Ducati, what an opportunity on the Stoner World Championship track. And the other themes on the eve of Motegi

Japanese GP, 16th race of the season: back to Motegi after three years. It has been raced on this track since 1999 and until 2019 a race has always been held on the Honda circuit, for a total of 21 GPs

September 22, 2022

G.P of Japan, 16th game of the season: we return to Motegi after three years. It has been raced on this track since 1999 and until 2019 a race has always been held on the Honda circuit, for a total of 21 GPs. It is a defined circuit stop and gowhere the brakes are stressed more than on any other track: for this reason Brembo recommends the use of 355 mm discs, a measure available this year to avoid overheating problems. On the eve of the GP, here are the main themes.

Index

    Less time available

    Lcancellation of the Friday morning program due to logistical problems (the material would not have arrived in time from Aragon), a practice session was canceled, even if the afternoon session was extended (75 minutes). Change the way you work a little.

    We haven't run here for three years

    THEof course also the fact that Motegi hasn't raced since 2019: the technicians have less data available. It won't be a big problem, but a minimum of it could have an impact.

    Ducati, another opportunity

    S.It seems to be another great opportunity for Ducati, because this track adapts very well to the characteristics of the DesmosediciGP (five wins here, the last in 2017): there is the possibility of putting many riders in the top positions, in qualifying as well as in the race. And if it did, it would be decisive for the world championship.

    Bastianini, never on this track with MotoGP

    THEThe winner of Aragon has never raced here with MotoGP: Bastianini is now an expert driver and the technical chief Alberto Giribuola will certainly give him a good hand, but Enea has a bit of a disadvantage.

    Team play?

    S.i continues to discuss whether or not Bastianini should overtake on the last lap on Bagnaia (as far as I'm concerned, appropriate, all right) and, above all, if from now on Ducati will impose a kind of team game. I am convinced not.

    Quartararo, still in defense

    THEThe world champion said he had recovered from Aragon's bad injury: should therefore not have physical problems. Even at Motegi, however, the technical limits could penalize him a lot: the last Yamaha victory dates back to 2014 (Jorge Lorenzo). It is true, however, that in 2019, Quartararo finished second behind Marquez.

    Espargaro for the title

    TOleix Espargaro has to recover 17 points: the Aragon podium has certainly galvanized him and he will give his all. Aprilia has never gone beyond seventh place on this track, but the speech is always the same: the RS-GP 2022 is another bike.

    Which Marquez will we see?

    TOd Aragon we saw a Marc Marquez quite perky: something is always expected from him and, despite himself, even in the last race he was somehow decisive on the final result.

    The unforgettable races (for me) in Motegi

    1999: class 125: fall of Sabbatani. It is racing in Motegi for the first time, the Japanese GP is the second round of the season. It's raining heavily, the rookie (he's in his second race) Max Sabbatani is fighting for the victory with Masao Azuma: Sabbatani makes the fastest lap, he seems to be able to win, but with a few laps to go, he slips. “If I hadn't crashed, my career would have been very different” the rider from Romagna still regrets today;

    2003: MotoGP class: disqualification of Tamada. Makoto Tamada, then driver of our engineer Giulio Bernardelle, conquers his first career podium, but is incredibly disqualified for a contact on the last lap with Sete Gibernau. The press room rises up against the decision, which was decidedly wrong: I still remember the noisy protest we all made in Motegi, even with signs praising Tamada. Unfortunately without success ... Biaggi wins, ahead of Rossi and Hayden (who benefited from the penalty in Tamada);

    2005: MotoGP class: Rossi overwhelms Melandri. In an attempt to overtake Melandri, Rossi completely misses the braking and overwhelms his rival: they both end up on the ground. I don't remember exactly what position they were in, but they weren't in first and second place. Capirossi wins with Ducati, ahead of Biaggi and Tamada (always assisted by our Bernardelle);

    2007: MotoGP class: triumph Ducati. Loris Capirossi wins the race (the last of his career), Casey Stoner is sixth and world champion with Ducati. I still shudder to write it today ...

    2010: MotoGP class: what a last lap between Rossi and Lorenzo! Stoner dominates in front of Dovizioso (with Honda), while Rossi and Lorenzo play for third place with overtaking and counter-overtaking. Jorge is playing for the title, hoping for a special treatment from Valentino. But in that period the two are far from getting along and Rossi is very aggressive - but clean - in his overtaking, up to the decisive one a few corners from the end that sends his rival off the podium. At the end of the race, Lorenzo will go and complain to Lin Jarvis, Yamaha number one, about Rossi's behavior;

    2017: MotoGP class: Dovizioso wins. It is the year of great challenges between Andrea Dovizioso with Ducati and Marc Marquez with Honda. It rains, the track is very treacherous, the fight between the two is, as often happens, very spectacular, with a final lap of applause. #Thank you.

    The favorites for the title

    AndI see how my favorites for the title change after fifteen races: Bagnaia 50%, Quartararo 30%, Espargaro 20%.

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