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There's a lot Ducati's there in the mix though.... The Yamahas still seem to be down on power.
I have to back Jack Miller as he's a fellow Australasian but I also like to see Alelx Espargaro go well as an Aprilia is underdog team and I ride one myself these days. Looking forward to the race.
 

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However Yamaha has Quartararo, he's a beast!!
Yes he is a very talented rider as he proved last year but I think after watching the race that the Yamahas are going to struggle unless they find some power. Morbidelli didn't fire either.
It was a good close race but I wouldn't have picked that podium! Great to see some underdogs having their day but disappointing to see Miller pull out with an electronics issue. :confused:
Wouldn't want to call a season winner at this point!
 

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Interesting line up, Pramac Ducati team will be happy with that. Some big names out the back inc the Honda boys. But yeah Fabio seems to have got his ducks in a row finally. I'm looking forward to the race later as for once we can watch it live at a respectable time here in New Zealand.
 

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And... it rained.
My man Jack started off well as he's generally pretty good in the wet but slipped back to fourth. Full credit to Miguel Olivera on the KTM for a master class display on how to ride in the wet, and win!
 

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Season is starting off to be an interesting one. The factory Ducati dominance predicted at the end of last season isn't coming to pass at all. Honda floundering, Yamaha totally dropped the ball by not doing something about the power deficit. Suzuki is there, but "there" is all. Satellite bikes, KTM, and now the Aprilia seem to be where it's at so far.
Yeah I prefer it when it's like this. The days of Marquez dominance are long behind us now. Pol Espargaro has been going well on the Honda but unfortunately pushed it a bit too hard. My man Miller had a mare for sure and Bagnaia on the other factory Duke ride is not going a lot better. Going to be interesting to see who the season tips towards as it unfolds. Anyone's game at this stage. Now that I ride an Aprilia I'm finding myself rooting for Aleix more and more!
 

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The Suzuki is the best looking bike in MotoGP hands down. Love the stylish exhaust system 👌

@Maximo Yes, full credit to Termas and also Indonesia for building the new Mandalika circuit. Great foresight, I hope they reap the rewards from their investment. I doubt the NZ govt would ever invest in anything like this esp given our isolated global position.
 

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Looking like Suzuki may be pulling the MotoGP plug at the end of the season.. Suzuki to quit MotoGP World Championship at the end of this season?
And this isn't biding well for Suzuki as a continuing motorcycle manufacturer at all.. Interesting Notes From Suzuki’s Annual Report – SuperbikePlanet
Thanks for the share, that's really interesting news. Rins running off the track on Sunday didnt help their MotoGP cause! Mir did OK though and great to see Aleix Espargaro on the podium again.
 

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And.. The story is that the WithU RNF Yamaha satellite squad will likely be RNF Aprilia next year. That will be 4 Aprilias on the grid and only two Yamahas.
For me this is good news as an Aprilia rider and fan! Vinales still seems to be struggling with the Aprilia though. I think he qualified P24 😕
Really interesting front row for the race, the rookies having their moment in the sun! Looking forward to flag drop.
 

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Good race at Assen this morning, though definitely a bad day at the office for Quartararo. Aprilia look to be coming together more and more all the time and could be a real late season thing...
It was a beauty alright, way more entertaining than the German round the wkd before. As an Aprilia rider I loved it! Great to see Vinales finally getting to grips with his Aprilia and putting it on the podium. But Aleix Espargaro's ride form 15th to 4th was epic. Esp that last lap lunge taking both Miller and Binder in one swipe. Very ballsey!
Cant wait till the 5 week summer break is over and we can recommence battle. Fabio's 21 point lead is looking more fragile now. Great viewing.
 

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After the weekend I'm putting my money on Bagnaia for the Championship crown now. Four wins on the bounce is pretty good form. Another good weekend for the Italian Marquees filling the podium spots. Vinales is going really well on the Aprilia now but obviously I was disappointed to see Aussie rider Jack Miller crash out from the lead so early in the race.
Good race though, everyone loves a close finish.

 

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Read that Yamaha was planning to bring out a prototype of the '23 bike at the test yesterday and today, but haven't really seen any results. I was kind of surprised when Quartararo signed a two year deal on the "promise" of a better bike. Believe I would have went with a one year "we'll see" deal.
Yamaha (and Honda) are going to have to pull their head's out and do something next year or it's going to be another Ducati Cup like WSBK used to be.
True, Yamaha have got the same problem as Honda where they've only got one 'freak of nature' type of rider who can make the bike work for them. Morbedelli has been dreadful on the yamaha this year. Even Dovi couldnt get a result on it.
 

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Quartararo is giving the updated motor a thumbs up. It's up several KPH on top speed from the current version with a few more minor changes still to go. If Yamaha gets even close to on par with the Ducati top end, barring an MM93 type injury, we could see a Championship reign that could go on for years (he's 23 and one of the youngest riders on the grid).
Even with the current (slooow) setup, FQ20 still left the test with the top time..
Peco Bagnaia is 25 so not much in it, but is that a scenario that we really want to see. I know personally I found the Marquez rein of dominance boring and didnt do much for the sport IMO. The crazy covid years of '20 and '21 were some of the best racing where you could have a completely different set of riders on the podium every race day. Kept it interesting.
 

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And over in WSBK, Rea and Toprak set identical pole times with Rea getting the actual pole because he set his time first.
Points are as close there as in MotoGP with Rea 31 behind Bautista and Razgatlioglu 7 behind Rea going into todays race..
Yeah WSBK has been a great watch this year. Maybe we need a thread?
I see Remy Gardner is reportedly going to WSBK after losing his seat at KTM. Rumor is he will replace Nozane on the Yamaha. Gotta feel for the guy a bit, he joined KTM on a bad year and only got the one crack at it.
 

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Toprak and Rea crashing in race 1. Bautista on the wretched Ducati winning. I'd rather see Harley Davidson winning than Ducati. I had a Ducati for 4 years, biggest POS excuse for a motorcycle I've owned in all my 40 years of riding.
Big reason why I root for Quartararo, I despise Ducati.
Haha, I'd picked up on the anti Ducati vibe ;)
My main riding buddy is a Yamaha man through and through so we have some great debates! I've owned every marquee apart from Moto Guzzi and Triumph so I'm not really inclined towards any one in particular but I did own a couple of Dukes, really enjoyed them (and had a trouble free run lol), so I back them in the racing. You've gotta have a team to root for right. These days because I'm riding an Aprilia I'm even finding myself backing Vinales :LOL:
 

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I've never owned a Ducati but have two friends who sound like you, "maintenance heavy, unreliable, cost repairs"....
I think the saturation of Ducati's in motogp is a little much, having eight bikes on the current grid, six factories! That's almost half the grid, a lot of red!
Yeah i hear ya, how many times have we heard the commentators say after qualifying " and its a Ducati lockout of the front row"...
I guess in Ducati's defense they only have two factory bikes like every other Marque. And is it not the choice of a non factory team as to which manufacturer they strike a deal with? For example it seems that the RNF team are dropping the Yamahas next year and switching to Aprilia.
If your going to choose a manufacturer's bike to race you want it to be a fast one right!
 

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I came to calling them the "Italian Harley Davidson". "Pride of Ownership" I found to be the mantra. It was all about the name and the image. Some didn't even ride them, they had other bikes or just didn't really ride at all. The bike was just part of it, the FB pages and owners groups were a clown show all in their own.. 😝
Oh dear... I can see you've got the hatred bad. Funny how we had completely different experiences on the same Marquee. I was in the Ducati Owners club for a couple of years, they were a great bunch of guys (definitely not posers lol) and we had some awesome day rides and weekends away together. Nothing but good memories for me.
I may even own another in the future! (y)
 
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