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MotoGP German GP

Race weekends hinging on qualifying has made MotoGP “boring” – Espargaro

Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro says the fact “everything is about qualifying” now on MotoGP race weekends has made the series “boring”.

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing

Many complaints have been raised by riders this year regarding the increased difficulty they are having in racing each other owing to the downforce modern MotoGP bikes are creating now.

A much-maligned front tyre pressure rule, which was enforced properly from the Italian GP, has also added to this problem, with riders noting how difficult their bikes are when following others due to the sharp rise in front psi as a result of heat.

This has put the emphasis on qualifying, with seven of the 14 races run in 2023 (sprints and grands prix) being won from the front row.

Espargaro started Saturday’s sprint at the German Grand Prix from 10th and made up only one place, while only one rider in the top six came from outside of the first two rows.

“We have a lot of downforce, that’s for sure,” Espargaro said.

“Everybody has a lot of downforce, but everybody has the same. MotoGP now, and I don’t want to blame MotoGP, but it’s boring.

“Everything is about the qualifying, then you can do a good race, because all the fresh air that you get [when in front], the bike can be a lot faster, is a lot easier.

“If you are far back in the grid, even if you have strong pace, it’s very difficult. It’s frustrating. It’s all about the qualifying and the start.”

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing

Photo by: Alexander Trienitz

Espargaro’s qualifying was compromised by yellow flags on his final two flying laps, while “the worst launch control of the grid” led to his “shit” race.

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“The race was shit,” he added.

“I’m very frustrated because of the qualifying. I had really good speed, I was aiming to fight for the pole and I had two yellow flags in qualifying on my last two laps when the track was drier.

“So, starting from 10th with the worst launch control of the grid is almost impossible.

“The pace was not bad, I overtook many positions, a lot of riders in front of me, but it doesn’t matter. It’s difficult when you start that far back.”

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