The riders of the MotoGP World Championship may have missed racing in the United States of America since 2019, but after riding in wet and dry Free Practice sessions Friday, the riders let it be known that they did not miss the bumps all around the 3.4-mile, 20-turn Circuit of The Americas (COTA) racetrack.
No one was more vocal about his displeasure with the state of COTA’s racing surface than current MotoGP World Championship point leader Fabio Quartararo.
“FP2 showed that the track is not suitable to race on,” Quartararo was quoted as saying in a press release issued by Monster Energy Yamaha. “It’s like a motocross track with asphalt. Of course, this is the same for everyone, but I think in terms of safety it’s really bad.”
“The condition of this circuit is probably the worst in the whole calendar,” Tech3 KTM Factory Racing rider Iker Lecuona was quoted as saying in a press release issued Friday afternoon. “There are so many bumps, it feels like a motocross track and very difficult to manage.”
“I really like this circuit but I found it a lot more demanding than in the past,” said Team Suzuki ECSTAR’s Alex Rins, who won the last MotoGP race held at COTA, in 2019. “It’s super bumpy and we’re all fighting with our bikes to stay on the right line and not get too out of shape.”
“The asphalt is in poor condition, much worse than I remembered, and the times show it,” said Aprilia rider Aleix Espargaro.
And even Marc Marquez, who has had an incredible run of success at COTA, said, “With all of the bumps it’s very hard to be consistent with your laps and to understand where you can push and where the limit is.”