2007 Shanghai MotoGP Race Report - Pomp And Circumstance

Sometimes, life seems scripted. Events, personalities and locations seem to align so perfectly that keen observers believe they can discern a pattern among the entrails of what is unfolding before them, and, borne by their smugness at believing they have glimpsed the future, they make proud predictions and pompous pronouncements. But the Fates do not allow such conceit to stand unchallenged, and love nothing more than to prick such pomposity with the cold, sharp razor of reality.

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2007 Shanghai Qualifying Practice

The rain that has been threatening Shanghai all weekend stayed away on Saturday, the day getting brighter and warmer, and the haze that obscured the view down the long back straight gradually drawing up its veil on a fascinating's day of practice. The morning's free practice session saw times improved by nearly 3/4 of a second, and set a benchmark for the kind of pace that will be necessary to win a race, with John Hopkins and Casey Stoner running consistent laps in the high 2:00 mark.

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2007 Shanghai Qualifying Practice

The rain that has been threatening Shanghai all weekend stayed away on Saturday, the day getting brighter and warmer, and the haze that obscured the view down the long back straight gradually drawing up its veil on a fascinating's day of practice. The morning's free practice session saw times improved by nearly 3/4 of a second, and set a benchmark for the kind of pace that will be necessary to win a race, with John Hopkins and Casey Stoner running consistent laps in the high 2:00 mark.

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Neil Hodgson To Replace Olivier Jacque At Le Mans?

After Olivier Jacque badly gashed his arm in a crash during this afternoon's MotoGP Free Practice session, rumors have been flying concerning a possible replacement. At first, it looked like OJ could be out for several weeks, and probably a couple of races, after damaging muscles in his arm. However, after successful surgery, performed by the doctors of MotoGP's hospital-in-residence, the Clinica Mobile, the Frenchman's chances of recovery have greatly improved, after doctors succeeded in closing up the wound without requiring a skin graft.

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2007 Shanghai Free Practice - Day 1 Results And Report

Before the Sinopec Great Wall Lubricants Grand Prix of China, most commentators, including this one, predicting total domination by Ducati. Fortunately, the racing gods decided that such hubris could not go unpunished, and decided to mix things up a bit. Although the Ducatis are clearly significantly faster down the back straight, the other manufacturers have all closed the gap, managing to stay in touch despite the top speed deficit, then following, and even leading, through the ridiculously slow sections of the track.

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IRTA Boss Poncharal: "Teams Too Weak In Finding Sponsors"

It is almost universally accepted that after the withdrawal of the tobacco companies, sponsorship in MotoGP is currently at crisis levels, the withdrawal of Ilmor being the latest and most obvious example of its parlous state. The situation is so bad that virtually everyone involved in the sport is racking their brains looking for a solution. But the big question is, how did it get this way in the first place?

British weekly Motorcycle News has an interview with International Racing Teams Assocation and Tech 3 Yamaha boss, Hervé Poncharal which sheds an interesting light on how the present situation came about. He highlights two major causes:

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Ten Kate To Decide On Formation Of MotoGP Team By July

Over the weekend of the Assen round of World Superbikes, Dutch regional newspaper Dagblad van het Noorden spoke to Ronald ten Kate, head of the Hannspree Ten Kate Honda Superbike and Supersport team, about their plans to go to MotoGP. It's an open secret that these plans exist, but so far, Ronald ten Kate has refused to be pinned down on specifics. However, the Dutch paper was rather more successful.

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Ilmor Scales Back MotoGP Program - Fires Staff, Focuses On Engine

The announcement the MotoGP world has been expecting since Ilmor withdrew from racing after the Qatar season opener has finally been made. Today, Mario Illien, Ilmor GP Team Principal, and Steve Miller, Managing Director, announced that the current GP team will be scaled down to a "skeleton crew", and switch the focus of the team to engine development. The pair cited problems raising sufficient sponsorship to make racing a "viable option", and announced that most of the Ilmor GP Team staff will be released from their contracts at the end of May.

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Ilmor Announcement Due On Monday

Crash.net is reporting that Ilmor will make an official announcement about their future on Monday. As we reported earlier, it seems inevitable that what will be announced is a permanent withdrawal from MotoGP, at least as an official manufacturer. Ilmor was 6 million Euros short of the funds required to carry on running the factory team, but with such an obvious development deficit, that money was very hard to come by.

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