Wednesday, April 8, 2015

MOTO GP: Can Marc Marquez "Three-Peat?"

No Fenders scribe Tomaso samples a Movistar Yamaha Scooter' during the 2014 MotoGP weekend at COTA. (The Tomaso Collection)
Otay, so this AIN'T Open Wheel Racing per sei, albeit they've got pretty small fenders; Hya! Yet once again your humble No Fenders scribe is currently basking in the Texas Heat, having just arrived in Austin, in order to attend this weekend's MotoGP race at COTA, nee Circuit Of The Americas to see "The Aliens" once again; after a resounding trip to my second ever MotoGP race last April, which I scribbled  about in;

Obviously, the early money's gotta be on Marquez doing the Hat Trick 'O Championships, while his Repsol Honda team-mate
Dani Pedrosa  will be hard pressed once again to upstage him, along with the rest of the grid.

Movistar Yamaha appears to be the lead "Works" Honda team's main challenger, as "The Doctor," nee Valentino Rossi still hungers for more titles, while it'll be interesting to see if team-mate George Lorenzo can get back to his MotoGP world champion form, as think his shoulder surgery slowed him down initially last year, right? Whilst recently spotted the news that Rossi thinks that the Ducs' (Ducati) riders have an "Unfair Advantage" with their softer rubber allowed per the Italian squad running to Open Class specs.

As making things "Clear as Mud on a Rainy Day!" Is the still muddled two class format which is further complicated by three Factory efforts utilizing the Open Class specifications, which allows for a softer  Bridgestone rear tyre, four more liters of fuel and continuous engine development, albeit in tandem with the sport's common "Spec" Magnetti Marneli ECU. (Engine Control Unit)

As I was totally unawares that both MotoGP classes were currently utilizing Seamless shift technology, as even more intriguingly is the fact that the different manufacturers have devised unique shifting patterns, i.e.; Ducati's 2nd-to-6th, etc.

Along with Ducati, Suzuki, who returns in 2015 and new Italian Scooter' manufacturer Aprilia will run their respective "Works" efforts under the Open Class rules, which thankfully will become more refined next year when everybody will run a common mandated ECU, although it sounds like there will still be room for engine development, etc.

And while Marques is still my favourite current rider, without knowing anythingy 'bout him, whilst scribbling this, I'm becoming more 'N more interested in the rookie Spanish rider with flair to his name, that being the 20yr old Suzuki rider Maverick ViƱales.

Also curious on how Cal Crutchlow, a favourite with the ladies; Hooah! Resumes his career trajectory towards the top of the MotoGP mountain, having left Ducati for a perceivably more competitive Honda, while NO idea on how the new Aprilia will prevail?

And then there's just one lone 'Yank remaining after the "Texas Tornado," aka Colin Edwards retired last year. As it seems a longtime ago that Nicky Hayden, known as "the Kentucky Kid" won the '06 title ahead of Rossi. With Nicky hoping for improved performance from his Open Class Honda, as he'll contest a second year aboard one of Drive M7 Aspar's (Open Class) Scooters.

Meanwhile, upon taking very quick cursory looks thru the supporting Moto2 and Moto3 Feeder Series entry lists, I gleamed these few following factoids.

Alex Marquez, younger brother of Marc, who won the Moto3 title last year, has graduated to Moto2 and surely is setting his sights upon joining his elder brother in the top category shortly.

And lastly, it'll be interesting to see how Doce Femme Fatales in the Moto3 category do? As look for the names Maria Herrera and Ana Carrasco, as Maria will ride aboard the #6 factory Husqvarna team's Scooter, with Ana straddling RBA Racing Team's #22 KTM respectively.

Not to mention The Binder bros, as surely Brad and Daren hope to emulate those Marquez guys, right? As Brad's taken over Jack Miller's ride at Red Bull KTM - reportedly a coveted seat.

And the  "Junior" Moto3 grid won't be devoid of 'Oz riders, with a familiar name from the past. As Remy Garner, 16yr old son of former GP500 champion Wayne Garner from Down Under will proudly fly the Aussie flag in just his fourth year of road racing, while his younger brother Luca also is working his way up the motorcycle racing ladder...

While I believe that the race will air on Fox Sports 1, I have NO idea what time, so per usual, check your local listings...