Barcelona Moto2 & Moto3 Review: Neil Morrison On Moto3 Fear And Delight, Gardner vs Fernandez, And A Moto2 Revival

Time for a Moto3 rethink?

It was hard to know what to make of Sunday’s Moto3 offering at Montmeló. On the one hand, there was drama and excitement from start to end, a contest across 41 minutes that had you on the very edge of your seat the entire time. But on the other, this strayed too far toward downright dangerous with so many near misses it was almost impossible to count.

Of all the weekends for a race like this to take place, the one that followed the tragic events of Mugello wasn’t it. As if a 15-rider fight for the win wasn’t wild enough, leader Jeremy Alcoba sat up through turn 13 on the penultimate lap (as did Pedro Acosta, then in second), refusing to lead onto the straight. Then it all kicked off, 13 bikes bunching up, crossing the line 0.7s apart. The braking antics into turn one were genuinely scary.

It didn’t end there. First Ayumu Sasaki high-sided out of turn seven, taking the Leopard Hondas of Dennis Foggia and Xavi Artigas down. Miraculously the Japanese rider escaped with minor injuries and will make a full recovery. Then Izan Guevara crashed at turn ten, narrowly avoiding a host of other names. And Sergio Garcia just held off Alcoba to the line to win his second race in three by 0.015s.

Back to top

Paddock Pass Podcast Episode 214: Moto3 & Moto2 From Barcelona - How To Stop The Madness

In the Paddock Pass Podcast Follow Up Show Fueled By Elf Marc VDS Racing, Steve English, Neil Morrison, Adam Wheeler, and David Emmett ponder the Moto3 madness and Moto2 badness at Barcelona. The first subject to address were the terrifying scenes during the Moto3 race, with a bunched up field which nobody wanted to lead create some extraordinarlly dangerous situations, and the Moto3 paddock dodged a veritable hail of bullets. We discuss how to fix it, whether it needs fixing, and whether the FIM Stewards need to get involved.

We also take a look at Moto2, discuss Remy Gardner's victory and just how maturely he approached it. We also find praise for Augusto Fernandez and Xavi Vierge, and highlight the result of Bo Bendsneyder in conditions which have traditionally been bad for him

Back to top

2021 Misano World Superbike FP1 Result: Young Guns Up Top

Toprak Razgatlioglu, Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Garrett Gerloff were separated by less than a tenth of a second at the end of the first session at the Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”. Satellite rider Chaz Davies was the only one of the old guard inside the top six. 


Back to top

Guest Blog: Mat Oxley - Inside a MotoGP rider/crew chief marriage

Maverick Viñales has changed crew chiefs for the second time in less than three seasons. So what’s so important about a crew chief? We spoke to ‘King’ Kenny Roberts, Kel Carruthers and Jeremy Burgess to find out

Maverick Viñales recently got married and became a dad for the first time. Hearty congratulations to him, Raquel and baby Nina!

However, the 26-year-old Spaniard is already on his third pitlane marriage, because many riders and crew chiefs will tell you that their relationship is like a marriage.

Back to top

Paddock Pass Podcast Episode 213: Weirdness And Wonder From The Barcelona MotoGP Round

In the latest episode of the Paddock Pass Podcast, Steve English, Neil Morrison, Adam Wheeler, and David Emmett gather to look back at one of the stranger MotoGP races we have seen in a while. The big point of discussion was naturally the last few laps of the MotoGP race, in which Fabio Quartararo's leathers suddenly opened. We all weigh in on how it happened, why it happened, and whether the Frenchman should have been black flagged for his own safety.

There was plenty more to talk to. Valentino Rossi's rise and fall, what to make of Marc Marquez and the problems at Honda, Miguel Oliveira and KTM's turnaround, bagging 45 points in two races, how Maverick Viñales' change of crew chief panned out, and just how strong Ducati is, with Jack Miller and Johann Zarco.

Back to top

Steve English Superbike Snippets - Round 2, Estoril: Rea's Risk Averseness, A Deep Field, And Gerloff's Pitlane Penalty

Back to back rounds kicked off the WorldSBK season and after six races, Jonathan Rea has opened a commanding 35-point lead. Estoril showed that the field is competitive but that Rea and Kawasaki still have the edge thanks to their experience and consistency. Over the course of a full season he’s very hard to beat, but over a race weekend it can be a very different story. Here’s some of the biggest stories from the paddock in Portugal.

Jonathan Rea is the margin for error

I said it on commentary this weekend, Rea is your margin for error. Whatever the circumstances in WorldSBK the Northern Irishman can make the most of the situation. He doesn’t make many mistakes and he’s always ready to capitalise on those of his rivals. On Sunday it was Scott Redding’s mistake when he tried to retake the lead that Rea took advantage of.

The Kawasaki rider has claimed over 100 victories by, amazingly, being more risk averse than his rivals. It’s very rare that Team 65 go to the grid with question marks. Rea and his crew chief, Pere Riba, generally use tried and tested settings rather than looking for a magic bullet on their tough weekends.

Back to top

Paddock Pass Podcast Episode 212: Moto2 and Moto3 From Mugello, With Michael Laverty

A special treat on this episode of the Paddock Pass Podcast Follow Up Show Fueled By Elf Marc VDS Racing. Ex-MotoGP racer and current BT Sport specialist Michael Laverty joins Neil Morrison, Adam Wheeler, and David Emmett to discuss the Moto2 and Moto3 action from Mugello.

Obviously, the main topic of conversation is the tragic death of Jason Dupasquier, killed at the end of Q2 for the Moto3 class, and Michael gives his unique perspective on the tragedy, from the point of view of a racer. Michael gives an honest and open insight into the mind of a racer, and how your view of danger changes over time. We naturally talk about the perils of racing, and what can and can't be avoided.

Back to top

Paddock Pass Podcast Episode 211: WorldSBK From Estoril

A little late, but worth the listen nonetheless, Steve English and Gordon Ritchie review the Estoril round of WorldSBK for the Paddock Pass Podcast. Steve and Gordo discuss the difficulties of overtaking in Estoril, the nature of the track meaning you always get stuck with at least one gear ratio which isn't right for a particular corner. They review Jonathan Rea's wins on Sunday, and his unusual tire choices over the weekend, Scott Redding's jump start which wasn't at first and then was, and why Toprak Razgatlioglu did. Steve and Gordo cover all this and more in great and entertaining detail.

Back to top

Barcelona MotoGP Race Subscriber Notes: A Forensic Analysis Of Quartararo's Open Leathers, The Collapse Of the MSMA, And Will Honda Rise Again

It would be nice to sit down at the end of a MotoGP weekend and just write about the race. But it seems increasingly, the first thing a journalist has to do after a MotoGP race is go back and read the FIM Grand Prix World Championship Regulations, also known as the yellow book, back when books were a thing, and rules didn't change every couple of weeks rendering paper books unusable. We have had a stream of rule infractions, both large and small, infringements of rules which few new existed, and the application of penalties which have inevitably needed clarification.

The need to go back and reread the rulebook has sometimes been due to inexperience in particular situations – for example, Fabio Quartararo parking his bike in the wrong spot during the flag-to-flag race at Le Mans – or cunning use of the rules – see Marc Márquez crossing the white lines on pit lane entry at the same race. Sometimes, it has because we needed clarification of very specific situations, such as Miguel Oliveira and Joan Mir exceeding track limits on the last lap in Mugello.

Back to top


Subscribe to | Kropotkin Thinks  RSS