Latest MotoGP News
The penultimate chapter in the Simoncelli-Pedrosa saga (the closing chapter of which will see Pedrosa return to racing, either at Silverstone or more likely at Assen) has now been written. Marco Simoncelli has met with Race Direction to discuss the events of Le Mans, which saw Simoncelli and Pedrosa crash, injuring the Spaniard and the Italian awarded with a ride-through.
Here's the great question that plagues MotoGP: How come Formula One teams - even backmarkers - generate many tens or even a couple of hundred million euros in sponsorship, while the most successful MotoGP team of recent years fielding the current World Champion cannot persuade a title sponsor to stump up between 5 and 10 million? The answer, of course, lies in the way in which the sport is promoted. MotoGP has a very strong appeal to its core audience, but it has struggled to break through into the mainstream.
Dani Pedrosa is to miss his home Grand Prix at the Montmelo circuit near Barcelona, Catalunya. After breaking his collarbone in the crash with Marco Simoncelli at Le Mans, Pedrosa faced a race against the clock to be fit for Barcelona, focusing all of his efforts on undergoing physiotherapy and physical rehab to make the plated collarbone strong enough so that he could race on it.
The aftermath of the crash between Marco Simoncelli and Dani Pedrosa at Le Mans is now spiralling rapidly out of control. The ride-through penalty awarded by Race Direction (for "riding in an irresponsible manner, which could cause danger to others") caused a good deal of controversy around the world, and just as the affair appeared to be dying down, the situation was reignited when Race Direction announced that Simoncelli would be called into a meeting with them at Barcelona.
Marco Simoncelli has been called to face Race Direction at Barcelona, to answer questions about the incident between himself and Dani Pedrosa at the Le Mans Round of MotoGP. Below is the official press release, analysis to follow:
Statement from the MotoGP Race Direction
The Race Direction will call Italian rider Marco Simoncelli during the Catalunya Grand Prix this week, to further discuss the incident during the MotoGP race at the French Grand Prix in Le Mans.
The return of the 1000cc MotoGP bikes in 2012 is keenly awaited, and testing for the 2012 season is now well underway. Ducati has had two days of testing at Jerez back in April, while Casey Stoner put in two days on the Honda at Jerez earlier this month.
With the names of the teams admitted to the next stage of the entry process for the 2012 MotoGP season, attention is turning to who will be supplying the future teams with bikes. It is an open secret that Norton have submitted a request for two grid slots for next season, entering as a factory team - therefore limited to 9 engines for a season and 21 liters of fuel. But the more interesting prospect is who will be riding what as a CRT team, with a range of possibilities open.
Behind the glamour, passion and engineering excellence that is MotoGP lies a world which receives a lot less attention, but is at least as important: the world of finance. For running a motorcycle road racing world championship costs money, and though the goal of any enterprise - including running a world championship - is to make a profit, in a world of declining motorcycle sales and economic uncertainty, making money in motorcycle racing is no easy feat.
Dani Pedrosa has finally made a decision. After two days in hospital mulling over the best course of action, Pedrosa has finally decided to have surgery to have a titanium plate fitted to fix his right collarbone, just a month after having surgery to have the plate in his left collarbone removed.
When Valentino Rossi broke his leg at Mugello last June, he was forced to miss the next three races, the first time he had done so since entering the World Championship back in 1996. The first of the races Rossi missed was the British Grand Prix at the newly restored venue of Silverstone, the track layout modified especially for the return of MotoGP. As a result of that accident, Rossi was the only rider left on the grid who had not ridden at the Silverstone circuit, and as the track counted as new on the calendar, the Italian was still entitled to test there to learn the layout.
One of the advantages of not having a title sponsor is the freedom to use special liveries on your motorcycle as and when you see fit. Throughout the preseason, while Yamaha haggled over potential title sponsorship deals with companies such as Telefonica, Petronas and AirAsia, in the back of their minds, the Japanese factory knew that if they failed to secure a title sponsor, they would be able instead to use the season - and Jorge Lorenzo's #1 plate - to promote their own brand in their 50th anniversary year in world championship motorcycle racing.