A lot has happened leading up to the 2019 MotoGP season – movements in the rider market, team changes, new rules and regulations, not to mention an all new series! Everything you need to know:
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As usual, the 2019 MotoGP calendar features 19 Grands Prix in the same order as last year, but some race weekends have been postponed. The season itself will start a week earlier and the races in Argentina and the United States will also be a week earlier than usual.
Despite the late start, two more weeks than usual separate the Red Bull Grand Prix of America and the Gran Premio Red Bull de España – the European opener at the legendary Circuito de Jerez.
In Europe, the races take place at the usual 14-day intervals. This year’s summer break will really deserve the name, as Sachsenring and Brno are separated by almost four weeks.
The leap into the second half begins with the familiar back-to-back races in the Czech Republic and Austria, followed by Silverstone on the last weekend of August. The meeting in Misano was postponed by a week. Two weeks later the riders will travel to Thailand and two more weeks later they will face three races in Japan, Australia and Malaysia from October 20th to November 3rd. The season finale will take place in Valencia on November 17th.
A longstanding partnership ended in the 2018 season when Tech 3 parted ways with Yamaha after 18 years in the premier class. Herve Poncharal’s team will use KTM machines for the first time this year. One team left MotoGP in 2019 without replacement: Marc VDS Racing pulled the plug at the end of 2018 after four years in the premier class. This means that the field has dropped from 24 to 22 bikes this season.
The biggest bombshell in the transfer market exploded in early June when Repsol Honda announced they had struck a deal with Jorge Lorenzo. Danilo Petrucci has been promoted to take his place at Ducati. Johann Zarco, who became a KTM works driver in 2019, also made a sensational step. Andrea Iannone left the Suzuki factory for Aprilia while Franco Morbidelli found a new home with the new Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team. Karel Abraham went to Avintia.
MotoGP also welcomed four newcomers in 2019. Joan Mir, Moto2 World Champion Pecco Bagnaia, Miguel Oliveira and Fabio Quartararo.
Furthermore, a new series partner has joined the World Championship. The FIM Enel MotoE World Cup will take place over five race weekends in 2019 with identical motorcycles with around 160 hp from the Italian manufacturer Energica in a dedicated electric class. Twelve established teams from MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 will field 18 machines for what is sure to be an exciting line-up.
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