2013 Brno MotoGP Sunday Round Up: Three Great Races, And One Great Champion

There must be something in the Moravian water. Three races at Brno on Sunday, and all three genuine barnburners. What's more, the podiums had a good mixture of experience, age, and nationality. 'Only' five of the nine were Spanish, while in Moto2, there wasn't a single Spaniard on the podium. And at the end, the championships in all three classes got a little more interesting.

Race of the day? Impossible to say, but the 2013 Czech Grand Prix will surely be remembered for the MotoGP race. After a tense race with a blistering finish last year, the 2013 race was even better. A brilliant start by Jorge Lorenzo - perhaps the best of his career - saw him catapult into the lead at the start. He pushed to break the following group, consisting of Marc Marquez, Dani Pedrosa and Cal Crutchlow.

Crutchlow soon dropped off the back of the Repsol Hondas, got caught up in a battle with Alvaro Bautista, then crashed out when he upped the pace to attempt to catch Marquez and Pedrosa once again. A red helmet appeared on the timing screens behind Crutchlow's name in one sector of the track, and then it flashed 'Crash #35, rider OK'. 'I lost the front but I was pushing. I've got nothing to lose and I needed to catch the guys as the front and I just pushed a little bit too much,' Crutchlow said. After a superb pole on Saturday, his race was one to forget.

The real excitement came at the front however, as Marquez chased Lorenzo down. The Repsol Honda rookie had tried to keep Lorenzo in sight at the start, but had struggled with a full tank, and having to fend off a hungry Pedrosa. After a few laps Marquez picked up the pace. He closed Lorenzo down and started snapping at his heels, looking for a way past. It took him nearly seven laps, but eventually, Marquez found a way though, slipping his way masterfully up the inside of Lorenzo at Turn 3.

That was not part of Lorenzo's plan, and he was not about to take it lying down. Lorenzo hung tough, held the outside line and exploiting the better corner speed of the Yamaha, held station round the outside of Marquez. As they flicked back right again for Turn 4, Lorenzo firmly seized back the lead, in a display of clear and clean aggression. His resistance would last for half a lap, Marquez chomping at the bit for a second chance. That came on the way back up the hill, at the Turn 11/12 combination. Marquez dived up the inside of Lorenzo again at 11, and this time closed the door firmly into 12, so firmly that Dani Pedrosa almost got past.

Lorenzo had no thought of surrender. Now it was his turn to snipe at Marquez, while simultaneously holding off the unwelcome advances of Pedrosa from behind. Lorenzo harassed Marquez for a lap and a half, before once again using the corner speed of the Yamaha to sweep through 13 and then swoop underneath at 14, retaking the lead from the young upstart. His lead would not last long, as Marquez tried the same attack at Turn 3, this time holding a tighter line and sweeping back across the track and into Turn 4 more forcefully, leaving Lorenzo no alternative but to cede the position. Lorenzo's fight was over, losing out to Dani Pedrosa a lap later.

Though tension had been building for six or seven laps, the race exploded for just four laps, before Marquez finally seized control. Those laps were a demonstration of just how extraordinary the top three are at the moment. Marquez' first pass on Lorenzo was classic Turn 3 at Brno, hard and fast on the brakes. Lorenzo's defense of that pass, upping his corner speed to hang on to the position on the outside line, was one of the most tenacious and daring of recent years. Marquez' second pass at Turn 3 showed just how quickly Marquez learns, adjusting his line to prevent Lorenzo from using the same trick to defend. To catch the young Spaniard out, Lorenzo, Pedrosa, Rossi, whoever happens to get in his way, will have to invent new ways of attacking him, as each trick only works once.

Marquez' victory means he breaks Kenny Roberts' record of most wins in a rookie season, taking his total to five. He also becomes the first rider to win four races in a row since Valentino Rossi in 2008. He leads the championship by 26 points, and is one race clear of his teammate Dani Pedrosa. He has 44 points over reigning champion Jorge Lorenzo, who is seeing the title slip slowly from his grasp. Marquez has passed from the remarkable to the phenomenal, to whatever it is that comes beyond that. Journalists writing about Marquez ran out of superlatives to describe him some time ago, and he just keeps on getting better. He is redefining the sport.

What can Jorge Lorenzo do to stop him? Lorenzo's team manager Wilco Zeelenberg outlined their plan: try to put as much pressure on Marquez as they can, in the hope that he will make a mistake. So far, that plan has not had much success, Marquez appears to be immune to pressure. He keeps saying that even though he is leading the championship, there is no pressure on him to actually win it. Even if he crashed out of every race for the remainder of the season, he will still have had a phenomenal rookie year.

What Yamaha really need is more help, though Lorenzo would not be drawn into any overt criticism of the factory. They are 'an unbelievable factory working 24 hours a day', Lorenzo said. However, he also made it perfectly clear that he was happy that he could not have ridden any harder. The message was plain: the problem is not Jorge Lorenzo, the problem is the Yamaha.

Teammate Valentino Rossi concurred, though the Italian has extra problems to deal with. He and his team have still not found a solution to their braking problem, but that is more of a set up issue. The introduction of the seamless gearbox is the next step required, Rossi said, but they also need something to help with drive out of corners. 'We suffer a bit when we open the throttle compared to the Hondas,' Rossi said. That means a new frame to help create more grip, but doing that while retaining the ability to hold so much corner speed is a difficult balance. Rossi also had a novel solution to stopping Marquez from dominating MotoGP for the next few years: 'Maybe he will decide to change sports, and go and race in Formula 1,' the Italian joked. 'I could give him some good advice,' he smiled.

The tense MotoGP race came after a scintillating Moto2 race which helped keep the championship tight. Mika Kallio was the perfect teammate to Scott Redding, demonstrating the reason the team keep signing him up each year. On a weekend when Redding was struggling with finding a working set up, Kallio runs at the front and wins the race, gaining useful publicity for the team, while also taking valuable points from Pol Espargaro. Kallio turned up at Brno with a glint in his eye, and a determination not to be beaten. The 30-year-old Finn is always consistent, but sometimes he has that little bit extra which allows him to exceed himself.

Kallio's victory was hard fought. Thomas Luthi was also on a charge, and looked at one point as if the race would be his, but Kallio seized control at the end to win the race. Takaaki Nakagami also came close to his first victory, a change of strategy starting to pay off for the Japanese rider. For the first time, Nakagami worked on managing his tires, giving up on leading when he realized he couldn't try to escape, and settling back into the leading group and trying to attack late in the game. He tried, but Kallio would have none of it.

Pol Espargaro took 4th, though he had to fight off a fierce Johann Zarco to hold on to it. Meanwhile, Scott Redding struggled to 8th, but given his history at the track - he has never scored points in Moto2 at the Brno circuit - an 8th place is not too bad. It also means that he only loses 5 points to Espargaro, and still leads the Spaniard by 21 points. Both sides can claim a moral victory at Brno, and both sides are just as dedicated to beating each other as they have been all year. Their rivalry grows, as demonstrated by the fierce battle the two had early in the race. There really is a lot of racing still left for the Moto2 title this year.

Last race of the day was Moto3 - a peculiarity, and down to Bernie Ecclestone deciding to host the Belgian Formula One Grand Prix from the magnificent Spa Francorchamps circuit on the same day as Brno. In TV terms, F1 easily trumps MotoGP, and so the bikes had to make way for the cars. The Moto3 race proved just as fascinating as the previous two races, and had an utterly deserved winner. Luis Salom won his fifth race of the season, in almost identical style to so many of his races this year. Wait until the end of the race, then force a pass, and then push on to destroy the people following him. It worked like a charm, and Salom further extended his championship lead over Maverick Viñales and Alex Rins.

The big surprise at Brno was the appearance of the Hondas. If the KTMs have one Achilles heel, it is their handling, the bikes being harder to turn than the Hondas and FTR Hondas currently left on the grid. Jack Miller was fighting right at the front until his tire nearly fell apart and he found himself lapping four seconds a lap slower than he had been. But Alexis Masbou was also right at the front, finishing in 6th just 4.7 seconds off the winner. That is less than half the size the Hondas must cede to the KTMs at most tracks, the flowing nature of Brno working in the FTR Honda riders' favor.

It is ironic that Honda should be dominating MotoGP so thoroughly, while in the cheapest class, the KTMs are blowing them away. Moto3's cost-cutting formula may look good in theory, but in practice, KTM and Mahindra are selling factory-spec engines and chassis to the teams at a very high price, while Honda is sticking to the spirit of the rules and producing a bike down to a price. Unfortunately for HRC, unless there is a revolution and a high-powered Moto3 engine on the horizon, they are about to learn that the spirit of the rules is a meaningless term in professional motorcycle racing. If they continue along that path, there could well be not a single Honda on the grid next year.

There must be something in the Moravian water. Three races at Brno on Sunday, and all three genuine barnburners. What's more, the podiums had a good mixture of experience, age, and nationality. 'Only' five of the nine were Spanish, while in Moto2, there wasn't a single Spaniard on the podium. And at the end, the championships in all three classes got a little more interesting.Race of the day? Impossible to say, but the 2013 Czech Grand Prix will surely be remembered for the MotoGP race. After a tense race with a blistering finish last year, the 2013 race was even better. A brilliant start by Jorge Lorenzo - perhaps the best of his career - saw him catapult into the lead at the start. He pushed to break the following group, consisting of Marc Marquez, Dani Pedrosa and Cal Crutchlow.

Comments

Is Brno really a Yamaha track?

Looking at recent history one would say not. Brno has sweeping bends and esses but it also puts an emphasis on horsepower, with quite a high WOT percentage compared to say Assen, Misano or Phillip Island. And Jorge was 2 seconds back after full race distance, I dont think it's time for Yamaha to throw in the towel yet. It was good to see Dani closing on Marc at the end, he actually looked smoother and faster than Marc which bodes well for the coming rounds.

Jack Miller was riding beautifully until his tyre fell apart, hope he can get on a faster machine next year.

Total votes: 104

Fascinating.

Three great races.

The Moto3 dichotomy is interesting, not least because it finds Honda on the opposite camp to where it often sits. Whilst I agree with the position of Honda in this case, as the article points out for Honda themselves that changes nothing to about the situation as it stands.

I had thought there was a fixed maximum price for engines in moto3 but reading the article suggests this is incorrect, in that KTM are charging teams large amounts for their 'super' singles. It is arguable whether the new rules for Dorna dispensing engines will make much difference, although it would get very expensive indeed for KTM to provide all high spec motors thus ensuring their factory riders continue to receive engines noticeably better than Honda.

The absence of competitive Mahindras was noticable. Was this a handling issue or something else I wonder?

Total votes: 94

A question...

...for anyone who knows about these things:

Was the (4stroke) Yamaha always required to be ridden wheels in line or is this part of development to suit Jorge?

At what point did Yamaha philosophy chose to adapt the corner speed model? Conversely, has Honda always eschewed such a philosophy?

I'm making (nor particularly asking for) no judgements, simply some perspective as to when and why the divergent approaches were adopted.

Total votes: 88

Totally agree, yamaha's new

Totally agree, yamaha's new frame looked a little too different when unveiled and I can't help thinking now and at the time(Cf duke anyone?) they've pigeon holed themselves by pushing the bike more and more at Jorge's high corner speed approach. As usual there's not much in it but enough to be a problem. Be interesting to see if yam go back to what they build best, a neutral bike, it'd help Rossi no end, and it's doing wonders for Honda. Marquez wonderful again though Dani looked a little quicker at the end, just needs to be a little more vicious on track.. Unlucky Cal but anyone can go faster and fall off.. "I've nothing to lose' is a piss poor response from any rider, if it's true..

Total votes: 102

Yamaha used to be more know

Yamaha used to be more know for their agility rather than corner speed. Their 800cc M1 had probably the shortest wheelbase along with a relatively longer swingarm.

Recently the 1000cc M1's wheelbase has grown longer to prevent wheelies and to be more stable.

I really don't think it's time to jump ship on the current bike. Lets at least wait until the new gearbox comes out.

Total votes: 98

Pretty much this way for the top class in the modern era

Yamaha and Honda's racing philosophy in the modern era has always been this way with a couple of minor exceptions.

Honda's philosophy is to get from corner to corner in the minimum possible time. Squaring off the corners, getting the bike from upright on the anchors to apex to full power on the fat part of the tire as quickly as possible. And double team this up with the fastest accelerating power plant and electronics that their significant resources can muster. The times between full power acceleration are almost inconvieninces that should be minimised.

Yamaha's has been to build a much more balanced motorcycle. One that attacks the track in a much smoother, more stable and more agile fashion. The Yamaha approach is to take a smoother and wider approach to the corners, spending more time on the side of the tyre but at higher mid corner speeds. The Yamaha pre the Lorenzo era (bridgestone control tyre era?) was also very agile and reasonably forgiving to its riders allowing a wider variety of lines and corner exit/entry strategy changes mid race.

You have to go back to the uncompetitive NS500 triple in 1983 to find a flagship honda factory 500/motogp bike that wasn't this way. Of course the NSR-V 500 twin was different but it wasn't built to win, it was built to fill the grid with semi competitive bikes at the lowest possible cost.

Total votes: 87

There's Only One Way To Stop Marquez...

As I predicted previously, Marquez will stop the Jorge/Yamaha with his riding style! MM93's riding style and his intelligence/race-craft will make up the allege short-comings of the RCV verse the M1. MM93 learns fast, immensely hungry to win, and still incredibly fast like he's still riding a Moto-2 bike and not a MotoGP RCV. There's only 1 way to slow Marquez down... someone/something must destroy his confidence. RCV just gets better with time and he's not afraid of it... it's his new toy that he's having fun riding while 'toying' with Dani and Jorge! So that rules out the bike destroying his confidence. Jorge? Jorge is Marc's new punching bag meter! If MM93 can beat Jorge regularly then the rest of the field doesn't have much of a chance. Dani? Same RCV, same Repsol Team and resources. Dani must pull the trigger and leave the field the way Jorge did today. Dani must force Marquez to catch him and hope that he makes a mistake doing so. Dani must win the next 3-4 races. Marquez VS Dani for the 2013 MotoGP title. Stoner is the only rider capable of destroying Marc's confidence in a straight-up, gloves off battle. Like many others... I'd love to see the Marquez VS Stoner battle for 2014.

Total votes: 127

I know it is only fantasy but

I know it is only fantasy but what would destroy Marquez's confidence is Stoner beating him whilst riding a Ducati. After all it destroyed Rossi as soon as Rossi realised what Stoner had been beating him on all those years. He has never been the same!

Total votes: 158

Last time Stoner raced at Brno

He beat Jorge and Dani by 6.5 seconds. I definitely think a fully fit Stoner would be taking wins off Marquez.

Total votes: 115

I doubt that

Though I'm a Stoner fan, even I'm skeptical about what he might have been able to achieve against Marquez in the long run. Marquez is doing awesomely well his first year in and can only grow from here. Yes, true Stoner is an adaptable rider but this guy is an equally phenomenal talent, if not more.

Last year Stoner faced a plethora of problems with the new generation of Bridgestones (chatter notwithstanding), was struggling to make the harder rear tyre work and was playing it safe with the softer rear tyre (keeping it slow for the first few laps to preserve it instead of running away to glory). Maybe Gabbarini and him would have found some solutions over time but for Marquez these so called issues are something he has turned into a basic frame of reference and as to what he can expect from a bike as opposed to Stoner who has seen better days. Which is why I also think that Stoner might just find it difficult matching upto Marquez in case he does make a comeback (which instinctively I think he most definitely will), also added to the fact that he was out of action for such a long time.

Also I think Lorenzo might have won had he been able to make the rear tyre last. Is the idea of leading the first few laps working against him? Did he bring the hammer down a tad too quickly as compared to when he did it in Mugello and Catalunya after a few laps? Did he miscalculate the amount of rear tyre he might have had left for the lap-times he was running?

Total votes: 117

Lorenzo burned matches to quick. Marquez attitude...

I also think Lorenzo burned his matches too quickly while on heavy fuel, might have been there at the end with a chance.

Stoner vs Marquez, who knows but would be awesome. I can't help but think the always grinning Marquez would give him the psychological edge. I was a stoner fan...

Total votes: 107

from The Age

5 hours ago. .

Honda team boss Livio Suppo has rejected continued speculation that Casey Stoner will return to MotoGP and could make a wildcard appearance in the Australian round at Phillip Island. 

http://news.theage.com.au/breaking-news-sport/honda-rules-out-stoner-motogp-return-20130827-2snht.html

[Edited: please do not cut and paste articles from other websites and post them here. That is a clear violation of copyright. Feel free to post a summary and a link to the other website. They created the content, so they deserve to get the visits via the link. Thanks, The Editor.]

Total votes: 75

Thankyou

I do understand the copyright, i was just unsure how to post the story without re writing the thing. I did mention the article came from the Age however this was not the way to go.
Cheers for putting me on the right path.

Total votes: 78

David, you make a point about

David, you make a point about only 5 of 9 podium riders being Spanish. Yet the main race was an all Spanish Podium. I guess it was a nice attempt at, "look over here so you don't see what is over there".

Marquez is no doubt a phenomenon. However, I think you are underestimating the manufacturer/team that a change in rules allowed him to walk straight into and more importantly the crew that he inherited. His crew, who are quite adept at winning races (the most in an era) and championships, are quite clearly giving him a bike that is exactly what he needs to apply his skill to the maximum. So before we claim the second coming it is worthwhile having a look at the whole picture. After all, do we really need another false prophet like the last one, that only devalued the qualities and opportunities of the rest of the field?

Total votes: 122

As it should be...

Outstanding rising talent should be able to go directly to where their abilities are best put to use. Marquez' ascension is almost exactly the same as Rossi's, who inherited Doohan's complete team and full HRC support (Nastro colours or not).
The rookie rule was one of Dorna's dumbest dumb rules, it is consigned to the scrap bin of history where it belongs. The rider market is no different to any other, trying to artificially fiddle the demand and supply curves never ends well.

PS: Pure supposition, but I doubt things would be much different if he were on an LCR or Gresini anyhow.

Total votes: 112

It's always crew and rider

It's difficult to make it big without a very good crew but impossible to do it without an excellent rider. Rossi needed a Burgess, agreed. But would have won nevertheless. And look where he is even with him at his side now. Burgess is no less than the Burgess he was a decade ago. In all probability he must have pick up a few more tricks along the way. But he needs a Rossi who can re-invent himself. The same applies to Stoner and Gabbarini, Lorenzo and Forcada, Marquez and Hernandez. Even if you give Bradl and Bautista Marquez's crew and equipment they won't be able to do this well this consistently. Remember, Marquez actually made the Suter Moto2 bike look better than it actually was last year. Which is why he deserves all the accolades he is getting all the more.

Total votes: 97

MM's crew is the same crew

MM's crew is the same crew that helped Stoner work around the massive shortcomings of the Ducati and turn it into a winner. If ever there was a worthy successor for Stoner's bike, MM is most definitely it, but without that team he would be finding it much harder to win.

Total votes: 108

corner speed

I don't think yamaha necessarily pursued a "high corner speed" philosophy, they have always just placed an emphasis on handling and ease of use over horse power. you could see it in the classic 500 days, the hondas rocket fast, but lacking the deft handling of the yamahas. the suzukis were just plain fickle. the reason yamaha riders are adopting sweeping lines and high corner speed is thats what you have to do if you have less horsepower. no good getting in a drag race with some one who has a vehicle with superior power. yamaha need to conjure up some more power, plain and simple.

Total votes: 92

Disagree

Yamaha have actively pursued the elusive brain-throttle connection over the past 10 years or so with the long stroke in line 4 engine. A screamer engine would achieve more horsepower with better fuel efficiency, but they have eschewed that approach in favor of a power delivery with maximum usability and still strong horsepower, though maybe not the strongest. That combination of a V4 power delivery and INL4 weight distribution has netted them 6 of the last 9 world titles. Can you say they are wrong?

Lets not forget Jorge won three races this season before he stuffed his collarbone, at Qatar, Mugello and Catalunya no less, three tracks with very long straights BUT also long corners. Rossi won on a Yamaha at Assen and Jorge would definately have been fighting fot the win there if not for the injury. Laguna is another track where Jorge is normally very strong but was slowed down by injury. After the break they've ridden two tracks which don't suit Yamaha in recent times, Indy and Brno. But still, Yamaha have won 4 of 11 races, which could possibly have been 5 of 11 without Jorge's injury, its not exactly a disaster for Yamaha. The disaster has been Jorge's injury, as was the case for Stoner in 2012 when Yamaha won the title.

The seamless box will no doubt improve the Yam when it arrives but I don't think the Yam is all that far off.

Total votes: 108

+1

Take Marquez out of the equation and you have a fair fight to the finish between Pedrosa and Lorenzo. Honda may have a slight edge, but I stongly believe MM is making the difference just as CS did. Pedrosa is a great talent, but 3 out of 4 (Dovi) of his teamates have or will be WC on the Honda.

Total votes: 103

Is Mahindra selling engines?

David,

I was under the impression that Mahindra had its own two motorcycles on the 250cc Moto3 grid. Is there some other team using their engines? Could you throw some light on this please? Thanks in advance.

Total votes: 86

perspective?

As I understand, the Mahindra developed bikes of last season have effectively been junked. The whole bike and engine development given to Suter, hence their sudden improvement in results. I believe the Mahindras are the only machines with such engines and chassis.

Total votes: 90

It can't be...

... overstated that Marquez is a great talent. And while that is certainly true, it's not the whole story as to the current standings and Yamaha's plight. You only need to look at the Honda's (all of them) during corner entry to see that they're surperior to the blue bikes on the brakes, not to mention the almost-constant Honda corner exit domination.

"Brno is a Yamaha track" was a valid (if short-sighted) statement during the seasons Yamaha won there, and that's it. It's becoming more and more clear that, in 2013 at least, "Yamaha is the 2nd best bike".

The corner speed advantage Yamaha holds has become a but a minor annoyance for the Hondas now that they show little to no deficiencies at all anymore. Pedrosa simply riding around Lorenzo in closing laps was a harsh display of Yamaha falling behind the times.

Total votes: 106

A minor annoyance

Apart from Qatar, Mugello, Assen and Catalunya obviously where Yamaha won. At those tracks the Honda's braking and horsepower were minor annoyances right?

Total votes: 90

Seasons evolve...

... and this one is no different. The Hondas, and certainly Marquez himself, have become much more dialed-in as the season progressed now to the point that all 4 RCV's are now pushing their way to the front. Bradl and Bautista's recent performances are proof enough of that.

Total votes: 102

Don't Mean to Brag But...

It's been a while since I last logged in to post. But, if I remember correctly I believe I publicly stated before the lights went out at Qatar, that Marquez would win the WC if he didn't crash at Qatar or Jerez. I got one star worth of votes! Hehehe man this kid is unstoppable!!

Total votes: 105

If you've ever...

... seen a cat play around with a mouse or lizard that is set to become the next meal, you'll notice that it wounds it badly to cripple it, then it bats it around for fun until it finally decides to kill it. All of these recent victories by Marc have looked EXACTLY like that. How they could be called tense or thrilling is beyond me. I've seen the writing on the wall saying that Marc was going to win after the first few laps of each of these last few races. Exactly ZERO of them were difficult for him, nor was there doubt one that he easily had the measure of the whole field. He didn't break a sweat. It was the antithesis of suspenseful or surprising. He's got this. Period.

Total votes: 102

Cat vs mouse

Videos of cats are HUGE on the net, it could be marketing genius :)

In fact, few people watch sport for suspense... most watch to identify with their hero, in the hope that he will win. That was why Lance Armstrong hugely increased the popularity of cycling, while winning 7 TdF without the slightest suspense.

Doohan did the same for motorcycle racing in Australia, moving it from occasional spots on the 2nd-string public "ethnic" channel, to the most prominent commercial network... despite a style of racing and winning that was all about domination and as far as possible from suspense.

Usually, when people complain about lack of suspense, they mean that their favourite isn't winning...

Total votes: 98

+1. In the early stages of

+1.

In the early stages of the race, Marc didn't even look like he was defending against Pedrosa. Look at the corner entrance lines he was taking; he wasn't even trying to keep Dani behind him. Couldn't have cared less if Dani had made an attempt.

And the way Marquez passed and re-passed Lorenzo seemed to illustrate that same "I'm faster than you" mentality. OK, that doesn't work, I'll do it here, and make this work, he seemed to say. Lorenzo must have felt that Marquez could come by anywhere, at any time. It absolutely took the wind out of Lorenzo's sails.

Not that Lorenzo's suffering.

As I mentioned earlier, at Indy, he looked quite relaxed, and we saw more of that this weekend. His life has become immeasurable simpler. Everyone knows that the bike isn't the best - if Rossi can't win on it, it must be the bike, right? - and Marc is attracting all the attention. The pressure is off. There's no strategy anymore. All Jorge has to do is go hell-for-leather, lead as much as he can, and when he comes up short, it's the bike's fault. All he has to do is beat his teammate.

Wonder how soon the Yamaha team starts thinking 2014?

Total votes: 87

"if Rossi can't win on it, it must be the bike, right"

Hilarious! LOL!

Total votes: 93

+2

thats absolutely correct, it cant be any of Rossis shortcoming eh? has to be the bike then!

Total votes: 73

you need a fantastic rider to ride a fantastic bike...

..disappointing to see quiet a few pundits throwing knives at the yamaha while also applauding the Honda machine more that it deserves. Dont get me wrong, its a fantastic machine and Honda have nailed it thus far, but that Yamaha is damn near it, maybe only slight step off the factory Hondas. Whats exacerbating the Yamaha riders is the terrific riders in MM and DP, seriously these two deserve it for their riding this year. I will never forget that lunge on lap 7 by Marquez just after JLo slammed the door shut on his previous attempt at passing, and Pedro did an admirable job in cutting the gap to Marquez after he took awhile to pass no99. A few more laps and who knows? dani MAY have taken the win.

Total votes: 112

That second pass that MM put

That second pass that MM put on JL was indeed memorable. In fact I rewound and watched the footage three times to get my head around it.

And I agree that DP could have won that race if he'd started his forward charge a few laps sooner. But you can't blame him - nor JL - for not going 10/10ths in that race, considering that it was the first 'fully fit' race he's had in a while. I think both of the veterans were smart to let MM do his thing and race with him for the duration of a race; they both learned a few things about him at Brno I think, and that's how you overcome your enemy; you get to know his strengths and weaknesses.

I think DP will beat MM fair and square sometime in the next few races.

Total votes: 71

probably..

... but surely that won't be much consolation as he watches MM steal away his best ever shot at the big one!

Total votes: 104

um

Yeah, I wouldn't call the main race a barnburner, not by any stretch. Even my wife, who watches with me but is only a recent fan - predicted that Marquez would sit there, watching, waiting, and make his move with about 6 laps to go. She wasn't far off !

Impossible to call what was the race of the day ? Hardly ! It wasn't MotoGP. The Moto3 though... that was something else. riders three abreast through turns, taking turns slipstreaming/passing, the battle between team-mates rins and marquez that ended badly for both in the last couple of corners - that was a ripper. MM93 has said 'my little brother is as fast as me' - in a few years, that could prove to be a brilliant matchup in MotoGP.

Whither poor Valentino ? Well, it's always something. Now he can't brake like he wants to. Think of the domino effect his refusal to retire gracefully has had on the sport, and the number of talented young riders that can't get a shot at a factory (or sattelite by default) yamaha because of his dogged refusal to leave, for me, it is a shame.

Total votes: 132

Hardly memorable

Glad to see I'm not the only one thinking the GP race was a snoozefest. Sure Lorenzo got an incredible start, but a good drag race and three passes do not make a memorable race.

Is it 2014 yet? 2013 looks like it's going to be The Marquez Show, but hopefully next year with the production machines we'll have some legitimately interesting racing. Until then, at least we have the support classes.

Total votes: 106

Only four bikes

Only four bikes can win the title, with two riders coming back from injury, and one of the greatest heading to retirement, I'm not really surprised Marquez won. I honestly believe he is a great champion in the making, however there are very few rides which can win the title. To listen to the commentary surrounding his victory, you'd have sworn all bikes were created equally and anyone on the grid could've won it. It was only a a year ago he had his hands full beating Luthi, Iannone and co. would they have been as competitive on the Repsol Honda as well? I think so.

They are making comparisions to Rossi already. Rossi's greatness is defined by his longevity of success, so many world titles over so many years, Marquez may or may not do this, but Rossi is a great not a great in waiting.

Stoner's greatness is built on the legend of being able to ride a bad bike fast, very fast. Marquez has not proven he can yet. we'll need to wait till Honda produces a RCV which can't turn (and they will, they all do, at some stage) and then we will see if he is as sensitive to bike feedback as he appears to be at the moment.

The cards have fallen the right way for the young Spaniard and to his credit he has taken full advantage, but the fickle finger of fate has a miraculous way of levelling the score. Gorge and Danni aren't finished yet!

Total votes: 126

I always enjoy your end of

I always enjoy your end of weekend round-ups but I must disagree: the race of the day is indeed easy to say: Moto2.

MotoGP was more interesting than it usually is, but it was not a great race, even considering Marquez' busting yet another record. Moto3 was good, but in Moto3 terms - in my opinion often the best race of the day - but overall average.

However I could not remove my eyes from the Moto2 race even to pay for pizza - apologies to the confused delivery man have already been made in the form of an irregularly large tip -- whatever it took to get rid of him as quickly as possible.

Total votes: 91

great, but....

You know, the next couple of years could be a tad boring / disappointing for anyone not into mm. As David says, he's a step change for motogp, and when you look at how ragged he runs right now, just think where he's going to be when he's finessed his control of the bike.

Other than that, the top few places look like the natural order, don't they. You have to feel for dani. If it wasn't for mm he'd be in a commanding position for the title now, but it looks like he missed the window of opportunity. Ditto Jorge to some extent, for a while it looked like he might dominate for a few years but as it stands he might only go down in history as a two time winner. VR, still a little sad to see him no longer an alien, but at least he's showing the pretenders that he's still emphatically the best of the rest.

Total votes: 93

A bit early to predict so

A bit early to predict so much future. MM is basically racing 3 guys. 2 of them are injured and one is over due to retire.

I won't say his accomplishments are nothing, but I don't think he's actually walking on water like many have spun up.

Total votes: 86

fair comment

Fair comment but in the same context, he isn't just doing well in his rookie year, he's winning again and again. I can't remember the last person to do that, seems to have been king kenny, but that does take something special to do.

Total votes: 99

KTM, Honda and the spirit

I doubt there would be much sympathy for Honda anyway, given their manipulation of the rules to price the opposition out of MotoGP. But the problem in moto3 is not only that the KTM engine is faster, it is also more reliable. First there was the special dispensation to change the camchain on the NSR, but they still have to detune to keep the rod alive. Honda simply did a substandard job on the bike.

Second point is that the Honda doesn't handle better than the KTM, the FTR does.... I don't think there is a standard Honda frame on the grid (although the TSR's are close to stock, if not to the front). An amusing irony that in Moto3, if you can't have a KTM you want an FTR, and they also seem to be the best choice in CRT so far as independently constructed frames, but they are extinct in Moto2.

Total votes: 107

honda power

@machine: never implied yamaha are not doing it right, merely that their greatest disadvantage right now is acceleration out of corners. as I said, they have spent many years crafting an extremely ridable bike;but now the honda handles pretty well too, and still has a considerably strong accelerating bike. no time to panic at yamaha, but one of their areas of concern to address I'm sure. yamaha's greatest concern now though, is MM.

Total votes: 79

Again the tide

I may go against the tide but I think it's the RCV that's incredible and it makes MM invincible and take average riders like Bautista and Bradl and make them shine. The yamaha has to step up the game (and Ducati to go back to Bologna and only come back when the GP bike is fixed).

Total votes: 93

Jorge's problem

It is not the bike... Every rider has always blamed the bike - it cannot be them. There is good reason for that - why would you keep trying to be the fastest if you believe you are not...

Dani was within .5 of a second of last years race time - could not do that if you tried. Jorge lost by 2 seconds most of which were two laps in the 57s. Jorge should have stayed as close to Dani in case he made a mistake. It was not like he / the bike could not do the times. Only 4 laps before he did a 56.4 and Rossi was 1.1 second faster on the last lap. If it was the tyres, then he needs to rethink the run away style in the first few laps.

I think the problem is he talked himself into this being a Yamaha track and his collarbone was better so he SHOULD beat the Honda's. When he went so hard to start and they got back to him he gave up in the end. This is the first time in his career I have seen it happen.

As for the Honda's being better - as always too hard to say. But for Casey moving to Honda, Yamaha would have won the last 5 titles. So was the Yamaha that dominant?

Marc is making the Honda look good under brakes because of his style. By sliding the rear in he is keeping the front wheel straighter and more vertical therefor can brake harder on it. What it does do is make it hard to keep good corner speed (not that it is bad...).

As for actual "the better corner speed of the Yamaha" does anyone have data on how much faster? I would assume it is more Jorge's style more than the bike.

Jorge needs to keep to Plan A and put as much pressure on the kid as possible and forget about the bike.

Total votes: 104

Agree 100%

I think part of the problem for Jorge is that when the Hondas are strong he gets beaten by at least two Hondas, where when the Yamaha is strong the two Hondas can both be on the podium still. The fact Rossi is no longer an alien makes the Honda look more dominant than it really is.

Total votes: 99

No data on "the better corner

No data on "the better corner speed of the Yamaha" but there were a few times during that race where it was very obvious. Especially when Cal came back at Bargey Bautista.

Total votes: 81

Bargey Bautista

I wonder what moniker the motogpnews crew would've given Marquez.
I'm guessing it would be related to his Joker smile.

Total votes: 90

There's no need for data...

...it has been really evident even from the spectator stands.
And it's not like it's a novelty either, has been like that in recent years.

If you look at Pedrosa, Marquez, Bautista and Bradl (and Stoner before) they've all got one thing in common in their riding... very late (and harsher) braking into apex, then point and pick up for early acceleration (like squaring corners, trailbraking). That's how all the RCVs have been going mostly.
It's a huge contrast to the Yamaha M1s (Lorenzo, Rossi, Crutchlow, B.Smith, also before with Dovizioso and Spies), all of which show smooth cornering into and out of corners, faster at mid corner.
Cornering wise, it's like the RCV is more as Moto-2, and the M1 is more like the old GP 250cc (sadly missing the 2-strokes, BTW).
Obviously, depending on rider it's a LOT or less evident, but it has been predominantly like that on each of the two different machines.

If you notice, both Pedrosa and Marquez have done most (all?) of their overtakes into the corners (being able to brake later into the corner) and then easily defend the position they capture right before accelerating out of the corners, by blocking the trajectory that Lorenzo would need to get the M1 to be fast(er) as he always does, loosing that tiny momentum and therefore the chance to keep up in the long term.

We've seen something similar happen in the past with J.McWilliams on the Modenas Kr3, Harada in the Aprilia RS400V, and Gibernau/Okada/Gooberg with the NSR500V. They could all go much smoother and faster on corners, but they could do very little on race day once they found the opponents (V4s) blocking the required faster trajectory they would have to take, hence why they never were successful other than in the ocasional practice/qualify surprise.

That's the big problem with the M1 as I see it, you can go just as fast as the opposition with a clear track, but I would say it's not the best bike to improvise on raceday with opponents around you, exactly because of the way it has been developped (by a certain champion and his "mantequilla" smooth and steady style).
I even think that the "silly excuses" from Rossi actually make a lot of sense. He may very well been struggling for real with the M1 on his return for this reason, as he was always a (very) late braker during all of his career and the M1 does not seem to be developped for that now.

Before we had a trio of dominant riders (Lorenzo, Pedrosa and Stoner) that were excessively "polite" in their maneuvers, but now with a more "adventurous" Marquez, and the return of (a struggling) Rossi to his former team, the differences between the two machines become more and more evident.

Total votes: 121

Fantastic input and

Fantastic input and observation. I feel that Brno had a layout that especially pronounced these Honda vs. Yamaha differences. In fact, I'm not sure if it's just me, but it seemed like even the race coverage cut to the overhead corner shots where the styles were extremely evident. At first glance it would almost appear that the Honda's were running a bit wide into the corners, but then all of a sudden you would see them pick up speed and fire out of the corner, offsetting their apparent lack of corner speed. Certainly this makes for a style that can make it difficult for the Yamaha's to battle.

This might even help explain why Lorenzo strives to get out ahead of the pack early on so that he can run his fast laps without having the interference of a Honda in front of him. He knows that his lap pace is on par, but the style difference makes him suffer. Of course this presents the challenge of maintaining the lead and yet setting a pace that does not prematurely wear the tires.

Total votes: 86

V.Rossi on MM - February 2013:"I like his attitude."

All those Marc Marquez wins makes me to remember what Valentino said after first test in Valencia and repeated that after first winter test, because even Marc keep saying that they dont think about title much, he wants it and aimed for that from first race. Did you see him so mad after his crash from second place in Mugello? That was telling a lot about what is the target in his rookie season. And what Vale said?

Valentino Rossi: “I expect - and said three or four months ago - that Marquez can fight for victory from the start of the season, but I like his attitude a lot because in his mind, looking at him today, it looks like he wants to win the championship at the first try. This is good. We hope he will make some mistakes or problems due to lack of experience!” Rossi joked. “But if not he will be very strong for everybody.”

It was bloody god prediction. So, considering that, I expect to see Casey Stoner racing in MotoGP soon, because Rossi said that he dont believe they do it without another reason. Phillip Island 2013? Lets hope so, that could be some race!

Total votes: 97

Everyone is talking up Marquez winning at Phillip Island

and he's obviously riding beautifully so why not. But Stoner dominated virtually every SESSION there for 7 years on carbon, trellis and aluminium framed bikes, leading all but two laps in 7 races, with riders like Pedrosa and Lorenzo crashing just trying to get within half a second of him. I don't think Jesus Christ could beat Stoner there.

The clear second fastest rider at Phillip Island has been Lorenzo recently, and with Phillip Island having just been resurfaced I think the high grip levels and high corner speeds will suit the Yamaha perfectly. Marquez will have his hands very full there I think.

Total votes: 114

Stoner at PI

Two corrections Desh. Stoner won at PI 07, 08, 09, 10, 11 and 2012 which equals 6 wins.
He never raced the Alloy frame, that was bought in for Rossi in 2012.

He did race in the prem class in 06 with LCR on 990 V5(his favourite race bike). He came sixth.
The 06 winner was Marco Melandri, his last corner tyre slide probably helped his profile more than the win.

Total votes: 89

Almost

I think Desh was referring to both Ducati and Honda when he said Stoner had won at PI on trellis, CF and alloy frames.

Total votes: 96

OK 6 Races

Thanks. But yeah I was referring to the Honda. Not that the Honda was a bad bike, but the point being it didn't seem to matter what bike it was, Stoner just repeatedly dominated there in a way Ive never seen.

Total votes: 84

I agree

completely. I was at all CS's wins at PI. He dominated FP1,2,3, warm up, qual and the race for 6 consecutive years.

Im a sucker for facts so apologise if i offended.

Total votes: 88

PI Style

While Lorenzo has certainly been fast at PI, Casey Stoner showed that going really fast around that circuit required getting yours wheels out of line. With Marquez (so far) unafraid of riding on the ragged edge, I expect to see him win. Given that he doesn't wreck his confidence between Silverstone and PI. Oh, and that Casey doesn't ride (which I highly doubt he will).

Total votes: 89

PI style vs Stoner style

Here's another interesting 'minus Stoner' stat. If you remove Stoner from the results at Phillip Island for the past 5 years, a Yamaha would have won the race in every year bar 2011 - when neither factory Yamaha took part in the race due to rider injuries. Jorge was almost certain to have come second to Stoner again before his qualifying injury in 2011 which would have made it 5 from 5 Yam wins at PI without Stoner. The Yamaha clearly works well around Phillip Island without getting sideways in the slightest.

It was necessary for Stoner to get sideways on the understeering pig of a Ducati, and the Honda seems to work best with a bit of oversteer as well so Stoner continued laying massive darkies everywhere in 11 and 12. But I think it depends a lot on the bike, I remember the Roberts Proton being crazy fast at the Island in the hands of Jurgen van den Goorbergh, and Ducati Superbikes have traditionally been unstoppable at the Island using superior corner speed and traction.

Add to all this that the Phillip Island has been beautifully resurfaced and you have the perfect recipe for a Yamaha win there this year, as a lot of the bumps which can mess up high corner speed have been smoothed out and the grip should be amazing.

Total votes: 83

Marquez will play safe

Even if Marquez wins all four of the next races, which is expecting a great deal, he may not have the championship in the bag by then, depending on how Jorge and Dani pinch points off each other. But there's a high probability that he'll still have a very commanding lead. What would you do in that position? Go for another race win that most of us will have forgotten in a year or two, or settle for 2nd or 3rd to get the championship sewn up in time for Valencia, then go for a grand finale in Spain? The lad looks smart to me, nobodies fool.

Total votes: 71

Yamaha needs upgrades. Honda

Yamaha needs upgrades. Honda has clearly continued development over the season while Yamaha has remained the same. On the Podium, Jorge said that he is riding the best of his career and he did everything he could yesterday, nothing more to give, and the injury wasn't a factor, at all. He set a blistering pace off the line to try and gap the Repsols. Once MM and DP's fuel load went down they reeled him in. This at a track where Honda only had a slight edge (up the hill). At Sepang, PI, and Motegi Yamaha is in big doo doo. And they still have an engine allocation issue that is surely likely to rear its' head either through detuning the engines to make it or starting from pit lane.

I don't think anyone is dumb enough to call the yamaha a Ducati. It's just that Honda has it nailed this season, and have had it nailed since mid-season 2012. Yamaha needs more HP and that gearbox.

Unless there is a MM dnf, he's got this one. 4 in a row, as a rookie, is something people need to really let sink in. He's only got better as the season has progressed.

Total votes: 105

Ha Ha Ha

I'm sorry, but Moto GP was boring. Your first two paragraphs sound like paid advertising. Carmelo, himself, could not have written more wishful prose.

The battle for the podium positions lasted all of three laps. Lorenzo took back exactly one pass from Marquez. Pedrosa dismissed him even more easily. The entire remainder of the race was a parade.

Rossi and Bautista did a brief two-step in the 'battle' for 4th, but there was never much doubt about their finishing order.

Cal took himself out early and was a non-factor.

Boring.

Total votes: 124

Boring races

You found it boring, I found it thrilling. There was a lot of tension all throughout the race, which built nicely to a climax as Marquez passed Lorenzo. Each to his own. Luckily for you, there was Moto2 and Moto3.

Total votes: 95

"Lorenzo took back exactly

"Lorenzo took back exactly one pass from Marquez."

two (spectacular) passes. not one. watch the race again please.

Total votes: 91

each to their own

The guy's entitled to his opinion and comment; that's one of the better things on this site. Me, I can't say I found it thrilling but that's probably because VR is still the only racer that can get me on the edge of my seat. And that in turn probably only became the case when Stoner appeared, followed by Jorge, to give him a right good run for his money.

Total votes: 74

Some just can't be pleased.

A thoroughly great day of racing I'd say. What do you wanna see? Fire? Blood? Three pretty great races as far as I'm concerned.

MotoGP had the three title contenders in the same camera frame for pretty much the entire race and no one had the win sealed until the last couple laps. More than that it looked like it may have not stayed that way had it run a couple more laps. Pedrosa looked to have the form to catch Marc after getting past Jorge but not enough time to close that gap. Fascinating seeing all three of those bikes together. You could easily see the different ways the Hondas had to be ridden from the Yamaha. You could also see a marked difference between Pedrosa and Marquez. Pedrosa was clean & surgical where Marc was riding very loose and always looking a fraction from out of control. Great viewing.

Moto2 was good to see different faces at the front and a couple different leaders through the race. Added drama was seeing Redding battle forward to briefly sit in front of Pol before falling back.

Moto3 a six way battle for the lead all race. Are you not amused?

Good hard racing, no rain, and looked like a very full spectator crowd. I say Brno was a win.

Interesting observation of the comments here. The very same people who are waxing nostalgically about Stoner and his continued potential in retirement are the very same ones who are discounting Marquez or qualifying his achievements. I would call that irony. I don't have to be singing his praises to note that he's breaking records almost every time he gets on the bike and making a fist for the championship in dominant style in his learning year. I also note the expressions on Dani and Jorge's faces lately in press conferences and parc ferme around him. I think he's giving everyone a lot more than they bargained for. So far a very interesting season from where I sit.

Total votes: 98

Moto 2 and Moto 3

I agree Moto 2 and 3 were cracking races, great fun to watch.
But I was disappointed by Moto GP. I give Yorgay credit for holding
his position on the outside and taking back Marq's first pass, but
one single solitary moment does not make for good viewing.
David talks about stalking and heel nipping, but it was a parade.

Total votes: 95

Beaufort - I remember when

Beaufort - I remember when Rossi used to sail off into the sunset to win races and that was even worse - yes you could couch it in terms of the GOAT at work but it was still dull.

In 2013, we are seeing the new kid on the block in operation and its fascinating. I just hope he gets some competition in 2014. There was an inevitability about 93 winning on Sunday.

I feel Rossi is at the end of his career. He can't qualify and finds it difficult to come sailing through the pack anymore. Getting regular 4th places is not the sign of an alien or someone gunning for a world championship. Unless he believes injury problems amongst those above him will gift it to him.

I am getting bored with Pedrosa. How many chances does he need to win a world championship? Just doesn't have the killer instinct compared with his team mate.

Total votes: 98

past masters

It's just natural. Every champ eventually gets knocked out. Muhammad Ali is still called "the greatest" but at one point he was just getting beat up. Rossi at the moment (and maybe forevermore, who knows?) just doesn't have the pace, or doesn't have it all the way through, or gets it late, or whatever. He has what I'd say is 8/10ths of what's needed to be champion today. He was never the pole position king. Even at his height he would often qualify off pole or off the front row to end up demolishing the field come Sunday morning. Now it seems he can run the same pace as the top Spaniards but sometimes that comes later in the race or not at all. All the same even if it is fighting for 4th with Crutchlow and Bautista it is entertaining to see him work his racecraft. He's lost absolutely nothing there. It's just now with the second group that he ruthlessly dispatches. Oh well. Hope he's enjoying it and sure, I'd like to believe too that if he just got the bike as he'd like it he'd be doing the same to Marc, Jorge, and Dani.
As for Pedrosa? Yes he's always been more cautious and methodical than some of his rivals and very much in contrast with Marc. I wouldn't discount him yet though. This race was the first one where he and Jorge were mostly fit. I say mostly. While their injuries may or may not have been at play neither of them are in the groove with fitness and with Marc on an absolute tear they will also have to be at peak potential. I say we'll see them back in it in the next few races.

Total votes: 97

so true

but still slightly painful to watch. at least he's not suffering the humiliation of being on the ducati, now that was just horrible, and on a good day, with the planets aligned, he can out-race the lot of 'em.

And yes, back in the early noughties it was sometimes boring to watch VR romp away into the distance, but every now and then he'd entertain us by loitering a few places back until it seemed way too late, then murder the rest one by one.... and then romp away as usual!

Total votes: 78

Non-telescopic forks in Moto2

What? Prototype bikes which actually differ in any substantive way from the norm? The bike ridden by Lucas Mahias in Moto2...

(French language info on the bike): http://www.sport-bikes.fr/moto2---la-transfiormers-de-christian-boudinot...

Total votes: 96

Thanks!

Hmm, looks like their bike was 31st out of 34 in yesterday's race.
Thanks for the link.


Total votes: 85

Considering...

... the rider had never ridden Brno before, that the 2nd gen frame had only a couple of days testing, and this was the second race ever for the team (one round of CEV last year on the gen 1 frame above), their results were impressive. Doesn't prove anything about the superiority/inferiority of this particular FFE, other than it's neither disastrous nor magical, but let's hope they find some money to keep going.

Total votes: 89

blimey

blimey, how do these work then? if the wheel is bolted to the axle-thingy, what moves to absorb the bumps?

Total votes: 82

It's not ONE thing, it's EVERYTHING

Rider, bike and crew. If the Honda is so good, why isn't Pedrosa swapping wins? Because MM is a better rider, that's why. Backing in a MotoGP bike? Unheard of, till he showed up. In some ways, the next several years will be boring as MM wins nearly everything. In other ways, it will be a display of mastery and dominance that we haven't seen in a while, where one rider is so much better than the others. I like close racing and DP and Jorge are incredibly skilled (so are the rest) but MM is on another level entirely. The 2nd pass on Jorge into the fast left hander was amazing, he BLEW by Jorge on sheer skill and balls and that's quite an accomplishment.

On a side note, the Stoner lovers need to let it go, for heaven's sake. Why is he even being mentioned? Yes, he was very good. But he's gone and he's not coming back. Why all these theoretical races between CS and MM are being held in people's heads is beyond me.

Total votes: 108

Please get the facts straight

You are aware that DP and JL have been injured during the current season, right?

Prior to their injuries, JL had won three races and DP had won two.

So your question of why DP is not swapping wins with MM seems to be based on a lack of knowledge of the season to date? because clearly he WAS swapping wins with MM until he broke his collarbone. As was JL.

And now that DP has completed a race 'fully fit', during which he was clearly holding something in reserve, we can expect to see DP go back to making MM earn his wins. I have no doubt that MM is capable of taking more wins, but DP will be winning again too, and sooner than people think. I am still betting on DP taking the 2013 title.

And sorry to bring Stoner up : ) but he too could back the Honda into corners like MM does. All of these guys can do it, if they wish - it's not some sort of secret.

Total votes: 99

Rossi on a RCV!

It's been very clear for a while that Yamaha has a lot of work to do to catch the RCV. But what can Yamaha do to make up the difference this season? Not much I think! When Rossi was at Ducati he wanted them to make the GP12 into an M1. Now back at Yamaha, Rossi wants Yamaha to make the M1 into an RCV!? Rossi wanted to go back to Honda but Honda didn't want or need Rossi. So now that the M1 has been developed for Jorge's riding style... Rossi wants a new chassis, better braking, more horsepower, and a seamless gearbox! How bout Yamaha just go ahead and put the Honda wing-logo on the M1 too. Jorge is already giving up the ghost by telling everyone that he's doing all that he can on the M1 this season against the Hondas... and still not winning. I just hope Cal can win his home race.

Total votes: 105

Rossi wants the yam to be a

Rossi wants the yam to be a honda?? a bike he hasn't ridden for nearly a decade?? WTF ??? Only a few years ago it was the yamaha that dominated even more than the honda is now(currently)..??? Easily forgotten when waxing lyrical about the incredible job Jorge is doing.. Rossi may well be in his twilight but the Yamaha has fallen a long way since he was top dog, just ask Jorge.. No doubt Rossi wonders what happened to that bike...

Total votes: 111

Good summary and entertaining comments

Naught to pick between the HRC bike the M1 current. Strengths and weaknesses in harmony. Riders make the difference at Yamaha and Honda's level. Marquez is clearly IT. To surpass King Kenny at this level says a lot. Personally, I deplore this GOAT rubbish. It should be GOTE(Greatest Of The ERA). I would suggest decades of greatness. The 70's ..Roberts, the 80's ..Lawson, the 90's ..Doohan,
The 00's..Rossi, the 10's is a moot point, but Marquez is certainly setting about staking a claim to that mark. Absolutely brilliant. As for pressure its not an issue for him. I'll never forget his run through the pack in 125 back at Estoril,I think when the rain came down. Casey put him under pressure? I think not. Maybe if they were both on Ducati's, but even in that event,I doubt it. Speaking of Ducati, Dovi is proving yet again why Nick's presence within the team has run its course. Alien, Dovi ain't,but his adapatability and consistency deserves mention. Lorenzo,absolutely stunning ride.
One could conceivably see having an alien aboard is good for 3/4 second per lap and only Yamaha and HRC have them. Ducati have none, so no matter what Audi come up with,I don't see Dovi and Cal shaking up positions higher than 6 & 7 next year. Ducati need to stick a really young charger on the bike,an unsallied one that will just ride the nuts off the thing. A bloke unsallied by expectations with Yamaha,HRC and Moto 2 Honda,Bridgestone points of reference. The bike has essentially gone backwards since 2009. And that had all to do with Bridgestone single tyre rule. Dare we call MGP a single tyre all Nipponese bike manufacturer sport for the laurels. It looks that way. If you are not on an RC213V or YZRM1 in a full blown factory outfit you are essentially ruled out of winning on any given Sunday. Cheap fix...Bring back the tyre war.

Total votes: 97

Amazed by...

... the assertion that MotoGP was dull. For those whom hold that so, I suspect you are watching the wrong sport.

One of the reasons I hold GPs in higher regard than superbikes is that is about more than 'just' fairing bashing. There is a subtlety that can and should be enjoyed. There is a mastery of riding, racing and tactics about which I never fail to be impressed.

In 20 years viewing GPs, it has been this way. Any nostalgia is for something that never existed. If you require something different please, watch something different and those of us whom understood the brilliance of Brno can continue to be thrilled.

Total votes: 105

Moto4

That's a good post, im of similar thought. Sometimes when i read post's about how boring the racing is im not sure if these people even get motorcycle racing.
The throttle control and finesse to ride these 250 odd bhp machines through turns at 180km is of "alien" type stuff.

Do yourselves a favour and watch the slo mo's and try understand what is going on.

Total votes: 109

Or get themselves out on a

Or get themselves out on a racetrack and have a go...

Not so easy now is it!

Total votes: 104

now then...

I do hate this 'you're not one of us' type of thing just because someone has a different perspective. I too have been watching everything on wheels with an engine for 30 odd years, even had a go on 2 wheels way, way back, and no, it's not easy, and yes, the skill level is sublime, but honestly, sometimes it IS a bit boring, and sometimes, after waiting for 2 whole weeks for the next race and banishing the family to anywhere but the living room, I have actually fallen asleep by lap 15.

Total votes: 87

Correct

you are. It takes all kinds and when people like me start saying "these people" im already lost and arrogant.

How does that saying go?

"I may not like what you say, but i will fight to the death for your right to say it".

I learn quite a bit from this site and like to read "all posts" to get an idea and different perspectives. It's a great site.

Total votes: 69

Honda /Yamaha

Last year the Yamaha won the Championship, last Sunday the Yamaha was on pole position. Seamless gearbox ? The Yamahas are being outridden period. You know in 1993 I bough a state of the art ZX7 20 years removed any 600 on the market smokes it, this is merely technological evolution. If Honda has evolved more this year so be it, Jorge can't always win, be a man and ride harder @ Silverstone stop blaming the bike you are the Defending Champion please conduct yourself accordingly ! Lost some respect this weekend.

Total votes: 92

thankyou! finally someone with some sense..

...amongst the fanboy ramblings, and biased apologists we do have someone saying it like it is

Total votes: 97

Criticising Lorenzo?

He has been down the pavement twice, been operated on twice, and finishes third behind two of the fastest riders on earth... and you've lost some respect? biased apologists?

Sorry, but I think his personality and nerve endings are made of stainless steel. So what if he has whinge? Which one of them has not in the past?

Eight screws and a plate in the first operation (29 June?) and then the plate's bent in the next race (13 July??), just 6 weeks ago?

Total votes: 102

Agreed

Very well put, Auskid27. JL put in a hell of a performance considering the damage he has done to himself this season, as did DP.

I don't blame him for stating facts - he did all he could in that race, and he more than anyone would know whether the bike needs more from Yamaha if they want him to be challenging the Hondas. So why on earth would people get upset about him stating the facts? Or are these the same people who got upset when Stoner stated facts? : )

Total votes: 93

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Total votes: 102

Honda=Late brake

,stand it up and impede the high corner speed of the Yamaha....seems pretty clear this is the current evolution of the two machines....certainly was this race,as we saw Dani and Jorge return somewhat to physical good form....Vale's struggles are purely a product of this fact,he has always been a late braking fool and this bike simply isn't going to do it well and lacks the grunt to make it work,in any case...his ability to repeatedly race the bike in front of him shows he has plenty of skill,heart and good racing left in him.....the Yamaha has indeed become Jorge's bike and uniquely so...and with the Honda coming together so well over the last 12 months,Jorge needs a solution....being healthy is the first step...clearly both he and Dani can beat Marquez in a race,if not for the title ,as they have done so multiple times when not broken in body....The ongoing rise of the other Honda riders is clearly indicative of it's current melding of all forces....bikes rise and fall as things come together and then move apart over time..the cycle continues.....The Yamaha is clearly not the dominant machine at this point,which does not preclude Lorenzo winning,but with Vale clearly not (yet??) suited to the "Lorenzo Special", the two against one scenario makes it all the more difficult,both mentally and practically....Look for both Dani and Jorge to win more races.MM has it going on,full of skill and confidence....out in front and running free...health,youth,mad skills and a very fast motorcycle are wonderful things.....the pavement remains hard and unforgiving and the competition is not about to hand the crown over without a fight....we shall see....

Total votes: 84

Lorenzo

The loss of respect came from the whining about the bike , not his riding or screws in his collarbone !!

Total votes: 88

New and interested.

Being a fairly new fan of MotoGP I’m still working on understanding the subtleties of the sport at this level. So far I absolutely love it. It's just a completely different world to F1 witch is what I had been watching until I started riding my self. For me at the level that the Yamaha and Honda's are at I find it hard to accept that so much could be down to the bikes as a stand alone object. In car racing so much is up to the cars and the drivers can take so much more for granted when throwing them around. In MotoGP the name of the game seems to be smoothness, physical strength and finite body control from the rider. Getting the bike into the right position on the racing line wile finely moving your body to stay at one with the bike. Dont the italians call motorcycle racers Centaur’s? Aren't the rider and bike one in the same? The race team are there to make the riders feel at one with the bike and the rest is up to the riders. I would argue that this is part of the reason why Lorenzo and Pedrosa have been struggling since their injuries. Now that they are as near as makes no different so 100% we’er starting to see closer racing and more risk taking as they feel more “Normal”. Brno’s fight is a direct result of that I think.

I don’t mean to say that some how the bike is not a factor because it most certainly is. I just think that the mechanical differences between the bikes can’t be more then two to four percent. If that is the case given the different requirements of the tracks and riders that those few percent would get berried under the other factors. If the riders are complaining about the bikes id say their complaining about how the bikes don’t "feel” right, and since it's ultimately their responsibility to communicate what they want to the team they can’t just blame the bike.

Marquez is obviously a phenomenal rider with exceptional skill and I'm anxiously looking forward to the rest of the season to see how his skills and luck play out. Maybe his success is dew to the fact that he’s young and hence still fearless. Many have said his style is rough as he pushes the bike right to the limit witch is a possible testament to that state of mind. Didn’t Lorenzo have a blazing entrance into MotoGP followed by a number of crashes? Maybe the story will be the same with Marquez? It’s almost the human condition for the best players to be nearly unstoppable when their consciousness is at that level. Unfortunately more often then not when they push too far as a result of that mind set they come crashing down to earth in more ways then one. I think that when that happens that we’ll see the true Marc Marquez as he battles to balance his desire to win with the fear of what he’s actually doing.

I’ll always have a soft spot for Valentino Rossi. I mean his legend was one of the reasons I got in to riding and watching MotoGP in the first place. Unfortunately age brings many things to the table other then a slipping of physical skill and experience. To my knowledge Rossi was famous for his adaptive style right? Well now that he’s back at Yamaha things weren’t what he seemed to be expecting. The bike has changed and his requests for basically a completely new setup are a testament that he’s not what he used to be. The old guard always get complacent with the direction things are going and long for the days of their youth. I do think he should retire at the end of this contract and who knows what he mite do next. That said I think it’s pretty amazing he’s been able to keep a really good pace.

Like I said I'm still struggling to see the subtle differences in the sport as well as how the bikes and riders enter and exit corners. If i’ve got any serious holes in my thoughts pleas point them out. I really love this sport and want to know as much as possible.

P.S. Im dyslexic so sorry for any horrible spelling or grammar mistakes.

Total votes: 75

What they want vs what they can have.

One very important thing that seems to be missing from this conversation is a point David made in great detail 2 weeks ago. Yamaha have no more engines, so whatever they'd like to do they are stuck with what they have, which would more than make sense when you look at the faces Jorge was pulling when he got off the bike. He knows he f@cked now. Chassis improvements maybe, but all the engines left will be 'turned down' just to be able to finish the season. Never mind they just better get their ducks ( and quality control) in a row for next year, because this one is over, pretty well.

Total votes: 95

anyone around here remembers

anyone around here remembers or was impressed by lorenzo's passes on marquez ? or is it just marquez marquez all around for most people, like the old rossi days ?

there were 3 great and spectacular overtakes in the race - lorenzo's balls out defense-pass on marc on the outside then inside in that S section turns 3 and 4 (7 laps to go), marquez' sudden and late pass on lorenzo on that left hander a few corners later (7 laps to go) and lorenzo's last corner pass (which to me was surprising and unexpected) on marquez (5 laps to go).

most people seem to remember and talk about only the second of the aforementioned 3, a few seem to care to remember the first one, and no one seems to have noted the third one.

people don't take fair notice of all things when they happen, then they choose (consciously or by nature) to have a selective memory, and then later on they cry and whinge on how someone like lorenzo doesn't battle or can't battle or hardly ever does spectacular overtakes or hardly ever gives it his all in a tense battle and what not, and how only rossi and now marquez are the ones capable to battle, with success or failure notwithstanding.

or maybe everyone just cares about what the race winner did, not what his rivals did to try to win themselves or at least not let the winner have it easy.

Total votes: 84

that's fair

and I'm a guilty as anyone. Even as one who has never been a great fan of JL I think his willingness to duke it out, and his race craft, are under-mentioned.

Total votes: 75

Well said. In fact I'd go further.

In my opinion Lorenzo has shown himself to be as skillful, focused and willing to put himself on the line every single time he gets on a bike as any rider since the days of 500 two strokes. And I think he showed that again on Sunday. Isn't the `one great Champion' at Brno, which David's headline is referring to, Lorenzo? As others have said, maybe it's time this was more widely recognised. Let's remember that while Marquez is coming, he hasn't done it yet!

Total votes: 76

reply reply

He diced it with Marquez for a short time , but seemed to just let Dani go as if he had given up. IMHO he had already lost in his mind, where as Marquez had already won in his mind a lot of this series is mental, confidence etc. earlier in the year I thought Jlo had gotten inside of Dani's head by racing injured and thought that to be the turning point in the championship after Dani crashed himself I thought for sure Jlo would repeat. It seems though that he has lost that mental edge and has become comfortable with watching the Hondas disappear over the horizon. Let him run the seamless gearbox if that will boost his confidence because he surely seems to have lost it ! Maybe the Honda is just that much better and no one else should even show up. I'm sure Bradl and Bautista would love a shot at the podium every week.

Total votes: 73

disagree

It looked to me like he just couldn't keep up with MM, maybe his tyres were shot, he got tired, whatever, but maybe he just figured sunday wasn't the day to risk a further fracture when the chances of winning looked ever more slim. JL is another brainy one on the track, he'd have done the maths. I'm not sure I'd ever believe that at this point in his career he'd succumb to Marquez getting inside his head. JL knows he is more than capable of winning further world championships if the bike is right, and maybe Yamaha do need a kick up the pants. Anyone remember VR giving them hell after Hayden won, and getting the desired result to come back out on top? If JL and VR are both saying their beloved M1 is a bit below par, I'd tend to listen to them.

Total votes: 82

Math(s)

There's one thing that I haven't seen mentioned (but I'm sure has been somewhere);

With a 44 point deficient, Lorenzo would no longer be guaranteed the championship if he won all the remaining races. That wasn't the case after Indy. It's no longer wholly in his hands. He needs help.

When in a similar circumstance in 2011, Lorenzo started talking a lot about trying his best and having to be happy with that and we've seen/heard that sentiment come out this season again.

Total votes: 82

Math(s)

Edit: My apologies, double posted.

Total votes: 83

Marquez

I'm absolutely loving the Marquez phenomenon. It's a pleasure to watch something like this unfolding live in front of your eyes.

I'm not necessarily placing him above Lorenzo or Pedrosa or Stoner at this point, but he appears to be a more complete rider with a wider range of tricks and styles and could very well prove to be a more durable, colorful, and successful quantity. I don't think he has Stoner's raw pace, but he is not far. He may not have Lorenzo's consistency, but he is not far. His aggression seems to exceed Rossi's. And all of that in one package...scary.

What is rather unpleasant is the self-proclaimed hype-haters and logic-mongers taking the lead initiative in building the Marquez hype. These characters react badly when they hear Rossi being credited for Yamaha's development; heck no, it is all Furusawa according to them. It's not important to them that Furusawa himself labels Rossi a genius; they label it as PR talk. However, when Marquez's suspension technician praises Marquez's feedback, these same characters make a story out it. Pure hypocrisy. They have no problem with hype; they just prefer new hype, of their kind and preference.

I don't know if Marquez would be still racing in say 2026; If he is, and as he then struggles for the odd podium against young hotshots, I hope to god that we don't see similar kind of characters arriving newly at the scene and starting their good fight against the Marquez hype; "oh Marquez got lucky back then, he won a lot because he had no competition - an over-the-hill Rossi, under-achieving Pedrosa, retired Stoner, and a mild-mannered corner-speed Lorenzo"

Total votes: 89

The thing about hype is...

you don't have to buy it. If you don't feel it let it pass over you and focus on what is going on that you do enjoy. I very much enjoyed Rossi's rise and reign in MotoGP without owning anything day glo yellow. I enjoyed Stoner's riding immensely as well without adopting the angry and overprotective track dad attitude that followed him. I've grown to admire and respect Lorenzo as a rider and a personality through his unshakable determination and flawless style despite his immature antics in the lower classes. Now I'm really enjoying Marquez. His enthusiasm, aggression, and wild "where will this go" attitude combined with a very effective and flamboyant riding style has won me over completely. None of my enthusiasm of any of the above riders comes at the expense of any of the others. I'm not on any team payroll or share a surname with any of them so I have no reason to boost anyone or cut anyone else down to shore up the pedestal of a given rider. I'm a race fan not a devotee. Right now Marquez is new and exciting and doing things we've not seen quite this way. It's ok to get caught up in the excitement... if you want to.

Total votes: 87

Good post

Thankyou for this post. Its intelligent and written far better than i could.
I agree with all you've said, i love the whole thing about Motogp and i especially enjoyed watching Rossi climb higher and higher. Same with the rest of the riders and now im enjoying Lorenzo and Pedrosa trying to catch Marquez.

Total votes: 82

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Total votes: 75

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Total votes: 86

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