MotoGP cancels Friday practice in Argentina over freight delays

Fridays running at the Argentinian Grand Prix has been cancelled due to freight delays affecting multiple teams. 

MotoGP, Argentinian Grand Prix 2019.

The Friday practice sessions at the Argentinian Grand Prix, scheduled to take place this weekend at the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit, have been cancelled. 

The cancellation is due to freight issues meaning some teams, such as Gresini Racing Ducati and Mooney VR46 Ducati, do not have even their bikes at the moment. Instead of forcing teams to rush over night and leave them at a possible disadvantage to their competitors, the sessions have been cancelled and the weekend will now begin on Saturday. 

This weekend’s freight issues are in part down to an illogical calendar, which sees perhaps the two most remote and difficult to reach races of the season next to each other. 

Of course, the race organisers have taken the only sensible choice for this weekend, but the situation is perhaps something that needs to be reviewed for following seasons. It should not be the case in the future that the Indonesian and Argentinian races follow or precede one another on the calendar. 

But, with the situation now already having happened, there is little to do other than what has been done, and so the weekend will go ahead as follows.

Practice will begin at 08:45 local time on Saturday morning with Moto3. Both Moto3 and Moto2 will get their regular allocation of two, 40-minute practice sessions for a Friday, but lose their 40-minute third free practice session. 

MotoGP will essentially lose its FP3 as well. It will still have an FP3, but it will run for 30 minutes, rather than the regular 45 minutes, and be run directly before MotoGP qualifying, like a traditional FP4. So, in summary, FP4, for this weekend, is FP3 in the MotoGP class.

The qualifying sessions will still run as normal this weekend, with two, 15-minute deciding the grids for all three classes. 

Sunday will see more changes, with Moto2 and Moto3 having 20-minute, rather than 10-minute, warm-up sessions. Warm up for both Moto3 and Moto2 were reduced from 20 minutes to 20 minutes for this season, so with only two rounds of the current format it should not be such a big adjustment for the teams to go back to the 20-minute session. 

MotoGP’s warm up will also be increased, from the regular 20 minutes to 30 minutes. 

Despite the condensed weekend, the races are currently scheduled to run to their regulation length, which for MotoGP and Moto2 will be only the second time in 2022, after the late distance reduction of their respective Indonesian Grands Prix.