Moto GP Mugello

MotoGP Roundup – Mugello, Italy…

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MotoGP: The house of cards…

It has been confirmed  that:

Binder will have a new teammate come 2025, in the form of young Acosta. 

It has been rumoured that Miller will join GasGas. Unconfirmed. Who knows?

Enea Bastianini will ride for Tech 3 KTM in 2025. Confirmed.

Martin moves to Aprilia. Who saw that coming? Confirmed.

Marc Marquez is set to become a factory Ducati MotoGP rider in 2025.

How the tides flow…

Oh and then there was testing on Monday when following overnight rain and showers throughout the day, running at the MotoGP Mugello Test was limited as only 16 of the 23 riders set lap times, with Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Brad Binder fastest with a 1:47.617 – 0.033s quicker than Pedro Acosta’s (Red Bull GASGAS Tech3) best effort.

Fun times await… In the interim, here’s what happened in Italy.

By Karien Pretorius, the Karr Report.

When some people think of Tuscany, they imagine great orchards filled with world-class olive trees, vast vineyards, and breathtaking architecture.

When MotoGP fans think of Tuscany, we see the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello – or, Mugello for short. 

To be frank, we think ours is better.

Why? Wine gives you a hangover and olives are an acquired taste.

Motorcycles barrelling around a stunning circuit at insane speeds gives you nothing but inner joy. We’ll give you the architecture, though – it truly is like being inside a work of art.


Race One:

Manfredi had a crash very early on the opening lap of the first race.

At the final corner, Tulovic’s bike dyna-vaulted him over the bars; the German remained stuck to the curb for longer than what would be considered ‘catching his breath’ time, and soon the Red Flags came out.

He was tended to by two BMW-loads of medical personnel for some time, but we were eventually informed that he was, at least, conscious.

First, a delayed, shortened four-lap-race was announced, but this was ultimately tossed in the recycle bin and they decided on postponing – no, rescheduling – Race One. 

Much, much later, Race One (now technically the second race of the day, but still Race One by name) was attempted again. We’d recommend reading Race Two’s part before continuing here, if you’d like to be more chronological about it.

This time, we got the full, crazy-overtake-filled race, with Torres becoming the only casualty when he crashed on the final lap.

We’d like to mention that the onboard cameras in MotoE seem to be of top-shelf cinematic quality, while in the Premier class we tend to have moments of panic during onboard shots when the picture suddenly either freezes, or goes into glitch mode. What gives?

Casadei snatched the lead from Zaccone at the start of the very last lap, using his slipstream to hurtle past as they went down the straight towards the first corner. Though Zaccone fought a valiant fight, Casadei held on to that lead, and claimed the home-victory. This left his fellow Italian, Zaccone, in second; Garzó took the final podium step.

Race Two:

Does it still count as Race Two, if it happened BEFORE Race One? According to MotoE, yes it does. After Race One was Red Flagged, and subsequently postponed to 18:40 LT (which, you might notice, would be well after Race Two), Race Two became the first race of the day, and Race One the second. You follow? Yes? No? Confused? So is everyone else.

No more Tulovic this weekend – the Race One crasher’s still stuck in hospital, being thoroughly checked out. Hopefully by some attractive Italian nurses.

Spinelli gets Save of the Day for his Turn Four front-tuck during the fourth lap. He used the Force to get that bike untucked; we have no other explanation.

It was a close, but relatively clean race. The final lap melee for third place saw five or more racers going into turns simultaneously, without punting each other into the scenery.

Zannoni claimed victory in front of his home crowd, Casadei followed closely behind, and some ways behind them, Granado snatched third in a three-thousandths of a second photo-finish.

Update on Tulovic: The German rider was diagnosed with neck- and pulmonary contusions, as well as a concussion. Get well soon, Lukas!

Update to the update: Tulovic was discharged and sent home on Sunday. Which is very good news indeed.


Sunday kicked off with a proper bang!


Esteban and Farioli’s race started with Double Long Lap Penalties, for their constant slowness during Saturday sessions. On Lap Three, Zurutuza’s motorcycle bodyslammed him into the curb at Turn Nine, directly in the path of an oncoming Farioli. 

Filippo had nowhere to go but over-or-into the stricken Xabi. 

Chaos ensued.

Half a lap onwards, the race was red-flagged. Zurutuza was tended to on the track, while Farioli managed to return to the pits relatively unscathed. We later saw Zurutuza being loaded into the hospital-taxi while shooting everyone a thumbs-up. This was a good thing.

An update later during the race informed us that Xabi had suffered trauma to his back, and would be getting the full medical service to determine the extent of his injuries. Given this track’s not-so-distant history, this was a huge relief to everyone.

Back to the race. Since three-and-a-half was nowhere near two-thirds of seventeen, the race would be restarted via the good ol’ Quick Restart Procedure, for a full eleven laps. 

Initially, they showed us that the grid would be as it were at the initial start; this was soon fixed to say the grid would be determined by the positions at the end of the third lap.

Though we never saw exactly what happened, Suzuki suffered a teeny crash in very close proximity to when the red flags came out. His mechanics worked fervently to get him ready for the new start, and they managed this successfully.

When Pit Lane opened to let the swarm out again, Veijer encountered a small stalling issue right at the exit; luckily his team were all ex-sprinters and got to him in milliseconds, restarted his bike to get him out of there with seconds to spare.

Esteban, having successfully completed one of his Long Laps before the Reds, still had one more to do. Farioli, having crashed and managing to make the restart in time, still had both of his.

The race started again and it took all of one turn to become chaotic all over again. This time, it was Holgado who got into trouble for helping a few other riders off the track.

Holgado nicked Rueda’s front wheel, sending the Spaniard slipping off into the wheels of Nepa whose bike became airborne while its rider landed face-first on the tarmac. By some miracle, Nepa’s neck and collarbones were all still intact after that. Would he be hurting the day after? Yes, definitely.

Rueda quickly rejoined the action, while Holgado earned himself two trips through the Long Lap Loop for his part in the incident.

Still on Lap One part 2, Suzuki’s mechanics saw all of their blood, sweat and tears go down in a cloud of dust at Turn Ten.

What was a race of two before the Red Flags, was now a Race of Six.

Ortolá’s podium hopes slipped from his fingers when he slipped, rather undramatically, at Turn Ten on the final lap. Though he managed to remount in a flash, he’d lost his chance.

After some fabulous battling, Alonso managed to snatch his third victory in a row, something less than ten Moto3 riders have ever managed to pull off.

Veijer had to settle for second, after posting a handful of the fastest laps ever seen in a Moto3 race towards the end.

Ortolá’s late blunder assisted Yamanaka in visiting Parc Fermé for the first time in his Moto3 career, the Japanese rider taking an emotional third place. He also downed nearly half of his Prosecco. Well deserved, we say.


Thanks to the chaos in the Junior Class’ race, the Middleclass boys saw their race delayed by fifteen minutes, and shortened by seven laps. 

This meant that, instead of nineteen laps of Moto2 action, there were a mere twelve.

They should do that more often. The shorter Moto2 race made for close-combat craziness!

Aldeguer made the start of the race, pain-in-the-neck regardless, though he had to start somewhere in the most distant positions.

Jumping the start doesn’t pay well, as Escrig found when he was instructed to visit the Long Lap. 



Having put in a most valiant effort to pick his way up into the points, Aldeguer went tumbling by Lap Four. Alcoba was somehow involved as well, but this was something Race Direction decided to investigate after the race had run its course.

Aldeguer’s bike first shot nose-over-tail, before returning to the track in an attempt to gather a few more buddies. This was unsuccessful, much to its frustration and our relief. Fermín stomped off through the gravel, not hiding his peevedness.

Salač slipped out of the race at Turn Twelve during the fifth lap…

Our boy Darryn was showing his mettle, featuring in the battle for the top all the way until Lap Six, when he slipped at Turn Eight. He managed to avoid being flattened by his bike as it re-entered the atmosphere after a short bout of space travel, but his podium hopes were not as lucky.

Turn Four snatched Sasaki from the race during Lap Eleven.

Wildcard Pasini was taken out on the final lap…

Binder Mugello 24
Darryn Binder was fastest on Saturday...

Meanwhile, at the front: Roberts fought tooth, nail, and balls to claim only his second Moto2 victory, and the first victory for OnlyFans American Racing. 

González, his final lap assault unsuccessful, relented into second and López snatched third.

To celebrate his win, Roberts demonstrated his standing wheelie skills. Ten out of ten, very neatly done.

López, on the other hand, celebrated third by sitting on top of the fence and tossing gloves at fans. Then he rode side-saddle back to Pit Lane; no hands. Little show-off.

Moto GP: Saturday Sprint Race:

We do like Pecco’s special home-race helmet, with its KISS-inspired rock ’n’ roll theme. It’s a pity the lid didn’t save him from that three-position Main Race grid penalty. At least it did deflect it from the Sprint.


During the second lap, Oliveira slipped up mid-turn and flopped down. On his way to roll in the gravel, Miguel decided to take Quartararo along for the slide. They tumbled intimately through the pebbles, motorcycles flailing around them in a scene straight out of an action movie. The slo-mo’s were certainly very flick-worthy.

Once untangled, Quartararo got gingerly to his feet before limping away.

Soon after starting Lap Three, Bastianini fancied a dive down the inside of Martín, though Martín committed to his tight line through the first turn, and subsequently ended up on Bastianini’s inside. Bastia got a gentle nip from Jorge which was enough to charm the wheels out from under his Ducati, sending Enea shooting off through the kitty litter.

Mir’s misery continued as he retired to the pits at the end of Lap Five.

As the eighth lap ticked into being, Martín made his first-ever Sprint Race blunder: crashing at Turn One. He had no assistance; he did it all on his own. Thus, he proceeded to punch himself while shouting every Spanish expletive he knew. And possibly a few in other languages.

Pecco, now with a comfortable lead, probably didn’t know the amount of blood being shed within his team’s garage, for he’d led a Sprint before, but he’d recently also thrown those leads into the gravel most spectacularly on more than one occasion. Nails were bitten; hair was pulled, goatees were furiously stroked.

Until, finally, he crossed the finish line. Upright, and victorious in front of his elated home crowd. Márquez Senior claimed yet another Sprint-second, while Acosta found himself on the podium again, in third.

Brad, having frog-leaped his way from thirteenth up to fourth by Turn One, finished the race in sixth.

In a post-race interview, a sweaty, sniffling Acosta was trying to explain just how f@<&ed he was after the Sprint. Why? Because he had hayfever. Those who suffer this irrational bodily response to breathing, would understand. We certainly do.

Main Race:

The jets shocked Master Crafar with their extreme lowness over the grid. Not a lot can shock the Master. Most impressive.

Lenovo Ducati changed colour to ‘Maglia Azzurra’ for their home GP, and it confused the hell out of us. We thought that Suzuki was back for just a second or two!

Commence race!

From the end of Lap Four, plumes of smoke coming off of Márquez Senior’s Ducati’s rear wheel had many a little perplexed, and somewhat concerned. Speculation along with the seasoned opinions of Master Crafar determined it to likely be an issue with the wizardry controlling the rear ride-height device.


It Didn’t seem to slow Marc down too much.

Augusto Fernández’s haphazard season continued on its poorly way when he was forced to retire to the pits by Lap Six – apparently, the rear hugger with all the sensors attached to it, had been sucked into the wheel. The luckless Fernández made his frustration known from the moment he dismounted.

Another rider not having the best of times was Mir, who again crashed out of the race; today it was at the first turn of Lap Seven.

Mir is having a torrid time...

Nakagami retired into Turn Twelve’s kitty litter by Lap Ten.

Did you see that final-turn overtake on Martin by Bastianini? Hand down the greatest overtake all Sunday; and there were a few other strong contenders. Unlike in the Sprint, this one stuck!

From his race-start storm into the lead, Bagnaia managed to keep his nose clean all the way to the end, taking the victory in front of a jubilant home crowd.

And, after the previously mentioned epic overtake, Bastianini clenched second, making it a very Italian one-two.

Probably slightly taken aback by the last-turn upset, Martín got third, and found himself to be the only non-Italian thing on the podium.

Brad Binder managed to take tenth over the line.

Bagnaia’s cooldown-celebrations included stopping at his Fan Club for a lot of KISS – he was handed a guitar with a flag, which we never once saw him actually play. This was a pity.

He went on to toss a glove into the crowd, and handed a second one to a young fan who was pressed up to the fence in front of him. Awww.


Then he had to pose for a KISSy group photo in front of said fence, before returning to his Ducati, guitar and all. Upon his launch from the throng, one marshal seemed to have a hard time letting go and had a tumble. Pecco briefly stopped to check the fallen marshal’s wellbeing before continuing on his way to Parc Fermé. The marshal was fine, by the way.

The guitar accompanied Bagnaia not only to Parc Fermé, but all the way onto the podium.

Even if he’d tried to play a few riffs, the roar of the crowd would’ve consumed any sound that came from the instrument. 

It was deafening; Monday morning in Mugello was a very quiet affair after all the Sunday evening parties.

With the Kazakhstan MotoGP postponed until September, we now have a few weeks of MotoGP-less weekends ahead. Some folks are going to be insufferable.

~ Karr

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