Yamaha

MotoGP : World Superbike rider Alex Lowes Takes The YZR-M1 For A Spin

alex lowes 2016

Photo Courtesy of Yamaha

Better than going to Disneyland… A month after winning the Suzuka 8 Hour, Alex Lowes gets to the dream ride on a MotoGP bike at the IRTA test in Brno.

If you’re a motorcycle racer, you dream of riding a MotoGP bike someday. For World Superbike rider Alex Lowes, that dream came true Monday, August 22, at the one-day IRTA test at Brno following the Czech Republic Grand Prix. Lowes got to put some laps on his Suzuka 8 Hour teammate Pol Espargaro’s steed – the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YZR-M1 – at the end of the day.

“Obviously this was one of the best days of my life!” Lowes said. “From when you’re a kid you dream about an opportunity to ride a MotoGP bike and it was fantastic. Obviously I didn’t do too many laps, but the feel of the bike was incredible. The power of the bike and the way that it turns was everything that I expected and even more than that, so it was an incredible experience.

“I have to say a massive thank you to Yamaha for giving me this opportunity, it’s a dream for me. Also a massive thank you to the Monster Yamaha Tech3 team for giving me the opportunity as well.”

alex lowes and pol espargaro 2016

Photo Courtesy of Yamaha

Lowes (left) was very appreciative to get the opportunity to ride his Suzuka 8 Hour teammate Pol Espargaro’s (right) YZR-M1.

Although it was around eight years since he last rode at Brno, it didn’t take long for the Brit to reacquaint himself with the Czech circuit. He was able to improve his time by over a second, setting the 12th fastest time of the day with just 15 laps. His session ended prematurely, however, with a front-end crash at the end of the session, for which Lowes was apologetic.

“The crash was on my last couple of laps, nearly at the end of the day and obviously the reason was because I tried to push a bit too much without understanding everything,” Lowes explained. “I broke a bit more and lifted the rear a bit, went a little wide and the track was a bit dirty and I lost he front. It was only a small crash but I’m feeling really sorry for that. Honestly, it was a fantastic experience and I really enjoyed it, even if I did only 15 laps, it were the best 15 laps I ever had.”

alex lowes 2016

Photo Courtesy of Yamaha

Lowes was also very apologetic for not keeping the borrowed bike on two wheels.

So what was it like compared to his Yamaha R1 Superbike?

“The brakes and the tires are quite a lot different from a World Superbike, but the biggest difference is the power,” he explained. “When I came from my first lap onto the straight I felt the engine’s full power and it was amazing, I couldn’t believe how fast it was, so I would say the biggest difference is the power.”

The handling of the MotoGP machine was also quite different, “The YZR-M1 is so nimble and agile, it’s a big step compared to what I have been used to. I have no experience of anything like this before and the way you go from one side to the other, it’s like you are on a cycle bike, it is really easy. So many things felt a lot better for me but were also difficult to understand in the time, but it’s been great.”