MotoGP Dashboard 'Flags' Debut at Sepang

MotoGP dashboard 'flags' debut at Sepang
Day two of the Sepang MotoGP test saw some riders test the new dashboard warning system for 2014.

The system will directly alert riders to warnings that could previously only be communicated to them via trackside flags, lights and pitboards.

“It's all up and running and we're just doing the final tests here,” confirmed MotoGP Race Director Mike Webb, speaking in Race Control at Sepang on Wednesday.

“For the first year we are able to display a red flag, black flag, black and orange flag (mechanical problem) and two penalty messages on the dash.

“One of those penalty messages is a ride through, such as for a jump start, and the other is to change position, for example if they have passed under a yellow flag we can send them a signal to go back a place.

“The reason there are only five, apart from keeping it simple, is that those are the only five signals that I control absolutely in Race Control. All the rest - yellow flags, blue flags, rain flags - are decisions that a marshal can make individually at their marshal post.

“Until we are one hundred percent sure about the system I'm not going to put that power into the marshals' hands, to put display lights on dashboards. So it's step-by-step. First are the things I control completely in Race Control and the next step will be to add more signals.

“This system is completely separate to the new control ECU unit in MotoGP and will be used in all three grand prix classes.

“The reason it is now possible is a change in the transponder technology. Our supplier has a new version that is able to do two-way communication as well as individual signals: So red flags would obviously be sent to everyone at the same time, but a black flag would be for an individual rider.

“We can also turn it on or off for each individual bike depending on where they are on the track. So we have the technology to get to the point where we can show rain flags in different sections and yellow flags, but as I say we're taking it step-by-step and doing the simple stuff first.”

At present each manufacturer is being allowed to decide on how the dashboard messages will be displayed, with a one-size-fits-all solution likely for next season.

“Already we've had some riders say, 'yeah that's great and I know exactly what it is', while some others have said they would like it to be a bit brighter or whatever. Because it is the first year it was really hard to come up with an exact set of technical specs, because every bike dashboard is different.

“It's a bit like when we first had the rear safety light for rain. Now everyone has settled on a set light size. So we're still fine tuning, and each manufacturer has got their own idea of how best to go about it. We've let them do that within certain boundaries because I'm not convinced we know what the ideal system is yet.

“Hopefully by the end of this year we will find the best dashboard solution and after that everyone will have the same.”

MotoGP Dashboard 'Flags' Debut at Sepang Rating: 4.5 Diposkan Oleh: Admin