From 17 to 19 November 2023, Qatar will once again host an action-packed racing weekend featuring the world’s top drivers.
Lusail International Circuit (LIC) is set to host the MotoGP Grand Prix of Qatar 2023 this weekend, bringing world-class racing back into the Gulf State.
LIC’s dynamic layout, spanning 5.4 kilometres, will take on the penultimate race in the 2023 MotoGP calendar from November 17 to 19, just one month after wrapping up the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix.
The three-day event will host MotoGP’s new sprint race for the first time in Qatar. The thrilling new Saturday addition to the 2023 racing calendar, headlined as the Tissot Sprint Race, will see the top nine finishers competing for up to 12 world championship points.
Similar to Formula One’s Sprint Race that also debuted in Qatar this year, the Tissot Sprint Race results are based on the results of the morning’s two qualifying sessions, with Sunday’s primary race setting the same driver grid.
With only two races left in the season, the Lusail circuit will find itself once again becoming a potential championship-deciding circuit.
Reigning Italian Champion Francesco Bagnaia of the Ducati Lenovo Team is looking to defend his title against Jorge Martin of Prima Pramac Racing, who is looking to take his maiden World Championship.
Bagnaia has accumulated 412 points so far this season, while Martin has collected 398. Notably, Bagnaia has won six Grand Prix to Martin’s four.
However, the Prima Pramac Racer has won seven Tissot Sprint wins to Bagnaia’s four, leaving only a mere 14 points advantage for the defending champion.
Set as an underdog, the 25-year-old Prima Pramac Race aims for a triumphant finish in Lusail.
“I really like Qatar. I did two pole positions in the last two seasons and I did also a podium in my second race in MotoGP. So I’m really looking forward to it,” said Martin.
“We have to understand the new asphalt. Let’s see with the tyres. But for sure, it’s a track where I am super fast,” the Spanish racer added.
Held under the floodlights of a remodeled venue with an increased capacity of grandstands and facilities, the MotoGP racing is no stranger to the LIC track.
Since 2004, Lusail Circuit has hosted the opening of the MotoGP calendar each year as the only nighttime Grand Prix but made changes this year because of the facility upgrades.
This year’s 2023 season will mark the first campaign since 2006 where MotoGP had started somewhere other than Qatar when the opening round took place at Spain’s de la Frontera.