Amid the safety changes made to Misano for its return to the MotoGP world championship calendar in 2007 was the unusual move of switching the track direction from anti-clockwise to clockwise.

The original direction was used by grand prix from 1982-1993, when Wayne Rainey suffered career-ending injuries after tumbling through a gravel trap raked into deep ruts, for stopping cars rather than bikes.

While the change in track direction allowed for greater run-off, it meant previous acceleration zones became braking areas and vice versa.

The biggest difference was on the back straight, where what had been a series of ever-faster left-handers leading onto the straight became a sucession of tightening right-hand corners, starting with the fearsome Curvone, at the end of the straight.

One rider that would unsurprisingly prefer an anti-clockwise direction is eight-time world champion Marc Marquez, who has a stunning record at 'left hand' venues, underlined by this year's Sachsenring win and another victory challenge at Aragon last Sunday.

“Although Misano is one of the oldest tracks on the current MotoGP calendar, it has been completely upgraded and that makes it a modern track," Marquez said, who has won six times at Misano in all classes.

"In Assen, for example, you can see how old it is when you look at the pits and some details of the track, but in Misano it is not like that.

"For me the old direction of Misano would have been better because it would be a left-hand circuit and I'm always better at those," confirmed the Repsol Honda rider.

"You can see that at some turns, where you see the line would be more fun the other way around because many of them look to be designed to ride backwards.

"But it is still an entertaining circuit and its current clockwise direction makes it safer and offers better run-off areas."

Reigning world champion Joan Mir agreed that the facelift to the facilities means Misano doesn't show its age.

“Although Misano is an old circuit, paddock and track has been kept up-to-date, so you don't see something different, but of course you can always feel the unique Misano atmosphere," said the Suzuki rider.

"Everyone working there is completely involved, there are always lots of fans and it also has a circuit layout that I really like.

"It would be fun [to ride in the original direction], but now everything is set in the opposite direction, although the fast right Turn 11 would be to the left and you would also have strong accelerations coming out from left turns."

Team-mate Alex Rins feels he would still prefer the current clockwise direction.

"I think that, with the modifications already made, today it would be impossible to ride in the opposite direction due to safety reasons. Leaving that question aside, I think I would still prefer the current direction of racing," he said.

Misano is one of the circuits chosen to help pad-out the MotoGP calendar with two rounds per season, this year and last, due to the Covid pandemic.

Perhaps with that in mind, Alex Marquez suggested it would be 'fun' if a future circuit was designed to meet MotoGP safety requirements for racing in either direction.

“You see that some corners [at Misano] look to be designed to ride backwards, but making it into the original direction would demand major changes," said the LCR Honda rider.

"In any case, it would not be bad if in the future there would be a circuit prepared to ride in both directions, it would surely be fun."

Meanwhile, the 2021 Misano events will mark the farewell of local legend Valentino Rossi, who retires at the end of this season.

“Valentino’s farewell will make Misano an amazing event. We are going to see yellow in all grandstands," said Rins.

Although last year's pair of Misano rounds were held back-to-back, this year's events are split by a trip to COTA.