MotoGP, new FIM rules: age limit increased and number of participants decreased

The Permanent Bureau has worked closely with all road and circuit racing stakeholders, including IRTA and MSMA, for many years to create the safest sport possible. While all parties and fans are aware that motorcycle racing is dangerous, all bodies are committed to continuous improvement and advancement in order to become safer every day and to ensure that the sport continues to grow worldwide.

Thanks to a constant review and revision process, this commitment by the permanent office and all those involved in sport in close cooperation with the drivers themselves in the safety commission goes back several decades and has already led to significant improvements in safety in motorcycle racing. Building on these advances, additional safety regulations and improvements are now coming into force in four core areas, which aim to keep the risk of motorcycle racing as low as possible. These key areas are minimum age limits and starting list sizes for each series, as well as projects under development to improve driver equipment and driver communication.

Nominal sizes and age limits:

In the coming seasons, the number of participants on the track in each series will be limited as described below. In addition, new age limits come into effect for each class, series or championship. These age limits are being introduced as part of a guideline to be implemented worldwide, with the FIM undertaking to ensure that they are also adhered to by national and continental associations in order to noticeably improve the sport at all levels.

Raising the minimum age for any motorcycle racing category is a decision to ensure a safer path for all riders starting and continuing their careers.

In addition, increasing the age limit for certain categories will allow greater equality between different countries and continents, thereby improving accessibility by leveling the playing field and ensuring that every driver can have similar experiences in different categories around the world.

From 2022:

The Talent Cups organized and / or supported by Dorna, such as the European, British, Northern and Asia Talent Cups, as well as the Pre-Moto3 ™ series increase the minimum age to 13 years and there will be a maximum of 30 participants in each Grid.

The minimum age for participants in the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup has been raised to 14 years.

At the FIM Moto3 ™ Junior World Championship in the FIM CEV Repsol, the minimum age will be raised from 14 to 15. Maximum of 32 participants is allowed in every race.

In the WorldSSP300 class of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship, the minimum age will be from 15 to 16. raised. A maximum of 32 drivers are allowed to line up on the starting grid.

For the 2022 season, drivers who are already registered in the same class in 2021 will be granted an exception so that they can continue to race.

For 2023 and beyond, the proposal envisages further raising the age limits as follows:

A minimum age of 14 years should apply to all races on Grand Prix circuits. including all those who have or have had Grade A, B or C homologation including the Asian, British, European and Northern Talent Cups.

The minimum age for participants in each class in the FIM MotoGP ™ World Championship has been increased to 18 years. This also applies to Moto3 and Moto2, for whom the age limit is currently 16.

The winner of the FIM Moto3 Junior World Championship and / or the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup can enter Moto3 at the age of 17. For the 2023 season only, there will also be an exception for drivers who have already entered Moto3 in 2022 so that they can continue to race.

A minimum age of 16 years applies to the FIM Moto3 Junior World Championship and the Moto2 European Championship, both in the FIM CEV Repsol. The Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup also increases the minimum age by another year to 15 years.

Following the same philosophy as in 2022 (for drivers who have already competed in 2021), drivers who are already participating in the Talent Cups in 2022 will be granted an exemption so that they can also drive in the same class in 2023.

The minimum age for participants in the WorldSSP Championship will be increased to 18 years.

Driver equipment:

From 2022, airbags will be mandatory in all Sprint Circuit Racing FIM championships.

For the FIM Sidecar World Championship it will be tested whether the known algorithms are valid for passengers. These tests can be used to estimate whether the airbag can be used by all participants from 2022.

Driver safety equipment has improved significantly over the decades and will continue to do so thanks to improvements across the industry, from leather, gloves, back and chest protectors and boots to FIM homologated helmets and innovative airbag systems. It has never been safer to ride a motorcycle at high speed, and these improvements help keep a rider safe from injury. In many cases, they help save lives without compromising drivability, which is also essential to keeping track safe.

At the Aragon GP, ​​a first meeting took place between all partners, including leather and helmet suppliers, technical staff and medical staff, on the next step in improving the level of protection of driver equipment. with an increased focus on protecting competitors from an impact with another rider or motorcycle, especially the chest and neck.

All parties are keen to make improvements in these areas and to overcome this challenge as safely and as quickly as possible, while not compromising the high level of current protection.

Driver communication:

The ease and speed of communication between drivers, pit wall and race control has improved significantly in recent years, with dashboard technology, high-tech light panels on the racetracks and instant communication channels between the marshals and the race control making a safer environment for all Competitors.

The next step in increasing the safety of everyone on the track is to let a rider or bike know as soon as possible that an accident has occurred.

A first meeting between all partners and technical suppliers has already taken place to discuss the installation and implementation of the required technology in the driver’s equipment, on motorcycles and / or around any racetrack, with the aim of implementing automatic, almost instantaneous warning systems for all subsequent riders / motorcycles. The first tests will start at the beginning of the 2022 season, and the system must and will be applicable to championships of all levels, including talent cups.