Silverstone, Great Britain

2016 MotoGP Provisional Calendar Updated - Four Races Changed, Silverstone Moves To September

The FIM have released another provisional calendar for the MotoGP series, in response to yet another shake up of the F1 calendar by Bernie Ecclestone. With F1 and MotoGP having an informal agreement not to have their dates clash, and with MotoGP losing out in terms of TV audience whenever they do, the MotoGP calendar released in September had too many conflicts with F1.

As a result of those clashes, four races have now been moved to different dates. The German Grand Prix at the Sachsenring has been shifted back a week to 17th July. Silverstone, scheduled to be held on the 17th, has been moved to the 4th September. The Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang has been moved from the start to the end of the Asia-Pacific triple header, and will now be run on 20th October. That shift means that the Valencia race has been pushed back a week, to 13th November.

Provisional 2016 MotoGP Calendar Released: Austria In, Indy Out, Silverstone Moved

The FIM today released a provisional calendar for MotoGP in 2016, featuring much that was expected and a few surprises. The calendar will once again have 18 races, with Indianapolis dropped and Austria taking its place. The biggest change in the calendar is the moving of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, which vacates its late August slot for the middle of July.

That move, and the scheduling of Austria and Brno back to back, will not be popular with the circuits. The British MotoGP round comes just three weeks after the F1 race at Silverstone, due to be held at the end of June. Silverstone will fear that having the two biggest events of the year in the space of a month will mean that they cannibalize attendance, with spectators choosing to attend either F1 or MotoGP. When there were two months between the two races, the chances of fans attending both were greater.

As for Brno and Austria, the Brno circuit feared that having Austria a week before their race would see German fans choosing to go to Austria rather than Brno, with an impact on attendance. So far, though, Dorna has prevailed in discussions.

Everything You Wanted To Know About MotoGP's 2016 Unified Software, But Were Afraid To Ask

2016 heralds a new era for MotoGP. Two major changes take place to the technical regulations: Michelin replaces Bridgestone as the official tire supplier (for more background on that, see the interview we did at Brno with Michelin boss Piero Taramasso), and everyone will be forced to switch to the spec electronics package, managed by Dorna and developed by Magneti Marelli.

Much confusion surrounds the introduction of spec electronics. Firstly, because there are so very few people who actually understand the role of electronics in motorcycle racing, it being a dark and mysterious art for fans, media, even riders. Secondly, because the adoption of spec electronics has been a process of constant negotiation between manufacturers, Dorna and Magneti Marelli, as they try to reach a compromise which is acceptable to all parties. That has resulted in the rules being changed a number of times, with such changes not always being communicated directly or clearly to outside parties.

So where do we stand now, and what is the process? I spoke to Corrado Cecchinelli, Dorna's head of technology for MotoGP, on progress with the electronics, and especially the spec software package, ahead of the 2016 season.

The 2016 MotoGP Hardware Package

Guest Blog: Mat Oxley - Rossi and the silver screen 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.

Rossi and the silver screen

The church bells in Tavullia rang out on Sunday afternoon, as they always do when the town’s local hero wins a Grand Prix. I only know this because I watched the new MotoGP documentary Hitting the Apex last week.

The film’s advertised stars are Valentino Rossi, Jorge Lorenzo, Casey Stoner, Dani Pedrosa, Marc Márquez and Marco Simoncelli, but (in my mind at least), its greatest stars are Tavullia’s priests, Don Cesare Stefani and Don Giuseppe Signoretti.

The pair sit in their church (called, oh the irony, the Church of San Lorenzo the Martyr), remembering the last Saturday of June 2013, when they rang the bells to celebrate the Assen victory that marked Rossi’s return to the top step after two miserable seasons that were surely the beginning of his inevitable decline into retirement.

Scott Jones Shoots Silverstone - Rainy Race Day

In the wet, there was only ever going to be one winner from this battle

Clear visors make watching motorcycle racing in the rain even more interesting

Smoke, steam, or spray? You choose

Bridgestone Press Release: Shinji Aoki On Racing On Wet Tires At Silverstone

British MotoGP™ debrief with Shinji Aoki
Tuesday, September 1 2015

Bridgestone slick options: Front: Extra-soft, Soft & Medium; Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre options: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)

The 2015 British Grand Prix was won in dramatic style by Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi who mastered the wet conditions at Silverstone to win ahead of Danilo Petrucci and Andrea Dovizioso.

A dry race was on the cards until a late change in the weather resulted in all riders riding into pit lane during the warm up lap to swap to their bikes fitted with wet tyres, resulting in race control deciding to restart the race. In the end all riders started and completed the race on the soft compound wet tyres front and rear as the rain continued for the full duration of the British Grand Prix.

Q&A with Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department

Round Number: 

Scott Jones Shoots Silverstone - Saturday Qualifying

Bradl The Brilliant Bavarian. Pretty good on an Aprilia too.

Bradley Smith. The sixth best motorcycle racer in the world, at the moment

Speed. Andrea Iannone in motion

2015 Silverstone MotoGP Post-Race Press Releases

Press Releases from the teams, Bridgestone and others after Sunday's soaked MotoGP race:

Round Number: 

2015 Silverstone Moto2 And Moto3 Post-Race Press Releases

Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after Sunday's races at Silverstone:

2015 Silverstone MotoGP Sunday Round Up: Controlling The Uncontrollable, And Championships Drawing Closer

The key to success in motorcycle racing is to control the variables which you can control, and adapt to the ones which you can't. The British round of MotoGP at Silverstone turned out to be all about those variables, the controllable and the uncontrollable, about right and wrong choices, and about adapting to the conditions.

The one variable over which those involved in motorcycle racing don't have any control is the weather. Especially at Silverstone, especially at the end of summer. That it should rain is utterly unsurprising. That it should rain during a MotoGP race even more so. The outcome of the MotoGP race – and in fact, the outcome of all three races at Silverstone – was entirely predictable: the rider who was both best prepared and best able to adapt to the conditions won. Behind the winners – Valentino Rossi, Johann Zarco and Danny Kent – came a mixture of those who adapted and those who didn't, those who had controlled the variables, and those who had overlooked some of the variables they could control.

Rain may have been predictable on Sunday, but the timing of the rain created an entirely unpredictable situation. The Moto2 race had started in the wet, the track drying after the rain eased off, wet tires getting chewed up as the laps reeled off. The MotoGP riders went to the grid on a track with a clear dry line, slick tires the right choice for the conditions, though there were a couple of corners where the riders had their doubts. Reports coming in to Race Direction from the marshal posts around the track said the track was dry, the fine drizzle falling not making an impact on the track. The driver of the safety car reported spotting on the windscreen during his lap of the circuit before the start of the warm up lap. Race Director Mike Webb declared a dry race with five minutes to go to the start, and with the keen sense of irony which the weather gods always seem to possess, that proved to be the signal for the rain to start getting heavier, especially around the southern end of the circuit.

2015 Moto3 Championship Standings After Round 12, Silverstone, Great Britain

Championship standings for round 12, 2015

2015 Silverstone Moto3 Race Result: Cool Head Prevails In A War Of Attrition

Result and summary of the Moto3 race at Silverstone:

2015 MotoGP Championship Standings After Round 12, Silverstone, Great Britain

MotoGP Championship standings for round 12, 2015

2015 Silverstone MotoGP Race Report: Rain Produces Plenty Of Surprises

Results and summary of a fascinating MotoGP race at Silverstone:

2015 Moto2 Championship Standings After Race 12, Silverstone, Great Britain

Championship standings for round 12, 2015
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