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Factory 2? Is That Like Moto2, Or Open, Or Factory, Or MotoGP Or?
by staff
Thursday, March 06, 2014

Honda's anger over Ducati slipping their factory bikes into a the "Open" designation of the MotoGP rules has caused MotoGP's sanctioning body to devise a brand new classification amidst an already complicated and confusing structure, beyond "Factory" or "Open", one called "Factory 2". The plan is that this new designation will debut at Qatar in just a few weeks.

Ducati's viewpoint in all of this is that they have done nothing wrong, that all of the MotoGP teams were ordered to choose either "Factory" or "Open", and they chose "Open".

European reports suggest that "Factory 2" is aimed at Ducati and perhaps the Forward Yamaha team.

Early reports suggest that "Open" teams who win one race or finish second twice or third three times will be designated "Factory 2" and will have their engine allotment fuel reduced in future races from 24 liters to 22.5, and their total season engine allocation reduced from twelve to nine engines.

With the Qatar MotoGP race just weeks away a major rule change like this gives critics of MotoGP's "rolling rulebook" much ammunition.

To over-rule the new classification all members of the MSMA (Ducati, Yamaha, Honda etc) would have to vote it down. This seems unlikely. Dorna seem assured that the "Factory 2" rule will pass given that they feel one of the manufacturers is on their side.

Thanks to the short-sightedness of the FIM--who are now basically powerless--Dorna are in total robber baron mode, with CEO Ezpeleta saying that Honda's dissatisfaction with the current rules and their threats to leave MotoGP for WSBK are meaningless, because "Dorna are there as well". He is doing all he can to force all of the factory teams into the "Open" designation with Dorna's software and ECU controlling the bikes.

Contractually the earliest that this could happen is 2016, but Ezplelta is pushing hard for "open" to be the class-wide designation in 2015.

ENDS

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