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Barcelona track layout tweaked for 2017 MotoGP race

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Officials at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya have confirmed that the track layout will be tweaked for the 2017 MotoGP Catalan Grand Prix.

Moto2 rider Luis Salom died following a crash in the final sector during practice for the 2016 race back in June, leading to a change in the track layout for the rest of the weekend.

MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 previously used the layout at the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona that retained the fast right-hand corners at Turn 13 and Turn 14, last used by Formula 1 back in 2006, as well as a different Turn 10.

After reverting to the F1 layout for qualifying and the race in 2016, MotoGP will now run a revised layout from the 2017 event onwards.

The F1 layout will be used at Turn 10, while a chicane will also be in place in the final sector, bypassing the right-hander at Turn 13 completely.

In a bid to prevent riders chopping across the racing line to come into the pits, MotoGP will place its chicane before the one used for F1.

The tweak to the layout has been approved by both the FIA and FIM, the respective governing bodies of international car and motorcycle racing.

The 2017 Catalan Grand Prix is scheduled to take place in Barcelona on June 11.

Alexander Rossi’s Grand Prix of Alabama gamble fails to pay off

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Alexander Rossi bobbled for the first time in 2018 with an 11th-place finish in the Honda IndyCar Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park.

And to add insult to injury, Rossi also lost the points lead as a result.

Rossi got off to about as great a start to the season as possible. He finished third at St. Petersburg and sat third in the standings. He finished third again at Phoenix and climbed to second in the points.

Rossi won the Long Beach Grand Prix after starting from the pole and leading 71 laps. That put him at the top of the standings after three races.

Then, as quickly as he climbed to the top, he got knocked down a spot after finishing off the podium for the first time in 2018.

Rossi not only missed the podium, he finished outside the top 10.

“We didn’t get the result that we wanted,” Rossi said after the race. “That remains a mystery. But at the end of the day it was about survival. We couldn’t make the tires last; we couldn’t really get a great fuel number.”

The biggest negative was the one factor that was mostly out of his control. Rossi gambled that he was facing only a brief shower when rain began to fall with about 15 minutes remaining. He was wrong.

“We tried to be pretty aggressive on the dry tires and stay out and survive the rain, hoping it would dry out,” Rossi said. “And it didn’t really work.

“Sometimes you’ll have those days.”