The AMA Rule book says that Pro Thunder Machinery must meet the requirements in "equipment standards general- and equipment standards all road race motorcycles" In the above mentioned section, it says that tires with a minimum .060" tread depth at the center of the tire are required.
Strangely enough, this also applies to Superbike, and Formula Extreme, GP etc. The only class with its own seperate guideline where you must run "groove molded" and DOT stamped tires is supersport.
Since Slicks are the norm in dry conditions for Superbike etc. All I can assume is that .060" of rubber in the middle is technically acceptable.
One could run DOT's in Pro Thunder, and If you can win on them, even better. It also depends on the relationship with the sponsors. We pay for slicks, but we get our DOT's for free.
Metzeler's suck! Their standard street tire put on Katana's, SV's, and Triumph RS's are constantly getting complaints. The biggest one is heat up time. They have great life but you can't get the damn things warm enough to stick. At the shop I worked at we actually had one of the mechanics go down because of this. (No he wasn't showing off. He is not that type of rider. He owns a BMW R100RS with the entire hard luggage set all the time, if that tells you how conservative he is.) I have had rear sliding problems out of these tires and don't recommend them to anyone.
I don't care how somebody else does on a track. I just hate the ME Z3 and the ME Z1 regular street tires. They enforce a line trough corners what I hate, front tires have too less grip, especially in cold conditions. They arent to well in the wet and absolutely sh i t (like very unstable) when you go over lines and stripes on the road. They wear too fast in the middle.
The only good thing is corner grip and spin up / drift predictability. Expensive.
Tire I like: D207 (but not grippy enough), but the rest is ok. Bike FZS600, sizes: 110/70 zr17 160/60zr17.
Well all I can say is check your air pressure on those Z3's if yours are not working, cuz they are doing super well on my 98 S3 Buell.
I spent a few years racing 600 Superbike, I live in Seatlle, ride year round, and these tires are very very good. Just came back from a 400 mile ride around the Olympic Peninsula and the whole time I was so Damn glad I had gotten rid of my Dunlops.
I used to race on Metzler ME1's and their slicks and they worked well, but has anyone tried the new Pirelli Super Corsa's ? They look extremely nice and it looks like they have a street compound also (according to catalog listings) they have hardly any sidewall treads which will be nice in terms of no tread squirm but won't fair well in standing water. The Bridgestones on my 1000 Gixer aren't bad but I liked the Pilots on my 929 better. Are the Metzlers offering the Rennesports in a street conmpound ? If not I 'm gonna try those Dragon Super Corsa's. And to anyone with a new 1000 Gixer, change your oil at 300 miles ! Mine was filthy ! Better safe than sorry.
I'll disregard your lack of knowledge this time. no thanks necessary. The rennsports are probably the biggest advancement in race/street tires in a long while. Whereas the Michelin PILOTs take a lap to a lap and a half to heat up, the rennsports heat up within one to two corners. BTW, the PIRELLI super corsa's are the exact same carcass badged under the metzeler name. Pirelli Owns Metzeler. The difference is just in the tread design.
Also, The "slick" sidewall is superior to the dunlop 207/208's in that is resists cupping. Water dispersion is not an issue in my opinion. What street rider would be using that much lean angle anyway in the rain.
Another Thing about these as compared to the street tires. (i.e) BT 010, D207ZR, etc. They last much longer than race tires of recent past. These tires when cold rarely slide out on me (unless coerced). I've had tire spin in 3rd gear @ partial lean angle on my Bridgestone BT-56SS, but only once in 1st gear on my metzelers.
These tires rock and will be my choice for a long time.
Metzeler's were just as bad as my 204's on my thunderace, it just kept sliding around. The 207s were better, but my pilot's have got to be the best one's yet. After 70,000kms in 3 years the metzeler wore out the fastest, i didn't even make through our short 6 month season (about 12000kms) all the other one's lasted about 16000kms...just my 3.3 cents (canadian, that should be about 2 cents US,)
Everything is slippery on big paint stripes in the road, especially when wet. When the road is cold and wet, NOTHING warms up, so all tires stay cold. The Metzlers do slide around, but what doesn't? They are still completely predictable. You know where you are sliding to on Metzlers. That is the difference between having sphincter tightening fun and having a medical bill. I ride all winter in Seattle, so wet handling makes a big difference to me.
In traffic, the Metzlers are stable at all angles, so when some cager does something odd, you can react predictably. They make the bike handle "heavier" because you don't fall into a corner so much as more eliptical profile tires, but they are balanced at any point along the radius, making them managable and predictable in just about any situation.
That is my humble, less than completely squidly, daily riding opinion.
I know that every tire is slippery on the paint stripes and I can live with that, but the difference with the D207 is that on the ME's the bike gets very unstable because of the height difference*. It tends to get out of balance and wants to get into tankslapping.
* the stripes around here are a couple of mm high
Good point about the handling, that's exactly what I mean. I like to fall into a corner so that's why I don't like the ME's.
About the warm-up time and road temperature... I compared them in the same conditions. But I feel that the ME's just don't have as much grip as other tires when cold.
I am told that the BT-010 and Pilot Sport are very good in every aspect, so I'll try one of those in the future.
www.motorcyclenews.com will have a test with a great number of sport street tires soon. Its on UK roads, so maybe a good item for MO to test them in the US too?
"There are 35 sets of tyres involved and they will be run on six very different bikes to give a great range of feedback: Honda CBR600 Sport, Yamaha Fazer 1000, Suzuki GSX-R1000, Ducati 996, Yamaha FJR1300 and Buell X1 Lightning"
Don't know when its available, but they are testing now.