MotoGP Germany – A toast to ease

Sachsenring MotoGP - Luca Marini

I’ve been going to the Sachsenring for well over ten years – as a fan, as a media representative, as a blogger, as a guest. The Sachsenring is and always has been something special. It’s where I can be as close to my passion as possible. There I can work for my blog and provide you with the latest info and pictures. When you’ve been going there for so long, you also see changes. You see which bleachers are no longer set up because other bleachers have been expanded. You see how the audience is changing, from an almost all-male domain to a colorful mix across society. The atmosphere, the crowd – all of that is still as special as it was in years past. Only there is one change that I have noticed more and more for some time now. Let’s call it “the ease.”

The ease

Media scrum, interviews, press conferences, meet & greets, hero walk, promo appointments, briefings, debriefings, training sessions, qualifying sessions, sprint races, main races – just a small excerpt of the workload of a MotoGP rider on a race weekend.
There is a lot to do. So it’s understandable that the baseball cap is pulled deeper into the face or you drive faster through the paddock on your scooter, just so that you remain unrecognized. So that you might also have some time for yourself. Time to concentrate and focus. Or maybe just to take a breath. In recent times, more and more appointments have been added for drivers. Many appointments and commitments create stress – and stress is poison for ease.

The ease that once prevailed is disappearing with professionalism. When I think back to my first years at the Sachsenring, I also remember that the riders used to step in front of the entrance to the paddock. They signed autographs and took photos. Just like that, without fences, barrier tape and boards saying “Hero Walk”. In the afternoon there were always people waiting outside the entrances to meet their heroes. They waited for someone to pass their guest pass briefly so they could take a look inside. It was a togetherness. A sense of togetherness. It was all approachable and easy. For me, this feeling has been lost more and more over the last few years. Everything is strictly timed. Everything runs according to a schedule that doesn’t allow any deviations. It can happen that the Saturday Hero Walk is cancelled at short notice because the schedule doesn’t allow it. Too bad for the fans who have been waiting there.

The fans

One should not forget the fans who do not have the opportunity to purchase a VIP ticket. It is the fans who fill the stands and standing room at the weekend. They are the fans without whom not only the atmosphere would be missing, but also the sport would be unthinkable. These fans visit the track because they love the sport. Because they love MotoGP. Contact with them must not be lost.

For me, MotoGP is taking a path very similar to the one Formula1 took a few years ago. More and more professional, more and more expensive, more and more marketing, more and more profit. From my perception, Formula1 has lost many existing fans and it has taken away the opportunity to gain new fans. If the ticket prices are too expensive, the TV broadcast can only be seen on pay TV and the drivers are unreachable, you lose your fans. Because they don’t care how professional it is, they want ease. They want a sport that can be experienced. Because without the fans and the closeness to the drivers, it won’t work for much longer. The ease must not be lost. Let’s hope it doesn’t.

Your Miss MotoGP

Additional info: I had given so much thought to this beforehand. Who do I ask for interviews? What topics do I want to work on to share with you over the course of the season? What additional equipment do I need? My preparations for Sachsenring 2023 were in full swing. Then, a week before the Sachsenring started, the cancellation came. Not accredited. For me, the Sachsenring was ticked off. But then I received unexpected help from the LCR Honda team. I was able to ride and even if I could not implement all my plans, it was the most important thing for me to be there.

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