6 things to know about the Superbikes braking systems


 Here are the six most important things to know, according to Brembo, about the braking systems that will be used in the 2016 Superbike World Championship.

After the long winter break, the World Superbike motorcycles are being started up.  This championship is expected to be one of the most challenging ever with seven manufacturers present. 
Here are the six most important things to know, according to Brembo, about the braking systems that will be used in the 2016 Superbike World Championship.


1) Superbike riders choose Brembo

After the blowout in 2015 when Brembo brakes equipped the winning bikes in all 26 seasonal races, a good part of the teams have decided to renew their trust in the world leader of braking systems. Of the 24 riders representing 14 teams registered in the World Championship, a good 18 (11 teams) will use Brembo brakes. This means that almost 80% of the riders have chosen Brembo for the 2016 season.


2) Only steel brake discs, according to regulations

Just like the MotoGP, World Superbikes use monobloc race calipers that are billet machined from a single block of aluminium. The biggest difference compared to the prototype has to do with the discs: the Superbike uses steel (MotoGP carbon) and boasts smaller measurements in terms of both the thickness and the diameter, which oscillates between 328 and 336 mm according to the circuit (depending on how demanding it is on the brakes) and the requirements of the teams and riders.

The choice of the master cylinder is also left to the riders, who can choose among different combinations of inter-axle differentials and pistons for the front master cylinder, each combination characterised by a specific feeling  that ranges from more modular to more immediate and reactive. Some use just a thumb brake master cylinder, others combine it with the pedal.


3) Superbike brake pads also available for the most widespread supersportive bikes

It is very rare to find on the market a racing component like those used by the World Superbikes, that is also available for the most widespread supersportive bikes.

The exception that proves the rule is the Brembo Z04 brake pad used in the Superbike and SuperSport races, but also available for sale for enthusiasts who enjoy driving their motorcycles on the track.

Characterised by high friction and continuous performance, especially with elevated disc temperatures, the Brembo Z04 brake pads guarantee excellent, uniform braking for the entire length of the competition, making the Fading effect less probable. Watch out however for less efficiency at low temperatures, which make them not recommended for street use.

To ensure availability of the Z04 brake pads (as well as all the other Brembo products) for your motorcycle, consult the Brembo Motorcycle Brakes Configurator.



4) Saturday's race will influence the brakes

Moving the race that was scheduled for Saturday to Sunday at 10:30 a.m. allows the teams to calmly make modifications to the motorcycle set-up and as a result, opt to make different choices in terms of the braking system. Additionally, the riders can test these changes during the 15-minute warm-up on Sunday morning: last year the modifications made at the end of the first race could not be tested because there was no warm-up between the two races.


5) Not all circuits are the same for brakes

No rider is able to express himself in the same way on all of the tracks; similarly, the braking systems are pushed harder on some tracks than on others. Drawing on almost 30 years of experience in World Superbike, Brembo asked its engineers to calculate expectations regarding the effort that the different tracks require. This is not a simple assessment due to the quantity of parameters that have to be considered: speeds reached, type of curves and the distance between them, grip on the asphalt, and the average temperatures expected. The circuit that by far could be the most stressful (the conditional form is necessary because it is not possible to forecast the weather during the races nor the track rubberising) is the Chang International Circuit (Thailand). The only other one equally as demanding is Monza (Italy), but its participation in the 2016 Championship is uncertain. On the contrary, the least demanding is Phillip Island (Australia). On a scale of 1-10, the forecasted severity of each track on the braking system is:

Difficulty 10: Chang and Monza
Difficulty 9: Sepang and Donington
Difficulty 8: Aragon, Imola and Magny-Cours
Difficulty 7: Misano, Laguna Seca, Jerez and Losail
Difficulty 6: Assen and Lausitzring
Difficulty 5: Phillip Island


6) The wheels also contribute to the perfect stop

Besides building braking systems, Brembo also produces light alloy wheels under the Marchesini  brand, for both track and street use.

The forged magnesium Marchesini rims used in Superbike guarantee unparalleled lightness that translates into explosive acceleration and a reduction in brake time and space.


That is why six manufacturers, seven teams and thirteen riders participating in the 2016 Championship have chosen Marchesini wheels.