MotoGP

The 2015 MotoGP Rider Line Up So Far - Just 4 Seats To Fill

With MotoGP's silly season for 2015 nearing its conclusion, we can draw up a list of contracts signed for next year and beyond. Below is who is going where for 2015, along with what they will be riding and how long their contracts are for:

Guest Blog: Mat Oxley - "The difference between idiot and hero is very small"

MotoMatters.com is delighted to feature the work of iconic MotoGP writer Mat Oxley. Oxley is a former racer, TT winner and highly respected author of biographies of world champions Mick Doohan and Valentino Rossi, and currently writes for Motor Sport Magazine, where he is MotoGP correspondent. We are featuring sections from Oxley's blogs, which are posted in full on the Motor Sport Magazine website.


“The difference between idiot and hero is very small”

Decisions, decisions, decisions… racers make tens of thousands of them every race, and each and every one of them can make the difference between victory and defeat, even between life and death.

With hindsight, there’s no doubt that Marc Márquez made the wrong decision to stay out on slicks as the rain in Spain swept across the Aragon plain on Sunday. But what if he hadn’t crashed and had crossed the line in front of his rivals equipped with rain tyres? We would be in awe of his ability to find grip where no else can. The headlines, no doubt, would’ve suggested he can walk on water.

Danilo Petrucci Confirmed At Pramac For Two Seasons

One of the last few pieces of the rider puzzle for 2015 has slotted into place. Today, Pramac Racing confirmed that they have reached agreement with Danilo Petrucci to race for them for the next two seasons. Petrucci will race the Desmosedici alongside Yonny Hernandez in 2015 and 2016.

The move had been widely expected, with Pramac keen to have at least one Italian rider in the team for the sake of their sponsors. Andrea Iannone had been a useful asset for the team, and they needed an Italian to replace him. The other riders linked to that ride - Loris Baz and Eugene Laverty - were less attractive to Pramac's Italian sponsors.

With the second seat at Pramac taken, that leaves just four seats unfilled. Eugene Laverty is believed to have signed to take the seat at Aspar Honda alongside Nicky Hayden, while Loris Baz is close to a deal with Forward Racing to race the Open Yamaha alongside Stefan Bradl. Only the second seat at Gresini Aprilia, and the second slot at Avintia, aboard the Open Ducati remain unfilled.

Suzuki Press Release: Q&A With Davide Brivio After Suzuki's MotoGP Team Announcement

After the official announcement that Suzuki will be returning to MotoGP, made at the Intermot in Cologne today, the Suzuki press office issued the following press release, containing a question and answer session with Suzuki MotoGP team boss Davide Brivio:


FIVE MINUTES WITH SUZUKI MOTOGP'S DAVIDE BRIVIO

Team Suzuki Press Office – September 30.

Suzuki has unveiled its plans for MotoGP at the Intermot show in Cologne, Germany today, where its 2015 model line-up was revealed to the world’s press.

The Japanese firm has been absent from the Blue Riband race series since 2012, but is back with an all-new bike, a new Team Manager in Davide Brivio and two new riders: Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales.

We spoke to David Brivio at Cologne and asked him about his involvement with the new project.

How long have you been working with the Suzuki MotoGP team?

“Since the beginning, in April 2013 I joined Suzuki and carried on the preparation.”

Year: 
2014

Confirmed At Last: Suzuki To Race In MotoGP From 2015 With Maverick Viñales And Aleix Espargaro

Suzuki have revealed yet another of MotoGP's worst-kept secrets (and the competition has been tough for that claim this year) at the Intermot motorcycle show in Cologne, Germany, officially confirming that they will be returning to MotoGP from next season, after an absence of three seasons. Suzuki team boss Davide Brivio unveiled the latest version of Suzuki's MotoGP bike - now dubbed GSX-RR - and announced that Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales will race for the team. At the same time, Suzuki also confirmed that Randy De Puniet will race as a wildcard on the bike at the final MotoGP round of the season at Valencia.

The official announcement had been a long time coming, despite the riders and team being an open secret. The wait had been down to a request from Suzuki headquarters at Japan, who had wanted to combine the team launch with the launch of Suzuki's 2015 road bike line up at the Intermot show. The presence of senior Suzuki staff at the launch was seen by the team as a powerful display of support by the Japanese factory.

Yamaha Press Release: Q&A With Valentino Rossi After His Crash At Aragon

The Movistar Yamaha team issued the following press release, containing a brief interview with Valentino Rossi. In it, Rossi speaks about his crash, the limited after-effects he felt, and looks forward to the upcoming flyaway races at Motegi, Phillip Island and Sepang:


Q&A with Valentino Rossi following his crash in the opening laps of the Gran Premio Movistar de Aragon

Motorland Aragon (Spain), 29th September 2014

This morning Valentino Rossi woke up at 09.30 and underwent a new medical check with Dr. Michele Zasa from Clinica Mobile.

After the check Valentino returned to the garage where Movistar Yamaha MotoGP members and teammate Jorge Lorenzo were shooting a TV commercial for Movistar.

The following questions were put to Valentino as he missed yesterday’s post-race media debrief and TV interviews.

Q: Valentino, how are you today?

Round Number: 
14
Year: 
2014

2014 Aragon MotoGP Sunday Round Up: Smart Heads vs Risky Manevuers For The Win.

What a difference a day makes. "There is no way to fight with the factory Hondas," Valentino Rossi had said on Saturday. Within a few laps of the start, it turned out that it was not just possible to fight with the Hondas, but to get them in over their heads, and struggling to hold off the Yamaha onslaught. By the time the checkered flag dropped, the factory Hondas were gone, the first RC213V across the line the LCR of Stefan Bradl, nearly twelve seconds behind the winner, Jorge Lorenzo on the factory M1.

What changed? The weather. Cooler temperatures at the start of the race meant the Hondas struggled to get the hard rear tire to work. The hard rear was never an option for the Yamahas, but the softer rear was still working just fine. From the start, Jorge Lorenzo, Valentino Rossi and the surprising Pol Espargaro were pushing the factory Hondas hard. All of a sudden we had a race on our hands. When the rain came, the excitement stepped up another notch. In the end, strategy and the ability to keep a cool head prevailed. The factory Hondas came up short on both accounts at Aragon.

The forecast for Sunday had been unstable all weekend. But conditions on Sunday morning were far worse than anyone had predicted. Heavy rain soaked the track, then thick fog blanketed the track in a cloak of gray, severely limiting vision at key points on the track. More importantly, the fog kept the medical helicopters on the ground. Without medical helicopters, there's no racing. Should a rider be seriously injured, the helicopters need to be able to get them to a hospital within 20 minutes. When the fog descends, that becomes impossible.

2014 Aragon MotoGP Sunday Post-Race Press Releases

Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after a fascinating and thrilling race at Aragon:

Round Number: 
14
Year: 
2014

2014 Aragon MotoGP Race Results: Uncertain Weather

Race Report follows.

2014 MotoGP Championship Standings After Round 14, Motorland Aragon, Spain

MotoGP Championship standings for round 14, 2014

2014 Aragon MotoGP Warm Up Result: Pedrosa Leads From Aoyama On A Drying Track

A dry line was starting to form by the time the MotoGP bikes started their warm up session. Dani Pedrosa topped the timesheets using the hard option wet tires, the rest of the field remaining with the softer wets. Hiroshi Aoyama set the second fastest time, finishing ahead of Andrea Dovizioso. The weather at Alcañiz remains unstable, with a chance of rain, though the fog is starting to lift. Conditions for the race are impossible to predict at the moment.

Results:

2014 Aragon MotoGP Saturday Round Up: Fast Hondas, Yamaha's Defective Tires, Surprising Ducatis, And Unstable Weather

Is Marc Marquez's season going downhill? You might be tempted to say so, if you judged it by the last three races alone. After utterly dominating the first half of the season, Marquez has won only a single race in the last three outings, finishing a distant fourth in Brno, and crashing out of second place at Misano, before remounting to score a single solitary point. Look at practice and qualifying at Aragon, however, and Marquez appears to have seized the initiative once again. He had to suffer a Ducati ahead of him on Friday, but on Saturday, he was back to crushing the opposition. Fastest in both sessions of free practice, then smashing the pole record twice. This is a man on a mission. He may not be able to wrap up the title here, but he can at least win.

The way Marquez secured pole was majestic, supremely confident, capable and willing to hang it all out when he needed. He set a new pole record on his first run of the 15 minute session, waited in the garage until the last few minutes, then went out. He shook off Andrea Iannone, who was trying to get a tow, then when he saw Dani Pedrosa had taken over pole from him, went all out. Despite making a bit of a mess of the final sector, he still took nearly four tenths off his own best lap, demoting Pedrosa to second.

It wasn't just his pole time which was impressive. The race pace he showed in FP4 was fast, a string of high 1'48s and a couple of low 1'49s. The only rider to get anywhere near him was his teammate, Pedrosa knocking out a sequence of 1'49.0s, followed by a handful of high 1'48s. Pedrosa still has a score to settle, and though Marc Marquez is grabbing the headlines, he could find himself with quite a fight on his hands.

2014 Aragon MotoGP Saturday Post-Qualifying Press Releases

Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after qualifying at Aragon:

Round Number: 
14
Year: 
2014

2014 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying Results: Managing Tyres

The first qualifying session was all about whether or not Valentino Rossi would get through to the final session and if he'd have a tyre left to do anything if he got there.

2014 Aragon MotoGP FP4 Results: Marquez And Dovizioso Quickest

Marc Marquez and Andrea Dovizioso recorded the quickest times in this untimed session as the factory Yamahas continued to struggle.

Results:

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