The Grand Prix Commission has chosen to introduce an exception to its aerodynamic rules especially for Phillip Island after high winds saw qualifying postponed at last month’s MotoGP event there.
Gusty conditions at the Victorian circuit, which is exposed to the Bass Strait, caused Free Practice 4 to be cut short and the qualifying sessions that otherwise would have followed to be held over until Sunday.
MotoGP bikes are more susceptible to such weather than Moto2 or Moto3 machines due to their use of ‘aero fairings’, which are subject to stricter homologation rules this year.
In light of that problem, the Grand Prix Commission has decided on a full exception for Phillip Island, and potentially for other circuits subject to the conditions, effective from next year.
“In the interests of safety, the Commission decided that at any event held at the Phillip Island Circuit it will be permitted for riders to remove the side pods from the aero body,” read an update from the Commission issued after its meeting last weekend in Malaysia.
“This is under the condition that all side pods are removed and it does not affect the external profile of the homologated fairing. All modifications must be pre-approved by the Technical Director.
“It was further decided that Race Direction will be responsible for determining and announcing if this concession will apply at any other event based on prevailing or forecast wind conditions.”