Heart-Pounding Action at India MotoGP

   Sep 27,2023

"We defied the odds," remarked Amit Sandill, co-founder of Fairstreet Sports, to Autocar India regarding the historic inaugural MotoGP race in India. Hosting a world championship event at the Buddh International Circuit after a decade was pivotal. With concerns looming over the Formula E Hyderabad round, India's international motorsports readiness hinged on the success of this MotoGP debut. Did it meet the expectations? Let's delve into the critical highlights.


The Buddh International Circuit surpassed all expectations

Originally designed for Formula 1, significant modifications were required to adapt the track for motorcycle racing. These changes involved expanding run-off zones, introducing gravel sections, and enhancing safety barriers. However, when riders finally hit the track, they lauded its technical complexity, marked by substantial elevation shifts. The banked parabola segment of Turn 8/9 also earned rave reviews from both riders and MotoGP enthusiasts.

Throughout the weekend, the riders grappled with challenging conditions at temperatures ranging from 32-35 degrees Celsius and humidity levels exceeding 80 percent. Consequently, riders advocated for shorter race distances. Responding to input from the official tire suppliers, Dorna and the FIM agreed to reduce the length of the MotoGP Sprint and junior class races by one lap each.

Despite these adjustments, Jorge Martin experienced dehydration in the race's final stages. Riding on a medium rear tire, the Prima Pramac racer exhausted himself while maintaining second place and required medical attention from the MotoGP medical team.

Considering these factors, organizers are contemplating scheduling the race for October or even November next year, recognizing the track's technical demands and the challenging weather conditions.

Work to accomplish for 2024

While the track itself exceeded expectations, there's substantial room for improvement should MotoGP make a return here in the future. Visa issues affected key staff and even riders like Marc Marquez. Additionally, unusual track delays occurred, such as a 45-minute delay in Moto3 track action on Friday due to a shortage of drinking water for the marshals.

Riders also noted minor adjustments needed for the track, particularly areas where the walls are too close to the racing surface. There were occasional delays in marshal response, but these issues gradually improved over the weekend. These are all aspects that can be addressed and refined.

The 2023 MotoGP championship has taken an exciting turn after the Indian GP. Bagnaia's significant crash dealt a severe blow to his title aspirations, while Marco Bezzecchi secured a commanding victory at the BIC.

With Martin's second-place finish, he now trails Bagnaia by just 13 points. Bezzecchi, on the other hand, is 31 points behind Martin in the championship standings.

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