Sil­ver­stone takes blame for Mo­toGP washout

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - SPORT - CARL LIVESEY

MO­TOGP of­fi­cials ad­mit­ted Sil­ver­tone’s new sur­face was to blame for the can­cel­la­tion of yes­ter­day’s Bri­tish Grand Prix.

The start time of the race had been brought for­ward by 90 min­utes be­cause of heavy rain in the fore­cast, but that rain duly ar­rived and left stand­ing wa­ter on parts of the track.

The race was put back sev­eral times but even­tu­ally can­celled just af­ter 4pm. Mo­toGP race direc­tor Mike Webb told a press con­fer­ence that the sur­face at Sil­ver­stone, which was laid in Fe­bru­ary, was re­spon­si­ble for mak­ing the track un­safe for rac­ing.

“We’ve had a num­ber of years’ ex­pe­ri­ence here in very wet con­di­tions re­cently with the old sur­face and have been able to run races,” said Webb.

“This year, with the new sur­face, is the first time we’ve en­coun­tered quite so much stand- ing wa­ter in crit­i­cal places on the track.

“So yes, it’s a direct re­sult of the track sur­face.

“The staff have done an un­be­liev­able ef­fort over the whole week­end to try and make the track safe and un­til the last minute they were still work­ing, but un­for­tu­nately we couldn’t bat­tle na­ture.

“We ob­vi­ously want to have a Bri­tish Grand Prix.

“The cli­mate of the area means we’ve got to ex­pect rain and the sur­face has to be able to han­dle it.”

Pra­mac Du­cati rider Jack Miller and Jo­han Zarco (Tech3) were in favour of the race go­ing ahead, but were over­ruled by the over­whelm­ing ma­jor­ity of rid­ers present in a safety com­mis­sion meet­ing.

Miller said Tito Ra­bat’s crash in prac­tice, in which he suf­fered a bro­ken leg, had been a fac­tor in the de­ci­sion. “It’s a case of the guys don’t want to ride,” said Miller.

“They are not happy with how the as­phalt was work­ing in terms of the drainage and be­cause of the ac­ci­dent yes­ter­day in­volv­ing Tito.

“It’s a shame for me, can­celling it al­ready.

“We were talk­ing about wait­ing for the weather to clear up a lit­tle bit and stuff like that.”

Jorge Lorenzo had qual­i­fied in pole po­si­tion ahead of fel­low Du­cati rider An­drea Dovizioso.

VALENTINO ROSSI: Ital­ian rider sits in the pits wait­ing for a Bri­tish GP that never hap­pened.

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