The wait is over: season opener for CFMOTO on rollercoaster track in Portimão

This weekend, the Portuguese Grand Prix officially kicks off this year’s MotoGP™ season. Added to the race calendar for the first time in 2020, the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve celebrates itself as the venue for the World Championship opener for this year. After the CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP riders had already been able to get in the mood for the track during the official IRTA tests last week and both managed to position themselves in the top 10 in the meantime, it will of course be all the more exciting to see how they will present themselves here in a race atmosphere next weekend.

4,635 m total length, 15 bends, 9 to the right and 6 to the left, a 969 m long finishing straight and up to 18 m total width – these are some of the hard facts you need to know about the course, which opened in 2008. It is definitely not boring here, because ups and downs are a constant companion along the entire length: gradients of up to 6.2%, downhill gradients with a maximum of 12%, blind curves, crests and dips make the track spectacular for riders and spectators alike.

After the hard preparation during the winter months, both CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP riders are fired up to prove their skills. In the last official tests before the start of the season, #43 Xavi Artigas (19) managed to finish 6th in the combined times on Saturday (1:48.881) and teammate #66 Joel Kelso (19) was even able to improve his lap time on Sunday to a 1:47.915. Not a bad outlook for the CFMOTO Factory Team, which is racing Xavi for the second year in a row. Kelso, who competed as a regular team rider in Moto3™ for the first time last year, is looking forward to convincing his new team of himself and his racing qualities.

#43 Xavier Artigas

“Of course I’m happy that it’s finally starting. They were good tests, we were able to work continuously on our programme and adapt to different settings, whether sprint or longer distance. This information is very important to get into the sessions quickly. I wish all MotoGP™ fans, whether live at the track or behind the screens, a great start to the season!”

#66 Joel Kelso

“This week I have my race premiere as a CFMOTO Factory Rider and that gives me a really good feeling. In the past few weeks, I have had the opportunity to get to know the team and the entire global CFMOTO family with its fans and to gather many impressions. I feel very comfortable and it makes me proud to represent our colours on the track. The first tests were good, I could understand the character of the CFMOTO better from lap to lap. We have the pace and hopefully it will be a successful first race weekend for our team. Everyone has worked hard during the winter months and we want to reward ourselves for that.”

Timetable of the Grand Prémio Tissot de Portugal from 24 Mar – 26 Mar for the Moto3™

FRIDAY, 24 MAR 2023

10:00 – 10:35 (CET)

14:15 – 14:50 (CET)



Free Practice Nr. 1

Free Practice Nr. 2


09:40- 10:10 (CET)

13:50– 14:05 (CET)

14:15– 14:30 (CET)




Free Practice Nr. 3

Qualifying Nr. 1

Qualifying Nr. 2

SUNDAY, 26 MAR 2023

12:00 (CET)


Race (21 Laps)

Pictures by © RLekl

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