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Bike Racing Simulation... With Your Real Bike?

This is a curious one, and frankly I don't know if I should be impressed or surprised or some other emotion in between... so I'll tell you all about it and leave you to decide.

An email popped into my inbox today about something I'd heard nothing of up to this point, and it took me a little while to fully understand what exactly I was looking at. Apparently, Moto Trainer have announced a motorbike simulator that allows you to use your own bike real world bike to "train" on each and every MotoGP circuit across the world…

Curious? Yeah, me too.


Now how do Moto Trainer intend to get your own real bike into a sim, and on to the virtual racetracks of the MotoGP World Championship? Well this is the curious bit, and the thing I'm honestly not sure if I think it a stroke of genius or just utter madness... they provide a stand that you bolt onto your real world bike, which then allows you to use your bike as a controller to pilot a virtual counterpart in the latest MotoGP racing game from Italian development team Milestone!

mockup.jpeg


Still a bit confused? Basically, the frame appears to act as a controller that you attach your bike into. Then, using software developed by the Moto Trainer studio, this will link into the latest MotoGP game and allow you to use your bike as a controller and ride the virtual bikes within the simulation. It isn't clear if the physics and specifics of your own personal bike will be replicated within the software, or if the bridge between real and virtual is just the physical use of your own bike, but it is certainly something a little different that's for sure...

Check out a kid using a £15,000 bike to play video games below:


From the official press release:

Dorna Sports is delighted to announce a partnership with Moto Trainer to launch a training revolution for riders across the globe. Bringing the thrill of Grand Prix racing to fans the world over, Moto Trainer is a motorbike simulator that allows riders to train on their own bikes.

Moto Trainer’s incredible software can virtually transport riders to the world’s greatest tracks, allowing riders to train on each and every MotoGP™ circuit across the globe. Suitable for sports bikes of all shapes and sizes, Moto Trainer can either be linked to the official MotoGP™ videogame, produced by long-standing MotoGP™ partner and videogame developer Milestone, or riders can follow an OnBoard lap of the track on which they wish to train.

Linking the simulator to MotoGP™ videogame allows riders to become part of the action like never before, with real-world movement perfectly synchronised to the digital rendering of their riding on-screen. On-board laps, meanwhile, provide the perfect blueprint for riders to follow – allowing even the most veteran riders to train in seamless synchronicity with their on-screen counterpart.

Andrea Lombardi, CEO of MotoTrainer: “The software behind Moto Trainer, developed by our engineers, is capable of playing any onboard video, and allows riders to save their efforts on a telemetry master track. This means that you can load any circuit and motorbike you want, with riders replicating the video to the reference telemetry. The software then analyses the rider's performance by monitoring the accelerator, front and rear brakes, gearbox and trajectories. It’s a platform that allows bikers to train on every circuit in the world at an affordable price.”

Pau Serrancanta, Managing Director at Dorna Sports: “I’m delighted to be able to announce this agreement, adding yet another way in which fans are able to connect with and enjoy their favourite sport. In addition, the fact that it can also be used alongside the MotoGP™ videogame proves another bolster to Dorna’s eSports project, which continues to go from strength to strength.”

An awesome innovation, or totally overkill?

What do you think?

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RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief, occasional YouTuber, commentator and broadcaster, with a passion for motorsport on both the real and virtual racetrack.

stenovitz

100RPM
Aug 22, 2014
144
195
48
Definitely like it!
Reminds me of the arcade halls in the 80ies. Remember a certain version with cinematic graphics and quite heavy bike so you really had to lean heavy with your body. Unfortunately, I don't remember console game name, must've been 32-33 years ago, but you could have real fun for just a coin.

This news brings it to another level of seriousness, though a tad more expensive it seems. But opportunity for having a time witth my TT Isle of Man game.
 
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RCHeliguy

3000RPM
Premium
Jan 19, 2019
3,575
2,076
I've ridden my bicycle on rollers inside. Does that count ?

Of course one day I was watching a movie where the car in the movie went up on two wheels shot from the POV of the driver and I leaned my bike..... It didn't end well.

Now I've got a Keiser M3i which is silent and much safer.
 
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mechsicko

100RPM
Jan 31, 2019
164
221
22
I've got a bike sim I'm working on.. it was being made for a hoverbike racing game in VR called VRacer Hoverbike. At first I just wanted something cooler to sit on than my ottoman so bought the seat and one thing led to another. Originally I was going to make it a high displacement leaning device like commonly seen but after playing around on one I stumbled across in an arcade I ruled it out high displacement and instead will use low displacement with high forces.. a push/pull loadcell.

High lean versions make it difficult to do quick reversals.. once your body mass goes past the balance point it's hard to get back upright without using your foot, even with a heavy spring assisting. In mine the lean will be limited to +/-15deg and coupled to the handlebars at 2:1 with simple bellcrank/pushrod linkage system so 7.5deg handlebar movement = 15deg of bike lean. Plus even when you are in a 70deg lean on a bike the centerfugal forces make it feel like you're sitting upright if your eyes were closed to high-displacement leaning inputs is kind of a gimmick like motion platforms that mimick attitude vs accelerations.

Here's an older pic showing it up on blocks.. parts are old FZR600 bits along with some new generic stuff cobbled together on a simple/light frame to hold it all in position. I've machined/made most of the critical parts before losing access to lathe/mill but the project sits unfinished but further along than this pic shows.



I picked up some parts to make a seq toeshifter. Foot brake will be a loadcell. Picked up clutch/brake levers too, anticipating the day MX Bikes is ready and now TrackdayR. I only play in VR so have ignored anything that doesn't offer it or plan to offer it.
 
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Cote Dazur

SIM Addict
May 21, 2013
2,116
2,376
As long as counter steering is not what moves/leans the bike, it is all for nothing. Which does not seem to what moves the bike in the video.
Too bad, I enjoy riding much more than driving.
Maybe one day, but time is ticking for me, I am retiring this year. :)
Could not vote, as it is neither cool or over the top, just useless. :(
 
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Neilski

3000RPM
Staff
Premium
Jan 7, 2017
3,660
1,683
Hmm, feeling very underwhelmed. The video with the kid is just... lame. His movements seem to bear little relation to the cornering; the steering seems to be completely locked; he doesn't even use the throttle...
The other video is too "cleverly" shot to give any clue of what the rig can and can't do. I choose to assume this is because it doesn't do anything realistic.
 

mechsicko

100RPM
Jan 31, 2019
164
221
22
I used to work for E2M Technologies, the company that supplied the motion platforms and hardware to Cruden who makes the most amazing sims with them. Here's one of E2M's 6dof (300mm stroke 1500kg payload... this was one of the 'small' ones lol) set up by Cruden as a high fidelity motorcycle simulator. I'm willing to bet it's the most advanced/realistic bike sim ever made... unless Cruden built a better one by now :p

 

Neilski

3000RPM
Staff
Premium
Jan 7, 2017
3,660
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Here's one of E2M's 6dof (300mm stroke 1500kg payload... this was one of the 'small' ones lol) set up by Cruden as a high fidelity motorcycle simulator.
Now that does look impressive! It might be slightly more expensive than the Moto Trainer though :D
 
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