British Grand Prix, Silverstone – Preview: MotoGP, Moto2, Moto3
The triple-header following the summer break comes to an end at Silverstone this weekend at the Hertz British Grand Prix, where the last 25 of the 75 points up for grab will be hotly contested as the MotoGP™ field tries to find a way past Repsol Honda Team’s Marc Marquez, who looks near unstoppable at the moment.
Marquez, firmly at the top of the championship after taking four successive victories since Germany, remains the man to beat, with his teammate Dani Pedrosa, and in particular Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo keen to claw back points in their respective championship bids. Lorenzo stated after the Brno race that more is needed from his M1 if he is to challenge the Hondas, so it remains to be seen if the highly anticipated “seamless transmission” will be introduced on time.
His Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi will be hoping for much of the same, whilst Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow, who will have the expectation of a home race on his shoulders, will aim to put on a show for his home fans and forget his unfortunate crash last time out. His teammate Bradley Smith, for whom it will be the first MotoGP™ race in front of local support ,will also look for a strong showing after a difficult Brno, though will not have it easy with the satellite Hondas’ recent form.
Whilst LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl went off the boil slightly in the last race, he has shown what he is capable of in Laguna Seca with his podium, whilst Alvaro Bautista has not only been battling with Rossi, but also has the memories of pole position at Silverstone last year. The Ducati Team continues to search for a formula to make them more competitive, though will be pleased that Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso are both pushing themselves to the limit. The Pramac Team will have Energy T.I. Pramac’s Andrea Iannone once again joined by Ducati test rider Michele Pirro as a replacement for the injured Ben Spies.
The CRT battle is hotting up as Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro is being challenged ever more by the resurgent Colin Edwards on the NGM Mobile Forward Racing machine, whilst the likes of Came IodaRacing Project’s Danilo Petrucci and Avintia Blusens’ Hiroshi Aoyama will also be ones to watch.
The race schedule will once again veer from the norm as in Brno, with the MotoGP™ race being held at 13:00 local time, sandwiched between the Moto2™ and Moto3™ race.
As the Moto2™ contingent bunches ever tighter and continues to produce new winners, the Hertz British Grand Prix in Silverstone will be a highly anticipated race, with the question being whether the battle for supremacy between Marc VDS Racing Team’s Scott Redding and Tuenti HP 40’s Pol Espargaro will continue.
Last time out it was Redding’s teammate Mika Kallio that made the headlines with his first-ever Moto2 win, ahead of Italtrans Racing Team’s Takaaki Nakagami and a resurgent Tom Luthi on his Interwetten Paddock Suter. All three could once again be serious contenders, with the likes of Mapfre Aspar Team’s Nico Terol and Came IodaRacing Project’s Johann Zarco also throwing their name into the hat with great performances in Brno.
Redding and Espargaro will hope for a change in fortunes as both struggled for form in the last race, whilst Dynavolt Intact GP’s Sandro Cortese will likely miss the race due to fracturing his arm, and JiR Moto2’s Mike di Meglio due to fracturing a bone in his lower back. The field will once again see Gino Rea line up as a wildcard with his very own Gino Rea Race Team, who will aim to improve over his DNF in Brno last weekend.
As in Brno, the Moto2 race will be the first on the schedule, starting at 11:20 local time.
Once again there will be very little rest for the Moto3™ riders as they head straight to Silverstone this weekend to contest the Hertz British Grand Prix and try and put a dent in Luis Salom’s championship lead.
The Spanish Red Bull KTM Ajo rider did incredibly well to take victory in a hard-fought Brno race, where he lined up with a broken left ankle. He is having surgery on it before Silverstone, and will hope to be in less discomfort when he takes on the wide and fast British circuit.
His nearest rival, Team Calvo’s Maverick Viñales, despite a fantastic podium record, will aim for another win this season, in the hope that Salom doesn’t escape at the top, or Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Alex Rins catches up. Rins was off the podium in Brno, but will continue to be one to watch, along with teammate Alex Marquez and Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Jonas Folger.
There will be two British wildcards lining up for the race, both fielded by the Racing Steps Foundation KRP outfit, in the shape of Kyle Ride and Wayne Ryan. This is the same team that helped John McPhee make his way into the world championship, who now rides for the Caretta Technology – RTG team.
As in Brno, the Moto3 race will be held after the MotoGP race, and will take place at 14:30 local time.