Half of the world is ready to be bought, the other half to be sold. Contracts are meant to be broken. Or, rather, to complicate things in the event of a break up.
Why are we talking about contracts instead of remembering Andrea Dovizioso's excellent win over Marc Marquez at the last corner?
Well, it's actually simple: unless Magic Marc made glaring mistakes, the 2019 world title is already secured his hands, even if Dovi were to win the remaining eight Grand Prixs - all 8! - All Honda's rider needs would be four second and four third places to win his eighth world title.
This doesn't mean, however, that we'll not be looking at the remaining races with renewed interest.
Andrea's spectacular overtaking - "block pass" in motorcycling jargon - was masterfully executed, and it's difficult to believe that the rider from Forlì hadn't thought of it beforehand it, since he had already noticed, after several laps, that his opponent could no longer count on maximum grip on the right side of his tire.
Moreover, Marc himself, who suffered the attack - despite the plastered smiles which he's really good at - realized he was in a hopeless situation when he hadn't managed to shake off the Italian, so much so that he completely missed the last corner leaving not only a door wide open for the Ducatista but a whole portal.
"Andrea had been playing with me for a couple of laps," was the half-hearted comment he let slip out.
At the Red Bull Ring, the show on the track rivaled market rumors
For once, however, the expectation of the show offered by the track - which we all were waiting for on a circuit where Ducati is unbeatable - was forced to rival the rumors that were bouncing around in the paddock over the weekend.
The most sensational of all, that of the (not so secret) negotiations between Gigi Dall'Igna and Jorge Lorenzo for a resounding return to Ducati, passing through Pramac's tiny door.
KTM's offer to Miller hid Zarco's early termination of his contract
At that point, the rider who would have been sacrificed would have been Jack Miller who, during the whole controversy, appeared not at all worried about being stranded, and now we know why: he was holding a KTM offer to replace Johann Zarco in 2020. Meanwhile, Zarco had reached an agreement to leave the Mattighofen team at the end of the season.
Max Biaggi was right in our interview with him last Friday: "Lorenzo will stay with Honda." When negotiations become public, they're not concluded."
On the contrary, the consensual resolution of the relationship between KTM and Zarco took place in perfect silence, and was communicated only when it ended.
At this point, the market that's apparently closing with Petrucci and Miller signing, is destined to reopen because one of the official orange motorcycles has been released. But is it over?
The 2021 market did not open early, 2020 never closed
In our opinion, no, because there are others who are unhappy with the current situation, and without having to necessarily bring Jorge Lorenzo back into the picture who, apparently, seems destined to suffer at home in 2020.
The fact is that, in the world championship, we're not talking about a travet in jacket and tie who must bring home a paycheck at the end of the month, but of professionals whose purpose is to win. Contractually linked to a team that pays them lavishly to do so.
It is, therefore, inevitable that, if this doesn't happen, the dissatisfaction is mutual. In fact, what interest would KTM have had in blocking Zarco, who was evidently no longer motivated in trying to get the most out of his bike?
After Lorenzo and Zarco, there's a third dissatisfied driver: Andrea Iannone
What also comes to mind, rereading Andrea Iannone's interview last Thursday is, "I want to get back on top, with or without Aprilia." Even the rider from Vasto might also come to the idea of seeing the bitter goblet become out of reach. The one from which he should be drinking the last drop until the end of 2020.
The question, which so far we have carefully avoided asking ourselves at this point is, however, inevitable: where could the dissatisfied end up in 2020?
What chance does Zarco have for next season, if we exclude a return to the Moto2 or a transfer to the Superbike? And Iannone who, after all, proved to be podium material with a winning bike - precisely on the track where he was overtaken - where could he end up?
It's not worthwhile for the teams to keep riders who are not happy riding their bikes
And as for Honda, who unofficially made it known that Lorenzo will remain in HRC, is it better to keep a RC213-V at a standstill for a rider who obviously doesn't want to lose another season trying to learn how to ride it?
All questions that lead to a single conclusion: it's not that the 2021 market opened very early. 2020 never closed.
Dall'Igna is right: the Teams have the responsibility of always and constantly looking for every opportunity presented to them, in order to put the best possible riders on their bikes.
Because when war disguises itself as peace, and one is forced to appear just, the only weapon that remains is deception.
Freely inspired by:
Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of York;
And all the clouds that lour'd upon our house
In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.
Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths;
Our bruised arms hung up for monuments;
Our stern alarums changed to merry meetings,
Our dreadful marches to delightful measures.
Grim-visaged war hath smooth'd his wrinkled front;
And now, instead of mounting barbed steeds
To fright the souls of fearful adversaries,
He capers nimbly in a lady's chamber
To the lascivious pleasing of a lute.
But I, that am not shaped for sportive tricks,
Nor made to court an amorous looking-glass;
I, that am rudely stamp'd, and want love's majesty
To strut before a wanton ambling nymph;
I, that am curtail'd of this fair proportion,
Cheated of feature by dissembling nature,
Deformed, unfinish'd, sent before my time
Into this breathing world, scarce half made up,
And that so lamely and unfashionable
That dogs bark at me as I halt by them;
Why, I, in this weak piping time of peace,
Have no delight to pass away the time,
Unless to spy my shadow in the sun
And descant on mine own deformity:
And therefore, since I cannot prove a lover,
To entertain these fair well-spoken days,
I am determined to prove a villain
And hate the idle pleasures of these days.
Plots have I laid, inductions dangerous,
By drunken prophecies, libels and dreams,
To set my brother Clarence and the king
In deadly hate the one against the other:
And if King Edward be as true and just
As I am subtle, false and treacherous,
This day should Clarence closely be mew'd up,
About a prophecy, which says that 'G'
Of Edward's heirs the murderer shall be.
Dive, thoughts, down to my soul: here
John Steinbeck: The winter of our discontent (in turn, inspired by Shakespeare), which explains the consumeristic society and how ethics are not valued in the face of money.