Travis Newbold, the American rider who will race the BOTT XR1R in Pikes Peak next 25th of June, came to Spain last week to test the bike.
As we saw in previous chapter, we already had a first test during one afternoon with Sergio Fuertes as a rider. We tested the BOTT XR1R in the “Lucas Guerrero” go kart track, and surprisingly (taking into account that it was the first test of a completely new bike) we didn’t have any problem.
Travis landed Tuesday morning in Valencia and in the afternoon we went with the XR1R again to the “Lucas Guerrero” track. Sergio Fuertes came also. Travis had a positive first contact with the bike and he confirmed the first feedback that Sergio gave us: the bike is agile and turns well in tight corners. The engine has lots of torque and pushes very hard. Something to improve was that the bike had a tendency to wheelie in the 2 small straights of the track.
In this second test the first problems also appeared, something logical with a new bike that had been tested only for a few hours. We discovered that the battery was not charging properly, and when we came back to our workshop we saw that one of the oil radiator mounting points was broken due to the vibrations (and it is mounted with silentblocks).
During the next two days we didn’t have any test booked, so we stayed in the workshop, solving those problems and working on the bike.
As we said in previous chapters, we had many delays with this project, and we need more days to finish the bike properly. This means that we will be working on it until the last day before the race. Luckyly Travis works as motorbike mechanic in his day to day work. He runs “Newbold’s Motorbike Shop” in Denver. His help was also really good to improve the bike.
Next stop was Motorland in Aragon. On Friday we rode in the kart track, and on Saturday in the big MotoGP track with the idea of testing the bike also in fast corners.
Unfortunately, in Aragon we started experiencing a problem that didn’t appear in previous days.
The bike throttle bodies are clamped to the magnesium intake parts with some rubber parts and metallic brackets. The right throttle body (which feeds the rear cylinder) started to pop off from the intake. This problem started on Friday and it drove us crazy on Saturday. While we were on the track we tried to solve it in different ways, but anyone worked properly. We spent more time in the box than on the track, and Travis did very few really useful laps.
The only positive news were that on those laps Travis said that the bike was behaving good also on fast corners.
That night Travis flew back to Colorado. Next day we analized the problem. It was much easier to do it with the parts over the table insead than on a very hot bike in the track. We saw that it was necessary to modify the intakes to improve the clamping. We did it and without starting the bike we already saw that the clamping improved a lot. Now it was almost impossible to pop off the throttle body from the intake part. Next day we went again to our base track to test the bike again, this time with Sergio as test rider. The test was really good, without any noteworthy incident.
Although, well.. we almost had a noteworthy incident.
That day rained in the morning, the track was dirty and it didn’t have too much grip. This track is quite small for the XR1R and it was difficult to make the tyres work in their correct temperature range.
We outlined this test also as a fuel compsumption test. The idea was to see how many laps we could ride with the fueltanks full, just to check that the bike can ride the race distance (20 km) without problems. Sergio was riding lap after lap, and just when we were over the race distance, he lost the rear wheel opening throttle exiting from a corner. We were in the wall, watching him, and everything happened just in front of us. For me, it was one of those moments when you see everything in slow motion: the bike going sideways, Sergio’s legs in the air, the bike exiting the asphalt and going into the grass, Sergio’s “macho” parts hitting the airbox.. luckyly the track is flat and there were no other riders. The bike went again into the asphalt in other area of the track and Sergio finally controlled it. We were really close to have a serious crash..
With the rider with some pain and scared face, we considered the test finished. 🙂
Right now both the bike and the Spanish part of the team are flying to Colorado. From now on we will continue working on Travis workshop. we will have the first tests in Pikes Peak very soon.
I just want to say thank you to Bea and Gori from Racing 100, for their hospitality and kindness in the Motorland test.
Also to Mario Rodrigo Martin and Albert Bleda for the photos of this post.
And of course, as always, we want to thank our sponsors: Kriega, Rotobox, CeraCarbon, Technical Composites, Continental Moto España, Global Racing Oil, Totimport, Derestricted, Husmee Studio Graphique, Sideburn Magazine, Motorbike Magazine, Newbold’s Motorbike Shop, Intelligent Design Solutions (IDS), Team BRS / BRS Suspension Works, Work & Wear.
We will keep informing from Denver!