Misano MotoGP Test 12pm Times: Espargaro Fastest As Yamaha Tests A New Exhaust

In an already condensed schedule, MotoGP is cramming a test in between the two rounds at Misano, to allow the teams and factories to make up for the loss of testing time this season. All of the riders bar Stefan Bradl and Franco Morbidelli are taking to the track, Morbidelli sitting out today's test with a stomach bug.

Pol Espargaro stands atop the timesheets at noon, the KTM rider just shy of the 1'31 bracket. The Red Bull KTM Factory rider leads the two Yamahas who were fastest throughout practice last weekend, Maverick Viñales leading Fabio Quartararo. Viñales expressed concern after the race, saying that the Yamaha is always fast on a track with a lot of grip, as is usually the case at post-race tests where the track is covered in Michelin rubber.

Pramac Ducati's Pecco Bagnaia is fourth quickest, ahead of Suzuki's Joan Mir and the LCR Honda of Takaaki Nakagami.

One of the novelties spotted at the test is on the Yamaha M1. Valentino Rossi has been out with a very long exhaust, a huge difference to the slash cut item which exits just beyond the fairing which the bike normally sports. Sky Italia have posted a photo of the exhaust on their Twitter feed:

Times at noon:

Pos No Rider Bike Time Diff Prev
1 44 Pol Espargaro KTM RC16 1:32.054    
2 12 Maverick Viñales Yamaha M1 1:32.319 0.265 0.265
3 20 Fabio Quartararo Yamaha M1 1:32.353 0.299 0.034
4 63 Francesco Bagnaia Ducati GP20 1:32.393 0.339 0.040
5 36 Joan Mir Suzuki GSX-RR 1:32.411 0.357 0.018
6 30 Takaaki Nakagami Honda RC213V 1:32.514 0.460 0.103
7 88 Miguel Oliveira KTM RC16 1:32.529 0.475 0.015
8 4 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati GP20 1:32.582 0.528 0.053
9 43 Jack Miller Ducati GP20 1:32.626 0.572 0.044
10 9 Danilo Petrucci Ducati GP20 1:32.821 0.767 0.195
11 42 Alex Rins Suzuki GSX-RR 1:32.847 0.793 0.026
12 33 Brad Binder KTM RC16 1:32.857 0.803 0.010
13 73 Alex Márquez Honda RC213V 1:32.892 0.838 0.035
14 5 Johann Zarco Ducati GP19 1:32.944 0.890 0.052
15 46 Valentino Rossi Yamaha M1 1:32.977 0.923 0.033
16 53 Tito Rabat Ducati GP19 1:33.460 1.406 0.483
17 38 Bradley Smith Aprilia RS-GP 1:33.489 1.435 0.029
18 41 Aleix Espargaro Aprilia RS-GP 1:33.510 1.456 0.021
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I have no clue how the changing of exhaust lenth and shape impacts power and power delivery. This new design seems like quite the departure from the slash design. Can anyone provide some context as to how or what impact this could have and what problem it could be trying to solve? Strickly from an aesthetic persepective i'll just say it looks intoresting :-p.

'Engine Masters' via MotorTrend just had an episode where they dyno'd header collector extensions (vs. a lack thereof) in which having an extension of (I think it was) at least 15-20" proved beneficial for output along most of the power curve -- something to do with better power pulse management?  Though the results 'trend' did vary when they switched to headers with a larger primary diameter.  Any guesses on how long a standard MotoGP Yamaha pipe is downstream of the Y-collectors?  Maybe a similar principle is at play here?

Longer pipe length creates more torque. The engines cannot breath as freely - there is a bit more resistance in pushing out the exhaust gases. It's an attempt by Yamaha engineers to redistribute power lower in the rpm range in order to accommodate the rumored decrease in revs required to make the engines last the season. It's a sign hinting at possible trouble on the horizon for Yamaha. But, it's all conjecture at the moment.

But on another podcast (yes I know, I didn't think there could be any others...) the excellent Neil Spalding said a few weeks ago to expect Yamaha to start bringing different exhaust/header combinations after the engine debacle in an attempt to tune and/or save revs on some of the borderline motors. He is also absolutely convinced Yamaha will break out motor #6 and start from pit lane sometime this year, though he felt their best chance of sacrificing a race has gone (Red Bull Ring).