MotoGP Mugello

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MotoGP Mugello

Post by Henrik on Tue Jun 04 2013, 13:09

MotoGP in Mugello is always a pretty special event, but looking at the images over the weekend it seems as if the economic crisis together with poor weather is getting the better of it. Crowds are considerably thinner than what has been seen in the past, and I wonder what it would look like if Rossi was to retire! It must hurt the Italians to see most of the races being led by a bunch of Spaniards.

The racing day started off in a good way with the Moto3. It is always so much fun to watch the Moto3 races here because of the really long straight. The positions always change completely along here, often finding the rider who was at the back of the pack at the start of the straight being in first as they enter turn one. It was clear that some of the riders did not in fact want to be in the lead, since they would just get slip-streamed by the others. Certainly Rins and Marquez (the younger) sat up from time to time to slow down their bikes a bit.

Moto3 is also probably the last category where there some Italian riders that can make a name for themselves, even if Spain dominates here as well. Fenati was showing so much promise last year, but he seems to be struggling to improve. The same can be said for Antonelli. I had a wish at the end of last year that this year we would see Viñales and Fenati fighting it out, but instead we are getting Salom and Rins. For sure Maverick is still up there, but I would say that Salom is really looking strong for the title. His maturity yesterday was obvious, and in spite of the commentators saying that he seemed not to be in a position to fight for the podium, I was sure he was just biding his time.

Moto2 was also a good race, even though Redding was fairly quick in stamping his authority on it. Nakagami is fast, but he just does not seem to be able to keep the pace for very long. Terol was good, and seeing Zarco fight with him had me remembering the fights those two had previously in 125. The real fun in the class was to be had a little bit further back in the field, with riders like Kallio, Corsi, Espargaro, Luthi, de Angelis etc. trading places several times per lap.

Finally MotoGP was a bit handicapped from the get-go, with Bautista and Rossi going off in the first lap. I think just about everybody at the track, as well as millions of TV viewers still want to see Rossi succeed. Even if he is not getting any younger, and he clearly does not have the pace he ones did, he is still something special and you cannot count him out come race day, especially in Italy. As of that point, the focus would clearly be on Lorenzo and the two HRC midgets chasing him.

Pedrosa got the lead in to the first corner, but Lorenzo quickly forced his way passed. He was on a mission, knowing that he really had to get out front to try and open a gap. Maybe the move Marquez pulled on him at Jerez has gotten Jorge to go back to his more aggressive passing techniques, but there was nothing wrong with his pass. Pedrosa and Marquez were not giving up any ground at first, and it took quite some time until finally Pedrosa’s lap times began falling off just slightly, and Lorenzo managed at the same time to put in his best laps to get a bit of a gap. Marquez was clearly faster than Pedrosa at this point, and in a beautiful pass he began to try and hunt down Jorge.

It was bound to happen, as reality has a tendency to catch up with alien rookies. Lorenzo had been in a similar position in his first MotoGP season, starting out exceedingly strong, until the crashes began accumulating. Marquez had a number of moments all through the weekend, and in the race he pushed just that bit too hard and lost the front. Given the level of riding from Lorenzo and Pedrosa this year such mistakes will be hard to recover from, especially in the points table.

With Marquez out, Crutchlow suddenly found himself in third. Being clearly faster than Pedrosa in the closing stage of the race, he pushed hard to try and catch him, and with another lap to go he may just have been able to make a move on Pedrosa. No matter, third places him on the podium, and clearly within the reach of the top spots. Even though he is on a satellite bike, his performance is up there with the top factory riders.

Ducati had been showing some promise earlier in the weekend, especially with Dovi putting the red bike on the front row. Even if the bike tends to be quicker in qualifying than in race trim, a front row was more than enough give the fans hope. Alas, having been up at the pointy end in the beginning of the race, Dovi began falling back fairly quickly. It is still a wonder what is holding them back.


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Re: MotoGP Mugello

Post by TopContender on Wed Jun 05 2013, 04:28

Question, does motogp go off the weight of the bike, or is it a combined bike and rider weight? Vale is 67 kilos, and Pedrosa is 5. That is a lot of weight to give up.
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Re: MotoGP Mugello

Post by Henrik on Wed Jun 05 2013, 06:41

The weight limit for MotoGP is 160kg or th bike. So, you are right that Vale and somebody like Crutchlow are at a disadvantage to the midgets.

In Moto2 they have changed to a max weight of 215kg for bike and rider, which clearly is helping Scott Redding.

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Re: MotoGP Mugello

Post by TopContender on Wed Jun 05 2013, 15:38

Even the field. Indy car had to do it because of Danica. She had a huge advantage and that was on ovals.
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