As the 2023 MotoGP season unfolds, fans eagerly await the thrilling races, rivalries, and new additions to the calendar. Here is Race Track World’s comprehensive guide to the 2023 MotoGP season.
Contenders for the 2023 MotoGP Title
Pecco Bagnaia is the favorite to retain his title after an incredible 2022 season, where he emerged as the riders’ champion. However, he faces stiff competition from the likes of Jack Miller, now at KTM, and Enea Bastianini, who takes Miller’s seat at Ducati Lenovo Team. The Italian duo could ignite an electrifying rivalry while working together to defend their constructors’ title for the third consecutive season.
Other contenders include Fabio Quartararo, Aleix Espargaro, and Alex Rins, with the latter two joining LCR Honda and GasGas Factory Racing, respectively, following Suzuki’s withdrawal from MotoGP. Six-time champion Marc Marquez is also looking to bounce back after struggling with injuries in the past three seasons.
Introduction of Sprint Races
Taking a cue from Formula One, MotoGP has introduced Sprint races to the calendar. These races will be held at every single weekend in the season and will contribute towards a separate Sprint leaderboard, with no impact on riders’ standings. Sprint races will be about half the length of the main race, with points awarded to the top nine finishers.
MotoGP’s Sprint races do not determine the main race grid positions, which will still be determined by Q1 and Q2 results. As a result, there will be no FP4, and the weekend order for MotoGP, Moto2, and Moto3 will be standardized wherever possible.
New Additions to the Calendar
The 2023 MotoGP calendar sees the addition of two new venues: the Buddh International Circuit in India and the Sokol International Racetrack in Kazakhstan. However, the Buddh International Circuit needs significant upgrades to meet MotoGP safety standards, casting doubt on its ability to host the scheduled race on September 24th.
As a result of these new additions, the Aragon Grand Prix has been dropped from the calendar, and the Qatar Grand Prix has moved to the penultimate weekend, with the Portuguese Grand Prix taking its place as the season opener.
British Riders in Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing
While there are no British riders competing in the 2023 MotoGP season, Moto2 and Moto3 have several talented British racers. Jake Dixon, Sam Lowes, and Rory Skinner will represent Britain in Moto2, while Scott Ogden and Joshua Whatley will compete in Moto3.
In summary, the 2023 MotoGP season promises to be an action-packed spectacle with intense rivalries, new additions to the calendar, and the introduction of Sprint races. Fans worldwide are eagerly waiting to see how this season unfolds and who will emerge as the ultimate champion.