The 51st running of the Macau Grand Prix got underway today under auspicious conditions, the race organizers finding a narrow window in the rain to let the motorcycles out on the road course.
That would prove to be a fateful move however, as the race would last only six of its twelve laps, with tragedy striking and red flags flying.
A crash in Fisherman’s Bend caused the race’s early conclusion, and in its aftermath we have learned that British rider Daniel Hegarty lost his life in the unfortunate incident.
Last year we covered a lot of motorcycle racing, and at many of those events Tony Goldsmith was the man swinging a lens for Asphalt & Rubber. We asked Tony to share some of his favorite snaps from 2016. We hope you enjoy them. -JB
As we look forward to the 2017 season I thought I’d share some of my favourites images from 2016. Above, the eyes of a man after a very fast lap at the Isle of Man TT.
My journey to Macau for the 50th Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix didn’t get off to the best of starts. I had just boarded my flight from Madrid to London, and discovered my tablet and laptop were missing from my bag.
After a few moments of panic, I came to the conclusion that they must have been stolen. I had spent three hours in the lounge at Madrid – someone must have taken them then.
It then slowly dawned on me what happened. When going through security, I had taken the laptop and tablet out of my bag as normal. After scanning my bag the security guy wanted all my camera gear out of the bag and sent me back.
I have no idea what makes Madrid security different to any other I have ever gone through, but obviously I wasn’t going anywhere if I didn’t do as instructed, so I emptied my gear into several trays and sent it back through.
Once everything was cleared I packed all my gear back into my bag, but left my laptop and tablet behind!
This gallery of photos came with a note from photographer Tony Goldsmith, apologizing that I was just now getting them, and also that they weren’t his usual “Gold Standard” of quality.
It turns out that when Tony left Valencia to go to Macau, his laptop took a different trip at the Madrid airport. This means that Tony wasn’t able to process his shots after the Macau GP ended, and also explains their late arrival to Asphalt & Rubber.
If you ask me, they look pretty damn good…as usual. Tony is a true talent with a camera, if you haven’t noticed already. I’ll let him tell the tale about this year’s Macau in the comment section though, but if the rumors are true, the full story involves a circus seal, a tube of toothpaste, and a pair of galoshes. -JB
The following is a preview of how A&R Pro member accounts will see event results during the racing season. This article format will replace the regular race results posts on the Asphalt & Rubber article feed on the homepage and search results, allowing A&R Pro members to avoid race spoilers while reading the site.
If you had an A&R Pro membership, the photo and headline of this post would be different, so as to avoid race spoilers. Instead, your race results would look like this post.
Just because it’s the offseason doesn’t mean the guys from the Paddock Pass Podcast aren’t busy cranking out shows. Episode 12 finds David, Neil, and Tony after the Jerez test for both the MotoGP and World Superbikes, as well the Macau Grand Prix.
The boys talk about how the MotoGP teams are handling the unified electronics and adapting to the Michelin tires. They also gives us a status update on how the Aprilia and KTM projects are coming along.
Moving on to WSBK, there is a good discussion about the speed from the Kawasaki factory bikes, and how Nicky Hayden is handling the switch to the production class, with the Honda CBR1000RR. You will also enjoy Tony’s report from the Macau Grand Prix, the last stop on the 2015 road racing calendar.
The show is continues its mix of useful racing insight and friendly banter – if you ever wanted to know how much KTM’s Moto3 bike weighs in pixie farts, this is the show for you.
As always, be sure to follow the Paddock Pass Podcast on Facebook, Twitter and subscribe to the show on iTunes and SoundCloud – we even have an RSS feed for you. If you like the show, we would really appreciate you giving it a review on iTunes. Thanks for listening!
Peter Hickman on his way to victory. He crashed on his debut at last year’s Macau Grand Prix, and didn’t make the race as the bike sustained too much damage. That makes his victory in this year’s event even more impressive.
The start of the race and Martin Jessop leads the field into the tight Lisboa turn on the opening lap.
Ian Hutchinson leaves pit lane to start Thursday afternoon’s qualifying session. The Macau race was Hutchy’s last appearance on the Kawasaki before he moves to the Tyco BMW squad for the 2016 season.
Italy’s favorite boutique brand will be back at the Isle of Man TT races this year, with a two rider team that includes American Brandon Cretu.
Cretu and his teammate Ben Wylie will campaign for Bimota at the big four road races (North West 200, Isle of Man TT, Ulster Grand Prix, and Macau GP) on-board the Bimota BB3 superbike.
This is not the first time that Cretu and Wylie have raced together, having shared a pit while at the Wylie Racing team during the 2011 and 2012 Isle of Man TT races.
Though the Bimota BB3 was ruled ineligible for FIM events, the international road racing scene has no hang-ups letting the S1000RR-powered superbikes lineup on the starting grid.