MotoGP To Test in Argentina after Assen

04/10/2013 @ 2:26 pm, by David Emmett4 COMMENTS


With MotoGP scheduled to race in Argentina in 2014, the MotoGP teams will be heading down to the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit between the Assen and Sachsenring races in July to conduct a two-day test at the track, as well as take part in a number of promotional activities.

The test, to be organized by Dorna, will see a number of teams participate, with Dorna announcing that teams representing the three factories racing in MotoGP will at least be present at the circuit. Exactly which teams will attend is not entirely clear. The press release is worded vaguely, saying only that Honda, Yamaha, and Ducati teams will be present.

Given that the factory Ducati team was absent at the private test organized at Austin – and given that Ducati hopes to be a lot more competitive in 2014 than they were in 2013 – it seems obvious that Ducati will attend the test. According to GPOne, the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 and Pramac Ducati teams are also likely to attend, as will the Gresini Honda squad.

It appears that Repsol Honda, Factory Yamaha and LCR Hondas will not take part in the Argentina test. The idea, we have learned, is to compensate the teams who did not make it to Austin for the private test held there, and give them some experience at the track before the race next year. Those riders will then be at an advantage at Argentina, to make up for being at a disadvantage at Austin.

The Argentinian circuit was originally placed on the 2013 calendar, but the lingering dispute between Argentina and the Spanish government over the nationalization of the Argentine branch of Repsol, Repsol YPF, was cause for it to be postponed. That dispute simmers on, and it is unclear whether Repsol Honda would consider it safe to travel to Argentina at the moment.

Having the Repsol Honda team skip the test also means that there will be more time for the political problems which exist between Argentina and Repsol to be resolved. Whether that happens is open to question: the conflict has already been dragging on for over a year, and the Argentinian government has shown little inclination to budge from its current position, and even less inclination to compensate Repsol, given the severe economic problems it faces, largely, it must be said, of its own making.

The test in Argentina also makes a mockery of the cost-cutting agenda in recent years. By having the test between two European rounds – Assen and Sachsenring – the bikes and teams will be shipped across the Atlantic three times during July.

From Assen to Termas de Rio Hondo, from Termas de Rio Hondo to the Sachsenring, and from the Sachsenring to Laguna Seca. Unless Dorna is covering the costs for the test, this could turn into a very expensive trip. Below is the press release from Dorna:

Argentina to welcome MotoGP™ this year for test

With the 2013 MotoGP™ World Championship having been launched last weekend, it has been confirmed that some teams will head to Argentina later this year for a test session to be staged at the Circuito Internacional Termas de Río Hondo in the first week of July, just after the IVECO TT Assen.

Between 1st and 5th July, MotoGP riders and teams will move swiftly from The Netherlands to Argentina and the province of Santiago del Estero. They will also visit capital city Buenos Aires for a selection of media commitments.

Several representatives of the World Championship – including those of marques such as Honda, Ducati and Yamaha – will take part in official trials in Argentina.

The program will include two days of intensive work on the track, where each team will focus on their competitiveness, while being able to extract data for the circuit for when the Grand Prix of Argentina is added to the calendar in 2014.

MotoGP is the premier motorcycling competition in the world and, for this reason, official tests are key to ensuring the development of reliability and competitiveness at the highest levels. Making best use of the official timing system, teams and riders will be looking to configure their motorcycles to perfection across each and every lap.

Details of the testing schedule for the Official Test in Argentina, as well as full lists of media activities and information on those taking part, will be available in due course.

Source: Dorna; Photo: © 2013 Scott Jones / Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.

  • Who is the logistic Genius , who thinks this shit up , have the test monday after laguna race , Hello

  • Gutterslob

    @Andres C

    That’s what I don’t get either. Recently we had some nutty Dorna honcho complaining about WSBK having unnecessary testing at Phillip Island, even though the race was a week later and most of he bikes just remained in Australia, and here we have them moving an entire battalion of GP bikes and staff to another friggin continent to test.

    Even if they use safety as an argument, since it’s a new track and all, why not have the Argentinian test a week before the GP instead? That way, the only ones that might have to do additional logistic work would be Bridgestone, in case they need to ship newer, safer tyres.

  • L2C

    All the reason’s why this is a dumb and inefficient move are in the article. Dorna clearly doesn’t give a shit about who would be able to afford to attend the test or not. And Repsol’s political situation and the potential affects to the HRC also means diddly to Dorna.

    The test absolutely should be postponed to just before the GP itself, but this makes too much sense, and is why it wasn’t done.

  • smiler

    In the interests of saving costs. Dorna have changed the engine capacity three times since 500’s are milking Honda to provide moto2 engines in a change in engine type. They have just fazed out 125’s. Additionally introduced the hopeless CRT’s which will be fazed out next year by kidnapping Yamaha to provide engines. Now they make up a schedule requiring, as stated the bikes to be shipped backwards and forwards from EU to America. There were 8,000 people at Qatar and now Argentina a monumentally large market for motorcycles and motor racing? Yet no round in India, China, Russia, Brazil or any other up and coming economy.
    WHat will they think of next. Honda powered Suzuki’s, a capacity change to 750 or a round in FInland.