MotoGP Austin: Gossip, rumour and intrigue - Bikesport News

MotoGP Austin: Gossip, rumour and intrigue

As Jorge Lorenzo ground to a halt for the second time in two days at Austin’s MotoGP round - this time removing him from the race - a small ‘pfffft’ was rumoured to emanate from the hairy chin-strap of Gigi Dall’Igna as Honda try to win the top-speed war.

According to Lorenzo, Sunday’s problem was different to Saturday’s problem, and it remains unclear whether that is good or bad for HRC. After probably one more sherry than was entirely necessary, team boss Alberto Puig said: “A black day is always followed by a sunny day, so the canopy must to be ready for black days and sunny days.”

Danilo Petrucci rolled across the line three places behind the man who is after his ride for 2020 and said he was not happy. The Italian ex-copper finished 13s after Jack Miller on almost the same motorbike. But he said he was shocked with how fast Pol Espargaro was. Like that matters.

Aleix Espargaro, who lobbed it at the start of the Austin race, believes countryman Marc Marquez is the greatest-ever motorcycle racer and the 2019 Honda the best bike of the last six years. Well, he said that before three of the four Honda riders didn’t finish and the best rider ever crashed out of a 3.6s lead…

Taka Nakagami, who was the only Honda finisher, reckoned he only needed one more lap to pass Pol Espargaro and Pecco Bagnaia. But there wasn’t one more lap for the man who said his pace early in the race was ‘not fantastic or catastrophic’. But he did actually finish. With some points.

Dovizioso took charge of the title standings after Marquez opted not to win and said his winter prophecy of four riders being in the mix for the title was coming true. You can now buy an online palm reading at or send him some of your old skin and tea leaves mixed up in a bag.

Johann Zarco is still struggling with the bucking bronco that is the KTM RC-16. So different is it to the silky smooth Yamaha he had last year, he was only able to beat fellow KTM rider and rookie Miguel Oliviera by two seconds. He did say stuff in French after the race but Google could only come up with ‘My hovercraft is full of eels’ as a translation.

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