2014 Magny-Cours World Superbike FP1: Guintoli Leads Sykes In France

Sylvain Guintoli pips Tom Sykes in front of his home crowd. 

Results:

2014 Magny-Cours World Supersport FP1: Van Der Mark Quickest

Michael van der Mark opened the weekend ahead of Jack Kennedy and French wild card Lucas Mahais.

Results:

2014 Magny-Cours World Superbike Preview Press Releases

Press release previews from the World Superbike organizers and teams ahead of this weekend's penultimate round at Magny-Cours:

Round Number: 
11
Year: 
2014

Eugene Laverty Confirmed At Aspar MotoGP For 2015

Another piece of the MotoGP puzzle has been fixed into place. It was widely known that Eugene Laverty would be riding a production Honda for the Drive M7 Aspar team in MotoGP next year, but official confirmation of the fact only came today. Laverty is to line up alongside Nicky Hayden aboard the uprated production Honda, now called the RC213V-RS, taking the place of Hiroshi Aoyama.

Laverty's path into the Aspar team was far from straightforward. The Irishman had been in talks with Aspar, who at the time were also talking to replacement rider Leon Camier and Frenchman Loris Baz. Aspar then signed a precontract with both Baz and Laverty, subject to the condition that Aspar could not secure the services of Scott Redding. Once the deadline for Redding's signature passed, Aspar found themselves with two contracts on their hands. They quickly moved to break the contract with Baz, declaring that they had not known that the Frenchman was 1.92m, despite the fact that Baz' height is a matter of public knowledge. That left Laverty in line to take the seat at Aspar, despite having offers from Ducati to ride at Pramac, and having had talks with Forward Yamaha.

The 2015 Moto3 Rider Line Up So Far: Still Plenty Of Question Marks

While the rider line up for the MotoGP is very near to being settled, there are still a lot of things up in the air in the Moto3 class. Though the teams were all required to submit their official entries, and pay a deposit to secure their rides at Aragon, there were only a few official announcements by the end of the weekend. Enough, however, to make a rundown of the latest developments for the 2013 season.

Though this year's title protagonists will be moving on to better things - Jack Miller to MotoGP, Alex Marquez and Alex Rins to Moto2 - the Red Bull KTM and Estrella Galicia teams are likely to be at the forefront in 2015 as well. With the Red Bull KTM team having signed Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder, they are the team which looks most likely to be fighting for the title, against Team Sky VR46's Romano Fenati. The Estrella Galicia team will have a couple of rookies in Fabio Quartararo and Maria Herrera, while Jorge Navarro will have learned a great deal during his first half season in Moto3 replacing Livio Loi.

Bridgestone Press Release - Shinji Aoki Talks About Cold Temperatures At Aragon

As usual, Bridgestone issued a post-race debrief press release on Wednesday, giving their view of how the weekend went. The Motorland Aragon circuit saw some of the coldest temperatures all year, as well as heavy rain on Sunday. In the press release, Shinji Aoki discusses the challenges faced by Bridgestone at the Aragon track:


Aragon MotoGP™ debrief with Shinji Aoki
Wednesday, October 1 2014

Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium & Hard; Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo secured his first win of the 2014 MotoGP™ season in a chaotic Aragon Grand Prix which started dry, yet finished in soaking wet conditions after a heavy downpour late in the race. Lorenzo won ahead of NGM Forward Racing’s Aleix Espargaro, who took second place for his first ever MotoGP™ rostrum, and Ducati Team’s Cal Crutchlow, who took third place for his first podium with the Italian team.

Round Number: 
14
Year: 
2014

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 Moto2 And Moto3 Sunday Post-Race Press Releases

Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after the races at the Motorland Aragon circuit:

Round Number: 
14
Year: 
2014

2014 Aragon MotoGP Race Results: Uncertain Weather

Race Report follows.

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