There is a ranking that no pilot would ever want to excel in: the number of falls per year. They say that motorcyclists fall into two categories: those who have already fallen and those who have not yet fallen. A first-hand encounter with the asphalt is practically always possible for a driver, because racing means pushing your bike to the limit and thus also the possibility of making mistakes.
Fewer falls, but not in Moto3
In 2019, counting all classes, 971 falls were registered. The MotoGP riders, the more experienced, are the ones who have crashed less: 220 times. Interesting fact as it represents a turnaround from the last two years when there were more than 300 falls at 18 GPs versus the current 19. The Moto2 riders also made fewer mistakes: 347 instead of 418 in the previous year. Not to mention Moto3, where it hit the remarkable number of 404 falls, fifty more than in 2018, but still far from the 2018 record of 463.
If you look at the corners where gravity does its more work, races definitely winbecause it is the moment when the riders have to give everything (74 falls were recorded in MotoGP, 111 in Moto2 and 166 in Moto3). On the other hand, not many mistakes happen in qualifying, maybe because they focus more on the flying lap. Instead, the riders in FP2 in MotoGP and in Moto3 and in FP3 in Moto2 get used to the asphalt a lot.
Le Mans, the black beast for drivers
Now for the more insidious circuits. Le Mans deserved the palm with a total of 90 falls during the race weekend. In 2009, 2012 and 2013, the French track achieved this unenviable record, also due to the not always optimal weather conditions. Barcelona and Phillip Island were tied on the podium this year and drove under critical conditions.
At the other end of the ranking is Aragon, which, with just 15 falls in 3 days, has hit the minimum number of falls since 2009, the year these statistics were published.
The worst corner is at Le Mans and it’s 3rd where 32 panels scratch the asphalt.
Zarco wins in MotoGP, but the absolute ruler is Booth-Amos
At the end of an almost unsatisfied season, MotoGP top scorer Johann Zarco had 17 (not so happy) falls. The Frenchman was at the head of the Pramac “crash team”, which brought Miller 2nd with 15 falls and Bagnaia 3rd with 14. Marquez was the same number, but we have dedicated a separate article to it (read HERE).
At the foot of the podium stood Abraham, Crutchlow and Mir (another newcomer like Pecco) with 12 falls. The rider with fewer falls (and it’s no surprise) was Dovizioso who only drove 4 times on the asphalt, while 2 more were chalked up by Vinales and Quartararo, proves that he is not only fast.
Instead, Valentino Rossi landed 8 times. Not many overall, as many as in 2018, but still high compared to his standards (in 2014, for example, he only fell twice in the entire season).
But the MotoGP riders are not up to the lower classes. Tom Booth-Amos is the overall winner with 22 falls, more than one per Grand Prix. The Welshman beat Can Oncu, a 21-year-old Turk. Third place in this ranking was taken by an old friend: Sam Lowes, to whom the spare parts dealers should erect a memorial.
Two of the Italians stood out (if you want to call them that): Marco Bezzecchi (5th with 18 falls) and Vietti (6th with 17). Both were newbies to their respective categories and paid the price for it … with their suits.