On Friday, September 22, Moto GP apologised for showing a distorted map of India in a recent live broadcast of a practice session at Buddh International Circuit. The apology comes after netizens slammed the depiction of a distorted map of India in which the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh were missing.
Taking to X, Moto GP stated, “We’d like to apologise to our fans in India for the map shown earlier as part of the MotoGP broadcast. It is never our intent to make any statement other than that of support and appreciation for our host country. We’re excited to be able to enjoy the IndianOil Grand Prix of India with you and we’re loving our first taste of Buddh International Circuit,” MotoGP said.
— MotoGP™🏁 (@MotoGP) September 22, 2023
MotoGP Bharat, presently known as the IndianOil Grand Prix of India, will make its Indian debut in the 13th round of the 2023 season. The event, which runs from today to Sunday, sees riders fighting on superbikes at speeds surpassing 300 km/h for the checkered flag.
Several netizens raised questions about the map shown during MotoGP’s live-streamed practice sessions, sparking an online debate. Users on social networking platforms including X questioned the usage of India’s distorted map and sought an explanation from MotoGP and the Indian promoters.
Journalist and author Ajeet Bharti questioned if it was a mistake on the part of the organisers or was the distorted map of India deliberately shown and wrote, “Hello @MotoGP, could you please clarify why your live-streaming of practice session had this map with Bharat’s head missing? @DirMktg_iocl. how was this allowed? @dornasport could you weigh in? I would request @CMOfficeUP to take cognisance of this stupidity and ask for reasons. If it is a mistake, it needs to be immediately corrected and not repeated again in qualifying and main race. If you think this image is ‘edited’, please provide a feed of the practice session, debunking this claim which is doing rounds on social media.”
— Ajeet Bharti (@ajeetbharti) September 22, 2023
One “Desi Racing Co.” wrote, “Well, this is not at all good to see. @MotoGP showing a distorted map of India while they are racing in our country.”
— Desi Racing Co. (@DesiRacingco) September 22, 2023
Notably, a total of 22 riders from 11 different teams will compete in a variety of sessions throughout the course of the three-day event. These sessions will involve practice, qualifying, a sprint race and the main Grand Prix event, which will be held next Sunday. These teams will ride motorcycles from prominent brands such as Honda, Yamaha, KTM, Ducati, and Aprilia, displaying a varied range of high-performance motorcycles.