Jump to content

"the Aliens" Is Not A New Phenomenon In Motogp


khp
 Share

Recommended Posts

OK Ladies and Gentlemen, please raise your hands if you've ever wondered if this thing with "The Aliens" in MotoGP is a recent thing or something we've always seen?

Thank you. This only popped up into my mind a couple of weeks ago, and I'm afraid I have too much time on my hands. How possibly else could I come up with digging into data like this?

 

The Aliens - way faster than the rest:

But let's back up a few steps. I first heard the term "The Aliens" about 6-8 years ago. "The Aliens" are the top-4 guys (seemingly invariably the Honda and Yamaha Factory riders) that were just that much faster than the rest of the bunch.

 

So just how much better are they at winning than the rest? - crazy much better. The more I look into it, the more my mind is swimming over their dominance.

 

Consider this: the Yamaha & Honda Factory Teams has currently won the last 87 consecutive races together. They have won every single race since Casey Stoner won on a Ducati in 2010 at Twin-Ring Motegi. Yes, Casey won later on an HRC Factory machine, so that counts on the Factory side.

 

Of the current riders, only Nicky Hayden (3 wins) and Andrea Divizioso (1 win) has ever won a MotoGP race, outside the Yamaha/Honda Factory teams. And both of them were on an HRC Factory ride at that time. But I digress...

 

As I said, a couple of weeks time ago I paused to wonder whether this is a new thing in MotoGP. After all, in Rossi, Lorenzo, Marquez and Pedrosa we are seeing some out-of-this-worldy talents.

 

Tonight, I say down with the help of MotoGP.com's statistics function and a bit of spreadsheet work and found myself arriving at a surprising conclusion: No, what we're seeing today is normal.

 

On average, 4.2 riders win a MotoGP/500cc race during a season.

 

Of the 67 seasons, 49 seasons have seen 3-5 riders winning. Only twice have a rider made a clean-sheet and won all racers in a season. Who? Giacomo Agostini. Twice (1959 and 1968).

 

Outliers are seasons like 2000 (7 different winners, title went to Kenny Roberts Jr) and 2006 (6 different winners; Nicky Hayden's championship year), and the decade 1973-1982, where there were 5-6 different winners every year.

 

Moto2/250cc and Moto3/125cc:

So what about the smaller classes - how about them? The statistics are clear on this: there is much more fighting going on, with average 7.3 and 6.8 different winners per season in Moto2 and Moto3.

Despite Zarco and Kent's dominance of their respective series, there has already been 7 different winners in Moto2 and 6 in Moto3 this year. In Moto2, only Zarco have won more than one race. In Moto3, only Miguel Oliveira have won 2 races (Kent has won 6).

 

Looking back at the data, I rationalize this as due to the Moto3 & Moto2 classes being feeder classes of the best onto the top-dog class: MotoGP. So if you had a really excellent rider in a class, he would invariably be offered a contract in a higher class and therefore move on.

 

So if you want to see some exciting racing and be less sure of who's going to win - MotoGP ain't the race to watch :)

 

 

 

post-15296-0-65651700-1441139135_thumb.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting, good job khp. All Moto2 bikes have the same CBR600RR engine. I believe there are only two frames available, and all bikes are prepared by the same company in Spain. Rossi tried Ducati, Hayden has won a championship and now is at the end of the pack without Honda.

 

I think the conclusion is that bike development is critical, more so than rider's ability. The reason why there seems to always be two teams battling in the top category could be that with only one team racing the season becomes unwatchable, like this year WSB. So the organization is prompted to shuffle rules a bit after each season that sees a one-team dominance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kai;

Thanks for putting this up here. Now that Prairie Dog Racing [...go Dogs!] has gone silent on us we may as well all go back to MotoGP for our racing analysis.

I agree with Eirik that there are "Aliens" in almost every aspect of life but since many of us follow motorcycle racing, the analysis is a fun sidebar.

 

I am personally fascinated by Jorge Lorenzo's riding this season. One round (many actually) he has been simply unbeatable and then others - not so much. For the first quarter of Silverstone, I was convinced that he couldn't be caught but once he gave up the lead - it was all but over for him.

 

I commented earlier this season that Rossi was pushing as hard as I have ever seen and wondered at 38 if he had the stamina to maintain that pace for an entire season. It appears he can but because he has, is that putting even more pressure on Lorenzo? Lorenzo probably expected to only have to contest with Marquez to claim his third MotoGP World Championship but not Rossi as well. It just reaffirms how Alien-like these guys are and why we are the beneficiaries of that circumstance.

 

Kai, thanks again for the analysis, it's provided a fun thread up here.

 

 

Kevin

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe the term " the aliens" came about in MotoGP when Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo both moved up to MotoGP and were succesfull right from the start of their rookie season, both finishing second in their first ever MotoGP race and getting their first win's in their 4th and 3rd races respectively. And Casey Stoner, while not overly succesful on his rookie season ( not on a factory bike either ), has a very dominant second season winning 10 / 18.

 

I think the term is not so much about their being overly more skilled than the rest of the riders in the series, but more about their coming into the series and raising the bar for everyone. In much the same way that Marquez has raised the bar for the entire field.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now that Prairie Dog Racing [...go Dogs!] has gone silent on us we may as well all go back to MotoGP for our racing analysis.

 

Hey, I have not gone silent. I am just sitting here waiting for Round 5 to happen. Sept. 12 - 13.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am personally fascinated by Jorge Lorenzo's riding this season. One round (many actually) he has been simply unbeatable and then others - not so much. For the first quarter of Silverstone, I was convinced that he couldn't be caught but once he gave up the lead - it was all but over for him.

 

I commented earlier this season that Rossi was pushing as hard as I have ever seen and wondered at 38 if he had the stamina to maintain that pace for an entire season. It appears he can but because he has, is that putting even more pressure on Lorenzo? Lorenzo probably expected to only have to contest with Marquez to claim his third MotoGP World Championship but not Rossi as well. It just reaffirms how Alien-like these guys are and why we are the beneficiaries of that circumstance.

 

Kai, thanks again for the analysis, it's provided a fun thread up here.

 

 

Kevin

 

Right, analysis is something to keep my meddling mind busy. A little fun, that's all :)

 

I share your fascination about Lorenzo. Or maybe even puzzlement. When he's in in the lead, on the charge, he is virtually unbeatable. When he's off, he seems to be very very off (if 4th and 5th place in the race is even considered to be "off"). Is there some mental "thing" happening to him when he sees that he doesn't have the pace of the very fastest?

 

Regardless, I think Lorenzo probably sighed a deep breath of relief when he saw that Marquez crashed out, so A/ Marquez is effectively out of the run for the title and B/ Lorenzo himself didn't loose another 2 points to Rossi. With less and less races left, those 12 points is becoming a sizable deficit to overcome, as long as Rossi & Lorenzo keep putting themselves on the podium - a crash and a broken bone can quickly smash any hopes of the title.

 

BTW, although Rossi is "a dinosaur of GP racing", he's still only 36 years of age - not 38(!) ;) Rossi started in GP500 in 2000. The next longest racing riders are Nicky Hayden (joined in 2003), Pedrosa (2006) and Lorenzo & Dovizisio (2008).

 

Kai

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think its a result of Lorenzo's riding style working best when he's got open track in front of him , if your behind someone who's holding you up mid-corner you lose all your advantage. so if your out front and can capitalize on your strength you're virtually untouchable, but if your stuck in the pack battling with and held up by riders with different styles you lose out on all your added mid-corner speed

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...