MotoGP Roundup – Valencia, Spain.

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The Final Soapie. The end of a jam-packed seventy-fifth season in MotoGP. We were entertained!

The pale, twisty expanse of the Circuito de la Comunitat Valenciana – or Circuit Ricardo Tormo for short(er) – gave us three season-ending races worth watching.

Not gonna lie, the layout made us think of a wood-planer. No idea why. It’s still a brilliant circuit.

By: The Karr Report.


Poor Moreira’s and Pérez’s final race for 2023 was cut down to two corners long when Artigas Lawn Mowing Services scythed them off the track. Holgado evaded the cut, but still ended up somewhere at the back of the pack.

Artigas’ payment for his services was a Double ticket to the Long Lap Loop.

On Lap Three, Fellon’s bike got frisky, throwing its rider into the gravel and immediately attempting to mount the stricken Frenchman.

Lots of hot overtakes happened, many of which were done by a stonking, fire-breathing Holgado as he made his way through the throng of racers. In the end, his stampede halted in P8, something worth an honorary mention.

Sasaki. Amazing race!

Finally! Sasaki led the final lap for the eighth time this season, and this time he didn’t lose the lead at the final corner. Ayumu claimed his first race win for the 2023 season in the final race, exiting from the Junior class on a high note.

A barnstorming Alonso took second, which he celebrated by clambering atop the tyre wall at Turn One, much to the delight of the fans.

Ortolá managed to take third, also having raced the wheels off his bike. A little burnout was in order.

Sasaki’s victory and Veijer’s efforts in the race meant that the Liqui Moly Intact team walked away with the Teams’ Championship trophy. Well done.

It’s not often a new Champion celebrates his Champion-ness more than one Sunday to such an extent; while wearing his gilded Champ helmet, with special livery on his bike (which we honestly hardly noticed at first), Masiá did his own burnout post-race. Again, he wore some odd-looking bits of clothing and a flag in celebration of his success.

We get it, Jaume. Sheesh.

In pit lane, Öncü showed us what a proper burnout looked like. He wins the Junior Burnout Award, no contest.


Mayhem happened on the opening lap when García high-sided his way out of the race after an overtaking manoeuvre on Vietti went a tad awry.

The moment García made contact with the tarmac, Guevara’s bike used him as a mini-ramp into the gravel. Thankfully, García was swiftly up on his knees and seemed relatively unscathed for someone who’d just been used as a human speed bump.

Both Guevara and Vietti also found themselves down in the pebbles, with a few other riders resorting to the gravel-track-route in order to avoid a similar fate.

The final corner claimed its share of victims, starting with Nozane on the first lap, and finishing off with Garzó on Lap Seventeen.

Tulovic went tumbling on Lap Five, into the very first corner.

Many were rooting for Canet’s first victory, but many hadn’t taken into account the recent assault by Aldeguer on the Moto2 field.

Once he’d hit the front, Fermín checked out. Again. His lap times were more consistent than the monthly debit orders on your bank account. He did his first 1:34 since Lap Four only on the nineteenth lap, and that, judging by his final lap, was purely because he was having a snack break.

For the last five-odd laps, Aldeguer’s lead remained four seconds and above. This, once again, afforded him the cocky privilege to go across the finish line with his front wheel pointed straight up to the sky.

A fourth race win on the trot meant that Aldeguer had become only the second rider ever to accomplish this feat since Tony Elias did it in 2010. Our money’s on this guy in 2024.

Canet took another second place, being the filling in a Boscoscuro-sandwich finished off by López in an on-the-line third.

Celebrations commenced; Aldeguer demonstrated why he wasn’t a shotput-champion by tossing his gloves – and one boot – in the general direction of his fans, and not quite managing the distance. A slightly more successful burnout followed, with a second one happening at the entrance to Parc Fermé.

More gloves were tossed at fans, this time by local hero Canet; one of the gloves did not want to go to the people, and grabbed onto the fence instead.

López wins the Intermediate class Burnout Award.

Acosta, celebrating his Champion status a little more, picked up some strange sushi along the way. Does shark meat go in sushi…?

Due to circumstances unseen, Darryn finished the race in twentieth. 

Onward to 2024, Daz!


The final showdown could not have been scripted better even if it were Spielberg doing the scripting. Hold on to your helmets!

How the race ended. But Digi was penalised for tyre pressures, so Zarco claimed second with Brad binder in third.

Viñales got slapped out of pole position by means of a three-place position drop due to him not heeding the Orange-on-Black flags during his Warm-Up earlier. This promoted Bagnaia onto the top spot for the race.

Chaos commenced; on the first lap Bezzecchi tumbled off (apparently, Marc Márquez was involved in this) and lay writhing in the pebbles while a troop of marshals attempted to lift his bike up again.

On the start of Lap Three, our two title contenders got frisky as Martín was sucked in by Bagnaia’s slipstream, almost taking Pecco’s exhaust with him as a trophy. 

Martin just got too close...

GiGi almost suffered a heart-attack and a stroke all in one go.

The contact caused Martín to run wide and drop off from second into somewhere well beyond Championship contention. Naturally he fought back, passing guys with as much aggression as he dared, plus a pinch. 

Then it was time for catchup and that was suitably spectacular, bordering on reckless abandon in pursuit of glory.

His raging rush came to an end on the sixth lap, when he tried to pass Marc into Turn Four, but instead made contact with Márquez Senior’s rear. Marc was flung from his bike like a human frisbee, sailing through the air most impressively before crash-landing in the gravel in a painful manner. 

Definitely NOT the way he’d wanted to end his time with Honda. A crappy way to end his Honda career and no fault of his own.

Marquez off to the medics. Luckily, nothing serious. It was a huge one...

Behind Marc, Martín did his level best to remain upright while his Ducati ploughed through the gravel, seemingly set on crashing into the barriers. Just short of headbanging the wall, Martín and his bike toppled over. 

And, with that, his last hope of becoming 2023 Champion.

While Marc was scooted off for a check-up, Martín arrived in his garage in an inconsolable state. It was so bad, he refused to take his helmet off. 

Fears of him drowning in his own ‘snot-en-trane’ were raised. He didn’t.

End of the line for Martin...

That pretty much settled the Championship battle. But the final race was far from over. Seriously, if you missed it, go and look it up.

 We still had twenty-two laps of carnage to complete!

During the tenth lap, Bastianini’s bike tried its wheels at high-jump, but failed miserably, and Augusto Fernández went butt-sliding out of Turn Eight, where he decided to fling pebbles at the track to show his discontent.

Brad Binder, third on Podium:

Brad, Courtney’s going to give you a (loving) whack upside the head. 

Our local star was leading the race by more than a second when the Long Lap Loop pulled him in for a go-around. He’s so used to getting penalties when things were going well, he went and gave himself one before the stewards could…

After this little self-inflicted penalty, Binder went on the charge, barging Márquez Junior out of the way in the process, MX style (Maybe in preparation for round the Houses at Roof of Africa). 

He earned himself a one-place-drop penalty. A penalty he served in an interesting manner: first, he passed Viñales; then, he let Viñales back through. Penalty served successfully.

It all confused the hell out of the commentators and us.

After Brad’s blooper, Miller was leading the race. Until he landed in the Turn Ten dust hard enough to look like he’d been in his mother’s makeup-bag, and had found her setting powder

Di Gi impressed again and almost claimed 2nd. He was penalised for tyre pressures.

Rins’ bike abandoned him for pastures new at the start of Lap Twenty.

Espargaró (Junior) tried to set the horisontal Best Race Speed on the twenty-fourth lap.

With about half the field eliminated from the race, suspicions arose of magnets hidden within the tyre walls, yanking bikes off the track one – and at times two – at a time.

Regardless of the wreckage around him, Di Giannantonio began hunting the leading riders. And he very nearly became the first rider in 2023 to take two victories in a row. 

Alas, this was not to be.

Zarco sniffing tyres...

So, with this season not seeing anyone nabbing two Sunday race wins in a row, it became the first season since the inception of the Premier Class Championship to accomplish this statistic.

Bagnaia defended his Champion status from the top spot, fending off DiGi’s relentless attack successfully. 

DiGi settled for second, while Zarco happily took third.

And that was still not the end of it…

Brad inherited third place and Zarco was promoted to 2nd after Fabio Di Giannantonio was dropped to fourth following a 3 second tyre pressure penalty…

Crazy stuff!

Pecco is a class act.

But all that was trivial. Let the celebrations commence! Fireworks, crackers, gilded helmet and three golden rings made up part of the on-track affirmation of Pecco’s achievement.

He not only took his second Championship in a row – something no Italian has managed since Rossi – he became the first rider to successfully retain the Number One plate since Doohan’s days, twenty-five years ago.

 #BACK2BACKgnaia – a cheesy AF hashtag, but it works. Congratulations, Pecco!

Brad, among all this, managed to take fourth. Well done, sir.

Right. Well. What’re we going to keep you entertained with until next year’s season kicks off? Perhaps one of our readers has a suggestion. 

Send it through! You could even get an honorary mention.

~ Karr

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

Back2Backgnaia. Ducati does it again.

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