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A fire has broken out in the pitlane ahead of this weekend’s Japanese Motorcycle Grand Prix at Motegi.
The pit complex was engulfed in smoke on Thursday after a Moto2 bike belonging to the Marc VDS Racing team burst into flames. The fire reportedly broke out between the garages belonging to the MotoGP teams of Suzuki and Aprilia.
Fortunately, no injuries were reported with the Marc VDS team tweeting: “Fortunately all the team members are well and safe despite the fire in our garage. Thanks a lot to everybody who is caring and especially to those on site helping to control the situation.”
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It remains to be seen if the drama will affect the team’s running this weekend, with pictures posted on social media showing a badly damaged garage covered in ash after the fire had been extinguished.
MotoGP photographer Cormac Ryan-Meenan tweeted: “Scary fire this eve [ing] here & reminder it can happen at anytime. Also very cool to see nobody care what team is what. just chipping in to help! Here @suzukimotogp are helping clean & look after the Marc VDS bikes!
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David Emmett, of the MotoMatters website, posted: “This was scary. Fire in the Marc VDS box. Nobody hurt.”
The fire took place after the day’s media sessions, with the first on-track action of the weekend taking place on Friday ahead of qualifying on Saturday and the races on Sunday.
Fabio Quartararo, who leads the way in the MotoGP standings, saw his advantage cut to just 10 points after crashing out on the first lap of last weekend’s race at Aragon in Spain.
Quartararo was catapulted off his bike after tangling with the returning Marc Marquez. British rider Cal Crutchlow continues his comeback to racing after replacing the retired Andrea Dovizioso in the RNF Yamaha outfit.
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