MotoGP 2022 Round 13 – Spielberg

Sunday was a lovely day for racing at what must be considered one of the finest stops on the MotoGP calendar. The immaculate circuit, as fast as any, despite the layout which keeps most riders out of 6th gear all day. The postcard quality scenery. World-class brolly girls. A microclimate enriched by the thousands of pine trees in the vicinity. Seeing Carlos Ezpeleta, The Big Boursin of MotoGP in lederhosen, looking like Wally from Dilbert. Three exciting races. Championships tightening.

This is how racing is supposed to be. Fans on first-name bases with the riders. Longstanding rivalries renewed every week. Rampant nationalism. Racing margins so thin they make the blink of an eye seem like a long time. Riders separated by thousandths of a second at the flag. All coming to us at breathtaking speeds. And all on two wheels.

We will cover the high points of all three races but not in our usual depth. I have things to do.

Moto3: Sasaki Wins from Waaaaaay Back

The Crazy Boy, Ayuma Sasaki, was having a bad day. Two long lap penalties early in the race saw him fall to as low as P24 on Lap 5. 18 laps later he was firmly lodged in P1 and on his way to his first grand prix victory ever. Research indicates that riders with the name “Crazy”, by itself or in combination with other words, in their “track name” correlate highly with truncated careers. Over the long term, Crazy typically morphs into “retired.”

First Japanese 1-2 at any level since 2001.

Today’s race: Sasaki Suzuki Munoz (16 years old!)

2022: S Garcia 193 Izan Guevara 188 Dennis Foggia 144

Moto2: P2-OK

Today’s Moto2 race was plodding along, minding its own business with Honda Team Asia riders Ai Ogura (ticket to MotoGP next year already punched) and Thai speedster Somkiat Chantra having carved out a considerable lead on the field, Chantra running as Ogura’s wingman. Over the last five laps of the race it appeared Chantra was having to rein in his bike, that he had better pace than Ogura in addition to the expectation from every member of the team and the media that he would never (NEVER) challenge Ogura during this race, possibly removing him from the lead in the 2022 championship.

So what happened on the last lap. Did young Chantra lose his effing mind? Yes, it was Chantra muscling up on his teammate and good friend, taking the lead on Turn 8 of the final lap before surrendering it again on Turn 9, getting up close and personal and causing team principal Hiro Aoyama to blow a head gasket, oil and smoke pouring from his ears. And though the race ended well for the Honda team, young Chantra will probably be headed to the woodshed with Aoyama and some Asian guys in expensive suits to discuss his comportment in an atmosphere of free and frank conversation.

Personally, I believe Chantra intended to keep it clean and intended to yield the lead to Ogura at the end. The two are good friends; to me it looked like one friend saying to the other, “Congratulations on a great win. I could have beat you any time I wanted. Your mom said to tell you hi.”

Today’s race: A. Ogura S. Chantra J. Dixon

2022: A Ogura 183 A Fernandez 182 C. Vietti 156

MotoGP: Fabio Takes on Five Ducatis, Beats Four

Today’s premier class tilt saw French heartthrob Fabio Quartararo lined up at the start in the middle of row 2, with Bologna Bullets going all Charge of the Light Brigade on him, (Desmosedicis to the left, Desmosedicis to the right, Desmosedicis in front), the Italian brutes occupying five of the top six spots on the grid. By the time he saw the checkered flag, young Fabio had dispensed with Jack Miller, Jorge Martin, Enea Bastiannini and Johann Zarco; given an additional lap, he might very well have tracked down Pecco Bagnaia for the win, as the Italian’s final margin for the win was a mere 4/10ths.

Other than Bagnaia taking the hole shot and holding the lead for almost the entire race, there didn’t seem to be a key moment that changed the course of things. Joan Mir crashed out early as his season of horrors continues. EBas, in some early race contact I missed, left with a damaged rim on his front that allowed air to escape, rendering the bike unrideable. Luca Marini enjoyed his best day in the premier class, finishing in P4 after overtaking a number of more experienced riders from P13.

Today’s race: P Bagnaia F Quartararo J Miller

2022: F Quartararo 200 A Espargaro 168 P Bagnaia 156

The graphic below is chock full of information. Someone—what all does this tell us?

San Marino in two weeks. Andrea Dovizioso’s swan song.

Lots of info here.
One long-stemmed rose.
Low rez, terrible.
Where does Monster find them?
Very orderly Teutonic devotees.
Aryan beauty on display.

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10 Responses to “MotoGP 2022 Round 13 – Spielberg”

  1. Starmag Says:

    El Diablo was Fabio again at a Ducati track. Baggy only gained 5 points on him, but since Baggy has stopped gravel dancing, he may be the bigger threat than Mr. Asparagus.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Buzz Says:

    Correction needed. It was the Beast that had the bent rim. Asparagus made it to the finish.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Old MOron Says:

    “…Chantra will probably be headed to the woodshed with Aoyama and some Asian guys in expensive suits to discuss his comportment in an atmosphere of free and frank conversation.”

    Ha ha ha, nobody creates an atmosphere like you do, Brucey!

    Like

    • Allison Sullivan Says:

      “Your mom said to tell you hi.” That made me giiggle. Mr Chantra has a rabid fan base at home, I bet there were some excitable little Thai people leaping around their living rooms this morning.

      Tatsu got a podium in Moto3! Result! He’s having a much better season that last, at least.

      The main event was a gooder. Enea … “cries”. Jorge “cries even harder”. Fabio rides the wheels off that Yamaha, but it helps that this is a five gear track, I suppose. I was talking to my friend about who’s going to win the championship -my pick is Pecco, but all it would take is a bin from him, and Aleix might punk everyone. And what a story that would be.Let Valencia decide? Maybe …

      Enea v Jorge -bets on who gets the factory seat? I hope it’s Enea. Termperamentally, I think he’s better suited. Jorge is a fast as all get out, but he’s a little fragile. Life at Pramac will suit him a lot better than life under Gigi’s thumb.

      Is Ai Ogura confirmed for next year? I hadn’t seen anything, but I guess with Bins confirmed at LCR, there’s only one seat left … and Idemitsu doesn’t care either way …

      Like

      • Old MOron Says:

        Actually Fabio goes pretty well at most of the remaining tracks, Aragon being a notable bogey. But if his races continue to be 25 qualifying laps, he’s going to crash at some point.

        Between Beastie and Martin, Enea’s wins this season should carry him a long way in the direction of the factory squad. On the other hand, Factory Ducati usually have one Italian rider and one foreigner. That helps Martin. I’m very interested to see whom they’ll pick.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Old MOron Says:

    Brucey, your captured graphic shows Fabio in pursuit of Jorge. Looks like they are entering a turn. Both of them are applying maximum braking. That’s the red bars in the middle. As Jorge is ahead, he’s been on the brakes longer. That’s why his speed is reduced to 161 km/h and his lean angle is greater, about 30 degrees from vertical. By comparison, Fabio is still straight up and down. He’s still decelerating and hasn’t tipped it toward the apex yet.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Mad4TheCrest Says:

    Great racing today from Fabio and the Factory Ducati boys. Surprised how well Miller is doing after his cast-off from Ducati, not surprised that Suzuki’s Mir isn’t. Love watching Moto2 and the race was a corker, but felt a bit let down by the American contingent. Beaubier went backward and Roberts started too far back to be a factor. Sean Dylan Kelly (“SDK”) will almost certainly not be here next year. I hope they are warming up a ride for him in MotoAmerica where he can excel again.

    Like

  6. Vrooom Says:

    I didn’t hear about Aleix’s tire. 6th is pretty good given that. Much as Fabio is a great rider, I’m pulling for Aleix. At least one Suzuki rider kept the rubber down, albeit in 8th. I’m sure knowing your team won’t exist in 2023 is a bit demotivating. I wonder if Ducati is regretting not getting Miller on board for next year given he seems to be outriding everyone but Pecco on the Ducati’s.

    Like

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