With barely a moment to catch its collective breath, the MotoGP paddock alights at Buriram, in the east of Thailand. The heavy rain which lashed the paddock in Motegi has followed them across the South China Sea, with heavy rain and flooding in many parts of Thailand. Some who chose to drive rather than fly from Bangkok to Buriram reported flooded roads at several points along the way, and fields around the track are also flooded.
Nor is the rain done with MotoGP just yet. Thursday's media duties took place in heavy rain, marshals and circuit workers doing their best to rid the track of the worst of its surface water. More rain is expected over the weekend, though the forecast is very difficult to read. There could be delays to track action on Friday, if the rain is as heavy as predicted. But there are also likely to be a couple of dry sessions spread over the weekend. Right now, the race looks to be wet. But three days out, that is pretty meaningless.
A wet race would both simplify and complicate matters, depending on your point of view. The track in Buriram is one of only two tracks – the other being the Red Bull Ring in Austria – which requires the use of the special, stiffer casing Michelin uses to resist the extremely high loads and temperatures at the two circuits. That is good for most, but not for Aleix Espargaro, the Aprilia rider not a fan of the special tire Michelin brings to the Red Bull Ring.