MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.

Weekends are back Baby!

motul. motorcycle oil. oil. bikewise.

The Karr Report brings you all the action…

Amidst hail storms, lightning and thunder-induced blackouts, and possibly a broken toe due to the haste in the darkness of loadshedding to watch the rest of the Moto3 race on the handheld mobile device, the first Race Report for 2024 is successfully compiled.

The unique night racing at Qatar once again delivered some brilliant racing action.

During the track’s upgrading, The first outing for the GP circus for 2024 was quite something!

Painters decided that the finish line ought to be closer to the last turn. We’re not complaining, really.


MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.

To the picturesque wallpaper of the setting sun, the Juniors lined up for their first taste of 2024 racing, and did so on new, Pirelli rubber.

Muñoz had a Moment on the grid moments before the lights could go on, and one short tussle with the stewards later he was chased off into pit lane to start from there.

This was a sign of things to come…

The race finally got underway, with no lack of action and overtakes throughout.

By Lap Three the first duo to crash on the first turn ended up being front fighters Rueda and Ortolá. Rueda had lost the rear ever so slightly while very close on the inside of Ortolá, thusly punting Iván off the track.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
Rueda & Ortola crash

Rueda tried to enlist in the Junior Space Program with an awkward launch upward. The potential has been noted Jose’.

Bertelle and Farioli became Crash Duo number two on Lap Five when Farioli also tried out for the Space Program via an impressive highside. Unfortunately for Bertelle, this transpired directly ahead of him, meaning he had nowhere else to go but down.

The two downed riders remained sprawled on the tarmac next to the track, catching their breath and gathering their senses.

At the start of the penultimate lap, Yamanaka’s bike clattered down, sending his rider on a collision course with the end of the pit wall. Right shoulder and wall connected with a solemn bump, the shoulder’s owner looking a smidge confused as to what’d actually happened.

Throughout this, everyone was watching the battle at the front like it was a leaked Onlyfans clip featuring Henry Cavill. 

It was anybody’s race.

On the final lap, Fernández went sliding at Turn Five, taking an unsuspecting Pérez along for company.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#80 David Alonso Winner Moto3.

Let’s focus on what happened at the front of the race on that final lap: 

Alonso started the lap in fourth. He divebombed his way into the lead at the last turn. Alonso won the race. Much impressed. Good job.

After Alonso’s bombing, Holgado had to settle for second place, having led ninety-nine-percent of the race. Behind him, Furusato – who’d jumped from eighteenth to lead on Lap Eight, albeit very shortly – took the third spot on the podium.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#96 Daniel Holgado 2nd.
MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#72 Taiyo Furusato 3rd.


MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
Moto 2 #54 Fermin Aldeguer penalised 3 spots on the grid.

The Middleweights had unknown grounds to cover with their new, pretty much un-race-tested Pirelli tyres. It proved to be a huge factor in many a riders’ race.

Aldeguer had to move three spots back on the grid for his mangy riding during Q2.

Safe for all the close calls, shoulder-rubbing, and divebombing, the first few laps went by smoothly. On the start of Lap Seven however, young Sasaki gave the riders around him a leather-soiling scare as he shot through between them mid-mega-highside. 

Remarkably the Japanese rider didn’t fall off, but it did send him on a bullet-train trajectory into the gravel and straight towards the far wall. Ayumu luckily bailed before becoming an artwork hung on said wall.

Escrig retired to the pits on Lap Nine. Guevara did the same by Lap Thirteen. According to the latter, his rear tyre was ‘gone’.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#21 Alonso Lopez Winner Moto2.

This’was an unpredictable, insane, definitely-not-boring race, with laptimes that were all over the show, likely due to the unfamiliarity of the tyres beneath them and the mystery of how they were going to wear through a full, dry race.

One mad race later, López came out on top, taking the win ahead of Baltus who’d given him a good run for his money. Behind them, García managed to claw his way up into third place.

During the cooldown, López went for a jog through the gravel, climbed a fence, broke a sign, then returned to his bike in order to head back to Parc Fermé.

García, on the other hand, went about caressing his motorcycle in borderline inappropriate ways, while Aldeguer uttered some choice words at his front tyre.

Darryn Binder, after possibly also suffering from medium-tyre-syndrome, ended the race in eighteenth.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#7 Barry Baltus 2nd.
MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#3 Segio Garcia 3rd.


Saturday Sprint Race:

If the first Sprint for 2024 is any indication of what the rest of the year will offer, then we’re all for it!

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
MotoGP Sprint Race.

The sole crasher of the race was DiGi during the third lap. His Ducati decided to hit the ‘eject rider’ button, but felt it proper to first drag him along for a second before abandoning him in the middle of a pack of leaning, fast-riding racers through Turn 10.

Miraculously, he wasn’t run over multiple times. He wasn’t even run over once. Still, his high-speed drag-and-drop caused him some obvious pain, the other Fabio rolling around next to the track.

By Lap Five the Yellow Flags reappeared in Sector Three, presumably to clear up some residual bits from Digi’s earlier crash.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#98 Jorge Martin Wins the Sprint Race.

Martín ran a dream Sprint, leading from pole to chequered flag, claiming the first win for the season and making his intentions clear.

Behind Martín, Brad Binder had a stellar launch, taking second from the start and not only keeping Martín ahead of him humble, but also fending off all potential attacks from behind. Taking second place, he had the whole South Africa celebrating like he’d already won the Championship. Wotaboytjie! Well done, sir.

Storming his way through, Aleix Espargaró managed to make his way into the third spot, very nearly managing to catch Binder. Failing to do so, Espargaró settled for third.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#33 Brad Binder Sprint Race 2nd.
MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#41 Aleix Espargaro Sprint Race 3rd.

Sunday Main Race:

What a race! And let’s be clear: 

All three races on Sunday were spectacular, each in their own right.

Oliveira started his race with an old Long Lap Penalty clinging to his name like the ex who didn’t want to leave.

At first the start was delayed when Fernández’s – Raúl again – hand shot up on the start grid due to some technical issues, and Raúl then refusing to wheel his arse off the grid. Finally the stewards managed to shoo him off into pitlane, while announcing a short delay in the start, which resulted in the race being shortened by one lap. A crappy way for Trackhouse Aprilia to start their campaign.

#88 Miguel Oliveira Long lap penalty.

Moments before the second Warm Up Lap got underway, Raúl went sprinting down Pitlane at a most impressive speed, nearly outrunning his team while in full race kit. The goal of his frantic running was to fetch his secondary bike, since the first had decided to call it quits.

Fernández – still Raúl – had to start his race from the back of the grid.

The sole crasher of the race was Miller, observed sliding off at Turn One on Lap Two with the epic lead battles raging in the foreground. Jack remained firmly in his seat while sliding, and executed a very rapid remount as soon as his KTM came to a standstill.

Rookie, Pedro Acosta gave everyone a double warning. First of all, a warning that he wasn’t here on holiday, and he WILL bomb the crap out of anyone regardless of who they are. Secondly, something more akin to a reminder that rookiness can affect the best of riders coming into MotoGP for the first time.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
Pedro Acosta vs Marc Marquez

Pedro came through the field like a barbarian on a mission, but alas, he overcooked his tyres and soon after nibbling at a podium finish the young sharkie began going backwards.

At the front of proceedings, Bagnaia bloodied the nose of Martín to take the lead, and subsequently disappeared over the horizon with it. Victory was Pecco’s.

Behind the Champ, Binder had at first stayed on his heels, but a drawn-out battle with Martín for second ended up costing both a shot at top spot. 

Brad managed to put Martín in his place, taking second again, and leaving Jorge in third. The only KTM to take it to the Ducati clan.

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#1 Pecco Bagnaia Wins MotoGP.
MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#33 Brad Binder 2nd.
MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
#89 Jorge Martin 3rd.

That concludes the first episode of the seventy-fifth series of MotoGP.

If this weekend was any indication of what lies in store for us this year, then we suggest everyone buckle up, put the popcorn on – it’s going to be a rollercoaster ride!

MotoGP Roundup – Lusail, Qatar.
MotoGP podium.

(My Patreon link. Just, you know, in case one might want to show some appreciation for the hours of toiling over a grubby keyboard: )

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top