MotoGP Glossary: T to Y

9 minutes

In this last edition of the MotoGP Glossary, we will go over some words that refer to mechanical elements of the bike, to the tyres, and to other terminology related to racing. Don’t miss the opportunity to enrich your biker vocabulary and to keep learning more things about your favourite sport!

Marc Márquez junto a su moto con el dashboard celebrando el Mundial
MotoGP Glossary: T to Y


It’s the instrument that shows you the engine’s revolutions per minute. They can be found in the majority of vehicles in digital or analogue versions and tend to have a range of red colours that indicate the engine’s limit.


It is the tank for liquids, whether it’s fuel, coolant, etc.

Telescopic forks

Refers to the forks

Test, Testing

It’s when the riders train by doing a lap to test and evaluate some mechanical change, a part, or an update to the bike.


It refers either to the controller itself or to the system (accelerator handle, body of the accelerator).


It’s the measurement of time that each bike undergoes in every session.

Técnico de cronometraje apuntando tiempos en la sala de cronometraje
Técnico de cronometraje apuntando tiempos en la sala de cronometraje

Top speed

It’s the maximum speed reached, whether it’s in total or for a specific rider.


It’s the power exerted in It’s a fundamental part of an engine’s functioning, since based on this and the RPM, the engine’s power can be determined. relation to a distance. Measured in Newton metres “Nm” or Kg/m.

Traction control

It’s the electronic system that prevents sliding in of the rear wheel. In the MotoGP bikes, it can be adjusted to three different levels.


Mainly refers to physical training, more than riding training.


It’s the term commonly used to refer to the gearbox. In reality, the transmission is the whole set of parts that transmit the movement from the crankshaft to the wheels. Depending on the type of vehicle, it can be made up of the: clutch, gearbox, transmission shaft, bearings, chain, differential, and more.

Transmission ratio

It’s the relationship between the number of rotations that enter in the gearbox (engine’s RPM) and those that occur in the wheels. Gearboxes can have many different relations.

Two stroke

They are the two cycles of a combustion engine. Intake/expansion and compression/exhaust. They have a great power relation for their displacement, but they are now used less and less, both due to the advances performed on four-stroke engines and because of their high levels of contamination.


It’s the rubber component placed on the rim.

Tyre pressure

It’s the inflation pressure of the tyre which, according to its level, may alter the performance thereof. Additionally, given that the pressure can also be altered by changes in temperature, in many competitions, tyres are inflated with dry air or with nitrogen, which are much less susceptible to these alterations.

Tyre tread

These are the grooves in a tyre, of varying depth, which help to provide better grip in adverse weather conditions. MotoGP dry tyres do not have any tread pattern.

Marc Márquez con un neumático de lluvia en la RC213V
Marc Márquez con un neumático de lluvia en la RC213V

Tyre Wall

It’s the pile of tyres that we find on the edge of the circuits and that are able to absorb the power of impacts, thus serving as a protective border in the event of a fall or an accident.


They are the elements that prevent or allow passage from one space to another. They can be found in the engine as well as other mechanical elements, such as the exhaust pipe, in the tyre system, or the cooling system.

Valve adjustment

The adjustment or setting of the valves is done to avoid an excessive gap between the upper part of the rod of the valve and the tappet that pressures them. If the gap is too big, a signature popping noise begins to sound and causes undesired wear and loss of engine performance. There are engines in which it is not necessary to set this, since they have automatic hydraulic adjustments.

Valve guide

It’s the sleeves where valve rods go. They ensure that the valve always moves toward the same side and help keep it cool. They also avoid filtering lubricant from the cylinder head to the combustion chamber.

Valve opening/lift

It’s the distance that a valve is able to travel during its opening phase.

Valve overlap

It’s the moment in which both the intake and exhaust valves are open at the same time. Its calculation is complex since it only happens during a few degrees of an engine’s turn and, when performed well, can help improve the filling of the cylinders.

Valve seat

It’s the point in the cylinder head where the valves sit and it must create an airtight closure. The accumulation of cinder in these valve seats can cause performance losses, which is why it is important to use quality fuel.

Valve timing

It refers to the defined order and time that the camshafts synchronise with the crankshaft so that the valves can open and close properly. Poor settings can cause great performance loss and even destroy the engine.

sección de motor con válvulas neumáticas
sección de motor con válvulas neumáticas

Virtual pit board

It’s the electronic system located in the bike’s instrument panel through which both the team and Race Direction transmits information to the rider.

Warm Up

They are the training sessions before the Sunday races. They are taken advantage of to check the bike’s adjustments and carry out last minute changes.

Warm Up lap

It’s the lap or laps that riders take before the race. Its purpose is to warm up the tyres, brakes, and check that everything works correctly. It can also be called a training lap.


It’s the loss of rubber in the tyres due to friction with the asphalt. According to the rider’s riding style and the state of the asphalt, the wear can occur to a greater or lesser extent, which will affect the bike’s grip.

Weight transfer

It’s the phenomenon that takes place when you accelerate, decelerate, or turn causing the weight of the vehicle to be displaced to the front (braking), back (accelerating), or to the opposite side of the turn (when turning).


Refers to the combination of the rim and the tyre.


Manoeuvre to lift the front wheel when accelerating suddenly. It can be done at the exit of a turn or during a rider’s celebration. One of the electronic maps can help mitigate this effect.

Marc haciendo un caballito al salir de una curva
Marc haciendo un caballito al salir de una curva


It’s the sliding or slipping of the wheel. It can be seen, above all, when accelerating suddenly, and occurs when the tyre loses grip with the asphalt due to excess power and spins too much, causing it to slide on the asphalt. The traction control map partly prevents this phenomenon.

Wheel balance

It’s the inclusion of weights in certain points of the rim when building the tyre to prevent vibrations. This is due to the fact that neither the rims nor the tyres are manufactured as perfectly symmetrical.

White flag

In the event of rain, it’s the flag that advises the riders that they can enter the pit lane to switch bikes.

White Flag with diagonal red cross

It’s the flag that advises the riders of the presence of rain drops in the part of the track where the flag is displayed.

Wild card

It’s the term used to identify riders that participate as invitees in one of many races in the championship.


It’s the upper part of the bodywork under which the instrument panel is located and which provides aerodynamic protection for the rider, in addition to better air access for the bike.

RC213V carenado
RC213V carenado

Yellow and Red Striped Flag

It’s the flag that indicates if there’s a grip problem on the track which is not caused by rain.

Yellow Flag

It’s the flag that indicates a danger in the area of the lap in which it is located and prohibits overtaking other riders.

Box repsol Honda con las motos de Marc Márquez


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