Breaking: Catalunya track will revert to last year’s layout. New chicane producing too many crashes and bikes liable to rejoin track
Another day which told us precisely nothing. The morning session was damp, so only a few riders ventured out and only a few of them got round to fitting slicks. All we learned was that the Hondas, which had been at a recent test here, looked comfortable and the Yamaha, which hadn’t, didn’t. That and the new layout of the chicane was not pretty or popular.
The chicane replaced the old right-hander which claimed Luis Salom last year and is not the same as the Formula 1 chicane that was pressed into use last year. It looks the same but is tighter and further back down the track by a few yards. Jack Miller forgot and used last year’s layout for a few laps before being black flagged. He was embarrassed and was mercilessly trolled by his team on Twitter.
But Jack may have the last laugh; there is move afoot to revert to last year’s layout. It will be discussed in the Safety Commission. However, as Cal Crutchlow pointed out this is the layout the riders voted for when different layouts were put to them so it’s a bit tricky to start demanding changes mid-GP. However, the new patch of slipper tarmac entails two changes of surface and the number of crashes both today and at the test may mean we change.
The afternoon session was dry and confirmed what he thought we knew in the morning. The teams that had tested here had a much better time than those who didn’t. Honda and Ducati seem OK, Yamaha don’t. It’s starting to feel a lot like Jerez.