KTM Press Release: Testing Continues at Brno

In a timely coincidence, after announcing that Pol Espargaro has signed to ride for them for 2017 and 2018, KTM today issued a press release containing updates on their latest test at the Brno circuit, with Mika Kallio and Karel Abraham. The press release appears below:

Next MotoGP Test at Brno – Team pushing hard to progress

MotoGP Test 2016 – Brno (CZE)

Following four weeks of development work, the KTM MotoGP Factory Racing Team returned to Brno on Wednesday and Thursday to complete the fifth test on this year’s program. As in the previous test in Misano, test rider Mika Kallio (FIN) and Karel Abraham (CZE) as the second rider, clocked up more than 300 laps on the KTM RC16 in unexpectedly good conditions and without any problems.

The team used the pause between this and the previous test to be ready for the second test at Brno in the best possible way with new parts and new ideas. In contrast to the anticipated forecast, there was very good weather and track conditions similar to that in Misano at the beginning of May. This allowed the team to advance on the development work of the MotoGP bike.

Mike Leitner (Vice President Onroad): “This time we also had luck with the weather and the team was able to try many things that we had prepared in the factory since the last test. Both riders were very satisfied with the technicians’ work and both noticed a clear advancement. We now have to confirm these improvements in the next test, where Randy de Punet will again be back with us and will be able to provide additional feedback.”

Sebastian Risse (Technical Director Onroad): “In Misano we had really good test conditions for the first time and we collected an unbelievable amount of information that took us in a broad direction. The preparation time between the tests was not long but we were able to react and also work on specific things here in Brno. That is, on the one hand we were able to make tangible progress concerning the rigidity of the swing arm and the frame. On the other, there was further development in the area of electronics, which needs normal track conditions and tires.”

Mika Kallio (Test Rider MotoGP): “For me this test in Brno was a bit better than in Misano. The bike is beginning to behave more and more as I would like it to do and is easier to ride. Firstly because the electronics are engaging better and secondly because we made changes to the front fork and the bike is easier for me to steer. But currently I see the greatest potential in the chassis, where we have again tested a lot and we now have a better understanding how the individual changes impact on each other. There is still a long way to go and usually nothing happens overnight, but we are moving forward with each round of tests.”

Karel Abraham (Test Rider MotoGP): “Two days ago rain was forecast for the test, but we were able to use 100% of the track time and we even rode through the noon break. In addition I achieved my personal goal concerning lap times. We tried very many things and I hope I was able to again deliver a lot of info to the team so that we make another good step forward when I return for my next test. For me the test stint was very tiring but I’m very happy with the performance and thankful that the team achieved so much between the tests and here onsite.”

The KTM MotoGP Factory Racing Team now travel direct to Spain where tests will continue next week with Mika Kallio and Randy De Puniet and there will be further development on the KTM RC16.

Round Number: 

Back to top


"The bike is beginning to behave more and more as I would like it to do..., ...the bike is easier for me to steer."

I certainly hope someone points out to this guy he's the test rider, the bike is not being developed for him to race.  He wouldn't be the test rider if he was good enough to be a team race rider.  We have seen in the past where a bike is developed around one rider to the extent that a new rider can't ride it the same and it has to be redeveloped for the new rider setting back their program a year or more.  I don't know if Smith and Espargaro ride anything like Kallio but they better hope they do if KTM continues to let their engineers develop the bike around this guy.

What on earth else are they to do?  Kallio is not as quick as some but obviously a very fast and experienced rider, which is why they've hired him.  At this stage they're just trying to make it behave like a proper racing motorcycle, using feedback from a very fast rider.  It will then be up the the contracted riders to push it harder, expose the next level of flaws and work through them.  Development.

Would this story make more sense if it went: "the bike is getting worse and worse, it didn't turn very well before but now I can hardly make it around the track.  But the contracted riders might feel differently so I feel we have made a lot of progress"?

what tires are they using? isn't it impossible to get motogp spec tires if they don't compete yet? KTM technically not a motogp team yet