Ever since the Great East Japan Earthquake, there’s been a great deal of speculation in the MotoGP paddock about the status of the Japanese GP. Although postponed until October, the reality that the Motegi circuit will be able to safely host a MotoGP event is still dubious in many minds, and accordingly names of alternate venues have been banded about as replacements for the Japanese round. At the top of the list has been Istanbul, which last hosted MotoGP back in 2007.
Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has seemingly put the kibosh on the Turkish GP taking over for the Twin Ring Circuit though, saying that if the Japanese GP cannot be undertaken, the round would be dropped altogether from the MotoGP calendar. Such an action would leave only 17 stops for MotoGP’s racing season, instead of the customary 18 rounds.
“We’re waiting for the local promoters decision, but in any case, if they should decide to cancel the race this year, there will be no replacement,” said Ezpeleta speaking to Italy’s Gazzetta dello Sport. “A national competition is scheduled to be held in July, which means that by then the venue should be usable and we should be certain on what we’ll do.”
“I have full confidence in the Japanese, if they tell us the race can go ahead, it’s because safety will be 1,000%,” the Dorna CEO continued. “If the situation isn’t clear, I’m certain they’ll be the first at evaluating the situation appropriately.”
Source: Gazzetta dello Sport; Photo: © 2011 Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved