The MotoGP chasing field on April 14, 2019 chasing the leaders in the Texas Grand Prix with Bagnaia in front of Mir and Lorenzo. As in the Corona season, there will be no race in April this year, as we expected and predicted (© MotoGP).

FIM and Dorna with the expected calendar change

We remember very well when the first provisional plan for the 2021 season was published two and a half months ago. First you scratched your head in our reaction and then shortly afterwards the keys of our computers rattled. MotoGP’s first change of plan for FIM and Dorna’s 2021 calendar was predictable. Because at the beginning of the season opener in Qatar, Argentina and Texas, three particularly “hot irons” were brought into play. Actually completely pointless in view of the still prevailing travel problems due to Covid-19 and the mutations to be expected. But practically all motorsport portals and magazines took over the “fair weather calendar” created at the beginning of November one-to-one and presented it to their readers without criticism, while we made it clear from the start: Such a plan was absolutely unrealistic.

Aerial view of the Circuit of the Americas in Texas – as we have already predicted since November 5, 2020, there will now be no US Grand Prix there, despite the original planning for April 18 of this year, as in Argentina.

Double race in Losail and, as predicted, Portugal after that

We had also seen a round in Qatar with skepticism, but of course existing contracts had to be kept. Since the desert state wants to host the soccer World Cup next year, the local authorities have managed to grant an exception. Here is the current status, which currently applies to “ordinary people”: “The international airport of Doha (HIA) is closed to entry until further notice. Foreign nationals who have a Qatar residence permit (Qatar ID) are excluded.” This is proof that we always do very well-founded research before making any claims. Wild speculation is also not our thing, so we were spot on with the first lockdown in spring 2020. Our only forecast back then was in March that there would be no races before midsummer and we were spot on.

Photographed by us on the WorldSBK weekend in September 2019 shortly before the Superpole Race: Turn 1 and in the background the huge grandstand of the Autodromo do Algarve near the coastal city of Portimão. As we already predicted over 2 months ago, this was, along with the Circuito de Jerez, one of the unsuitable possibilities for a replacement when Argentina and Austin were eliminated in spring. In January 2019 it was almost 20 degrees Celsius during the WSBK test drives.

After the failure with the test calendar

It had been clear to us since the test plan was published that there would be no testing in Sepang. But even here we hardly read a critical word on either German or other language portals. Not so with us, we generally don’t like to buy a pig in a poke, even (or even more so since Covid-19) when something comes from FIM and Dorna. At the end of the day, we should be right about this, too, and the calendar received the correction we expected at the beginning of January. With the cancellation of test drives in Sepang, the teams also no longer had to travel to Malaysia.

Our photograph shortly before the Moto2 race from behind the main grandstand of the Losail circuit in the desert state of Qatar. It was created in the last edition in 2019, when MotoGP was still racing here, while in the following year only the smaller classes should be at the start.

MotoGP’s first change of plan for the 2021 calendar

In italics the changes and the event in Finland on the KymiRing, which is still unsafe due to the lack of homologation. Other endangered dates are Sachsenring and Assen, as well as all overseas races in October. There is currently no replacement for the canceled appointment on the Masaryk Ring near Brno, but as a precaution we left this space free. With a probability bordering on certainty, this second provisional plan is unlikely to be the final version.

The replacement track for MotoGP is the new Mandalika Racetrack in Lombok (Indonesia), depending on the completion and homologation, while the Igora Drive Circuit in St. Petersburg (Russia) was not mentioned in the second version again.