While the new category of privateer 'Claiming Rule Teams' has arrived just in time to fill the 2012 grid, discussions are underway to point MotoGP in a clearer direction for 2013 and beyond.
Following Suzuki's departure and a reduction in satellite entries, full prototypes have been reduced from 17 to 12 for this season - each of the remaining manufacturers (Honda, Yamaha and Ducati) supplying two factory and two satellite bikes.
But the grid will still rise to 21 courtesy of the nine new CRT entries, running Superbike-based engines in a prototype chassis.
Extra fuel and engine concessions will be available to help the CRTs compete and the controversial Aprilia project has set lap times that suggest its top riders will be in touch with slowest satellite machines.
However other CRTs have far less resources and the difference in technology between the front and back of the 2012 grid could be greater than at any point in premier-class history. As a result, track performance is likely to be just as varied.
“The concept of CRT we agree with… but the lap time difference is too big at this moment,” said HRC executive vice president Shuhei Nakamoto, who has previously stated that Honda test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi was only one second slower on a Superbike than on an 800cc RC212V at Suzuka.
But none of the three factories are against the CRT concept. After all, where would the 2012 MotoGP World Championship be without it? Nevertheless, this season is very much transitional, with May targeted as the deadline for agreeing the full set of proposals for 2013 and beyond.
The challenge facing MotoGP can be broadly split between deciding on new rules for the manufacturers and those for privateer customer teams:
The manufacturers need a revised set of technical and sporting rules that substantially reduce the costs of entering a full prototype, whilst retaining enough technical freedom for meaningful R&D and, where possible, helping 'the show' (click here