Sunday's Pacific Grand Prix proved to be a controversial one with two riders, John Hopkins and Makoto Tamada, being given severe punishments for 'dangerous riding'.

Hopkins triggered a first turn accident which took out Carlos Checa and Troy Bayliss, amongst others, but openly admitted it was his fault and publicly apologised. It was the first time he'd 'taken out' another rider this year.

Tamada made contact with Sete Gibernau while battling for third place on the last lap. The two were side-by-side approaching the braking area at the end of the back straight with Tamada on the inside and Gibernau in the gap between the Japanese and the outside edge of the race track. Whether Tamada squeezed Sete unnecessarily or Gibernau simply ran into the back of the Pramac Honda rider is open to debate.

Crash.net's own view is that a warning would have sufficed for both incidents - since no-one was hurt, both were 'first time offenders' and neither appeared obviously intentional. There have also been other incidents this season which appeared much more dangerous, but gone unpunished.

However, the FIM saw things differently and gave the following rulings:

FIM statement - Hopkins:

"On Sunday 5th October, during the MotoGP race, American rider John Hopkins has ridden in an irresponsible manner causing danger to other riders.

"For this infraction to Art. 1.21.2 of the Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix Regulations, the Race Direction decided to impose upon him a suspension for the next Grand Prix event (Malaysian Grand Prix, Sepang, 10-12 October 2003).

"This decision of the Race Direction was subsequently confirmed in appeal by the FIM Stewards. The decision of the FIM Stewards is final."

FIM statement - Tamada:

"On Sunday 5th October, during the MotoGP race, Japanese rider Makoto Tamada has ridden in an irresponsible manner causing danger to Spanish rider Sete Gibernau.
"For this infraction to Art. 1.21.2 of the Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix Regulations, the Race Direction decided to disqualify him from the race results.

"This decision of the Race Direction was subsequently confirmed in appeal by the FIM Stewards. The decision of the FIM Stewards is final."

Rule 1.21.2:

"Riders must ride in a responsible manner which does not cause danger to other competitors or participants, either on the track or in the pit-lane."

Were the FIM right to exclude Tamada and ban Hopkins...?

We would like to know how you saw each situation and - having read what the riders concerned had to say on Crash.net - what, if anything, would you have done in the FIM's situation.

Please send your comments to: views@crash.net

Include your Name, Nationality and please add: "MotoGP feedback" to the subject box.

Your views will be published by Crash.net on Thursday October 9 - the day before first qualifying at Sepang - you have until then so get writing!

Email addresses will not be published, passed on to a third party or added to any mailing list.

 

Comments

Loading Comments...