2019 Brno MotoGP Race Result: More Weather Drama Than Actual Drama

Remember the wet Saturday that didn’t matter because the forecast promised a gloriously sunny Sunday? Weather apps started trembling when umbrellas opened just as the intermediate class podium was popping cava bottles. The rain fell just enough to tease the riders and half the track so after a half hour delay of safety car drift action, the one-lap-shortened race got underway. Dark clouds were still spectating but the only liquid to hit the surface was the metaphorical tears of Marc Marquez’s rivals as the world champion crossed the line for his 50th premier class victory. It seemed close for a while but then the Spaniard pulled an Alex Marquez and gone he was. Andrea Dovizioso made a return to the podium on an emotional weekend for Ducati and was joined by a delighted Jack Miller, who grabbed third place through nothing but sheer speed.

Marquez was in control from the start, launching off the line with Dovizioso in hot pursuit ahead of Miller and Rins, while front row starter Johann Zarco instantly left the top ten like he was never there. Valentino Rossi was the top Yamaha off the line and in fifth position by the end of lap one, while Fabio Quartararo kept steady in tenth but Maverick Vinales had a nightmare start and had to recover from 15th after the first couple of turns.

It was a steady first few laps as riders got to grips with the conditions but Marquez, Dovizioso, Miller and Rins were already extending one second’s gap to the chasers led by Pol Espargaro and Rossi by lap three. Another second back was a sizable group including Cal Crutchlow, Danilo Petrucci and Quartararo but the LCR rider seemed to have more speed at this stage and quickly caught up with the duo ahead. Meanwhile, Vinales was making no progress and struggling to get past Zarco.

Back at the front, Rins stalked the Ducatis mainly in turn three, pulling a successful move on Miller but Dovizioso proved a bigger challenge. The four-man band was posting similar lap times at the front and by the time Rossi and Crutchlow got past the KTM of Espargaro, the gap to the leaders was standing at over three seconds. The lead four were the only men on track dipping into the 1:56s and their advantage continued to grow. Crutchlow picked up the chase from Rossi in turn three of lap eight but was left with four seconds to recover to have a shot at the podium.

As the race hit the halfway mark, nothing changed at the front, Marquez ahead of Dovizioso and Rins, with Miller starting to drop a tenth here and a tenth there. The Pramac rider was losing touch with the podium but was in no real danger from behind, pal Crutchlow the next man four seconds down the road, another second ahead of Rossi and with significant gaps to Quartararo, Pol Espargaro and Petrucci.

Another lap gone and another victim for Marquez, Rins also appearing to struggle a touch and Dovizioso being put to the test next. Despite relying on his precious right knee to keep him upright – well, just upright enough – at turn ten, Marquez still extended his advantage to nine tenths of a second by the end of that lap. Dovizioso definitively failed the world champion’s test with six laps to go, when the gap ticked over the two seconds mark and second place didn’t look secure either, as the Italian was dropping into Rins’s less aerodynamic claws. That, however, motivated Miller to get ever nearer and Rins’ focus quickly turned from attack to defence mode. Miller first showed a wheel with two laps to go and after a failed first attempt, the Ducati found the inside line at turn five and claimed the final podium spot. Rins was instantly distanced and limped his way home while managing the 1.5 seconds gap to Crutchlow behind.

Marquez started the final lap three and a half seconds ahead and took the checkered flag as alone as he was for the latter part of the race. Dovizioso settled for second, with a jubilant Miller taking a well-deserved and fought out third place. Rins had to make do with fourth, holding off Crutchlow in fifth, with Rossi taking a lonely sixth place. Quartararo, Petrucci, Takaaki Nakagami and Vinales completed the top ten positions.

Another masterful display from another Marquez and the eldest sets off to Austria with a 63 points advantage in the world championship. Dovizioso continues to be the closest challenger, with Petrucci trailing the leader by 81 points. Rins is the only other rider with a tally within 100 points of the championship leader.

Results:

Pos. Num. Rider Bike Gap
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 39'24.430
2 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati +2.452
3 43 Jack MILLER Ducati +3.497
4 42 Alex RINS Suzuki +4.858
5 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda +6.007
6 46 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha +9.083
7 20 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha +12.092
8 9 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati +13.976
9 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda +15.724
10 12 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha +16.558
11 44 Pol ESPARGARO KTM +18.234
12 63 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati +19.738
13 88 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM +22.539
14 5 Johann ZARCO KTM +30.459
15 6 Stefan BRADL Honda +30.500
16 53 Tito RABAT Ducati +30.755
17 29 Andrea IANNONE Aprilia +37.170
18 41 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia +37.343
19 17 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati +44.296
20 50 Sylvain GUINTOLI Suzuki +48.938
    Not Classified    
  55 Hafizh SYAHRIN KTM 14 Laps
  21 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 0 Lap
  36 Joan MIR Suzuki 0 Lap
Round Number: 
10
2019
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Comments

Thank you Michelin! Cannot wait for the next exciting 20 lap procession.

Thrilling! 

I'm pretty sure the lack of drama does not lie at the feet of Michelin.  Let's face it that fault rests with MM, how dare he lift himself to that position? The patently obvious "fault" however, is that it is up to the others to catch up.  If you want to both blame and credit Michelin for creating drama they would probalby have to deliberately introduce random duds into the tyre selection.

Nice to see Jack manage his tyres well enough to be there in case MM or AD biffed it.

 

Pretty straightforward: check out the fast lap sequence 2018 v. 2019 .. Enlightening! 

In 2018 the fsatest lap was on lap 21! Both Dovi and Lorenzo pulled a 1'56.6

This year the fastest lap happened ... On lap 3! Rins, a 1'56.9

I can go on and give timings and all other numbers that prove my point. .. So yes! Thank you Michelin! 

over my head mate, how does the fastest lap from last year bear any influence on the end result from this year, and the the way the race was won?  Who won last year? Why is MM's win this year somehow Michelin's fault?  I think if you are going to claim that your numbers prove your point you might (just might) have to tell us what assumptions you are working with becuase at the moment they totally escape me.  That is not too hard becuase I'm probably a bit slow but I'm thinking there are potentialy a few other readers wondering the same thing so please, humour me, elaborate.....

In a nutshell writing on my smartphone: that never-ending procession we saw yesterday is due to the fact that everybody was so desperate to save the tires (and anyway they did not) that basically we could not have a proper race and battle. I do understand that Marquez is the best but I don't think that all the others behind him have forgotten how to race. Not only were they slower than last year  - though the race was 2 laps shorter - but in that procession nobody was able to up the pace to catch the rider in front. 

I'm not even talking about the two yamaha unable to overtake a KTM on the straight. No, that nightmare is another story. 

I'm saying that right now in some races the Michelin are a handicap that affects too much the race.  

Dovi won last year in Brno. This year he could not even get near MM!  So : either Dovi lost it and cannot ride, or. . Maybe, just maybe, the engineers in ducati box have problems sorting out those tires

 

"I do understand that Marquez is the best but I don't think that all the others behind him have forgotten how to race."

They haven't but even with concrete tyres that would last the whole race aka the 800cc era if the fastest rider gets out in front then it is all over rover.  MM himself said that in certain tracks this is what his strategy will be.  Their goal is to first and foremost WIN, if that doesn't entertain us then blaming one this on tyres seems a tad simplistic.  Where were the other Hondas on Sunday - they had access to the same tyres? It really is down to MM at the moment and part of that is not just his skill on the Honda but also how he manages the tyres, the whole package.  Again, you could change this by giving him a random selection of dud tyres but I think the other riders would suggest it is up to them to lift themselves and their bike/tyre combinations.

Anyway, that race is done and dusted, onto testing and perhaps a glimmer of hope from.... anyone?

Don't you see that those behind MM were slower than last year? Namely the Ducati ... How come last year they could do the fastest lap which was 0.3 faster than this year's fastest lap at the end of the race when yesterday the fastest lap was done at the beginning? By your reasoning Dovi has lost the ability to be as fast as last year.... Really?

And as for Crutchow: check out where he started and lap times. If he had better qualified he would have been on the podium. 

 

Glad they delayed the start, the conditions were good. Enjoyed Crafar's BMW laps to see the track condition. A bit bumpy in some spots but not bad.

Vinales' start was quite a step back. Oof. More the conditions and a spinning Yamaha than him, but his compatriots didn't Zarco that badly.

The Ducati is pumping too much again on drive out, they had that sorted last year. Thought and hoped that Rins was going to have tires in better shape than his rivals nearing the end to reel in and stuff Dovi. Nope, and Jack motored by. Good ride from AD04. Not fantastic, but good. Sorry of course for Mir. He needs seat time like a sprouting plant needs sun and water.

This Suzuki handles SO well! Best on the grid. Watched closely as per usual the drag races - it isn't getting embarrassed, but it needs more grunt to excell at all sorts of tracks given the huge Honda and Ducati power. It is an amazing bike though! An anti-Duc, doing things as conventionally as possible. Tomorrow they debut a new motor, eagerly awaited.

The KTM w Pol is looking better! But it has to get pitched into corners too loosley and aggressively, which isn't as sustainable consistently w/o leaving chasers a line through once in a while. Not easy enough on tires either. But for most of the race Orange looked like the genuine article. Good for KTM!

Cal's bike looked like shite under him. His lap times were fine, but his Honda moved around WAY too much. The early laps w Nakagami in close tow were exciting. Bradl not so much this go around. Rough unweildy cranky beast, that.

Disappointment award goes to Yamaha, and Vinales. Keep your head and heart in it buddy. Ride of the day, aside from you know who93, Jack Miller. Nice run. Close 2nd to Rins, kept it together finally, and displayed clinical aggression when called for. On a track w a horsepower hill it is hard to do what he accomplished today.

Q: Why can't Dovi challenge Marc this year?
A: He lost his horsepower advantage w the fantastic new Honda engine. AD04 says he was "on the limit, and Marc was too" which is not accurate. Marc was on Dovi's limit, but sitting with another half second in his bag.

Cheers!

Most races aren't like this now and are closer, but with MM always having that bit extra.

The answer is amazingly simple. The younger riders need to be as good as or better than he is. VR had a golden run in the noughties. It faltered when Stoner and Lorenzo came along. The same will happen to MM. He looks invincible now, and will be this year again, but its not forever. The last time he was seriously challenged was by an already aging VR four years ago (I don't remember many battles with the eventual champ JL). What we need now is the younger guys like Rins and FQ to get better and step up. The challenge will come from the new generation, not Dovi, VR, or JL. Vinales, is very inconsistent, if he could overcome that he may be the man.

Until then, MM owns this as he proved yet again with an amazing qualifying, and doing only whats needed (as ever) to win.

On a lighter note, the entertaining thing for fans will be, that MM, when that serious challenger comes, will fight very dirty with the one who gets close (not trying to be controversial here - he will, he has form).

Fight dirty, that is. And I’m sure you’re right in every sense, including the entertainment value. Personally I think it’s only one or two years away but that may be wishful thinking; it could be about to get worse (or better, depending on your perspective). The clue is in David’s piece, that Yamaha lost their way in 2006, thus ending Rossi’s absolute dominance. Honda, on the other hand, seem to have found the true path and god forbid they get better still.

Regarding the race itself, pretty boring but at least it’s rare that we have that these days. Thankfully it was a cracking day at Thruxton so for those with access to BSB, there was more than adequate compensation.

^ Agreed!

Peter Hickman and the BMW - how great is this combo to watch?!

The kid is on an upwards stride. Enjoying the bike too, in WSBK they look to be sorting the package (nice chassis!!) on a Superstock to 2020 rules engine for now. Watch out for next year, the BM will be joining the pointy end.

Hickman is running the Triumph 675R wonderfully in Supersport too. Anyone notice that last week a limited run was announced of 2020 Daytona 765R's? Yep, they are back. Evolution of (fantastic) 675R, added (not so compelling to me) electronics suite befitting a Superbike, up AND down quickshifter (cool!) plus some nice wee improvements.

Is there hope for the Supersport class on the horizon?

For sure it was a lacklustre weekend at BRNO. We can't expect a Laguna 2008, PI 2009, a Motegi 2017 or a Mugello 2019 week in and week out. Marc is smashing the record book by leaps and bounds. In defense of Dovi, the bloke is an absolute machine. When last did he NOT start a race in GP since he entered the circus? Never is my guess. That is a stat in its own right. That Honda blasts off the corner better than the Ducati, better mechanical grip. Marc used it magestically. Dovi and Jack rode their guts out to stave off Alex Rins.