TRIUMPH MOTO2 BIKE RIDDEN
PB’s ride on Triumph’s Moto2 engine mule proves the British firm’s long-awaited Daytona 765 is the rightful heir to the middleweight sportsbike throne
An afternoon on the 765 engine mule reveals much about the Daytona 765 road bike.
TRIUMPH’S CHIEF ENGINEER, STUART Wood freely admits their involvement in Moto2 from next season, was opportunistic, and incredibly fortunate from a timing point of view. Just as the 675cc triple engine was being consigned to the history books thanks to ever-stricter emissions regs, three separate and unrelated events took place.
The Daytona 675 would no longer be a viable option for race teams in the FIM Supersport class, the Dorna contract to be engine supplier for the Moto2 class came up for tender, and Triumph had just committed at board level to replacing the outgoing 675cc motor with a cleaner 765cc three-cylinder platform on which to keep a presence in the lucrative middleweight naked road bike sector. Problem: No possibility of getting the FIM rules changed for triples in supersport racing, thus no longer any presence on race tracks. Solution: Do a deal with Dorna to supply Moto2 with the new 765cc motor. Action required: Add a fourth state of tune to the development program of the newly proposed 765cc motor, on top of the three already proposed for the Street Triple range. Bingo. Thus the development of the Moto2 engine took place alongside the Street Triple S, R, and RS motors at the same time, with power figures set by Dorna. Stuart picks the story up. “In many ways the Moto2 engine was the easiest to develop because we were able to achieve Dorna’s power figure without any bother at all,” he said. “We even went back to them and said we could comfortably produce more power with the same reliability, but they weren’t interested.” From Dorna’s point of view there is a logic to this. Moto2 bikes’ lap times must never get even into the same postcode as those of MotoGP bikes. Politically, even if the last man on the MotoGP grid’s lap times are being nipped at by the likes of Bagnaia, Marquez and Olivera, it’s a bit of a PR disaster for MotoGP.
Stuarts claim that the power figure was easily achieved is credible, when you consider that almost
single component inside the engine is taken straight from the Street Triple. The valves are titanium in the Moto2 engine. The only other differences are the valve springs are stiffer, first and second gears are taller, the alternator is a low output item for reduced inertia, the engine covers are slightly different to reduce the physical width, and the sump is slightly deeper. The crankshaft, con rods, pistons, gearbox, oil and water pump are identical to the Street Triple’s. The cylinder head is the same, but with modified inlet and exhaust ports for better gasflow. Triumph supply Dorna with the engine, an airbox, a slipper clutch from FCC, and the throttle bodies and throttle grip from a Street Triple. The only other spec item is the Magneti Marelli ECU which Marelli supply separately to Dorna, who in turn supply the teams with the complete package, all sealed. The rules permit teams to use their own exhaust and intakes.
As with the Honda CBR600RR engines used previously as Moto2’s control motor, a separate company takes care of the maintenance in line with Triumph’s guidelines, but once Dorna takes delivery of all the hardware, that’s where Triumph’s involvement ends. It’s perfect in many ways for both parties. Triumph get all the corporate benefit of being associated with a grid full of sweet sounding three-cylinder engines with TV audiences that Supersport can only dream of. Meanwhile, Dorna get a unique soundtrack to their MotoGP feeder class, as opposed to the soulless, universal sound of the inline four engine Moto2 currently has. If there was ever a good example of being in the right place at the right time, this is it. Triumph get to go racing, despite not actually having a sportsbike in their range, let alone one that’s within the FIM rules, Dorna get an engine supplier, and the fans get the soundtrack.
Triumph’s test bike features uprated K-Tech suspension front and rear
Adjustable steering damper keeps everything in line on track