Press Release From Silverstone On Cancellation Of British Grand Prix

The Silverstone Circuit issued the following press release following the cancellation of the British round of MotoGP at Silverstone on Sunday:


Statement from Silverstone Managing Director Stuart Pringle regarding the cancellation of today’s GoPro British MotoGP™ Grand Prix at Silverstone

August 26, 2018

“Firstly and most importantly I would like to apologise to all of the race fans for the most trying and foulest of days at Silverstone. I am truly sorry this has happened. If I had known fans would have to wait for six hours in these conditions with this outcome, I would have taken the decision to cancel the event at midday.

“We were willing to cancel the meeting much earlier but I was assured by Dorna that the teams were willing to race if conditions improved.

“I’m very conscious of the amount of money people have spent on this event. We will be contacting all customers next week to explain what we are doing about the cancellation of this event.

“Nobody is more disappointed by the outcome of today than me and the incredibly hard-working team at Silverstone, who have done everything in their power to try and ensure the race could happen.

“It was not our decision to cancel the racing. This was a sporting matter not under Silverstone control and was a decision made by the riders and Dorna, along with the Safety Commission and Race Direction.

“A plan was made at midday today in consultation with Dorna and Race Direction. We looked closely at the weather predictions provided by the Met Office with whom we were in regular contact all afternoon. The further delay this afternoon was due to the forecast of the rain subsiding, however the final decision was made without our knowledge or input. We kept the decision to race open in good faith, however this was taken out of our hands.

“All the work we have done here to make Silverstone a better place for motorcycle racing has been done with the best of intentions. We will be making further investigations into this matter immediately after the Bank Holiday to understand whether our newly resurfaced track played a part in today’s inability to stage races.

“We will be reviewing all the data we have on the track and gathering more, and together with the contractor, Aggregate Industries, a full investigation will be carried out.

“Once again my sincere personal apologies for today’s events. Can I also extend my thanks and gratitude to all of the marshals, medics, security, catering, track and everyone else working on the event this weekend for their extremely hard work and dedication in trying to keep this event open.”

Source: 
Round Number: 
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2018

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“The further delay this afternoon was due to the forecast of the rain subsiding, however the final decision was made without our knowledge or input. We kept the decision to race open in good faith, however this was taken out of our hands.”

“We will be making further investigations into this matter immediately after the Bank Holiday to understand whether our newly resurfaced track played a part in today’s inability to stage races.”

Setting up to be handbags 2018.  Your resurfaced track is definitely “the” part that played in the inability to race.  The riders were giving the track the business on Friday, calling it a first class cawk up.  Looks like Silverstone are pointing the finger at Dorna, Race Direction, the riders, and even naming their contractor.  Toys are being tossed outta the pram.  Won’t be good for anyone.  That multi-rider pileup was dangerous, treacherous, with some very lucky riders and one unlucky in hospital.  I think the riders made the right call after seeing that.  Obviously this press release isn’t getting a good scrutiny by a PR person for it fails to mention Tito at all and he got the worst of Silverstone this weekend.  Damn shame.  

This appears a concise and honest statement. Forget PR polish, such a disaster (for that is what this was) deserves the simple truth. Now we know. The riders cancelled this race and Dorna cannot manage a bit of understandable rider wariness, whilst teams like Honda and maybe Yamaha manipulate the day for their own benefit.

England and Wales is still a major part of the U.K. last time I checked and it is a bank holiday today, and many people could have attended or watched on TV or, wonder of the modern age, recorded it. At least that would be some recompense for the poor blighters who sat or stood in miserable conditions for hours. The Racesafe team, largely volunteers, would probably have coped too.

As mentioned elsewhere on this site, very eloquently and correctly, Rabat was in large part the architect of his own misfortune. I too am amazed that riders walk away with their backs to a live circuit with hardly a glance and seemingly lost in their “What shall I say to the team?” excuse list.

The Bumps of Silverstone did not cause this problem. We hear of the skills of riders in feeling out the grip and remembering where it lays in each corner. You don’t go as fast in the wet as the dry. In the really wet you go slower. I know where water lays on some tracks and how to avoid it.

Miller and Zarco, and perhaps other riders were right - it was raceable and they owed something to the fans to put a race on. Money has nothing to do with it. It is a very safe circuit to fall off on - extensive run-off as Miller showed this weekend and multiple others have shown over time, and it only affected a part of the circuit. 90- 95% was ansolutely fine.

A massive screw-up and I don’t blame Silverstone at all now I have read this. Over to you Dorna to give the fans all their money back - after all you cannot put a price on safety and your credibility. 

 

It was an almost unanimous dicision by all riders present not to race, the only objection was Miller. The only non attendants were Dovi and Rossi and when questioned they both agreed they didnt want to race either. If you were fine with Miller having a race by himself, thats one thing but Dorna can't force the other 21 other riders to cirulate the track with him (source below).

The issue wasn't a wet track, the issue was standing water and the resulting aquaplaning. You can't "feel out grip" in conditions where your tires are not touching the surface of the track.

If 95% of the professionals in an situation deem it unsafe I don't understand everyone beign so incensed that they didnt get to see the event. Yes it was unfortunate BUT neither of us were risking our necks out there. 

As for the comment on Tito being a large part of his large part the architect of his own misfortune, perhaps the 21 riders took it upon themselves to NOT be the architect of their misfortunes as you so ineloquently put it? 

<https://www.gpone.com/en/2018/08/25/motogp/marquez-with-rain-like-in-fp4...

and a bit churlish to ask a rider to effectively walk backwards through a gravel trap. Nothwithstanding the shock and effort to get away, walking backwards through a gravel trap is nigh on impossible, try it one day-or if in the UK in winter, try it in snow! It’s why you hardly ever see Marshall’s doing it, they spend more time in them than anyone else and they know...Small point maybe but the chaos of a crash, especially multiple and in such conditions renders any kind of logic at the time unenforceable; we can sit in the comfort of our living room with dog on lap (as mine is right now!) and analyse it to death, in the end it’s just moving the deckchairs around on the Titanic..

I'd say cancelling was the correct decision. The water wasn't draining. I also think they were right to keep hanging on (painful though it was for us around the track) since there were 2 or 3 periods of weaker rain where the sweepers / brushes were definitely winning at Vale.

However, running on Monday seems to have been rejected, even though (according to unconfirmed reports) the staff and marshalls were prepared to turn up again - bless their cotton socks.

I think the crowd lost badly on this one. Why? I don't think riders would have rejected a Monday run - everyone loves to race. I presume Silverstone wouldn't want this much embarassment. It can only be the team bosses that shot this down.

So, in summary:
- Silverstone initiated the resurfacing cockup
- team bosses completed the deed

Still drying my kit 12 hours later, but a minor detail compared to Tito's broken leg.

Monday racing was ruled out by some teams which have 2 days Aragon testing booked in on Wednesday from what I read - wouldn't have been logistically possible for them.

Replying to my own post (not good form, I know), there was a separate issue raised elsewhere - those of police and traffic control.

Those two aspects are outside the circuit's control, and may not have been quite so easy to re-arrange for a second day, so my summary may be a little too harsh. That, or I'm mellowing now everything has dried out. :-)

If it had lashed down at any time since the resurfacing, like it normally would, this wouldn't have happened.

A crazy summer.

Props to Miller and Zarco. 

 

Grab comfy chair and get ready for a long, drawn out legal process.

I wonder if this puts Silverstone in jeopardy for 2019, if the safety commission deems it unfit for next year.  Managing Director Stuart Pringle is saying all the right things... we'll see.

was the point about riders in gravel traps. I didn't and wouldn't suggest anyone should walk backwards but being alert to what's going on and turning your head towards the potential threat is the important thing and works just fine. I have watched many riders walk away without a single glance and that was the point being made - we are all responsible for our own safety and marshalls cannot and should not be expected to take sole responsibility. Whilst some may be dazed/confused/concussed and marshalls can be seen leading riders away from the track, most are not so affected. Marshalls themselves now utilise spotters whilst they work to clear incidents and as riders are simply required to remove themselves from the scene it would be sensible that they also keep their eyes on the action.

I feel very sorry for Rabat and, having heard that his femoral artery was cut, his situation may have been extemely serious. He was very unlucky to receive such a degree of injury and being hit by a bike was clearly the key point. Such multi-bike incidents are not uncommon in MotoGP/2/3 and the point I was making is that Rabat's injury was caused by multiple factors and not simply due to the weather or the track condition.

Similar to the comment I made on the Saturday round up post.  There wasn’t really clear vision of Rabat, but from the account of Rins, he was walking back to his bike.  This would suggest he was mobile and relatively injury free prior to getting hit by the bike.  I know others have said it is not practical to walk backwards but you can exit a gravel trap to the side and climb over a tyre wall, all the while keeping an eye on track whilst you do so.  If you've ever had a break down or an accident on a freeway bridge or overpass with small emergency lane and no way of getting off .... scary... never took my eyes off the oncoming traffic and felt very vulnerable.

I hope Tito recovers quickly (no femoral artery cut as initially reported), but it would be a fair assessment to make that he contributed to the situation he found himself in and if he had of made a concerted effort to prioritise exiting the gravel trap first instead of going back to his bike, he wouldn't be facing an uphill recovery period.

though any Marshall crew should always have a spotter. I take all your points but I was there and actually in the region of the crash and when something so chaotic happens in such horrendous conditions (and I don’t use that word lightly), it becomes almost a damage limitation exercise. There are certain things you cannot prepare for, sadly this was one of them and yes, very sad for an improving Tito Rabat.