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Published: 14:58 | 26/8/18

British Moto GP cancelled after torrential rain

The British MotoGP has been cancelled following torrential rain showers at Silverstone on Sunday.

The decision came shortly after 4pm, following talks between the International Road Racing Teams' Association and commercial rights holder Dorna Sports.

Riders had told race organisers they would not race if conditions matched Saturday's fourth practice sesssion, during which Tito Rabat fell off his Avintia Ducati following a heavy downpour and suffered a triple fracture to his right leg after being hit by Franco Morbidelli’s bike.

The season-opening round in Qatar on Sunday, 17 March was postponed because of heavy rain, but eventually took place on the Monday.

However, MotoGP says this was not an option at Silverstone because of a shortage of safety marshals. 

MotoGP race director Mike Webb blamed the newly-laid surface at the Northamptonshire track for the cancellation, the first time a MotoGP event has been called off completely since 1980, when a snow storm wiped out the Austrian Grand Prix.

"We've had a number of years' experience here in very wet conditions recently with the old surface and have been able to run races," Webb said.

"This year, with the new surface, is the first time we’ve encountered quite so much standing water in critical places on the track. So yes it’s a direct result of the track surface.

"The staff have done an unbelievable effort over the whole weekend to try and make the track safe and until the last minute they were still working, but unfortunately we couldn’t battle nature."

The MotoGP Italian Grand Prix will be shown live on the eir sport pack on BT Sport 2 on Sunday, 9 September [coverage begins at 12.30pm]

Image: Getty/Mirco Lazzari

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