The Grand Prix Commission, MotoGP's ruling body, met at Brno today, and as expected, they finalized the demise of the two-stroke engine from Grand Prix racing. As of 2012, the 125cc class is to be replaced by Moto3, a 250cc single-cylinder four-stroke engine, with a maximum bore of 81mm.
Unlike Moto2, however, the class will not use a spec engine, but instead will use rules to help keep costs down. Any manufacturer building a Moto3 engine must sell it at 10,000 euros or less, and be prepared to supply at least 15 riders. The idea is to prevent factories from pouring large amounts of resources into engine development, and then making it available to only one or two teams, thus assuring themselves of the valuable publicity that a certain victory would provide. More than one manufacturer has already shown an interest in the class, though the requirement to supply at least 15 riders becomes a little difficult to enforce as more manufacturers get involved. After all, if there are 4 manufacturers and 32 riders on the grid, it is hard to test whether they are all willing to supply 15 riders if the interest in the engines is divided equally among the various teams.
The meeting also confirmed a few other open issues, including Suzuki being allowed 9 engines per season instead of 6. The press release was diplomatic enough not to mention Suzuki, however, referring instead to manufacturers who have not won 2 dry races in the past two years. The extra engines were also promised to any new manufacturer entering the class, lowering the artificially high barrier to entry in MotoGP.
The return of four practice sessions spread over two days for Aragon was also confirmed, with bikes now taking to the track on Friday morning. This will please the riders, as they spend most of Friday morning kicking their heels and waiting to get going, something that almost everyone has complained about. To prevent the riders putting more miles on the engines, the sessions have been reduced from three 1 hour sessions to four 45 minute sessions. The change will apply only for the Aragon Grand Prix this year, as this was the only race with a flexible schedule, the others having been set much earlier in the year. If it is deemed a success, however, the four-practice schedule will be reintroduced from 2011 onwards.
Some of the rules concerning the Claiming Rule Teams were also cleared up: A team can only be designated as a CRT team by unanimous decision of the Grand Prix Commission, in a bid to prevent manufacturers from entering under the guise of a CRT team. An important addendum was also added to this rule, allowing the status of a team to be changed midway through the season, from CRT team to prototype team.
The reasoning behind this rule is to ensure that factories don't try to bypass the prototype requirement by allowing a private team to enter a bike based on one of their engines, and then providing factory-level support once the private team has been accepted as a CRT team. If the GP Commission believes that a factory is providing too much support to a CRT team, they will be able to redefine the team as a prototype team, reducing their fuel allowance from 24 liters to 21, and reducing their engine allowance from 12 to 6 for the season. A key proviso here is that the status change can be enforced by a simple majority of the GP Commissions four members, meaning that neither the teams' association IRTA, sanctioning body FIM, series organizers Dorna nor manufacturers' association MSMA can block the change of status on their own.
The text of the FIM press release follows below:
FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix
Decision of the Grand Prix Commission
The Grand Prix Commission, composed of Messrs. Carmelo Ezpeleta (Dorna, Chairman), Claude Danis (FIM), Hervé Poncharal (IRTA) and Takanao Tsubouchi (MSMA), in the presence of M. Paul Butler (Secretary of the meeting), in a meeting held on August 14 in Brno (Czech Republic), unanimously decided the following:
MotoGP class for 2012
Technical Specifications (as already announced on 17/02/10)
|Capacity||up to 1,000cc|
|Number of maximum cylinders||4|
|Maximum bore||ø 81 mm|
|Minimum weight||150 kg (up to 800cc) and 153 kg (over 800cc)|
|Maximum number of engines available for use by each rider||6|
|Fuel tank capacity||21 liters|
|Exception for Claiming Rule Teams (CRTs)|
|Maximum number of engines available for use by each rider:||12|
|Fuel tank capacity||24 liters|
The selection of the Claiming Rule Teams (CRTs) will be by unanimous decision of the Grand Prix Commission. Modification to this exception due to performance of the teams requires the simple majority of the Grand Prix Commission.
Official MotoGP post-race tests
For these tests of 1 day duration, each rider will be restricted in the quantity and specification of tyres that they may use at a single test event as follows:
For all practice sessions, a maximum of 8 slick tyres will be allocated, specifically:
Front slick tyres: 2 of Specification "A" + 2 of Specification "B" = 4 in total.
Rear slick tyres: 2 of Specification "A" + 2 of Specification "B" = 4 in total.
During all practice sessions, a maximum of 4 wet tyres, specifically:
Front wet tyres: 2 of the standard specification
Rear wet tyres: 2 of the standard specification
In addition each rider may use 1 set of tyres (1 front + 1 rear) retained from their allocation for the preceding event. These tyres may be new or used (NB. used tyres must still be mounted on wheels from the preceding event), and the team must inform the tyre supplier which set of tyres (1 front + 1 rear), if any, they wish to retain for the test within 2 hours of the preceding race finish.
Number of engines for MotoGP
For 2010 the manufacturer members of MSMA who did not win at least 2 dry races in 2008 + 2009 seasons can use 9 engines instead of 6.
Event schedule for the Gran Premio de Aragon
The schedule below prepared by Dorna has been agreed:
|Friday, 17 September 2010|
|09:05-09:45||125cc||Free Practice 1|
|10:05-10:50||MotoGP||Free Practice 1|
|11:10-11:50||Moto2||Free Practice 1|
|13:05-13:45||125cc||Free Practice 2|
|14:05-14:50||MotoGP||Free Practice 2|
|15:10-15:50||Moto2||Free Practice 2|
|Saturday, 18 September 2010|
|09:05-09:45||125cc||Free Practice 3|
|10:05-10:50||MotoGP||Free Practice 3|
|11:10-11:50||Moto2||Free Practice 3|
|Sunday, 19 September 2010|
|11:00||125cc||Race (19 laps)|
|12:15||Moto2||Race (21 laps)|
|14:00||MotoGP||Race (23 laps)|
Newcoming manufacturer in MotoGP
Any new manufacturer entering the MotoGP class and not being selected Claming Rule Team (CRT) will be allowed to use 9 engines instead of 6 for their first season.
The 125cc class will be replaced by the Moto3 class.
The basic technical rules of this class are:
- single cylinder 250cc 4-stroke engines with a maximum bore of 81 mm.
- each engine should last for 3 races minimum and cost not more than 10,000 (final cost will be announced)
- each manufacturer if required should be ready to supply a minumum of 15 riders.
This proposal has been agreed by the majority of MSMA