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Jack Miller, Ducati Team
Prime
MotoGP Indonesian GP
Opinion

The safety problem MotoGP's fraught Indonesia return exposed

OPINION: Last weekend's Indonesian Grand Prix at the new Mandalika International Street Circuit, held in extreme conditions and with asphalt that was tearing up, made it clear that the MotoGP world championship must review its protocols for approving the facilities where races are held.

The event, which was initially due to debut in 2021 before being suspended due to the COVID pandemic, was able to go ahead on Sunday after a morning of uncertainty and suspense. And, paradoxically, it was the same torrential rain that forced the MotoGP start to be postponed for an hour and a quarter that made it possible for the second stop on the calendar and the first event in Indonesia in 25 years to be completed.

It mattered little that Race Direction had to shorten the total distance of the premier class race by seven laps (from 27 to 20), and that a while earlier it had left the Moto2 class at only 16, when it should have reached 25. There were few on the developing island of Lombok who thought that the world championship caravan could leave without racing. There is probably no image that better reflects this desperate desire to go ahead than the rain shaman strolling through a waterlogged pitlane, shouting at the sky to turn off the tap.

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