Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Michelin after Sunday's rain-sodden race at Misano:
Powerful win for Marquez at wet Misano to take back the Championship lead
Marc Marquez perfectly mastered today’s very tricky wet conditions at Misano, taking his fourth win of the season and the 59th in his career, putting him back at the top of the Championship standings, equal on points with Andrea Dovizioso (with Marquez ahead by virtue of more second-place finishes).
Marc started well from the front row, taking second place behind Jorge Lorenzo at the end of the first lap. After his fellow countryman crashed out of the race on lap seven and Danilo Petrucci took the provisional lead, Marc began a close chase of the Italian, controlling his advantage over Dovizioso just behind him.
Marc waited until the final lap to make his move and overtook Petrucci in turn one, then set the fastest lap of the race at 1’47.069” and earned the win, his fifth across all classes at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.
Dani Pedrosa had a very tough race, as he struggled to put temperature in the tyres and could not push as he wanted. Dani had to finally settle for the fourteenth place.
Today’s result gave Honda the lead of the Constructor Championship while the Repsol Honda Team tops the Team Classification before heading to Aragon in two weeks.
HRC wish to congratulate Toni Bou for sealing the 2017 TrialGP World Championship Outdoor Title today with one round still to run before the end of the season.
“This was one of the best races of my career. It gave me an amazing feeling because it required incredible concentration to manage the tension the whole time. It was very easy to make a mistake, and that’s why I decided to attack only on the final lap. That lap was amazing; I took many risks, but with such a close season, it was worth trying to get the five extra points for the win. Of course I was thinking about the Championship the whole race. At the beginning the feeling wasn’t so good, probably because there was so much water on the track, and I had a couple of very scary moments. Lorenzo was amazingly fast early on, and so was Danilo later when he took the lead after Jorge’s crash, but I was able to follow him and finally to attack. Thanks to the team for the great job. I’m happy for everyone after what happened at Silverstone. We always try to be ready for every situation, so because we knew that changing the setup from wet to dry takes quite a long time at this track, we agreed that if I felt the track was drying, and there was even a small possibly of a flag-to-flag race, I would signal the team. So I did, and even if in the end that didn’t happen, it was right to do so as we got close to it. This Championship is amazing; anything can happen, but now we’ve returned to the top, equal on points with Andrea. The last five races will be very tough, but we’ll keep pushing and give it our 100%. Finally, I wish to congratulate Toni Bou for his 22nd title, it’s just amazing. Keep doing like that, Toni!”
“It has been a very difficult race. Unfortunately, I struggled a lot as I could not put any heat into the tyres. For me, it was as I was riding on the ice. This morning I crashed during the warm up and even if we tried everything to solve this issue we could not coming out with a solution. I was very slow, risking to crash at every corner. Only at the end, with much less water on the track, I was able to increase a bit the temperature and my lap times immediately drop by almost four seconds. It was a shame as we’ve lost many points. We can now only keep focusing in the next races and try to achieve better results. Regarding Toni (Bou) I think he deserved this impressive 22nd Trial title, he is an example for everyone!”.
Podium for Andrea Dovizioso, third in the San Marino GP at Misano. Jorge Lorenzo crashed and had to retire on lap 7 while in the lead. Good fifth place for Michele Pirro
Andrea Dovizioso scored another podium finish today at Misano Adriatico with third place in the San Marino Grand Prix, which was held in the pouring rain. The Italian rider started from the front row in second and then battled almost all the race with Marquez and Petrucci but had to settle for third a few laps from the end, a result that confirms his position at the top of the table on equal points with Marquez.
A crash on lap 7 put paid to Jorge Lorenzo’s good race. The Spanish rider moved into the lead on the opening lap and immediately set the pace, opening up a gap of more than four seconds on the following riders, but his efforts on the wet track came to an end when he high-sided and retired.
Michele Pirro, taking part in his second wild-card race of the season with the Desmosedici GP of the Ducati Test Team, put in a good performance. The Italian, who started from row 4, recovered well to finish in fifth, just under three seconds away from Viñales.
The MotoGP World Championship will be back on track again in two weeks’ time at the Motorland Aragón circuit near Alcañiz in Spain.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 3rd
“In the end I’m happy with my third place because today I wasn't able to find a perfect feeling with the bike. I tried to keep up with Marquez and Petrucci and I did for 20 laps, but the track conditions were really difficult. When they began to lower their lap times I would have had to take too many risks to stay in touch, and I preferred to slightly drop my pace to bring home the 16 points for third place, which is very important for the championship. The Misano weekend however confirmed that we can be competitive on every circuit and we can fight for the title until the very end.”
Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team #99) – DNF
“What a pity about my crash! The bike was going very well and I was riding pretty calmly, without taking too many risks and trying to manage the tyres well. Unfortunately at a certain point I lost concentration trying to change the mapping to a different electronic configuration, I used the rear brake in a slightly different way and that was enough to cause a high-side and make me crash. I’m very disappointed about that because I think I could have won the race by a distance and instead I had to retire. Races are like that however and you have to accept that these things can happen.”
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51) – 5th
“The weekend hadn’t begun well with yesterday’s crash in qualifying, which unfortunately compromised my grid position, and today I didn’t want to take too many risks in the early laps so I started too slowly. From half-way through the race I started to lap at a good pace and I began my recovery, getting close to Viñales. But I was struggling to keep his pace and in the end I decided not to take too many risks because, after yesterday’s two crashes, I was keen to finish the race. I still have to improve because I’m lacking pace in the early stages of the race, but today I really enjoyed myself.”
Viñales Fiercely Fights Off Rivals for Fourth in Misano
Under today's gloomy skies, at a soaked Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, the air was filled with tension as Maverick Viñales made his appearance on the starting grid for the Tribul Mastercard GP S.Marino e Riviera di Rimini. However, the sole Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider remained calm and collected, securing fourth place in a very slippery race.
With his teammate Valentino Rossi unable to compete in his home Grand Prix due to injury, Viñales had to fly the Movistar Yamaha flag alone, and all eyes were on him as he started from pole. After a good launch off the line, he entered the first corner with caution, slotting into fourth place. He took a couple of laps to get heat into his tyres, after a small wobble on lap 2 gave him a warning of just how tricky the wet track conditions were. Danilo Petrucci passed the Yamaha rider at the start of lap 3, but the Spaniard had a plan.
Viñales gradually upped his pace in each sector, trying to determine the limit whilst having to contend with a lack of rear grip in most of the left corners. He set consecutive personal best laps, but he had to keep an eye on his pursuers at the same time. He got into a fight with Cal Crutchlow and Jack Miller, which lost him some valuable time, but the battle was short-lived.
Crutchlow was soon caught out by the treacherous conditions of the race, allowing the number 25 rider to seize the opportunity. Back in fourth position on lap 7, as Jorge Lorenzo crashed out of the lead, the 22-year-old could pick up where he left off and started to better his rhythm again. He steadily broke away from Michele Pirro and Miller, opening an over 2-second gap. Viñales had a lonely ride in the final stages of the race, though he didn't stop pushing for even a second. He ultimately took the chequered flag in fourth place, 16.559s from first.
Today's results keep Viñales in third place in the championship standings, 16 points behind the joint leaders and 26 points ahead of Rossi, who holds on to fourth place in the standings. The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team is in second place in the Team Championship, with a nine-point margin to first. Yamaha is also in second place in the Constructor Championship with a five-point gap to the top of the rankings.
The MotoGP paddock will next head to the MotorLand Aragón for round 14, the Gran Premio Movistar de Aragón, held from September 22nd - 24th.
Position: 4th - Championship: 3rd - Points: 170
"I'm happy with the result, because it is the best we could do. Honestly, today we asked 100% of the bike. I tried to get the best result and today that was fourth. We have to continue to work in the same way, because today was a good improvement compared to the wet race at the Sachsenring, especially the handling of the bike. We still need a lot of grip on the traction, so we have to keep going. I'll have to push in Aragón and believe we can close the 16-point gap to our rivals. On the dry we were really fast, I'm happy we made another step here in Misano. I hope we can do the same in Aragón."
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP - Team Director
"Today's race was really difficult. We only had this morning's 20-minute warm up to prepare a wet set-up and it was clear that the track conditions were going to be very tricky. Maverick stuck to his original plan of riding at his own pace and he did a good job holding off his rivals, which is especially challenging when the track conditions are changing throughout the race. Moreover, Maverick had to manage his race pace whilst suffering from a lack of rear grip in most of the left corners. Nevertheless, he didn't get lured into making mistakes and secured some very valuable points for the championship. We now look forward to the next Grand Prix in Aragón, in two weeks' time, which is a very special event for the team, as we share the title sponsor."
BRILLIANT RACE FOR THE ROOKIE RINS - 8TH IN MISANO GP
Team Suzuki Press Office – September 10.
Alex Rins: 8th / +34.662
Andrea Iannone: DNF
The rain arrived in Misano Adriatico at the beginning of race day, making a mess of the whole situation. The wet conditions rewarded an effective and mature Alex Rins, who took 8th place. This is also his best result of the season so far. Andrea Iannone suffered a problem with his arm which forced him to retire before the end of the race.
Starting from 20th place, Alex Rins did not have a perfect jump at the start. He found himself in last place after the first corner. However, the excellent pace he set from lap 2 on was as fast as the riders at the head of the race. This allowed him to advance many positions. The wise management of the race in the second half was crucial to make his way into ninth place and then go for the eighth in the very last corners.
Despite a positive warm up, where he was feeling good with the GSX-RR in wet, the race proved to be a hard one for Iannone. Immediately after the early laps he started to have problems with an arm pump that made his forearms too stiff to maintain mobility. In these conditions he was not able to safely ride his machine and decided to retire before the end of the race.
Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager
“Finally the bad weather helped us. Alex did a very good job; he was able to adapt very well right from the warmup, and also in the race he kept a very good pace. 8th position is a great result, the best in this season. I want to thank him very much. Unfortunately Andrea could not finish the race, which is a real shame because his effectiveness on a wet track was good. I hope the next time he will get a good result. The truth is that this weekend we struggled a lot in dry conditions. This is a fact and we have to face it and find a solution. We will stay here in Misano tomorrow and Tuesday for some private testing. We have many new items, some of them for immediate use for the rest of the season and others for the longer term, for the next season. We will be looking for the missing piece to a better performance.”
Davide Brivio – Team Manager
“We can be very happy for Alex’s race. He’s been excellent in very difficult conditions. He started from the 20th place and recovered many positions. The race was very difficult and it was easy to make a mistake. Considering that he´s a rookie, he’s been very good in the management. The pace in the middle of the race was as fast as the top riders; this makes us proud of him. Sadly we’ve not been very lucky with Andrea. He had a problem at his forearms that forced him to retire from the race. It’s a real shame but we keep positive. Tomorrow if the weather is good, we will have one day of testing here in Misano with some new items. For us it is important to prepare well for the final five races of the season, and also to think about 2018, in order to find a more effective and consistent performance in dry conditions.”
"I’m happy about this result. During the whole weekend we struggled in dry conditions, but on wet we did a very good job. After the start I found myself in last position. It was a problem with visibility, with all the water kicked up by the other riders ahead of me. Little by little I managed to recover positions, setting my own pace. I saw I could get up to the 9th position and settled behind the rider ahead, where I waited until the last lap to attempt the challenge for 8th place. Then in the last corners we crossed lines with another rider and I lost some ground, without a chance to recover further. My team prepared a fantastic setup for the wet, despite only lapping for 20 minutes in this morning’s warmup.”
“Sadly I had a problem in my arm. I decided to wear the rain suit for the race, which actually proved to be too tight, obstructing the blood flood to the arms, so right after two or three laps my forearm started to pump and get rigid, preventing me from riding properly. I was never able to open the gas full-throttle, and then I also lost responsiveness with the brake. It’s a shame because the machine was performing well and had good potential. I’m sorry for Suzuki because we could have taken advantage of these conditions.”
Most points for KTM MotoGP project so far in 2017 season at San Marino Grand Prix
RACE 13TH Rd. MotoGP 2017 – Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli (SMR)
All three San Marino Grands Prix were today held under torrentially wet conditions making racing exceptionally difficult, but both KTM MotoGP riders fought through to take their biggest points haul from a Grand Prix with eleven points between Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro who took tenth and eleventh positions. For the KTM RC16 it was impressive as the motorcycle had only done 20 minutes in the wet at Misano before today's race.
In Moto2, KTM Moto3 World Champion from 2016 Brad Binder had his best ever finish in the middle class of GP racing with fifth place from seventeenth on the grid while in Moto3 it was Philipp Oettl who came home in fourth place heading a quintet of KTMs inside the top ten.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing will stay on at the Misano circuit for a test tomorrow.
Red Bull KTM MotoGP Factory Racing took their biggest points haul from a MotoGP today with a tenth and an eleventh following one of the most treacherous races in recent years after torrential rain since dawn. A score of eleven points has therefore been taken away from the Adriatic coast.
Bradley Smith started 22nd, but found more and more speed as the race progressed and as the rain eased very slightly, he took his first top ten finish for KTM. The result is all the more impressive as his KTM RC16 had only ever previously done nine laps in the wet at this track. Pol Espargaro was just three seconds behind his team mate on a day that didn't quite see his set-up to his liking following the 20 minute wet warm up in the morning.
The team stay at the Misano Circuit for a test tomorrow before moving to Aragón in two weeks time.
Smith: "I think the biggest thing today was that if you stay upright you'll get some points, so I tried to play it smart right from the word go. At the start there was so much spray you couldn't see much, plus there was so much standing water but then I felt better and better as the track started to dry and then from mid race I found myself chasing Folger and then Pol so we then had our own little battle and in the final laps. I dropped into the 1m 48 bracket, which was great, to then bring it home for tenth in the end, my first top ten finish. I'm super happy to put it together on a Sunday and although it is a wet race, we now need to put this together in the remaining dry races, but certainly things are going in the right direction. A good day."
Espargaro: "I think I've tried everything today! Out on track the conditions were similar to the warm up, but this track doesn't give much grip on the rear wheel when it's wet. In the dry we were not far away at all but with only 20 minutes this morning in the wet we hardly had much data going into a 28 lap race. I ended up doing everything I could during the race...nothing more! Luckily we have tomorrow to test new things for Aragon and hopefully in the next wet race I can do a little bit better."
Mike Leitner (Team Manager MotoGP): "We knew that this weather would be difficult for everybody, but both Bradley and Pol had a clever strategy during the race as we had never done any wet laps here until this morning's warm up. It's so easy to be in the gravel in these conditions and I think they really pushed to the max out on the track today. Also huge respect to the guys in the garage as after the warm up there was so much work done in preparation for this wet race but it worked and we came away with the team's best result as a whole to get valuable points in the MotoGP Team Championship. On Bradley's side, Esteban (Garcia) is working well with him and he helped Bradley get this good result."
DOUBLE CRASH FOR ESPARGARÓ AND LOWES
BOTH WERE INTO THE TOP-TEN
The rain soaked asphalt of Misano heavily influenced the GP of San Marino and the Rimini Riviera. The rain that fell heavily even for the first laps of the race and the wet conditions caused numerous crashes. The Aprilia Racing Team Gresini riders also paid the price, crashing while they were battling for a good placement.
Espargaró crashed in the 14th lap while occupying ninth place. After a good start from the third row, earned thanks to his good performance in qualifying on Saturday, Aleix had found a spot in the group of riders battling for a spot in the top ten, a result that seemed to be well within his potential.
This time, Sam Lowes also has something to complain about. Feeling quite at ease in the conditions today, he was the protagonist of a fantastic comeback ride from 24th to tenth place, riding behind his teammate. His race also ended early due to a loss of grip at the front on the wet asphalt.
“The conditions today were truly difficult. This morning in warm up I did not feel good, but we made a few important changes to the RS-GP and in the early part of the race the feeling was decidedly better. Then I began to have problems with the front tyre before the crash. It's a shame because we have not been able to demonstrate our true potential for a few races now. I am disappointed, but I have not lost my spirit or the desire to continue fighting.”
“I can't be pleased about how the race ended, but on the track I was able to be competitive. I battled, overtook, maintained a good pace and the RS-GP worked brilliantly on the wet track. When the amount of water on the track began to go down, the front didn't give me the same confidence. I tried to slow down too, but I wasn't able to avoid the crash. Despite the result, the race is still incentive to give me confidence that I hope to take advantage of in Aragón where I won my last race in Moto2.”
ROMANO ALBESIANO - APRILIA RACING MANAGER
“First of all, I would like to say a few words about Sam, who was moving up in the order and had gotten into the top ten. A great result was definitely within his potential. It's too bad about his crash, but today the conditions were very treacherous and unfortunately they also led to Aleix's crash. We need to keep hanging in there, even if recently we haven't reaped much, we are sowing well. The potential is there and we are determined to demonstrate it soon with a good result.”
FAUSTO GRESINI - TEAM MANAGER
“The race was held in very difficult conditions and it was easy to fall victim to a crash - something that unfortunately happened to both our riders. We could have brought home a nice double top ten finish, because Sam was demonstrating good competitiveness today. In any case, I would like to thank the riders and the entire team for their great efforts. We will keep working as hard as possible to stay with the leaders more and more often.”
Stunning Petrux leading until last lap and on podium again. Super Scott from 19th to 7th
GP di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini - The RACE
Stunning Petrux leading until last lap and on podium again. Super Scott from 19th to 7th
Once again on the podium, for the third time this season, the second in Italy after Mugello. Petrux was fantastic and has brought to Octo Pramac Racing an extraordinary Sunday. Scott gave extra enthusiasm at the team party with a good seventh place.
Over Misano the rain was constant through all morning, and Petrux started pushing already from the first lap gaining 4 positions. After overtaking Crutchlow and Vinales he was fourth in the second lap. At the fifth lap he was the fastest and he was able to overtake Dovizioso. The fantastic overtake on Marquez came the lap after. Then Lorenzo crashed, and Danilo became the leader of the race in the 6th lap. The Italian rider was the leader until the last lap but Marquez managed to overtake him at the end of the straight. Danilo finished in second position after a fantastic #SanMarinoGP. Thank you Petrux!
Scott started in 19th position but since the first lap the pace was good. The English rider had the strength to remain focused and in the 12th lap he overtook Espargaro for the 9th position. Ten laps from the end he tried to catch Zarco who had a technical problem on the last lap. A precious P7 finish for Redding.
2nd - Danilo Petrucci
"It was a fantastic race. From the first lap the feeling was good. I was leading for long until I saw Marquez coming back. I was thinking to make him pass but my fear was that he could run away. Marquez has done a fantastic last lap and he deserved the victory. I would have liked to win the race but I am very happy for how the weekend has gone, and I have to thank the whole team".
7th - Scott Redding
"It was a difficult weekend. I never had feeling throughout all free practice and qualifying. All things considered I am very satisfied for this result. I was able to have a good race pace, without making any mistake. This very good result will give me trust for Aragon. I have to thank the team for the work that the team has done this weekend".
Miller sixth with a wet track masterclass at Misano
With a fast and focused performance Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Jack Miller finished a superb sixth in a rain soaked race at Misano today.
It was another masterclass in wet track riding by Miller, who surged into his second top six result of the season from 14th on the grid.
Miller’s previous sixth place was at the Dutch TT in June.
Miller had threatened a big haul of points after qualifying and the Australian delivered on cue, despite the slippery and tricky conditions at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.
Miller dashed into ninth place on lap one and two laps later was locked in a titanic battle with Cal Crutchlow and Maverick Vinales for fifth place.
On lap six Miller had moved to fifth and settled into a long contest with Vinales before fading rear grip left him unable to hold off the late race challenge from Michele Pirro.
Miller’s sixth place is a confidence boost in advance of the next race, the Aragon GP, in two weeks.
Tito Rabat’s desire to finish in the points was dampened in the opening laps when he suffered from a lack of grip on the drenched Misano circuit. The race day rain was not ideal for Rabat who had showed good pace in the dry practice sessions.
But the determined Spaniard regrouped and by lap 17 he was in 13th and on target to score championship points. Three laps later Rabat slid out of the race at turn six.
Jack Miller: 6th
“At the start of the race I felt I had more pace than Vinales and Crutchlow but by the end of the race my pace dropped and I probably switched the engine map too late to help look after the rear tyre. It was good on the edge but I had lost some drive grip and it wasn’t possible to hold off Pirro in the final laps. This was my best weekend in the second half of the season so far and with some good points I am looking forward to the next race in Aragon.”
Tito Rabat: DNF
“At beginning of the race I had no grip on the rear and don’t know why and this made the early laps difficult on a very wet track. Then I was able to take my rhythm and catch the guys ahead and was in a position to score points. With the crash I just rolled the gas a little at turn six and the rear slid out. It is disappointing for me and the team, I wanted to finish the race in these difficult conditions.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“Not only I am very happy with this race result by Jack I am even happier that we are back in the form showed at the beginning of the season with a fast and constant pace. And who knows what could have happened if Jack had been able to get ahead of Crutchlow and Vinales earlier in the race. But sixth is a perfect result considering the conditions and I hope we can take this level to the next race in Aragon. It is a shame for Tito not to finish as he was closing on some points late in the race in tricky conditions.”
Resolute Folger snatches 9th in San Marino – Heroic Zarco seals 15th after bad luck strikes on final lap
Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Jonas Folger produced a tireless effort to claim 9th in the highly challenging San Marino GP. The young German began the soaking wet race from 16th on the grid and undertook a decent start to move up two places by the close of the first lap. He maintained his consistency in the tricky conditions before finishing the grueling GP inside the top ten, marking a positive close to the weekend.
Meanwhile, Johann Zarco suffered bad luck on the final lap of the race but showed great determination as he wheeled his Yamaha across the finish line after running out of fuel. The rapid French rider began from 6th and ran a formidable pace throughout the sprint, as he held 7th whilst heading into the last lap. The issue then struck but Zarco memorably pushed his bike down the start finish straight to clinch 15th.
Position: 9th - Championship: 10th - Points: 84
“I am not so happy about this weekend overall, but I did my best. Qualifying was a different story compared to today because I felt good in the dry conditions. In the wet warm up, we decided to change something but we were a little bit unlucky because by the end of the race we understand that it was the wrong direction with the setting. I struggled with the rear grip and the turning in the last part of the GP but eventually, I finished 9th, however, this was due to Johann’s bike giving up. We didn’t have the speed so I am a bit disappointed as I expected more, especially in the wet. Now, we have to look onwards to Aragon.”
Position: 15th - Championship: 6th - Points: 110
"It was challenging but tough for everyone. In the warm up I saw that I wasn’t as strong as I would have liked, but then at the beginning of the Grand Prix, I felt quite good. I was happy to have control and see that the other riders were not much faster than me. I stayed focused and then I saw Crutchlow and Lorenzo crash, who are dangerous for me in the championship. Because they fell, it made me realise how difficult the conditions were for everyone. The race was long but step-by-step it got less wet, although it did not dry and this gave me some confidence but not as much as I expected. I had to stay focused and in the end, I was managing the gap to Redding quite well so I thought that everything was in order for the last lap. However, I had no more fuel from turn 11, which was a shame. I did my best to preserve the fuel until the last corner but then the bike stopped and I had to push it on the home straight and that was long. Some riders overtook me and it’s a big pity but I made sure that I got to the end because it’s the racing mind. I finished 15th, which equals one championship point but it is better than nothing."
“I must admit that it’s a very difficult race result to think about. We did an ok job with Johann Zarco throughout the weekend as he had a good qualifying, and started on the second row of the grid. He began the last lap in a solid 7th position, with a gap of 2.5 seconds over Redding and there was no way he could have caught us. It would have been a strong result but unfortunately, we only finished thanks to Johann’s dedication and effort to push the bike over the line and score one point. He ran out of fuel, which is something that is unacceptable for me, and tonight we have to sit down with the Yamaha engineers as well as our own in order to understand why this happened. It should never occur and I feel very sorry for Johann who did a great job. He didn’t deserve that so I would like to apologise to him. We had Rodney Sacks, the Monster Energy CEO, with us today and I wanted to give him something to cheer about and this is not what I was expecting. On the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 pit box, Jonas had an ok start but I think that he was lacking confidence in the first part of the GP and it was easy to see that because the lap times were not there. In the last third, he looked better and his pace improved, plus he was inside the top ten which is nothing amazing but it is positive finish for his first real race in the rain on a MotoGP bike. I’m sure that we can bounce back with two strong results at the next round in Aragon but again I have to say that I feel very sorry for Johann.”
Loris Baz and Hector Barbera leave Misano without reward
The forecast was right and today heavy rain hit the Misano circuit. After the strong performance showed by Loris Baz during the warm-up session, the expectations of Reale Avintia Racing for the Grand Prix of San Marino were high. Hector Barbera was not as fast as Baz during the 20 minutes-session in the morning, but nevertheless his feeling in wet conditions was quite good and he was confident to fight for a top ten result in the race.
Both riders had a great start and passed some rivals, with Barbera 11th and Baz 13th after the first lap. But then it was the Frenchman who mounted his attack and moved up to fifth place in only a few laps, fighting with Jack Miller. When they caught Maverick Viñales, Baz lost the front and crashed on lap ten. He returned to the track and kept fighting to score some points. Lap by lap, he closed the gap with Bautista, but pushing too much with a broken steering damper from the first crash caused him to crash again. He didn’t give up,but bravely continued a second time and finished the race in 16th place.
The Misano race ended also unlucky for Hector Barbera. The Spaniard was in seventh place, fighting with Pirro, Miller and Viñales for fourth position. But on lap 12 he suffered a big crash and his race was finished.
The MotoGP World Championship will resume in two weeks time on Spanish soil at the Aragon Grand Prix, where the Reale Avintia Racing riders hope to get a good result.
Loris Baz | P16
“From the first lap I realized that the feeling with the rear was not the same as this morning. But on the other hand, I had a lot of confidence with the front, so I pushed hard to gain some places. There are races that you do with your head and there are races that you do with your heart, and this one was a race to take risks. I did my best get closer to the front and every lap I could see how I was catching up with the front group. I was with Jack (Miller) who had a good pace and I wanted to catch Maverick (Viñales), but when I hit the brakes I lost the front and crashed. Then I came back on track, found back to my pace and wanted to score some points. But once again I crashed when I had Alvaro (Bautista) in front of me. Now we have to forget this race and think about Aragon, were I want to use my head in the race.”
Hector Barbera | DNF
“The crash was a pity because today we had a big chance to get a good result. But all in all, the weekend has been positive, because we started the race better than usual and after some laps we were close to the front. The conditions were tricky but we had to try. I was closing the gap with Viñales and Miller, maybe I pushed too much and I crashed. I was highsided from my bike and I was lucky to escape with no injuries. Now we have to focus on the next race in Aragon.”
POINTS FOR CRUTCHLOW DESPITE CRASH IN MISANO
PRESS RELEASE: 10 September 2017 | San Marino GP
LCR Honda man Cal Crutchlow salvaged three points out of a treacherous San Marino Grand Prix at the Misano circuit on Sunday. With heavy rain falling throughout the day the 28-lap race presented danger at every turn, but the British rider navigated his way safely through the early laps and was sat comfortably in fifth, just behind the lead group of four. However he was soon embroiled in a battle with former LCR Honda team-mate Jack Miller, and even though he dispatched the Australian, he went to ground soon after.
Following that setback, Crutchlow rushed to his bike to remount, and despite some clear damage he then began the task of closing down the riders in front of him. With 22 laps still to go, Cal eventually picked off enough rivals to finish the race in 13th place and collect three valuable points for his championship account.
Cal Crutchlow – 13th
"I felt really good, I felt comfortable and confident. I knew after ten laps that I could probably start pushing, I didn’t want to take too many risks early and I ended up flying as high as I have in a long time. It was my own mistake, no fault of anyone else. I wanted Jack and the rest behind me, but as soon as I passed him I crashed. I was confident that I could come back across the gap to Dovizioso and maybe even Marquez at that time, but I just pushed too hard and crashed out.
“I got back on though, and got some points. It was a difficult, long race with the handlebar touching the tank and no footrest! I did what I had to do, but I’m sorry to the LCR Honda team because we could have had a good result today. I don’t know if we would have won the race, but I think we could have definitely been with Dovi. In the condition I’m in we’ve done well all weekend, I’ve felt good all the way through and we can take those positives away from here. We were fast in both wet and dry, but I made a mistake in the race and that’s what cost me.”
Pull&Bear Aspar rider suffers from lack of grip, on a day in which a crash prevents Karel Abraham from getting a good result
The San Marino Grand Prix went down to the wire in the MotoGP class, as Danilo Petrucci was bested on the final lap by race winner Marc Márquez. The Spaniard waited until the last time around Misano to pass the Italian and break away for the victory. Márquez, who set the fastest lap of the race on the final lap, moves level on 199 points with Andrea Dovizioso -third today. Maverick Viñales leads the way with a 16-point advantage, with only 125 still to play for.
The Pull&Bear Aspar team were able to salvage 4 points from a race in which the prospects after the first lap were not so positive. Karel Abraham crashed at Turn 3 after feeling contact from another rider, on a day in which the track grip level was minimal, and although he was able to rejoin the race he was more than 40 seconds off his closest rival. Álvaro Bautista was twenty-second on the fourth lap, after qualifying for Q2 yesterday. From there, the Spaniard was able to recover positions and cross the line twelfth, adding four points to his total for the season. He now has 62 points, heading to his next home race at Aragon.
12th Álvaro Bautista: "Today I could not do anything more than finish. In the morning I had problems with grip. We tried out solutions for the race to see if it would improve, but it was still the same. It seemed like I was riding on ice, there was no grip at all and when I came into a corner I didn't know if I'd get out of it. I couldn't feel the tyres. I had to just try to finish, which is what I did."
17th Karel Abraham: “This was the worst race of the season for me. We had a good qualifying session but we had been struggling a little over the weekend. Today was really very bad. I had a little crash in the morning, and in the race I had a crash at the same corner -Turn 3- immediately. It was unfortunate because there were a lot of riders and we were overtaking each other. I feel like somebody pushed me a little on that corner, but with this low grip level it is very easy to crash. I felt like somebody kicked me from behind and I lost the bike immediately. I tried to pick it up, but then it was really difficult to ride alone because I didn't know where the limit was. It was really hard, and I basically just put in some laps to finish the race, thinking that maybe we would get some points if any riders crashed. It didn't happen, we finished seventeenth, and towards the end of the race I had a few moments where I lost the front or the rear -but it doesn't matter. We just have to forget this race and go to Aragon positively. I know we can get a good result, but today was definitely not our day."
MICHELIN POWERS MARQUEZ TO VICTORY AT A WET MISANO
MICHELIN Power Rain tyres were used to their full potential at today’s Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini from Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli as Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) splashed to MotoGP™ victory in challenging conditions.
Heavy rain leading up to the start of the 28-lap race meant the 4,226m Italian circuit was very wet as the riders lined-up for the start with Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) sitting on pole. All racers chose the soft option front and rear MICHELIN Power Rain tyres, which signalled the first time all riders had made the same choice for a race since Michelin returned to MotoGP last season. First off the line was Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati team) and he pushed hard to open a gap at the front as his tyres gave him the confidence in the wet. Unfortunately, the atrocious conditions caught out Lorenzo on lap-seven and he crashed. The Spaniard’s demise handed the lead to Danilo Petrucci (OCTO Pramac Racing), with Marquez just behind him and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) also in close attendance. From lap-20 onwards Petrucci and Marquez continuously set the fastest laps as they pulled away at the front, demonstrating the consistency and durability of the wet tyres as the race wore on. Marquez made the defining move of the race on the penultimate-lap as he passed Petrucci and immediately pulled a gap between the two – on his way to setting the fastest lap of the race – before taking the chequered flag for his fourth win of the season, a result which also moves him to the top of the championship standings. Petrucci crossed the line in second and took the prize of First Independent Rider, whilst previous championship leader Dovizioso was third.
Despite the awful weather a crowd of 96,324 was reported to have braved the downpour and gathered around the trackside. They were not disappointed as the 23-strong field pushed to the limits in the tricky and demanding conditions, each one of them putting total faith in their Michelin tyres as the touched speeds of more than 280 Km/h on a very wet track. With battles between themselves and the weather, the action went all the way through the field, Viñales held off a charging Michele Pirro (Ducati Team) to take fourth, Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was sixth with Scott Redding (OCTO Pramac Ducati) in seventh. Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR), Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Team) rounded out the top-ten by coming eighth, ninth and tenth respectively.
Michelin’s next outing will be the final European race before the three fly-away races, as MotoGP heads to Aragon in Spain for round 14 of the championship on Sunday 24th September with the title race still very much in the balance.
Marc Marquez – Repsol Honda Team:
“At the start of the weekend in the dry conditions it was difficult to choose the correct rear tyre, because the performance was very similar from all three and they were all working really good. On Sunday though everything changed and we had rain conditions and I was honestly quite scared after watching the Moto3™ and Moto2™ races – where there were many crashes – and because the track was slippery, but the Michelin tyres worked really good, especially in the braking points. It was very difficult, but I always felt like I had it under control and the tyres gave me plenty of warning. I’m very happy because these 25-points will be good for the future.”
Nicolas Goubert – Deputy Director, Technical Director and Supervisor of the MotoGP Programme:
“The weather here at Misano has been the biggest thing we have had to contend with all weekend. We came here with the tyres we had used successful at the test here a couple of weeks ago, but due to poor track conditions on the first two-days the riders couldn’t quite match the performance they had at the test. We were pleased with how the tyres worked despite the circumstances and all riders had a clear strategy for race day. That all changed though as it rained hard today, so the rain tyres came in to play. We were fortunate that all riders had a wet warm-up session this morning, as they could get some data and set-up info for the race, so they were prepared at the start. It was quite cool, as well as very wet, so the obvious choice was the soft wet pairing, which everyone went with. The conditions were very difficult for all concerned and it was a testament to the riders and the grip provided by our tyres that they could produce such an enthralling race. Seeing the fastest lap of the race set many times as the race ended and finally beaten on the last lap again provides further validation of the durability that we are striving for with all our tyres, wet or dry. We now move on to Aragon for what will be another challenge and one that we will take on with all the commitment we have shown all season, no matter what lies ahead.”