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MOTOREX Magazine 2019 114 EN

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POWERSPORTS © KTM Racing, Markus Berger Racing manager Mike Leitner in his element. KTM MOTOGP 9 MONTHS OF TENSION Over a nine-month period, the world’s best MotoGP riders face one another in 19 races worldwide. The team with the most successful strategy takes home the world championship title at the end of November. Much of the work that leads to victory takes place in the pit, where human and engineering factors meet. Dive into the thrilling atmosphere of the pit with MOTOREX. 10

The air rings with prayers, curses, laughter and tears – peeking behind the curtain of the MotoGP scene, into the pit, one sees just how tightly wound the team has become in pursuit of victory. But the entire team’s success can never be allowed to depend on the emotions of one individual. THE CIRCUIT OF THE MIND “When the atmosphere in the team is good, that usually helps.” Mike Leitner, MotoGP team leader for KTM, knows this from experience. “But there are also riders who absolutely need the competition with teammates,” he adds after pausing for breath. Before the race, one rider is hyperactive, talks too much and fidgets while another grows suspiciously quiet. There is no magic formula for the time before the race. Many riders go over the circuit in their minds, knowing exactly where to shift and brake and how much a precious one-hundredth of a second will cost. Lap for lap they grope their way towards their personal best using various training methods both mental and physical. Total fitness in mind and body is crucial. ABSOLUTE TRUST In a pit manned by as many as 25 people in close quarters, everyone needs to know exactly what to do. Every reach of the hand has to hit its target – even the slightest uncertainty can turn up the heat in an already Bradley Smith getting the most out of his KTM RC16 in the Qualifying. MOTOREX MAGAZINE 114 I JANUARY 2019 11

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