Thanks to Jeff at Viets Perfomance for the tires for this test:
REAR: YCX Bridgestone slick (white band) 190/645 x 17
Cold pressure 24psi on a calibrated gauge
Set at 28psi after 30 minutes at 180F on warmers
Hot pressure after 4 laps set at 30psi
FRONT: V profile YCX Bridgestone slick (white band) 120/600 x 17
Cold pressure 26psi on a calibrated gauge
Set at 30psi after 30 minutes at 180F on warmers
Hot pressure after 4 laps set at 32psi
It was essential to test the Nitron Shock with fresh tires so we could assess the shock under optimal conditions. That included setting the hot pressure correctly after 4 laps. We did not set sag, change settings or do anything else to the shock other than to ensure it was set at 295mm.
The shock was purpose built to my bike, my weight and for a race application. With high quality products built this way, it is a safe bet that the shock is very close to perfect as all the engineering brain power, testing data and product information are combined with this product offering.
I gave the shock 4 laps to warm up and then pressed on with reducing lap times in steady increments to develop a feel for the shock in general and to see how the characteristics changed as more heat went into the shock and more stress was placed on it from greater acceleration.
Initially the shock was a little harsh, but that is to be expected with race hardware and cold oil. Only when you reach the designed performance threshold will the shock start to come in. The most immediate and noticeable part was how high speed bumps started to mellow and later disappear. That speaks volumes to the engineering and attention to detail via data to build high and low speed compression valving that really works.
Once at decent lap times for Thunderhill, I put the Nitron shock under some severe wide open duress from the R1′s engine. Ensuring that turn in and apex points were accurate and entry speed was optimal, I could accurately assess how the shock might collapse under these conditions and potentially fade wide out of corners. It didn’t. I did the same test at full throttle in fast off camber corners (7 and 13). On rails.
Next was to test rebound action. No wallowing in 5a nor at the down hill exit of 9. Under braking the shock didn’t suddenly “pop” to push the front by immediately fully extending.
Try as I might the shock kept delivering no matter what I did. I saw no need to change any of the settings at all. It has been a long time since I tested a race shock and this was exceptional. Nitron REALLY have their race product figured out……… I took on board video with audio of the test, so that will be arriving soon for you to watch.
Need proof? Here’s the rear tire after more than 140 miles of hard and often abusive riding:
On Track Video:
Long term test video: