MotoGP is set to make its debut at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimao in November, as the last race of the 2020 season, and as a brand new track on the calendar, the teams, factories, and riders have no data on the circuit. To help them prepare for the race, Dorna has organized a test at the circuit ahead of the race.
The timing of the test is a little unfortunate. The test is due to take place on October 7th and 8th, directly before the French Grand Prix at Le Mans. Though only a limited number of riders are due to take to the track - one from each team and factory, with the exception of KTM and Aprilia, the factories who have concessions for the 2020 season - those riders face a punishing schedule. Two days of testing at Portimao on Wednesday and Thursday, a flight to Le Mans on Thursday night, then practice for the French Grand Prix on Friday morning. That is then the first weekend of three, with a double-header at Aragon following on from Le Mans.
Test riders will also be present, including Jorge Lorenzo, making his return at last for Yamaha. Team boss Maio Meregalli told MotoGP.com pitlane reporter Simon Crafar that Lorenzo would be returning at the Portimao test, logistics issues having prevented him from testing earlier. Throughout the pandemic period, Yamaha was unable to fly their Japanese engineers to Europe to work at the test, and so switched their testing strategy to test at Japanese tracks with their Japanese test riders.
The press release from Dorna announcing the test appears below:
Portimão test to take place in October
Newly-announced venue set to host two-day test for manufacturer test teams and some MotoGP™ class riders
Thursday, 17 September 2020
Following the announcement that the 2020 FIM MotoGP™ World Championship season finale will take place at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimão, a two-day test at the venue can now be confirmed. This will take place on Wednesday the 7th and Thursday the 8th of October, just before the Shark Helmets Grand Prix de France.
The test is primarily for MotoGP™ manufacturer test teams and will provide valuable data to premier class teams, as well as technical suppliers, ahead of Portimão’s debut on the calendar.
Test riders present will include Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha), Michele Pirro (Ducati), Dani Pedrosa (KTM) and Stefan Bradl (Honda).
Some MotoGP™ class riders will also be present on Wednesday the 7th of October. They will be strictly limited to riding street machinery in order to familiarise themselves with the track.
The provisional entry list of MotoGP™ class riders is as follows:
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team)
Jack Miller (Pramac Racing)
Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP)
Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing)
Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu)
Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3)
Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing)
Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing)
Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing)
Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini)
Alex Marquez (Repsol Honda Team)
Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3)
Bradley Smith (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini)
Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol)
The final entry list of MotoGP™ class riders will published once confirmed.