Polesetter Maverick Viñales Photographed by us on March 10, 2019, before the start. In the race, things went anything but as desired for the Catalan with 7th place. He had similar experiences several times in the following year.

The last tests in Losail will soon end – it will start on Friday!

The ridiculous engine protection program of Moto2 will soon come to an end. Only Moto3 could be tested sensibly and without artificial limitations. In between, after the second session in Moto2, Marcel Schrötter briefly shone with a provisional best time. At first glance, you might think that 4 different makes had ended up in the first 8 of the Moto3. But Husqvarna and GasGas are KTM as far as their insides are concerned. We would welcome the gag in MotoGP if Suzuki were to send a customer team with green machines out on the track from 2021 and write to them as Kawasaki. In this case there would be a driver from Northern Ireland who would possibly heat up some established stars. But for now it is important to note: Five days after the end of the test, the first GP starts in Losail and the teams and fans are really looking forward to it!

We photographed the starting grid in Losail two years ago. After the MotoGP was missing in the first Corona year, all categories are there again this time.

The top 15 in Moto2 after the last session

In the end, it was Sam Lowes who had a wafer-thin lead in front of Marco Bezzecchi and Remy Gardner. Behind the Petronas Sprinta duo Jake Dixon and Xavi Vierge, followed by Bo Bendsneyder from the Netherlands. Marcel Schrötter and Tom Lüthi were not at the forefront. With Albert Arenas and Raul Fernandez, two rookies made it into the top ten.

1. S. LOWES, 1:58.655
2. M. BEZZECCHI, +0.013
3. R. GARDNER, +0.048
4. J. DIXON, +0.182
5. X. VIERGE, +0.216
6. B. BENDSNEYDER, +0.249
7. N. BULEGA, +0.320
8. R. FERNANDEZ, +0.375
9. A. ARENAS, +0.427
10. A. CANET, +0.550
11. MANZI, Stefano, 1:59.331
12. OGURA, Ai, 1:59.334, +0.679
13. BEAUBIER, Cameron, 1:59.350, +0.695
14. ROBERTS, Joe, 1:59.361, +0.706
15. SCHROTTER, Marcel, 1:59.473, +0.818
16. ARBOLINO, Tony, 1:59.513, +0.858
17. NAVARRO, Jorge, 1:59.516, +0.861
18. DI GIANNANTONIO, Fabio, 1:59.521, +0.866
19. GARZO, Hector, 1:59.536, +0.881
20. LUTHI, Thomas, 1:59.658, +1.003
21. CHANTRA, Somkiat, 1:59.676, +1.021
22. RAMIREZ, Marcos, 1:59.703, +1.048
23. BALDASSARRI, Lorenzo, 1:59.731, +1.076
24. FERNANDEZ, Augusto, 1:59.739, +1.084
25. VIETTI, Celestino, 1:59.908, +1.253
26. DALLA PORTA, Lorenzo, 1:59.969, +1.314
27. MONTELLA, Yari, 2:00.160, +1.505
28. CORSI, Simone, 2:00.336, +1.681
29. BALTUS, Barry, 2:00.503, +1.848
30. SYAHRIN, Hafizh, 2:00.873, +2.218

Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Kalex) – together with teammate Jake Dixon in the fastest riders and thus a favorite for the podium or even victory for the first double race of the season (© MotoGP).

The top 15 of Moto3 after the last session

With Jaume Masia, the double winner of Aragon in the first Corona year was in the lead in the end. The World Cup sixth had been in the front positions several times before and is therefore not a surprise. The first 15 have moved a little closer together compared to the previous day. Guevara, Artigas and Dupasquier are among the positive phenomena that one would not have expected so far up front. On the other hand, Deniz Öncü’s performance with P22 and Max Kofler directly behind must be described as a disappointment. Before the first free practice sessions continue in 5 days, drivers and teams can lean back a little in their hotels. Of course, there is also a lot of training these days, but not on the track.

1. 5, J. MASIA, 2:04.263
2. 37, P. ACOSTA, +0.306
3. 7, D. FOGGIA, +0.440
4. 28, I. GUEVARA, +0.455
5. 2, G. RODRIGO, +0.527
6. 17, J. MCPHEE, +0.624
7. 52, J. ALCOBA, +0.665
8. 55, R. FENATI, +0.840
9. 12, F. SALAC, +0.883
10. 40, D. BINDER, +0.885
11. 43 X.ARTIGAS, +0.953
12. 50 J.DUPASQUIER, +0.962
13. 23 N.ANTONELLI, +1.034
14. 27 K.TOBA, +1.058
15. 11 S.GARCIA, +1.093

Jaume Masia (on the right on Leopard Racing Honda) and Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Husky-KTM) crossing the finish line in the 1st race in Aragon – the Spaniard set the absolute best time on the third day of testing in Losail (© MotoGP).

The forced break in the desert state – agony or luxury?

If you hear and read the opinions of the fans who stayed at home, there are very divided views. For the riders from Spain, who like Rins and Mir, have stayed in Qatar since the MotoGP test, a start in their country would have been much more pleasant. Despite homesickness, for security reasons they decided to stay in the desert state for around 5 weeks at a time. The fact that she and the team members called this a victim called numerous critics on the scene. They doubted that the forced break in the luxury hotel would be torture. But despite all the luxury, what would these critics please do in Doha?

Alex Rins (left) and Joan Mir (both Suzuki) – one of the two, like Takaaki Nakagami, did not get vaccinated for free when the Dorna driver and team members surprised overnight with this suggestion for early in the morning the next day. A more than questionable approach by the Dorna people, who once again showed little sensitivity (© MotoGP).

Our understanding as experts on the matter
We have already been there several times and didn’t even feel at home in the hotel, let alone in taxis, Doha airport or in shopping malls. And we were intentionally staying in hotels with a more western feel. If a cold beer there or at the airport costs around 10 euros, we as normal citizens rarely feel comfortable in the heat of the desert. But we wanted to be there, at MotoGP and WorldSBK. And that’s exactly how it is for Nakagami, Mir, Rins and many other people in the paddock, who decided against unnecessary air travel and the increased risk of Covid-19 infection. Incidentally, anyone who goes outdoors as a normal citizen in the desert state without a Corona app easily risks 2 years in prison. Other countries demonstrate different customs and in Europe they demonstrate without masks!

Taken behind the main grandstand at Losail at dusk. We are excited to see how comfortable the football fans will feel here, should some of them travel to the World Cup in a year’s time. By the way, there was no beer (whether cold or warm) on the route here either.

Very few beneficiaries of the questionable planning
There are not many who benefit from the start of the season in Qatar, even in their country. For the Dorna, however, it was definitely worth it to start here with the organizers’ hefty fees. The few selected restaurants (only 4 to 5 hotels are said to have been selected) can rub their hands while the rest of them look down the tube. You almost feel a little reminded of the madness that is going on in Germany at the moment. The local restaurants are on the verge of ruin, while countless citizens fly to the “newly opened” Mallorca. However, no GP visitor flies to Doha, in contrast to vaccination tourist Marc Marquez a week ago, ordinary citizens are not even allowed into the country.

Marc Marquez, the last time he got off his Repsol Honda and went into the pits. It was after his pointless attempt to qualify on the 2nd Jerez weekend in 2020. His vaccination trip to Doha divides the fans and compatriots because, of course, many criticize the jostling in the vaccination sequence, not entirely wrong. Now the only question left is when will he come back and sit on the RC213V? (© MotoGP).

Winners and future world champions – the list of contenders is large
As in MotoGP, we also guard against hasty predictions in the smaller classes, while many overzealous so-called experts already claim to know the next MotoGP world champion. For more information, see our article http://www.motoracers.eu/always-wrong/?lang=en