News 14 Feb 2018

Select MotoGP races reduced in length from 2018 season

Consistency sought across the course of the world championship.

Image: Supplied.

Race-length in the MotoGP World Championship will be reduced at selected rounds during 2018, along with the shortage of Moto2 and Moto3 races this season.

Race distances will be adjusted from this year, with a two-year transition beginning this season before final changes come into force in 2019. This is to ensure that races have a similar duration at each venue on the world championship calendar.

The move is to enhance event organisation and aid television broadcasters to better structure race-day programming. Due to the limitations of regulations regarding fuel and engine usage in the premier class, it is not possible to increase the distance of some MotoGP races and decrease the distance of others. Therefore, to achieve the objective of less variation in race duration, seven MotoGP races will be shortened.

The Americas, French, Catalan, Czech and San Marino grands prix will be one lap shorter, with the Spanish GP set to shorten by two laps and Valencia by three laps. These changes are final according to an announcement from organisers.

In Moto2 and Moto3 however, there are two stages in order for manufacturers to prepare. This year, changes will be largely the same as in MotoGP as Moto3 races at the Americas, Spanish, Catalan, Czech, Aragon, Malaysian and Valencia GPs become one lap shorter and the Moto3 French GP is shortened by two laps. Moto2 will see the Americas, French, Catalan, German, Czech, San Marino, Japanese and Malaysian GPs shorten by one lap, and the Spanish and Valencia rounds will have two laps fewer in 2018.

In 2019, there will be a bigger reduction in race distance in both the Moto2 and Moto3 classes. MotoGP races will not be adjusted further.

In addition, there is a further update to the MotoGP regulations for 2018, when if a red flag is shown after 75 percent or more of the race distance has been completed, the result will be declared. This does not change the existing regulations in Moto2 and Moto3, in which two thirds of the race distance must be completed in order to declare a final result.