The riders have been listened to and for the Portimao Grand Prix the gravel of the run-off areas will be changed. It was no small problem and it had already occurred in the past. Last year, after a crash, Pecco Bagnaia picked up some gravel and brought it back to the pits, to show how big the stones were.
In the tests, it was Fabio Di Giannatonio who paid the price, destroying two bikes in as many crashes and suffering a head injury that stopped him, as a precaution, on the second day. “Might as well race at Monte Carlo with the low walls! – said the Gresini team rider provocatively - The regulation of the tracks should be as rigorous as that of protective clothing. When I crashed, I heard like an explosion and I lost consciousness."
Even Aleix Espargarò recalled that “we've been talking about it for 4 years and no one listens to us. We can only say our opinion and we have done so several times in the Safety Commission".
For the homologation of the circuits, the run-off areas must meet certain conditions, both for the size of the gravel and for its depth. In Portimao these standards seemed not to have been respected, but action has finally been taken.
This was confirmed to us in an interview by Loris Capirossi, Dorna's Race Direction representative: "They're working right now to solve the problems, I guarantee that everything will be fine for the GP".
All's well that ends well, even if a few years late.