2023 MotoGP Calendar
The 2023 MotoGP Calendar:
- Read more about 2023 MotoGP Calendar
- Log in or register to post comments
The 2023 MotoGP Calendar:
A hat-trick of wins for Alvaro Bautista, two Sunday podiums for Michael Ruben Rinaldi and even a double race win in the Supersport class meant that Australia was absolutely perfect for Ducati. With his likely title rivals faltering it was even better for Bautista. Steve English looks back on Round 1 of the Superbike World Championship
Perfect weekend for Bautista and Ducati
Stop the presses: Ducati are a juggernaut! It’s hardly news that Ducati, winners of both MotoGP and WorldSBK titles in 2022, are strong. It was perhaps a little bit startling to see just how strong they were in Phillip Island for the opening round of the Superbike season though. With four bikes inside the top five, they were able to take advantage of Kawasaki’s stuttering start to the campaign and a crash for Toprak Razgatlioglu but even so it was a perfect start to the campaign for them.
With Axel Bassani and Philipp Oettl finishing fourth and fifth in Sunday’s 22 lap finale it was clear just how good the Panigale V4R was working in Australia. It was also likely that Alvaro Bautista would claim a hat-trick of race wins at Round 1 and that Michael Ruben Rinaldi would make progress and be strong, but Bassani and Oettl’s Sundays were very newsworthy.
World Superbike standings after the Australian round at Phillip Island:
World Supersport standings after the second race at Phillip Island:
World Superbike standings after the sprint race:
In the final race of the weekend, after investigation of his crash with Dominique Aegerter in the morning's sprint race, Remy Gardner would earn himself a long lap penalty for irresponsible riding. The long lap loop is at Miller Corner. The temperature was up on this morning and a warm and dry twenty two laps would determine the results. Everyone had the same tyres.
Yari Montella and Adrian Huertas were ruled unfit after their crash and would not take part in World Supersport race two which should be eighteen laps of a windy Phillip Island with a slightly altered grid due to the missing riders. Geese would affect the race.
World Superbike's fastest sprint of the year was dry but with the traditional Phillip Island wind. Ten laps would determine the grid position for this afternoon's race and everyone was on the same soft tyres.
World Supersport standings after the first race at Phillip Island
WorldSBK standings after the first race at Phillip Island