Video: MotoE From An Outsider's Perspective - Cosmic Shambles Investigates Electric Motorcycle Racing

How has the MotoE series been received in the MotoGP paddock? And how is it viewed by outsiders? At Silverstone, the Cosmic Shambles network - a network of podcasts and events for the intellectually curious - paid a visit to the Silverstone MotoGP round, to talk to paddock insiders and the people behind the MotoE series.

Dr Helen Czerski, a scientist and, among many other things, presenter of the Fully Charged Show on Youtube, a channel about electric vehicles, talked to MotoE series Nicolas Goubert, Tech3 boss Hervé Poncharal, MotoGP presenter and pitlane reporter Amy Dargan, MotoGP pitlane reporter and former GP winner Simon Crafar, Grand Prix veteran journalist Mat Oxley, Two Wheels For Life's Andrea Coleman, and myself, David Emmett, about the purpose of the MotoE series, the future, and how MotoGP's electric motorcycle racing series fits in with the future of racing, and electric motorcycles in general.

The result is a fascinating view of MotoE, seen from an outsider's perspective. Dr Czerski asks the kind of questions we as paddock insiders forget to ask, about the essence of motorcycling, and why MotoE is a spec series, unlike Formula E. Unfortunately, in my interview, I understated the number of motorcycles Honda produce - it's 19.5 million, rather than 4 million (they sell 4 million PTWs in Indonesia alone). Well worth 30 minutes of your time.

If you enjoyed this show, I can highly recommend the other productions of the Cosmic Shambles network. The live shows with Robin Ince and Professor Brian Cox, the Book Shambles podcast (which also featured Mat Oxley, after the publication of his book Speed),  and the Science Shambles podcast are all fascinating, entertaining, and informative in equal measure.

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That was a great video. There is no doubt that the racing in Moto-E is legit. However, the sound of a race bike with a transmission is very important in that it connects the observer to the bike. When I hear them shift, in a sense, it makes me feel like it is me on the bike. Hearing one rider wind it out and another short shift gives you reason to wonder why. Or to hear an engine reach its rev limiter. I cannot fathom racing without these sounds. Adding artificial noise would be an insult. I understand electric motors and the sound they produce. I understand chain or belt drives and the sound they produce. I am fine with all that. But nothing will ever compare to the sounds we have now. What a joy it is, at least for me, that Triumph is supplying three cylinder engines for Moto 2. I listened to all the youtube videos of their engines on dyno's before the season. As much as I enjoyed them it paled in comparison to what they sound like live. I was fortunate enough to go to Austin this year and that sound in itself made the trip worthwhile. Sound can be a very emotional thing. As you walk through the parking lot towards the track and you hear engines running in the paddock, it just does something to you. You pick up your pace for fear of missing something. I'll be at Austin again next year. It cannot come soon enough.

I noticed you mentioned rolling down the hill with the engine off.  Just be aware, when you turn the engine off the gearbox stops getting oil pumped to it, so depending on how long you roll, you could be increasing gearbox wear.

Thanks so much for posting this, it was brilliant and excellent contributors too. Isn't Herve a really nice smart guy?