NIt’s no secret that MotoGP has always been a few steps behind Formula 1 when it comes to money, marketing and aerodynamics. The competition of two wheelsHowever, it nailed this last aspect with a revolutionary reform of the rules at the end of 2018 that forever changed the landscape of the grid, allowing the use of wings on motorcycles. from traditional Japanese rule formed by the Honda-Yamaha duo, entered the ‘Italian era’ in the competition, with Ducati and Aprilia as the teams that best interpreted a regulation where aerodynamics are as important as the engines.
Many purists, not in vain, accuse MotoGP of having become a substitute for Formula 1 with these changes. The fact is that the entry of aerodynamics into the competition brought about a series of alliances between some MotoGP manufacturers and others from Formula 1, which we will analyze below.
Currently, the main data meters in two-wheel competition are CDF hardware and wind tunnels. The data collected by both systems is collected and applied to improve motorcycles. Few brands have both options, with the wind tunnel being the differentiating element.
1) Red Bull-KTM
Two Austrian teams, with the same sponsor and the same base of operations in Milton Keynes. It was obvious that the current hegemonic Formula 1 team had to help its ‘younger brothers’ in MotoGP and began to do so from this season onwards, lending them the wind tunnel to improve their riding.
The results are obvious: they are the best MotoGP team behind the three that belong to Ducati and a medium-term alternative to displace them. KTM has always been a ‘stinking’ team, but the change in management at Red Bull with the death of its founder gave them a budgetary boost that is felt.
The color red, factories 50 kilometers away and the pride of being the economic engine of the Emilia-Rome region unite these two incredible Italian teams. Although the Prancing Horse has had greater success in the sport throughout his life, it is no less true that both have always helped each other, even going so far as to do pre-season training together at Madonna di Campiglio.
They currently share technology in the wind tunnel and CFD hardware, with these exchanges being much more profitable for a Ducati team that won the world championship last year and will do so this season. Ferrari needs to absorb the spirit of its neighbors to win again a World Cup that has eluded them since 2007.
Some Italians and some Japanese working together? We may have forgotten something, but as the saying goes “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” seems to have applied. Toyota failed in its Formula 1 journey, but left a legacy that has been enjoyed by many in the automotive world in the form of the most modern wind tunnel in the world.
He built it in Cologne and has since been used by his competition department, dominating the World Endurance Championship or the Dakar at will. There were also loans to “friendly” companies, such as Aprilia, who has it at his disposal whenever he wants to improve his mount. The goal? He will relegate his arch-rival Honda to hell, as he has managed to do in recent years in MotoGP.
Inspired by the success that the collaboration between Red Bull and KTM has had, especially with the transfer of personnel from Formula 1 to MotoGP, Honda wants to do the same, strengthening the now battered HRC team. It must be remembered that this team is the most successful in the history of the Motorcycle World Championship, but went into crisis after winning its last title in 2019.
With Honda practically withdrawn from Formula 1 – it only supplies engines to Red Bull – the Japanese brand’s main objective is to revive the MotoGP team and they will do so using personnel from the four-wheel competition. The experience can go very well – as happened with Red Bull – or very badly – as happened with McLaren. In 2024, we will have tangible answers.