2023 MotoGP Calendar
The 2023 MotoGP Calendar:
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The 2023 MotoGP Calendar:
The complaint commonly leveled at the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas, is that it does not produce great racing. And this is often true. But not this Sunday. In 2023, the fans who flocked to COTA for MotoGP saw three great races on Sunday, and a whole heap of surprises.
The Moto2 race was a great example of how a track like COTA can produce a tense and exciting race. Marc VDS rider Tony Arbolino and Pedro Acosta of the KTM Ajo squad broke away shortly before the halfway mark and a hard chase ensued. At a track which is as physically demanding as COTA, Acosta knew he had to plan an attack on Arbolino, rather than just try to pass and having to spend the rest of the race battling. The additional energy that would take would leave them both with nothing left to finish the race.
So Acosta waited. When Arbolino ran wide into Turn 1, Acosta seized the lead, but the effort of leading saw him outbrake himself and run a little wide into Turn 12. Arbolino snatched back the lead, while Acosta slid back in behind him. On the last lap, Acosta attacked again into Turn 12, the tight left hander at the end of the back straight, and snatched back the lead.
MotoGP standings after Austin:
Results and summary of the MotoGP race at COTA:
Results and summary of the Moto2 race at COTA:
Moto3 standings after the Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin:
Moto3 standings after the Grand Prix of The Americas in Austin:
Results and summary of the Moto3 race at COTA:
Sprint race number three is in the books, and despite the crashes – three in the ten-lap sprint around the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas – everyone made it back to the pits pretty much in one piece and ready to go for Sunday. After the attrition of Portimão and Argentina, this was a welcome change.
Saturday underlined once again what a massive change the sprint races are for MotoGP. They change everything: there is no such thing as "it's only Friday" any longer, as Friday determines who gets through to Q2 directly, and who has the stress of trying to pass through Q1. With qualifying counting for two races rather than one, a spot on the front two rows is now utterly vital.
Conditions had changed too. A very heavy fall of rain overnight had flooded into some of the temporary offices in the paddock, and left the track green and still damp in the morning. Then, when the sun came out, temperatures soared, track temps creeping up towards the high 40s°C.