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2019 MotoGP Championship Preview: Watch the Rookies

The 2019 MotoGP championship series gets underway this weekend in Qatar at the Losail Circuit. Lots has happened in the past 12 months, and the new season promises to be exciting.

The biggest story, perhaps, is the “super team” at Repsol Honda where seven-time World champion Marc Marquez teams with five-time World champion Jorge Lorenzo. It wouldn’t be a bad bet that the 2019 champ will emerge from this team (Marquez is the defending champion). Both riders are less than 100% this weekend, however, with Marquez undergoing a complicated shoulder reconstruction surgery during the off-season, and Lorenzo having even more recent surgery to repair a broken left wrist. Nevertheless, both riders were fast at the Qatar test just two weeks ago.

The other favorites have to include the factory Yamaha duo of Maverick
Viñales and Valentino Rossi. Both riders would like to forget the 2018 series where their Yamaha M1s performed inconsistently – notably lacking traction on acceleration. The M1 appears to have come around in testing, however, with Viñales arguably the fastest rider coming into the start of the new season.

With the departure of Lorenzo to Honda, the Ducati factory team returns with last year’s title runner-up Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci, promoted from a Ducati satellite squad. With the exception of Marquez, Dovizioso has won more races than any other rider in the last two years. The Ducati GP19 beneath these two riders is perhaps the most consistently fast bike on the various tracks encountered by the championship.

Outside these three factory squads, there are other riders who will likely challenge for the podium throughout the season. These include Alex Rins at the Suzuki factory team. Rins, who found several podiums last year was very quick in pre-season testing, not only for a single lap, but on race pace. Cal Crutchlow, aboard a satellite Honda (but full factory spec) has won three MotoGP races, and appeared on several podiums in the last few years. Crutchlow is fast when healthy, but is still recovering from a nasty ankle injury suffered last October. Finally, Franco Morbidelli, aboard a satellite Yamaha, enters his third season with hopes for consistent top five finishes. Morbidelli leaves a difficult-to-ride Honda for a Yamaha that has seen him post consistently fast times during pre-season tests.

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11 Comments

  1. Fasterdamitt says:

    Sling tv or fubo tv has bein sports and a 7 day free trial.

  2. SharkGuitar says:

    I have DirecTV. They They cancelled their contract with BeinSports last year.
    What’s the best way to get access to the series this season?

    • mickey says:

      I had Direct TV last year and lost the ability to watch the races love. had to watch them on youtube later. Cancelled Direct TV and got Spectrum. Can get Be-in but have to buy their latin package. I gave up and bought Dornas Video Pass from MotoGP.com for $159, but get to watch free practices, qualifying and the races live.

      Was just watching Moto 3 FP 3 a minute ago.

    • Jeremy says:

      I really like MotoGP’s video pass. You need a good internet connection, but it is great. Fun to go back and watch old races from the past two decades, too.

    • bladester says:

      I’d recommend Sling. Comcast here in Seattle area has never carried BEin in English so had to get it via streaming. Tried Fubo, but dropped it after the 1st year. With Sling you can watch whatever after the fact without a DVR. BEin Sports is in the Sports Extra package, which means $5 extra after one of the main packages, for a total of $30/month.

  3. Pablo says:

    Can’t wait! Just hope MM dosn’t dominate and for some super tight racing. I’m a little bit worried that Honda now seem to have a higher top speed than the Ducati’s through the speed trap! 👀

  4. fred says:

    Gentlemen, start your engines! LOL

    We’re only a few hours away from the start of the season, and I’m really looking forward to a great racing season. Lots of talent on the grid, and the shakeups in the various teams should keep things interesting.

  5. Fred says:

    Sign of another title for Jorga ?
    He beat Marco to the centre front row position, and Vale is off to the front far left.
    The pecking order is changing again in 2019. Is this Vale’s last year in MotoGP and his final #1 Championship chance ???

  6. Lmartin780 says:

    Can’t wait!!!!!!!!!