portuguese GP and the third to be held at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve International Circuit. According to the Brembo technicians who work closely with all the MotoGP World Championship riders, the Algarve international Circuit is a moderately demanding one for brakes.
On a scale of one to six, it has been awarded a difficulty rating of three. The constant ups and downs make it difficult for riders to calibrate their braking, with the risk of going too long on the downhill sections or braking too early on the uphill sections. As such, it is crucial to ensure that the bike is equipped with a good master cylinder and to adjust this according to individual requirements.
No Friction or Locking with the Brembo Radial Master Cylinder for MotoGP
All 24 MotoGP riders use the Brembo radial master cylinder. Both the strength of the fingers on the brake lever and the strength of the lever itself move in the same direction, i.e. radially, with regard to the point where the cylinder is fastened to the handlebar without generating friction or locking. This ensures that no energy is wasted.
Brembo filed the first radial master cylinder patent way back in 1985. It was produced to meet the needs of racing and especially the need for smaller dimensions. It was fitted on Eddie Lawson’s Yamaha YZR OW the year after, the very year he won the World Championship in the 500cc class.
All the Hardest Braking Sections at the Start
In 10 of the 15 corners of the Lusitanian track, MotoGP riders use their brakes for a total time of 32 seconds within the lap, which is equal to 33% of the duration of the race. For the Superbike, the braking sections are the same, but the duration is different, with less than 31 seconds per lap, equivalent to 31% of the total race time.
The three hardest braking sections on the track are all within the first five turns, although at Corner 13, the loss of speed, distance and braking time are greater than at Turn 3; meanwhile, the deceleration and the pressure of the Brembo brake fluid are lower. From the starting line to the checkered flag, each driver exerts a total load of just over 800 kilograms (0.88 tons) on the brake lever.
Brake fluid at 14.1 Bar
Out of the 10 braking sections on the Algarve International Circuit, only one is ranked as demanding for the brakes; another of these is rated as being of average difficulty, and the remaining eight are not particularly challenging.
The hardest braking section for MotoGP bikes is the first after the finish line, due to a 969-meter straight: The prototypes must go from 336 km/h to 120 km/h in 4.7 seconds, during which they cover a total of 259 meters. To do this, the riders apply a load of 4.7 kilograms (12.3 pounds) on the brake lever and are subjected to deceleration of 1.8 gravity units, while the brake fluid pressure soars to 14.1 bar.