By the time you read this, I will probably be in transit, flying back home from Qatar, and trying to shift my sleep schedule back to some semblance of normality. Most of all, I will be looking back on an amazing weekend spent in Qatar, thanks to the generosity of the Fiat Yamaha team, and most particularly, their sponsor Fiat. So as a way of expressing my gratitude to them, here's a collection of photos of the Fiat Yamaha Team in action. You as a reader won't be disappointed, though, as all - with the exception of the out-of-focus last shot - come from the lens of Scott Jones, MotoMatters.com friend, photographer, and stellar talent. All of the photos that have appeared on MotoMatters.com from Qatar are available for purchase as large prints from Scott at Turn2Photography.com. You should also check his personal photography blog at scottjones.net.
Before the 20210 World Superbike season began, pundits (including yours truly) took great relish in playing the prognostication game. In this fantasy world, the Xerox Ducati teammates of Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio were the odds-on pre-season favorites. Some, however, conjectured that Haga was so psychologically devastated from flinging away the 2009 championship at the last round at Portimao that he wouldn't be able to go through the same excruciating process this year, but most thought that when push came to shove, Nitro Nori would summon his inner warrior and make yet another serious quest for his first World Superbike championship.
Other sure contenders were thought to be Max Biaggi, aboard an Aprilia RSV4 that would benefit from a year of development, Jonny Rea, also in his sophomore year on the Ten Kate Honda, James Toseland and Chris Vermeulen, who both had something to prove after their demotion from MotoGP. And, oh yeah, Leon Haslam was doing good things in testing on the Alstare Suzuki and was clearly a man to be watched.
One of the best places in the world to watch a MotoGP race - apart from the stands, among the fans - is in the press room. Journalism is supposed to be a lofty profession, whose practitioners raise themselves above the level of the subjective fans, and regard the world with a cool, clear, objective eye. To be fair, for most of the weekend, that's exactly what the journalists attempt to do. But once the lights go out and the racing starts, any pretense of objectivity goes right out of the window, and the journos become ordinary fans once again.
Results and summary of the MotoGP race from Qatar:
Results and summary of the first ever Moto2 race, from Qatar:
Results and summary of the 125cc race at Qatar:
Results of the Warm Up session for the MotoGP class at Qatar:
Results of the Moto2 warm up at Qatar:
Results of the warm up session for the 125cc class at Qatar:
Results of the second World Superbike race at Valencia:
Results of the World Supersport race at Valencia:
Results of World Superbikes race 1 at Valencia: