Enhancing the Performance of High Powered Motorcycles by a Proper Definition of Geometry and Mass Distribution 2002-01-3345
The constantly growing engine power of modern racing motorcycles makes it possible to increase their performance, i.e. to reduce the lap time. The aim of this work is to investigate the relationships between the motorcycle characteristics and its performance by means of the optimal manoeuvre method. This is a powerful technique that essentially, simulates a perfect driver and calculates the minimum lap time for a given motorcycle in a given circuit. Several simulations were carried out on a test circuit, which includes a part of the real Mugello racetrack. Results show that as the engine power increases the lap time decreases and it tends to a limit value. Moreover, for a given engine power, one can find a particular position of the center of mass that leads to the best performance; performances can be improved by adjusting the wheelbase too. Furthermore, best performance can be only reached if the rider chooses the right trajectory for any different vehicle. A physical interpretation of results is given.