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F1 driver predicts more Silverstone MotoGP issues after 2018 fiasco

After last year's disastrous event, Silverstone needs a flawless 2019 British MotoGP... but is it already running into problems?

TOP FORMULA 1 driver Daniel Ricciardo has predicted MotoGP riders will ‘kick up a fuss’ about the newly-resurfaced Silverstone in comments that are unlikely to be welcomed by circuit bosses after last year’s disastrous event.

The 2018 British MotoGP at the iconic circuit – which had been resurfaced in the run up to the event - became a farce when rain exposed the track’s woeful drainage capabilities.

A fiasco compounded by repeated delays and discussions whilst a huge crowd of spectators persevered for hours in the rain only to be told to go home without having witnessed any racing, Silverstone has been under pressure to deliver an unaffected race for 2019.

With a second resurface having been completed by an alternative contractor, one which has concentrated on ensuring standing water can drain away, there remains concerns that the similarly criticised bumpiness hasn’t been counteracted.

“It is still really bumpy in some areas. I don’t think the MotoGP guys will like Turn 6. They are going to kick up a fuss, [but] for us it is alright,” Ricciardo said. “The rest seems pretty decent.

“The new surface is pretty good, it offers quite a bit of grip in some areas,” he continued. “Initially this morning it was quite slick and oily, but then it really rubbered in.”

Lewis Hamilton – who won this weekend’s British Grand Prix - was more praiseworthy of the changes that have been made, even if he admits there remains some problematic corners.

“The new track surface is better on the straights, especially between Turn 4 and Turn 6 where it was pretty bad before,” Hamilton said. “It’s still bumpy on the exit of Turn 7 and towards Copse, but after that it’s nice and smooth through Maggotts and Becketts and down the Hanger straight.”

Whilst bumpy tracks aren’t a ‘red flag’ for MotoGP races, they do create some unpredictability for the riders at higher speeds, which is unlikely go down well in light of the controversy that rumbles on almost 12 months later. 

The full Silverstone layout is yet to be used in 2019 by a two-wheel series with the Bennetts British Superbike Championship using the shorter ‘National’ layout.

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