Already a subject of heated debate in recent years, arguments over rider penalties reached new heights at Jerez with several widely disputed sanctions.

First, a Long Lap penalty was given to Franco Morbidelli for tagging Alex Marquez on the exit of Turn 2 after diving for the inside on the opening lap of the Sprint, with Marco Bezzecchi among those caught up in the aftermath,

Yamaha team-mate Fabio Quartararo then received the same penalty when he fell going into the corner at the start of the Sunday race, after becoming sandwiched between Miguel Oliveira and Bezzecchi, taking out the luckless Oliveira in the process.

Another eyebrow-raising then call saw Francesco Bagnaia told to drop one position after a hard pass on Jack Miller. But there was no punishment when Miller put a similar block pass on Jorge Martin, costing the Pramac rider several places.

Former grand prix rider and British champion Huewen said: “Normally I'd go off on a rant, but this is too serious to take the entertaining view.

“I'm fed up to the back teeth with the amount of negativity that MotoGP is getting around the world on this. So it's not about criticising the situation, it's about finding a solution, because at the moment there isn't an obvious solution to how these penalties should be levied.

“I know Freddie Spencer really, really well. He's analytical. He's careful. He thinks about every detail. But I think communication is poor coming out of the Stewards office, in that we don't get a reason why we get a penalty or why we don't.

“I believe that the first thing that the Stewards need to have is a PR person. A single point of communication about what has happened and why it has happened. I think Dorna have dropped the ball with that massively. They need to spend more budget on what's going on.

“What you’ve got to bear in mind is that there is a rule book the Stewards obviously need to apply. There is also a process to fololow and they are trying to apply all of that while the race is going on. You could spend four hours looking at some of these moves and still have difficulty in coming to a conclusion.

“You've also got to consider that in the Riders’ Safety Commission meeting at each Grand Prix, the riders have always been going on about needing stronger penalties. So the riders started this, in as much as they wanted stronger penalties.

“But the riders are now the ones that are doing most of the bleating over whether the penalty is strong enough, or not strong enough, or inconsistent or not. So I believe, as a solution, the riders need to take more responsibility for the outcomes.

“For instance, perhaps all of the riders, in all of the classes, need to vote for three or five or seven riders that can represent them and give their opinion on controversial post-race incidents.

“So if we've got a situation where it's an obvious penalty, Freddie Spencer and the Stewards can make that decision there and then.

“But if we've got a situation where it's so contentious, the decision on that particular penalty is deferred until hearing from the small selection of chosen riders that have actually been out there on the track.

“Of course, the big problem you have with those post-race penalties is that none of us then knows where the hell we are as far as the race results. It’s the worst situation.

“But where we are now with the Stewards, I think unfairly to a large extent, is that their positions have become untenable. I think their credibility now within the paddock has reached such a low level that it's almost whatever they do is always going to be seen as wrong.

“It's a situation where most of the riders, teams and fans are criticising the decisions.

“The problem is that the riders have screamed in the Safety Commission that they want stronger penalties against dangerous riding. That's fine. But now look what we’re getting… Morbidelli up the inside of Alex Marquez. Hang on, that was a gap! If you're a club racer, national racer or Grand Prix rider, the second there's a gap, you're going for it.

“But if the riders want to challenge the decisions being made by the Stewards all the time, then they must get involved and take more responsibility for what's going on. The riders need to be involved in any penalty that cannot be given straight away in a race.

“The three or five designated riders can then watch the incident and vote, anonymously, penalty or no penalty. Maybe even a level of severity.

“The problem is that doing that adds another layer of complexity and a layer of political manoeuvring behind the scenes.” MotoGP editor Pete McLaren added: “I think the point about communication is a good one and also the pressure to increase penalties after the incidents at round one, where we saw so many riders injured and RNF even put out a public statement pushing for harsher penalties.

“We said on the podcast at the time, ‘Be careful what you wish for’. Because you can end up with too many penalties that could decide the outcome of races and World Championships. That's not what any of us want.

“In Jerez, Morbidelli’s penalty appeal was even rejected on the grounds that he was observed as being 'ambitious' in his attempt to overtake!”

Huewen said; “If I had a rider that wasn’t ambitious, they’d be fired!”

'The fans deserve better'

“You need to be transparent and you need to be able to transmit that decision," Huewen added. "The Stewards have already tripped themselves up with the Marc Marquez penalty. It should have been written as ‘his next race’, not ‘Argentina’.

“If we're going for instantaneous information, it needs to have a credible.

“It's not just the riders and the teams that deserve better. The fans deserve better. Everybody paying a subscription or coming to watch the races...“

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