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Solutions for the Moto3 Insanity?

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  • Solutions for the Moto3 Insanity?

    MotoGP scribe Mat Oxley is truly alarmed at the potential for sport-changing disaster in Moto3 and I agree with him. Read his perspective here:

    https://www.motorsportmagazine.com/a...3796VK,4XXMR,1

    Since my youthful days in and around motocross 50 freaking years ago, I have always been intensely aware of the "First Turn" craziness. It seemed like every other heat race featured a massive pile-up as everybody tried to be in front coming out of that first turn of an MX race. But injuries were usually mild. Years later in road racing, I found it to be different but the same- especially in 8-10 lap sprint races, being in front or at least in the lead pack coming out of that first turn was critical. The difference was a higher degree of caution, due to the relative speed and perhaps maturity in Open class club racers in 1985. Less crashes, but still pretty nuts.

    But today's Moto3, at most tracks, features "First Turn Craziness" 20 or more times per race! If you have watched, you know that due to the gigantic drafting effect on the little bikes, a crowd of 15 bikes can be vying for first place at the end of each long straight (thankfully most tracks only have one). As Oxley notes, the truly fast riders and machines are dealing with slower riders all the time, because they may get away from the pack with their superior corner-speed and line selection around most of the track, but they give it all back on every big straight. And these guys ride like, well like the maniac 18 year-olds they that are, convinced they are immortal and bound for MotoGP glory. Racing at the edge in packs like this, multi-rider crashes are common. And so a young rider died a week ago, from a multi-rider crash in practice, no less. And I fear Oxley is right- more, and perhaps much worse carnage is to come if this continues. And a disaster with multiple severe injuries and/or deaths may result in government intervention in road racing with results that nobody who loves the sport will like.

    So, what can be done? Oxley suggests changing to larger, more powerful bikes in Moto3 , like 400 or 450 twins. I don't know how much power it will take to make the draft tangibly less important, but clearly this in not an issue in the 140 HP Moto2 class. Maybe 100 HP rather than the current 60? Testing would reveal this. Another suggestion was to de-regulate, so that those with the money and resources could build faster machines with more exotic and custom components, allowing the (inevitably) factory racing team riders to escape the pack. I am not so hot this one.

    Another option, though expensive and difficult to implement, is to break up all the big straights with artificial chicanes (for the M3 race only). Not pretty, but it would do the job of reducing the influence of the draft...

    Your thoughts?
    Last edited by gregness; 06-09-2021, 03:31 PM.
    "The Price of Speed is Eternal Vigilance" 2015 ZX14R 30th, Four Kids

  • #2
    I usuually like Oxley - but that wasn't one of his better article. He states the obvious - persons in charge of the rules goofed up with Fabio and the handled the whole chest protector incidient poorly. (Why didn't the Rule Enforcers do a text search of the rule book for "chest protector", find the appropriate punishment, and black flag him?) He agrees and disagrees with Stoner. Uh???? And Moto3 needs to be fixed by bringing back the uber-expensive Factory Specials. (Wait a minute - Moto3 isn't spec machinery - that's Moto2 - the most boring racing of the bunch.) And then he ends the article with "I don't have an answer".

    Back to the matter at hand - racing has gotten safer, but there still more that can be done. I think the next "big" area is how to improve the safety of racers on the ground when they are hit by other riders - Marco, Tomizawa, and now Jason.
    Last edited by tbolt; 06-10-2021, 01:09 PM.
    tbolt

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    • #3
      Originally posted by tbolt View Post
      I usuually like Oxley - but that wasn't one of his better article. He states the obvious - persons in charge of the rules goofed up with Fabio and the handled the whole chest protector incidient poorly. (Why didn't the Rule Enforcers do a text search of the rule book for "chest protector", find the appropriate punishment, and black flag him?) He agrees and disagrees with Stoner. Uh???? And Moto3 needs to be fixed by bringing back the uber-expensive Factory Specials. (Wait a minute - Moto3 isn't spec machinery - that's Moto2 - the most boring racing of the bunch.) And then he ends the article with "I don't have an answer".

      Back to the matter at hand - racing has gotten safer, but there still more that can be done. I think the next "big" area is how to improve the safety of racers on the ground when they are hit by other riders - Marco, Tomizawa, and now Jason.
      How you obviate the laws of physics regarding hard heavy objects striking soft malleable humans at high speed, without encasing said humans in unworkably hard and/or thick "armored suits" (for lack of a better description) is way beyond any current or dreamed up technology... I am pretty sure the only solution is going to be decrease the chances of such collisions, rather than reducing their consequences...
      "The Price of Speed is Eternal Vigilance" 2015 ZX14R 30th, Four Kids

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      • #4
        Not enough was made of the fact that the Japanese rider Ayumi Sasaki sustained a fractured skull during the race, after being run over by other bikes just like young Dupasquier. It's a miracle he wasn't killed as well. I don't know what the solution is, but something needs to change right now, before another teenager loses their life.

        Maybe for now they should split the field and hold smaller-pack super pole races, with only the top tranche getting to the deciding race on Sunday?

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        • #5
          4 bikes per row on the grid and 5 +/- sec staggered start for each row?





          Our ability to distribute interesting information is out pacing our ability to create it.

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          • #6
            I agree with Gregness to increase the hp in Moto3 to reduce the number of drafting riders swarming to the apex of the turn after a long straight or eliminate the long straights with chicanes.
            My ol' ZZR1200 pics:
            http://zzrbikes.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_itemId=156883

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