Duncan Bishop

  • Shades of 2011 in tyre-heavy US GP

    Fans in Europe have it relatively easy when it comes to watching MotoGP, enjoying premier class action at a reasonable hour on a Sunday afternoon for most of the year.

    There are only those three summer weekends where you have to sneak downstairs at an ungodly hour to watch the Malaysian, Japanese and Australian Grands Prix.

    This past Sunday's race at Laguna Seca only provided slight inconvenience with its 10pm start (British time), but anyone looking to pop off to bed early could have just watched a recording of last year's US GP.

    Despite the change of engine capacity and a turn in the tide of

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  • Motocross: MotoGP’s necessary evil

    Show me a MotoGP rider, and I'll show you someone who has done perhaps a little too much motocross in their time. Road racing's more rough-and-ready cousin made its latest appearance this past weekend — as ever, at the most inconvenient of moments for the rider involved.

    Cue Héctor Barberá being rushed to Barcelona for surgery on a broken tibia and fibula, undergoing surgery and being ruled out of action for 4-6 weeks. That puts him out of this weekend's US Grand Prix and most likely the Indianapolis GP as well. The rider who has only missed one race in his premier class career faces a spell

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  • Hayden’s likely Ducati departure hardly an injustice

    Glum Hayden: A familiar sightThere's no traction control capable of toning down patriotic spin for a favourite rider.

    Valentino Rossi will always be the hero of the story in Italy — so much so that this year and last he had to make an impromptu appearance on the Mugello podium stage in order to address his 'friends, Romans and countrymen' gathered on pit lane and the track for the traditional invasion. In the US, certain people would have you believe that Nicky Hayden is being unjustly forced from his place alongside Rossi in the Ducati factory team.

    MotoGP rides at the moment resemble budget airlines in peak season: it's

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  • Pedrosa still outside bet for the title

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    After nine races without a win, Dani Pedrosa finally opened his victory account for the season at Sachsenring. Favourable circumstances have been the ally to his consistent podium form, with the end result being that he is now in second place in the overall standings -14 points behind leader Jorge Lorenzo and six ahead of team-mate Casey Stoner.

    Expecting MotoGP's great white hope of the mid-2000s to finally take the title that has eluded him over the past six seasons? I'm not so sure.

    The win at the German Grand Prix was Pedrosa's 16th time on the top step in the premier class. Nobody has

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  • Assen crash challenges regulation small print

    The crash that has gotten people talking (Reuters)

    Alvaro Bautista had bowled spectators over with his improvement in performance over the past month, but his kamikaze dive to bowl over Jorge Lorenzo at the opening corner of the Dutch TT swiftly undid all that.

    Having gone from being referred to as an impressive rider surely not long from claiming a first MotoGP podium to some idiot "who was still going full throttle when the rest of us were braking", it is easy to fall from favour in a split second when one goes racing, it seems.

    Still, to 'Amazing Alvaro' and 'boneheaded Bautista' we can add the moniker 'Bautista the philosopher' after the

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  • Honda’s production racer and the illusion of equality

    Some of the best riders in the world are going to be heading into a tight space this week at Assen — and I don't mean the famous 'Cathedral' turn one entry.

    Those in charge of putting bikes on the MotoGP grid will convene in the travelling Dorna office to talk rookie rules, spec ECUs and other pending topics on the grand prix agenda.

    The game-changing speculation since Silverstone has surrounded the strong possibility of Honda making a new, more economically accessible bike for 2014 and beyond, based on the RC213V. The project is rapidly gathering pace, just as it looked as if the future was

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  • Lorenzo’s roll firm championship form

    To be 25 points ahead after six races isn't bad by any standards —especially against the best in the world. That's the situation Jorge Lorenzo has imposed on the rest of the MotoGP field after the first half-dozen races of 2012, relentless in his quest to regain the World Championship that he conceded to Casey Stoner last season.

    A showman who thrives on attention, the Yamaha factory rider must have been pretty irked over the last few weeks with taking a back seat to extraordinary circumstances. Stoner's retirement bombshell and Valentino Rossi's second place at Le Mans distracted fans from

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  • Bradl quietly impressing in rookie campaign

    It's always the quiet ones that you have to watch out for.

    In the 250cc class, a young champion typically made the ascent to MotoGP with plenty of fanfare —even more so had he won for the past two seasons. Moto2 has been a little different, of course. MotoGP rubber man Toni Elías has gone up and down between intermediate and premier classes, the height of his bounce diminishing with every year. His replacement at LCR Honda, Stefan Bradl, has been going about his business almost silently, but the praise is growing for the young German.

    Five rounds in, Bradl's rookie campaign has been an

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  • Márquez’s long race for third spot

    It was the longest battle to decide the Moto2 podium to date. Six hours, in fact. That's how long it took those behind the scenes to decide on three things this past weekend at the Catalan GP:

    1) Did Marc Márquez breach the regulations set out in the FIM rulebook?

    2) What penalty should be given?

    3) Who was going to tell Esteve Rabat that his third place trophy needed to be returned?

    After deliberation, race direction's decision was made. That it was announced after the MotoGP race had finished and most TV channels were off-air was something of an inconvenience to the viewing public and

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  • When MotoGP is wounded, call in ‘The Doctor’

    Rossi pays the bills in MotoGPJorge Lorenzo won the French Grand Prix this year and left Le Mans as the leader of the MotoGP World Championship. He might well have been the only person in the world who remembers the weekend for those reasons. He is not the first and neither will he be the last rider to have his performance completely overshadowed by Valentino Rossi —and maybe the series is all the better for it.

    It has been almost a year and a half since 'The Doctor' won his last premier class race — the 2010 Malaysian GP — and he has taken to the podium on just two occasions since his move to Ducati. Despite that, the

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