Yamaha has kept me waiting for a long time, but I’m pleased to report that finally, the R1 comes with an Antilock Braking System, which links the front and rear brakes like the Honda system, although it is linked electronically rather than physically (a mechanical setup would be too heavy, but with electronics, it’s easy).
With the Yamaha Unified Braking System (let’s call it UBS, oh wait that’s a Swiss bank, scrap that…….) operating the front lever also operates the rear brake; operate both front and rear brakes together and the system will distribute the forces most effectively.
Where the linked brakes choose to apply the braking force is down to the IMU (black box), and the information it has gathered regarding lean angle, and forward pitch. Such a system has been comprehensively tested in the field and must recalibrate frequently to take into account different suspension settings, riding styles, but also to deal with the huge variation in performance with tyres, brake pads, and road surface. I’m sure the engineers had fun working it all out. Give them a black box of tricks and they’ll put it to good use. The only time the linked brakes don’t work is if the rear brake alone is applied.