Is that an effect of "heat cycles"? Or what is it. I've known slick tires lose their best grip since I was a kid and saw NASCAR pit crews and F1 ... But don't really know why.
I've seen so much conflicting info on heat cycles idk what to believe anymore. Lol
Heat cycles, at least as far as motorcycle racing tires are concerned, are a thing of the past.
Back in the day, natural rubber was kept flexible by the oils in it. After heating it up to operating temp the oils would rise to the surface and scrub away. Do that a couple of times and there were not enough oils left in the remaining rubber to keep it soft and flexible which is where the whole heat cycle thing comes from.
Today, tires are not made from natural rubber but rather chemical compounds which are much more soft and flexible, not to mention long lasting. For track use, the surface is gone LONG before a rider should even consider wondering if there might be reduced grip due to heat.
Think about it: On my street bike I have about 6k miles on my current set of Pireelli Angels (and still tons of tread left) which were mostly accumulated in short rides (<50 miles per trip I would guess). That is ~120 heat cycles and the tire still feels like new.