2008 Jerez MotoGP Preview - The Waiting Is Over

The Qatar round of MotoGP always makes me think of my grandfather. During the first few months of the Second World War, he was sent to Belgium to fight the Germans. Luckily for him, the Germans were otherwise engaged, steamrollering across Poland and subduing Denmark and Norway, leaving my grandfather to trundle around the Low Countries on the back of a truck, wondering if this was what war was supposed to be like.

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Melandri's Future Uncertain At Ducati

When Marco Melandri signed for Ducati, he cannot have foreseen the immense difficulty he would have in getting to grips with the Ducati GP7. Since making the switch from Honda, Melandri has floundered near the back of the field during testing, only managing to stay ahead of the satellite Alice Ducati riders Toni Elias and Sylvain Guintoli. The measure of his difficulties is summed up in the relief Melandri expressed in managing an 11th place finish at the season opener in Qatar.

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Night Racing: The Next Big Thing

The success of the floodlit MotoGP season opener at Qatar, held at the dead of night local time, has opened up a whole host of new perspectives. After the race finished without incident, and generating some spectacular images, a host of race organizers around the world breathed a huge sigh of relief, and started work on their own plans.

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War Of Words, Episode I: Lorenzo vs Pedrosa

When Jorge Lorenzo entered MotoGP, sparks were sure to fly. Lorenzo is both outspoken and flamboyant, and has never been at a loss for words. He has also never been afraid of confrontation, having spent virtually his entire career engaged in sniping at various targets in the paddock. Such was his reputation, indeed, that as part of his contract, Yamaha banned the "Lorenzoland" celebrations, and forced Lorenzo to work with a psychologist to keep his impetuosity in check.

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New MotoGP.com Website In Beta

I am sure that many of you, like me, keep a close eye on the official MotoGP.com website. MotoGP.com is owned and run by Dorna, the organization which runs MotoGP, and contains a host of useful information, images, and videos. Sadly, in its current incarnation, it is also an absolute monstrosity, and a demonstration of the evils of Flash. It is hard to navigate, has limited archiving, difficult to link to, as well as a vast resource hog, slowing even the fastest modern computer to a crawl.

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First Glimpses of 2009 Calendar: China Out, Hungary In?

The 2008 season has barely just begun, but already (and as usual) rumors and speculation has begun about what the 2009 calendar will look like. That we will be coming back to Losail in Qatar was already settled, with Dorna and the QMMF cementing a deal to run the Qatari MotoGP round until at least 2016. And as we suggested here yesterday, the Qatar round will be pushed back to the end of March at the earliest, to allow warmer temperatures, and so that the Jerez round can reclaim its place as the season opener.

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2008 Qatar Race Report - Plus Ca Change

The march of the seasons may well be Mother Nature's way of bringing balance to our hurried and stressful modern lives, but to motorcycle racing fans, it is a maddening annoyance. The onset of wet and windy fall, and the long, dark night of winter, calls an aggravating and nigh-on interminable halt to racing for month upon month.

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2008 Qatar Race Report - Plus Ca Change

The march of the seasons may well be Mother Nature's way of bringing balance to our hurried and stressful modern lives, but to motorcycle racing fans, it is a maddening annoyance. The onset of wet and windy fall, and the long, dark night of winter, calls an aggravating and nigh-on interminable halt to racing for month upon month.

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2008 Qatar Qualifying Practice - Rookies Rock The Grid

The qualifying session for the 2008 Qatar Grand Prix proved once again that running in the late evening is having more ramifications than anyone considered. The planning for this event has been, as ever, extraordinary, but like most well-planned events, there are always things which people overlooked. So far in Qatar, it's been the track temperatures.

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