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.
How tyres could decide the 2015 MotoGP title
Let’s do some maths: nine races gone and nine to go, so it’s halfway time when we get to examine the past with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight and pretend we’ve got even the slightest clue about what’s going to happen next.
If we take Sunday’s German GP and extrapolate that result all the way to Valencia, Marc Márquez will record a famous comeback world-title victory. However, if Márquez, Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo each win three of the remaining nine races, while recording podium finishes in the other six, then Rossi will most likely make history with a 10th world title, 18 years after his first. The possibilities are endless, of course, though it might be fun if someone fed the data into a supercomputer. Please be my guest…
What the supercomputer would fail to take into account is tyres. But MotoGP runs a control-tyre rule, so all the riders run the same tyres, right?
Not exactly. During the 18-race season Bridgestone make a total of 17 different rear tyres available, usually limited to two different types per race. So, not much room for personal advantage or disadvantage? In fact, even within this narrow allocation there is room for Rossi or Márquez to find more speed than Lorenzo with one tyre, and vice versa.
Read the rest of Mat Oxley's blog on the Motor Sport Magazine website.