Red Bull Ring Getting its First Piece of Action Ahead of F1 Season

Published 05/29/2020, 7:25 AM EDT


For a fairly long time, the COVID-19 pandemic halted almost every sporting event in its tracks. Now, normalcy is slowly resuming, with football back in action and motorsport is not far behind. The 2020 F1 season will tentatively begin with the Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.

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After months of dead silence, engine sounds finally shattered the Viennese tranquility, but not from F1 cars. The Red Bull KTM MotoGP team held a two-day private test at the former A-1 Ring facility. The idea was to get back in the groove in case the MotoGP season began. In addition to that, it would also mean that KTM were breaking the circuit in for the F1 cars.

The Red Bull KTM team is the first MotoGP team hit the track since the cancelled Qatar Grand Prix. At that time, the MotoGP class race at Doha got called off at the eleventh hour. So, the Moto3 and Moto2 classes carried on without their premier class counterparts.

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Will the track be ready for the F1 grid?

The Austrian manufacturer held a private test with regular rider Pol Espargaro and test rider Dani Pedrosa. Unfortunately, South Africa’s lockdown rules prevented rookie rider Brad Binder from attending.

With this test, the bikes should hopefully lay down some rubber, so the circuit won’t be completely green. However, one big question that may plague the drivers is their preparation. This is arguably the longest that an F1 driver has been away from their car. So one cannot really blame them if they are a little rusty.

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Some teams are even predicting carnage in the first couple of races. This is largely because of the gap and also the severely shortened calendar, with double-headers and even talks of triple-headers. Truly, the 2020 season has turned into the most bizarre year.

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Dhruv George

11625 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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