A beginner’s guide to what some of the lingo used in Grand Prix racing means
With MotoGP™ now being a very tech-ridden sport, some words and phrases might seem alien to some newer viewers. That’s why we thought it would be a good idea to collect some often-used slang into three articles, and explain what each term means. Enjoy!
The apex is the point at which you are closest to the inside of the corner. Once you have hit the apex you should be able to reduce the steering lock, start increasing the throttle and focus on exiting the corner as fast as possible.
MotoGP™ manufacturers are allowed new aerodynamic packages for each year, plus one upgrade at any point throughout the season. These upgrades are solely for each rider and not for teams or factories as a whole. There are four aero bodies: front fairing (including the wings), rear-wheel (includes spoon and wheel covers), front mudguard & front forks, and seat unit.
All riders must now wear race suits that have airbags fitted. When riders crash or have a big moment, the airbag goes off around the collarbone and shoulder area to help protect them from injury.
BACKING IT IN:
You’ll see this most when a rider uses the back brake on their motorcycle whilst entering a corner, sliding the rear tyre in doing so.
BEHIND THE BUBBLE:
Sometimes people will describe a rider being behind the bubble when they’re simply tucked in. You’ll see this every time the rider is on a straight.
BITING THE SCREEN:
A rider is said to be biting the screen when they’re visibly trying extremely hard and appear to be pushing to the absolute limit.
The brake disc is the rotating part of a wheel’s disc brake assembly, against which the brake pads are applied.
An instruction from team to rider via either pitboard or dashboard message telling the rider to enter pitlane and the garage at the next possible chance.
Riders can often crash as a result of this. Cold tyres mean less grip and performance, so it’s very important for riders to not have cold tyres when pushing for a lap time.
From Mapping 8 to Back to Box: Dashboard messages in MotoGP™
If the track is dry, it will be declared a dry race. For Moto2™ and Moto3™, this means the race will be red flagged if it starts to rain. In MotoGP™, riders will continue if it rains and a flag-to-flag (see below) commences.
Every MotoGP™ bike uses the same Electronic Control Unit – this is the brain of the bike. Teams are allowed to change various settings through this like traction control, wheelie control, engine braking and more.
How are tyres selected for each MotoGP™ race?
The fairing on a bike is the outer body shell, usually made of carbon fibre. It’s easily visible as it’s the section of the bike that contains the team’s colours and different sponsors' logos.
This is used to describe a race that starts dry and becomes wet – or vice versa. It will see riders come into pitlane and swap to their second bike that has different tyres and settings better suited to the track conditions.
This is what connects the front wheel to the frame of the bike, and it contains the front suspension.
Keep your eyes peeled for Part 2!