Mechanics set for 'hard' weekend; Bastianini says 'I have nothing'

Championship leader Enea Bastianini confirms 'I have nothing' after Friday free practice was cancelled due to freight delays. Mechanics are in for a 'hard' weekend say MotoGP riders following an intense four-session schedule being revised for Saturday.
Enea Bastianini, Ducati MotoGP
Enea Bastianini, Ducati MotoGP

Bastianini was one of several riders to share his views on the unusual situation, with the Italian being one of those most impacted after revealing he’s without either bike and pit box.  

Instead of the traditional FP3, FP4 and MotoGP qualifying, Saturday will now undertake a revised schedule that includes FP1, FP2, FP3 and qualifying, thus meaning FP4 - a session crucial to understanding where riders lie regarding race pace - has been completely voided.

Without even his leathers, Bastianini said: "For the moment I have nothing. I don’t have the bike, the box, but we will see if it arrives tomorrow. It will be hard for all the mechanics I think. I hope Saturday we can be on-track."

While optimism of getting underway on Saturday remained somewhat subdued during the pre-event press conference, Miguel Oliveira, winner of the first-ever Mandalika Grand Prix, said he’s ‘happy’ not to be in Bastianini’s shoes, despite the fact he’s also missing one of his KTM RC16 machines. 

"I think we need to be happy considering some teams have nothing," added the Portuguese rider. "On my side we are only missing one bike. 

"I would say it’s the least of the problems so we have to condense the activity for Saturday, which will be different and a challenge, especially with just four mechanics. But I'm happy to do something." 

For the other two podium finishers in Indonesia, there have been no such problems in receiving their bikes and personal equipment. 

Fabio Quartararo, always one to seek an advantage, joked he’s ready to hit the track and should be allowed to do so, even if that means touring around the Termas De Rio Hondo on his own. 

Fabio Quartararo, MotoGP, Argentinian MotoGP 31 March 2022
Fabio Quartararo, MotoGP, Argentinian MotoGP 31 March 2022

The reigning world champion added: "I have everything so we could start! [laughs] It’s a shame and we’re really crossing our fingers that it will arrive tomorrow. 

"But yeah, basically it will be a challenge for the mechanics because they will have a lot of work. 

"Saturday will be a long day but I think for the TV it will be nice. Then, we will see if it’s great or not for us. 

"At least we have everything in one day and will only be missing one practice."

Johann Zarco, who like Quartararo and Oliveira secured his first podium of the season last time out, uttered the same sentiment that mechanics, who usually have two nights to analyse data and therefore find improvements, are in for a rough weekend. 

Nevertheless, a big result is still possible for the Frenchman as he returns to a track where he very nearly claimed a maiden MotoGP win (2018).

Johann Zarco, MotoGP, Indonesian MotoGP, 19 March 2022
Johann Zarco, MotoGP, Indonesian MotoGP, 19 March 2022
© Gold and Goose

Zarco said: "It will be tough for the teams that didn’t receive anything because the work you can do in 48 hours, will be in only one night. It will be quite tough. 

"Fortunately for Pramac we got everything, so we are ready! 

"I think they managed well for Saturday and it will be a big day, but it will be enough practice to get used to the track and also to clean the track I guess. 

"It’s been a long time since we were racing here, so as usual we will have some slippery feeling before it gets better. 

"That will be a big day on Saturday. For myself, here I like the track, so this changing schedule is still good enough to have a good result."

The opening MotoGP practice session will now get underway at 14:35pm UK time, while qualifying begins at 21:05pm to round out the day.

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