Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Riding Noriyuki Haga’s Yamaha YZF-R1…


Nitro Nori's 220bhp YamExpress. Awesome...


Finishing in second spot overall in 2007 and 2008, the Yamaha R1 has done reasonably well in World Superbikes. Motociclismo recently had the opportunity to ride Noriyuki ‘Nitro’ Haga’s YZF-R1 racebike, and here are some excerpts from what they have to say about the machine:

The ultra-aggressive Haga, on his Yamaha, reminds us of the Kamikaze pilots on their Zero fighters. But you actually don’t need to get aggressive with Haga’s R1 – the bike is very manageable and manoeuvrable. In addition to the excellent chassis, perhaps some of that is down to the R1’s MotoGP-spec Öhlins fork and electronically controlled rear shock.

On this bike, the suspension is connected to an on-board computer that works in conjunction with the bike’s telemetry system, constantly adjusting the suspension as needed. But the system is not perfect, and if the rider is too heavy or too light (compared to Haga), the electronics can’t compensate for that. Which is probably why we found some constant wiggling from the fork under braking…

The engine in Haga’s racebike is, of course, very different from a stock R1, with major changes to the camshafts, gaskets, cylinder heads and… almost everything else. There is a lot of power at even low to medium revs, while the top-end power delivery is simply endless. And then there is Yamaha’s traction control system, which is just fantastic. Just like the bike’s Brembo brakes, it’s hard to come to terms with just how well it really works at the limit…

With next year’s MotoGP-inspired R1, we suppose Yamaha would be taking things up to the next level. We can only imagine how good that bike would be to ride.

For the full test report, visit Motociclismo here

Noriyuki Haga’s Yamaha YZF-R1: Tech specs

Engine: 998cc, 16-valve, DOHC, liquid-cooled inline-four
Power: In excess of 210bhp
Ignition: Magneti Marelli
Gearbox: Six-speed
Chassis: Aluminium twin-spar
Suspension: 43mm USD Öhlins fork, Öhlins monoshock, both ends electronically adjustable
Brakes: Twin 320mm discs at front, with four-piston Brembo monobloc radial-mount callipers (front), single 203mm disc with twin-piston callipers (rear)
Wheels and tyres: 16.5 inches, 120/65 (front), 190/65 (rear)
Weight: 162kg

Also see:
Big Bang: The 2009 Yamaha R1...
Remapped: The 2009 Yamaha YZF-R6...
Custom cool: Mad specials from Icon...
Higgins-Aubé show the Energya trike...
Pics, specs and video: The 2009 Kawasaki ZX-6R...
Suzuki heat up the GSX-R1000 for 2009...!
2009 Buell 1125CR riding impression...
The hot, new BMW K1300R gets rolling...
Marisa Miller does the Harley-Davidson V-Rod Muscle...

Elsewhere today:
Two wheels are good, eight wheels are better...?
A Honda DN-01 trike...?!

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