The MotoGP World Championship visits the first of two new circuits for 2010 – the other being Aragon, Spain – this weekend as the historical circuit of Silverstone returns to the motorcycle Grand Prix calendar. The Northamptonshire track has previously hosted the British Grand Prix on no fewer than ten occasions, from 1977 to 1986, before switching to Donington Park in 1987, where it remained up until last year.
Much, if not everything, has changed since those days. The track itself has been vastly updated, as have the pit garages, circuit infrastructure and the grandstands. Casey Stoner and Nicky Hayden, who were given a warm reception by the thousands of Ducatisti present at WDW last Saturday, cannot wait to discover the ‘new’ Silverstone. The Australian actually raced on the old layout in 2000 and 2001 when he was competing in the British Championship and he is looking forward to experiencing the special atmosphere of this legendary motorsport venue once again.
On Wednesday Nicky Hayden will be attending a pre-event press conference in London, at the famous Lord’s Cricket Ground, alongside series leader Jorge Lorenzo, and British riders Bradley Smith, Scott Redding and Danny Webb.
CASEY STONER, Ducati Marlboro Team
“I am really pleased that MotoGP is going to Silverstone. I raced there when I was living in England, before I started in the World Championship, but not on the current layout, which has been changed a lot for this year and there is really only one section left that I know. Anyway, it will be a fast circuit, one of the fastest on the calendar, and one of the most spectacular and I’m sure there’ll be a great atmosphere. I can’t wait to go there because I have always preferred Silvertsone to Donington Park. I think it will be more fun for the riders and for the fans too.”
NICKY HAYDEN, Ducati Marlboro Team
“I like the idea of going to a new track – it is exciting and it’s a challenge for the riders and for the team. I have seen a video of the track and obviously the team have the layout, which we have looked at together and talked about what gear ratios we might need, things like that. It looks like a fast track and we have a fast bike so that is a positive start. We have an intense run of races coming up and even though unfortunately the race at Mugello didn’t go to plan we did a good job in practice there and we’ll be looking to do the same thing here.”
VITTORIANO GUARESCHI, Team Manager
“As far as I’m concerned this is the first time that the team goes to race at a new track so that will be a new experience for me. On paper Silverstone appears very fast and this is a characteristic that both the riders and the bike will enjoy but, having said that, there are certain variables that we have to bear in mind. From the weather, that forecasts say will be good but in England you never know, to the nature of the circuit, the asphalt, and how quickly we’ll be able to find the right set-up. At Mugello last week we worked on some new set-up solutions that we may try at Silverstone or, depending on circumstances, during future race weekends”.
Silverstone is located within a small village, of a little over 2,000 inhabitants, in the county of Northamptonshire. After almost quarter of a century at Donington Park, MotoGP returns to Silverstone this weekend for the first time since 1986. The circuit has changed dramatically in accordance with safety measures for the riders and spectators and was recently the subject of further updates to the track layout, garage complex and grandstands. The ‘new’ Silverstone was officially opened on 29th April 2010. It promises to be one of the fastest and most spectacular circuits on the calendar and should be very popular amongst the majority of MotoGP riders.
Circuit Record: N/A
Best Pole: N/A
Circuit Length: 5.902km
MotoGP Race 2010: 23 laps (120.635 km)
MotoGP Schedule 2010: 13:00 Local Time (GMT + 2)
Number of laps: 20
Race distance: 118.040km
DUCATI MARLBORO TEAM – RIDER INFO
Age: 24 (Born 16th October 1985 in Southport, Queensland, Australia)
Bike: Ducati Marlboro Team Desmosedici GP10
GP Appearances: 131 (70xMotoGP, 31×250, 30×125)
GP Victories: 27 (20xMotoGP, 5×250, 2×125)
First GP victory: Valencia, 2003 (125)
First GP: Great Britain, 2001 (125)
Pole positions: 22 (18xMotoGP, 2×250, 2×125)
First pole position: Italy, 2003 (125)
World Titles: 1 (MotoGP, 2007)
Age: 28 (born 30th July 1981 in Owensboro, Kentucky, USA)
Residency: Owensboro, Kentucky, USA
Bike: Ducati Marlboro Team Desmosedici GP10
GP Appearances: 120 (120xMotoGP)
First GP: Japan, 2003 (MotoGP)
Number of victories: 3 (3xMotoGP)
First GP victory: USGP, 2005 (MotoGP)
Pole positions: 5 (5xMotoGP)
First Pole: USGP, 2005 (MotoGP)
World Titles: 1 (MotoGP, 2006)