Between MotoGP’s high-stakes drama and Moto3’s frantic action, Moto2 ranks as the middle child of the Grand Prix paddock. Before the world’s best up-and-coming riders get a shot at riding MotoGP’s million-dollar monsters, they must prove themselves on Triumph triple-powered machines.
Starting in 2019, every bike on the Moto2 grid has harnessed Triumph’s latest 765cc inline-triple popularized by the current-gen Street Triple. The race and production mills only share an outward appearance, though, with Hinckley modifying the cylinder head, valves, alternator, ECU, sump, gearing, and slipper clutch to meet the rigors of the raceway.
Whereas differing manufacturers present MotoGP riders with specific strengths and weaknesses, the one-make Moto2 series levels the playing field by limiting mechanical advantages. However, overtaking a fellow competitor can prove challenging when riding the same-spec machine.
To help enliven the competition, Triumph will bolster the triple’s top end, providing riders with more flexibility and performance. A higher rpm comes by way of a new cylinder head, increased valve lift, a revised camshaft profile, updated valve springs, and a higher compression ratio. Fortified pistons, conrods, and crankshaft should help the trusty triple maintain its excellent reliability record as the revs rise.
“Since the start of the Triumph era in Moto2, we’ve been very satisfied with the performance, and reliability, of the Triumph 765cc triple and the lap records speak for themselves,” reported Dorna Sports managing director Carlos Ezpeleta. “It’s important that Moto2 is a spectacle in its own right and that it provides a relevant platform to develop the next generation of MotoGP riders and this new announcement of more engine power goes even further in achieving both of those objectives.”
In the past three-and-a-half seasons, the 765 engine has set 68 lap records and the first 300+ kph (186 mph) top speed in Moto2 history. Twenty different Moto2 riders have taken the top step of the podium during that period as well. With Triumph set to roll out the updated inline-triple for the 2023 season and recently extending its Moto2 contract through 2024, it looks like we’ll see even more battles between the best up-and-coming riders for years to come.