MotoGP

Tire Allocation Changed For 2023 - Michelin To Bring Just 2 Rear Compounds

There is to be a reduction in the choice of rear compounds from the 2023 MotoGP season. Today, the Grand Prix Commission announced that from next year, the teams and riders would have a choice of only two compounds, instead of the current three. The number of rear tires per race weekend would remain unchanged, but the number of compounds would be reduced.

The change has been made in response to the way the teams are now using tires. At most races, riders are choosing between two of the three compounds for the race, and keeping the soft only to set a fast lap, either for qualifying or in FP2 and FP3 to secure a spot in Q2. This means Michelin ship a lot of tires around the world, many of which go unused. By focusing on just two rear compounds, the teams should have a clearer choice and be able to focus on the race.

The change was requested by Michelin, but met with overwhelming approval from the teams.

The FIM press release appears below:

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2022 Barcelona MotoGP FP4 Result: Aleix Espargaro Asserts His Dominance

The final practice session of the premier class was a good opportunity for some tyre experiments, with all the options getting an outing during the 30-minute session. Aleix Espargaro’s experiment was running full race distance on a set of mediums and it seemed to be a very successful one, the Spaniard boasting impeccable consistency and topping the session by a tenth of a second. In a familiar flashback from last weekend, Marco Bezzecchi was in close proximity, together with Fabio Quartararo – the reigning world champion two tenths off top spot.

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Barcelona MotoGP Notes From Pit Lane

A few thoughts on things I saw walking up and down pit lane.

First, it is clear that teams are worried about tire temperature. The factory Ducatis, the factory Yamahas, and even Andrea Dovizioso were using the silver wheels, using special paint to dissipate heat more effectively.

Aprilia appear to have the most sorted motorcycle, judging by the parts and tools in the garage. Where other teams and factories have shocks, fork springs, and even swingarm linkages (Suzuki) lying in the garage, Aprilia are just changing tires. That is ominous for the rest of the grid.

As one of the factory KTM riders left pit lane, a caught a glimpse behind the bottom of the fairing. It looked like they have a lot of hydraulics there, which are most likely used to control the ride-height device. Locating it under the bike is ideal in terms of weight distribution.

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2022 Barcelona MotoGP FP3 Result: Aleix Espargaro In A League Of His Own

MotoGP machines were unleashed in another beautiful low grip morning in Barcelona and spent much of their time chasing a precious Q2-worthy flying lap. Despite some early eagerness from the likes of Fabio Quartararo and Maverick Viñales, they were no match for the man of the moment, Aleix Espargaro, who posted the first 1:38 time of the weekend to go over half a second quicker than the opposition.

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Barcelona MotoGP Friday Round Up: How To Go Fast When There Is No Grip, And Why Aprilia are Favorites

Normally after the first day of practice for a MotoGP race, everyone says, "it's only Friday, you can't read too much into the times". But not here. At Barcelona, everyone is asking how they can stop the Aprilias. Aleix Espargaro was fastest on a soft tire and in race trim, and Maverick Viñales was quick over a single lap – his weakness so far with Aprilia - and managed a respectable race pace. If one or both qualify well on Saturday, nobody will see which way they went.

The gap over the rest is impressive. Aleix Espargaro was three tenth faster than his Aprilia teammate, while Viñales was two tenths quicker than Enea Bastianini in third. And that was with Viñales feeling he hadn't get everything possible out of the soft tire he put in at the end of FP2. "When I put the soft, the jump was huge so I didn’t take enough profit of the soft. The difference was very big," the Spaniard told us.

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HRC Press Release: Fourth Surgery For Marc Marquez Deemed A Success

Marc Marquez has undergone a successful surgery on his right arm. The operation consisted of removing two screws from the old plate on the back of his arm, cutting the humerus, rotating it by 30 degrees, and inserting a new plate on the front of the humerus to fix the bone in place. Marquez will remain in the US to start his recovery, before returning to Spain.

The press release from the Repsol Honda team appears below:


Successful surgery for Marc Marquez

Marc Marquez has completed surgery on his right humerus at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. The medical team have deemed the operation a success as Marquez’s recovery begins.

Lasting three hours, Dr. Joaquin Sanchez Sotelo and his team performed a humeral osteotomy. The surgery was deemed a success without complications by Dr Sanchez Sotelo as Marc Marquez entered the post-operative stage of his treatment at the Mayo Clinic.

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Barcelona MotoGP Thursday Round Up: Managing Tires, Honda Hinting At Espargaro's Future, And Silly Season Kicks Off

Mugello and Barcelona are widely regarded as very similar circuits. Both have a long, fast straight approached from a fast, sweeping corner. Both have long corners, where the ability to carry corner speed counts. There are differences too: Barcelona does not have as many left-right combination corners, where riders have to choose which corner to take perfectly and which corner to leave themselves open to attack.

But the biggest difference between Mugello and Barcelona is in the asphalt. Mugello is pretty tough on tires, mainly because of the high speeds involved. But Barcelona is a grueling assault on Michelin's race rubber, the circuit featuring the deadly combination of high speeds, long corners, an abrasive surface, and scorching track temperatures.

That makes the race a war of attrition. Do not push too early, or you burn up your tires and will struggle to reach the finish line. But be too gentle, and you risk losing touch with the leaders, and are left to hope they will use up their tires before the end of the race. It is a game of patience.

Hot and cold

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