The race at Silverstone never started. In fact, the weather was so chaotic and the rainfall immense that the Grand Prix event for all three classes of motorsport was deemed unsafe to run. For the first time since the 1980’s, the fans were treated to a warm up session and that was it! It was a real shame to have no race take place, with that said, it was just too dangerous for any rider to go out and put his life on the line for a lap or two or three. The track did not offer conditions that would have allowed the riders to perform at a high level whilst remaining safe. As a result, there were four keys issues preventing the event from going ahead: asphalt resurfacing failing to work effectively in the wet, cold carbon brakes, an increase in the bumps around the circuit and Tito Rabat’s horror incident on Saturday which resulted in a broken right leg after being hit by a fellow competitors MotoGP bike.

Firstly, the track resurfacing appeared to get the thumbs up until the rain bucketed down. It was discovered that the drainage was poor and riders felt as though they were riding on ice. The Silverstone surface is to blame for the BritishGP cancellation as it appears across headlines. Alex Rins knows what it was like to lock his brakes, have no way of stopping and jump off his Suzuki machine at 160km per hour. It was scary and it is not often that you see a rider white faced and looking petrified. The problem with the carbon brakes is that riders were not able to keep them warm due to the rain falling and cold temperatures. As a result, they were technically riding without any positive way of stopping at high speeds. This raised concerns and it happened to several riders including: Jorge Lorenzo, Tito Rabat, Franco Morbidelli and Aleix Espargaro. The aquaplaning was out of control.

Silverstone will have to answer for the cancellation. Fans were solid throughout race day staying positive and hoping the event would take place. However, they were left with cold faces, wet shoes and disappointment. You have to respect the decision that is one of safety. Unfortunately, the bumps were even worse and Jack Miller said it perfectly: “It was like you needed motocross suspension”. Since Formula One visited the circuit, the riders felt worse at Silverstone and at times you could see them getting thrown around on their bikes. DesmoDovi voiced his concerns and wants answers: We’ll talk about it in the Safety Commission at the next race, because to resurface a track and then find out it has more bumps than before, together with a problem of drainage, is just not good enough for a championship of this level.” We have to agree with him. The impact of a race not going ahead is colossal. You have to look at the fans, the circuit, local community, businesses who work the event, riders, teams, media personnel, those watching from across the globe and sponsorships just to name a few.

Some riders wanted to race and others did not. Various teams wanted to explore the idea of racing on Monday and others were strictly against it. Ducati was one team that was happy to look at the following day. Unfortunately, this was never an option. Lorenzo: “We only managed to do the warm-up in dry conditions and then it didn’t stop raining and the track was in a bad condition. This confirmed that the asphalt wasn’t draining well and as time went by the situation didn’t improve. When it was late, the riders met with the Race Direction and we decided to cancel the race because the track didn’t offer the right conditions to race in safety.”

When you ask the home riders about the event, they are guttered, sad and disappointed to pack up their gear and go home. Cal Crutchlow was one of those guys. Crutchlow: “I’m devastated not to be able to race at my home Grand Prix, it was very disappointing that today went how it did with regards to the weather situation. The safety commission decided that we delayed and delayed all day and then decided finally that the track condition was not safe to ride due to standing water on the asphalt. But it was a very, very sad day for the fans and I’m truly sorry for them having come out in force to support me and all the MotoGP racers. We’re just sorry we couldn’t put on a show, as always I would have tried my best and I will try my best in the next Grand Prix also.” On the opposite end is Scott Redding who is sour because it was his last home event in MotoGP. Don’t cry, lets race was his tagline for the event. In contrast, Valentino Rossi was not going to cave in and race. He was set in his opinion and made that clear. No was the answer. Ultimately, Michelin could not change anything to help either. Piero Taramasso – Michelin Motorsport Two-Wheel Manager: “Today has been very disappointing, but at the end the safety of all the riders is the important thing. The track conditions had been difficult all weekend, but our tyres had coped very well with the bumpy track – despite it being resurfaced this year – and with the wet surface yesterday. Today’s conditions were very bad with lots of standing water, so it would have been almost impossible to ride. We now head to Misano and hopefully we will have better weather there.”

 Time to reset and head to Misano where fingers are crossed for good weather!

Credit: CormacGP & LCR Honda Castrol MotoGP Team

Credit: Michelin

Credit: Michelin


About The Author

Myanna has an incredible grasp and knowledge of the sport in detail and continues to secure lead stories every week. She is in constant contact with team and rider media management. She is an admitted lawyer with two degrees and is currently writing a biography on Alan Jones MBE 1980 F1 World Champion. She is a fond lover of two wheel motorsport, predominantly MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3.