MotoGP gets into gear this weekend with first official track test in Qatar
MotoGP bikes will get to lay down some rubber at the Losail Circuit in Doha Qatar from Friday in a five-day testing session.
The MotoGP paddock will head en masse to Doha, Qatar this weekend for the first official track test ahead of the 2021 season.
The Grand Prix of Qatar will get the 2021 season underway on 28 March 2021.
The Losail International Circuit will also stage pre-season testing for the Moto2 and Moto3 classes on 19 March.
How you can follow testing in Qatar this weekend
There will be no live tv coverage of the MotoGP test weekend but the circuit’s official social media channels will provide regular updates and release daily highlights packages.
“The shakedown test kicks proceedings off on Friday 5 March with factory test riders and rookies on track, before the other riders then hit the asphalt for five eagerly anticipated days of testing across seven days at Losail. The excitement is building, so make sure you keep your eyes peeled on motogp.com and across social media over the next couple of weeks to see and hear from all the MotoGP riders who are in Qatar,” an announcement from MotoGP.com reads.
South Africa’s MotoGP hopes pinned on Brad Binder
South African KTM Red Bull Rider Brad Binder will be looking to build on a rookie of the year performance in 2020 and continue the team’s push towards competing for titles.
“2020 in general was a season where I feel we achieved a lot, a few good results and obviously with the first victory – or KTM’s first victory – being the main thing, ” Binder said at the launch of the new KTM Red Bull bike earlier this month.
“But also there were so many days when we had the potential to do so much more. I made a hell of a lot of mistakes and ended up throwing away a lot of golden opportunities, so in general that was a bit frustrating and is one thing I really want to fix this season and if we can do that then I know we have the speed and the pace to do a good job.
“The first time you jump on a MotoGP bike is an incredible feeling. It is something you have always worked towards your whole career as a motorcycle racer and there is no real way to explain the sensations you get on those first few laps.
“The bike is just unbelievable: the way it accelerates, the wheelie, the power you have is just insane, the way the bike stops. There are so many insane things that it just takes time to get used to. I’m sure now – after a few months off the bike – that jumping straight back on [will mean] all of those things are going to ignite again, so I’m looking forward to it.”