Round 12 Great Britain

  • British GP Cancelled Due To Poor Track Conditions

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British GP Cancelled Due To Poor Track Conditions

SILVERSTONE, Great Britain, August 26, 2018

Today’s British MotoGP round was cancelled at 4pm local time, due to poor track conditions. It is the first motorcycling World Championship event to be cancelled in its entirety during the race weekend since the Austrian Grand Prix of April 1980, which was called off due to heavy snowfall.

The event had been in jeopardy since yesterday’s FP4 practice session, when a heavy downpour caused three riders to crash at Stowe corner, after aquaplaning at around 290km/h (180mph) on Hangar Straight. Spanish rider Tito Rabat suffered worst in this melee, suffering a badly fractured right leg.

Yesterday evening Race Direction announced that today’s MotoGP race had been moved to an earlier 11.30am race slot, taking over from Moto3, in an effort to complete the 12th round of the 2018 MotoGP World Championship before heavier rain arrived at lunchtime. However, the downpour arrived earlier than expected, so the race couldn’t go ahead at the revised time.

Over the next few hours the race schedule was repeatedly delayed as incessant rainfall swept in from the west. Hopes to run shortened MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 races were finally ended at 4pm. The problem wasn’t so much the rainfall as the new asphalt, laid earlier this year. This new surface allowed large areas of standing water to form at various parts of the track, which causes aquaplaning, which can cause even the most talented riders to lose control and crash.

Race Direction, advised by the riders and MotoGP safety officers Loris Capirossi and Franco Uncini (both former World Champions), finally announced that conditions were simply too dangerous for racing, so all three races – MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 – were cancelled. Safety is always the first priority in the motorcycling World Championships

Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team RC213V), Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team RC213V) and other Honda riders would have liked to have raced and entertain the fans, but finally they understood that track conditions were not good enough. Reigning World Champion Marquez arrived here leading the championship by 59 points and will therefore go to the next race in San Marino on September 9 leading by the same margin.

Comments

MotoGP

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team: 

“It has been a long, unusual, tiring day that we hope won’t happen again. The safety commission analyzed the situation and I think the Race Direction has to be thanked; they listened, and in the end, safety was everybody’s main consideration—one of us riders is in hospital already. During the day, I watched the screen and saw all the fans in the grandstands patiently waiting; it would have been good to reward them, but in the end, sometimes we must keep a cool head and think.”

Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda Team:

“I think it was obvious that with this weather, the track wasn’t in a proper condition to race today. The safety commission agreed that it wasn’t safe enough, and I think it was a right decision. It’s a great shame because racing is what we always prefer to do. And we tried very hard actually, first moving up the start and then later delaying it as long as possible. Of course we’re sorry for the fans who came to see us and waited for us all day, but I’m even sorrier for Tito, who is injured and has a long recovery ahead.”

Cal Crutchlow, LCR Honda CASTROL:

“I’m devastated not to be able to race at my home Grand Prix, it was very disappointing that today went how it did with regards to the weather situation. The safety commission decided that we delayed and delayed all day and then decided finally that the track condition was not safe to ride due to standing water on the asphalt. But it was a very, very sad day for the fans and I’m truly sorry for them having come out in force to support me and all the MotoGP racers. We’re just sorry we couldn’t put on a show, as always I would have tried my best and I will try my best in the next Grand Prix also.”

Takaaki Nakagami, LCR Honda IDEMITSU:

“Unfortunately the conditions were very bad. We tried to make a race, but finally race direction decided to put safety first and cancel all three races. Of course I’m very disappointed as I wanted to race, but we have to think about safety and I think it was the right decision. Of course, I’m very sorry for the fans and the media, but now we just have to think about the next race in Misano. We’ve already had one day testing there and it went really well, so that will be really important for the team as it’s a home race and hopefully we can make a good result there.”

Franco Morbidelli, Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS:

“It’s very sad that the race was cancelled. We’re very sorry for the fans that spent the day waiting but safety is the most important part of racing. Now I’m looking forward to the Misano race. We tested there recently so I think we are ready to make good race.”

Thomas Luthi, Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS:

“It is a pity for the spectators but it was impossible to race in these conditions today. On the sighting lap to go to the grid I was aquaplaning with some big slides so it was too dangerous. The conditions did not change during the afternoon so for safety reasons the race was cancelled. The riders want to race but only in safe conditions.”