Rev your engines, motorcycle racing enthusiasts in India! The thrilling event, the MotoGP Bharat, is making its debut on Indian soil. Straight from Misano and part of the 2023 season, the MotoGP Bharat will electrify the Buddh International Circuit, albeit subject to successful homologation by Dorna Sports and FIM. Despite these formalities awaiting conclusion, the race weekend is already well scheduled and eagerly awaited.
MotoGP is renowned as one of the world’s largest and most prestigious racing events, featuring motorcycles reaching speeds well in excess of 300 kmph. Riders from across the globe will take part in the MotoGP, Moto2, and Moto3 races hosted at the Budh International Circuit.
MotoGP, which stands for Motorcycle Grand Prix, represents the premier category of motorcycle road racing events conducted on road circuits officially approved by the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM).
The significance of this event lies in its status as the revival of motorsport in India following the exit of Formula 1 in 2013. It stands as a historic moment for India’s sports industry and serves as a tribute to the 75th year of India’s independence. With 82 riders representing 41 teams, this event marks a notable milestone, especially considering India’s position as one of the world’s largest motorcycle markets, boasting over 200 million motorcycles on its roads. By hosting this event, MotoGP aims to become more accessible to Indian fans and establish a deeper connection with this crucial market.
MotoGP, Moto2, and Moto3: Understanding the Distinctions
Three distinct classes, each with their respective bikes, mark the MotoGP weekend: MotoGP, Moto2, and Moto3. The key distinguishing factor between these classes lies in the power of the bikes.
- MotoGP: This is the premium championship, and it features bikes with robust, inline-4, 1000cc engines.
- Moto2: This category spots middle-weight bikes with 765cc engine capacity. All Moto2 bikes run on the same inline-3 engine found in the production-spec Triumph Street Triple RS.
- Moto3: These are entry-level bikes, possessing a single-cylinder 250cc engine that produces approximately 60bhp.
Race Weekend Details
As Friday beckons, practice sessions for Moto3, Moto2, and MotoGP will commence sequentially at the Buddh International Circuit. Preparations will take-off at 9 a.m. with Moto3, followed by Moto2 at 11 a.m., and lastly, MotoGP’s inaugural ‘Free Practice session’ will kick off at 11:15 a.m. This thrilling series of events will wrap up at 4:40 p.m. with the MotoGP practice session.
The primary purpose of these practice sessions is to allow teams to familiarize themselves with the track conditions and accordingly fine-tune their bikes.
Come Saturday, race-goers will once again enjoy practice sessions for all three classes. This will be followed by two qualifying sessions for each. MotoGP fans will have the added pleasure of experiencing the shorter Sprint race, a new format that made its debut this year. The Sprint race is scheduled to start at 3:30 pm.
After an action-packed Friday and Saturday, Sunday will see the culmination of all the preparations into the final race day. The day will kick-start at 11:10 am with warm-up sessions, followed by an enjoyable rider fan parade. The day’s racing will commence at 12:30 pm with the Moto3 race, trailed by the Moto2 race at 1:45 pm, and ultimately, the highly anticipated MotoGP race at 3:30 pm.
Key Players To Keep An Eye On
“Given that the upcoming MotoGP Bharat is just the 13th race of the season, the field is still wide open with every possibility of surprises. Leading the championship table right now is Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia, followed by his team-mate Jorge Martin and Ducati rider Marco Bezzecchi on the third spot.”
An exciting rivalry has been observed between Jorge Martin and Francesco Bagnania, so this weekend’s spectators can look forward to some thrilling overtakes and intense duels. Honda’s rider, Marc Marquez, although struggling with performance issues, is highly appreciated by Indian fans and will undoubtedly receive the loudest cheers in the stadium. In addition, KTM’s wildcard, Brad Binder, has made some inspiring performances this season. So, expect some impressive overtakes from the South African as well.
Aprilia Racing’s recent performances have shown promise, especially with their latest RS-GP bikes. Their rider duo, Aleix Espagaro, and Maverick Vinales, could potentially spring a surprise with a strong qualifying result, potentially starting in the top 5 in the primary race. Furthermore, Aprilia Racing is introducing two teams for the first time, including a satellite team, Team RNF, fielding riders Miguel Oliveira and Raul Fernandez.
Where and How to Watch
If you’re looking to experience the race live, head to BookMyShow to get your tickets. Prices range from Rs 800 to Rs 1.8 lakh.
However, if you prefer the comfort of your home, you can catch the race on Sports18, or live stream the race for free on your Jio Cinema mobile.
MotoGP India on Friday apologised for broadcasting a distorted map of India during a live telecast of its event, called the Indian Oil Grand Prix of India. The event is taking place at the Buddh International Circuit in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
MotoGP India took note of the Indian map being distorted after journalist Ajeet Bharti pointed out that the map did not include the Union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.
Please, also have a look into : ‘Grand Prix Bharat’: MotoGP to make India debut in winter of 2023