MotoGP rules out running double-header races

MotoGP promoter Dorna Sports has ruled out the possibility of running two-race weekends as part of a condensed schedule should racing get underway later this year.

MotoGP rules out running double-header races

The coronavirus pandemic has forced the opening eight races of the 2020 campaign to be either cancelled or postponed due to lockdown restrictions worldwide, with the season now not starting until June’s German Grand Prix at the earliest.

Since the cancellation of the Qatar GP at the beginning of March, both Dorna and governing body FIM have mooted several ideas for a reshaped 2020 calendar – one of which was running two races per weekend.

However, Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has now ruled this idea out completely, telling Spain's Teledeporte: “That possibility is of no use to us.

“The promoters are already quite stressed and will not pay for having two races, nor the television [broadcasters] either.”

It has long been thought holding two-race weekends would likely be impossible due to circuit contractual situations.

Dorna’s director general Manel Arroyo added in an interview with Catalunya Radio that “at a technical level” it would be hard for MotoGP to run two-race weekends.

“We not contemplate it, it is one of those news stories that is coming out – it is speculation, doing two races in the same weekend is not going [to happen],” he said. 

“Besides, the current structure of the championship, of the teams and the bikes themselves, are designed to make a type of competition, with a 45-minute race on Sunday. 

“Changing this is not easy at a technical level. Obviously it would not be impossible, but it does not provide us with anything."

Since the postponement of May’s Spanish GP, Dorna and the FIM have declined to issue any new calendars on the grounds that the current coronavirus situation is still evolving rapidly.

Arroyo admits nothing has been planned yet in terms of a provisional schedule, and they will only know how many races there will be this season when a firm start date can be made.

“When we know what day we can start, we will know how many weekends we have until Christmas to do races,” he added.

“Obviously taking into account the logistical needs, we cannot pretend, logically, to do a race every weekend until the end of the year - that is obvious.  

“But when we know the day we can start, we will know if there will be ten, 16 or eight races, saying it now would be very risky.”

Recently, Ezpeleta said he would be delighted with a 10-race season, though Ducati sporting director Paolo Ciabatti told Motorsport.com he believes finding 10 countries able to host grands prix will be difficult.

Ezpeleta also confirmed MotoGP does not have to run the minimum 13 races its contract with the FIM usually stipulates to make up an official world championship this year.

shares
comments
Quartararo could be the next champion, says Espargaro

Previous article

Quartararo could be the next champion, says Espargaro

Next article

Espargaro: 2015 Ducati deal was "practically done"

Espargaro: 2015 Ducati deal was "practically done"
Load comments
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Prime

How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike

His third place at Misano made Enea Bastianini the fifth different Ducati-mounted rider to score a podium in 2021. Amid a season that has seen one rider amass the bulk of Yamaha and Honda's success, the Ducati's versatility makes for a potent weapon, but the contribution of a former leading light shouldn't be forgotten

MotoGP
Sep 23, 2021
The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career Prime

The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career

Maverick Vinales’ early debut with Aprilia has been one of the most interesting plots of the recent MotoGP rounds. The results may not look standout on paper, but a closer inspection reveals just how much progress Vinales has truly made in understanding a bike that has taken him well out of his “comfort zone”.

MotoGP
Sep 22, 2021
Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future Prime

Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino GP will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP's present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia's flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021
How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Prime

How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Prime

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Prime

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Prime

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the track's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP Prime

How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP

The 2020 MotoGP season was an enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if you thought the world championship was a poorer place without Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape.

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021