After three days of testing at Sepang, it’s over to Losail for those last changes before the season begins at Losail International Circuit from 8-10 March.
From 23-25 February, MotoGP™ makes its first visit of the year to Losail International Circuit in Qatar for the second and final pre-season test of 2019 – two weeks before the season opener at the same venue.
Track activity for the Qatar Test will be from 4 pm-10 pm with free entrance to the Grandstand for all spectators. All fans will have the opportunity to enter the Paddock during the test just by showing your ticket for the Qatar Grand Prix.
After the first outing in Malaysia, teams now have to make their final preparations for the year on everything from aero to engines, so what are we looking out for?
Engines are one of the biggest keys for success on the track. After the start of the season, factories aren’t able to make changes, so it’s important to choose well from the beginning.
There’s no sign of indecision from the Hamamatsu factory so far in 2019, and Ducati and Honda both seem happy after the last test in Sepang. Yamaha, after a more difficult couple of seasons, also had plenty of positive comments about the engine from Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) in Malaysia.
Aerodynamics is another key component that teams must make a final decision on during the Qatar Test. This year it’s a simple choice of two fairings for the year, one of which must be decided upon before the season begins, the other mid-way through, and neither of which can be changed once homologated. And this time around, they also have to fit in a specially designed homologation unit that judges the legality of the fairing – if it doesn’t fit, it doesn’t race!
At Sepang, Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati Team) and Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing) crashed on the different aero fairings they were trying, so they’ll want to get a little more track time under their belts in Qatar before the final decision is made.