MotoGP

Repeat races at circuits suited MotoGP rivals more – Suzuki

Suzuki team boss Davide Brivio says the double-header races at one venue suited its MotoGP rivals more during the 2020 season.

The 2020 MotoGP calendar was heavily revised owing to the coronavirus pandemic, with the scheduled shortened to 14 rounds from 20 and centred in Europe.

Of the 14 rounds, five circuits – Jerez, Red Bull Ring, Misano, Aragon, Ricardo Tormo – held two races.

World champion Joan Mir tended to be one of the riders who took a step forward in the second race at a repeat venue, but Brivio feels Suzuki’s rivals – despite the GSX-RR generally having a strong base set-up – were able to make bigger strides from race to race.

When asked what the biggest difference for Suzuki was in 2020 compared to a normal year, Brivio said: “The preparation was different because we were all in lockdown.

“So, after the test in Qatar we had to stay all at home. But I have to say our engineers never stopped working.

“Even during the lockdown, they were keeping meetings and developing tools, analysing data.

“So, they kept working, they never stopped working. And then we tried just to be able to restart, maybe the toughest thing this year has been many times three races in a row.

“It’s ok, but it’s something different from the past, and also the fact we were doing two races in the same circuit in two consecutive weekends.

“This, I think, was helping more our competitors rather than us.

“We’re quite quick on finding set-up on a new track, but on the second weekend our competitor came closer, making it more difficult for us to keep going.

“So, the three races for us, the back-to-back in a circuit was the most different compared to the past.”

Brivio would like Mir to run the #1 plate in 2021

As champion, Mir will be allowed to run the #1 plate in 2021, which has not been seen on a MotoGP bike since Casey Stoner used it in 2012.

Mir hasn’t ruled out the possibility of using the plate, but is shown on the provisional 2021 entry list as sticking with his traditional #36.

Suzuki boss Brivio says it would be nice to see Mir run the #1 next year, but the decision is ultimately the rider’s.

“Somehow it would be nice, but also a rider’s decision in this modern time as the number is a logo, merchandising, business related,” Brivio said.

“But I would like for one year to have the number one, it would be nice. But it’s up to Joan.”

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