MotoGP riders explain themselves after the 2020 Valencia Grand Prix
The MotoGP 2020 titles of Joan Mir and the Suzuki team, the dantesque final between Morbidelli and Miller, the three KTMs in the Top6, the falls of Quartararo and Zarco, etc. Site reviews the highlights of the Valencia GP through the drivers’ statements… and some notes.
1st: Franco Morbidelli, Yamaha n ° 21 (P1 in qualifying)
"It was the best win of the year, maybe even the best of my career! It was a complicated race: I felt we had good potential all weekend, but we opted for the front tire was hard in the race and had to change my riding style a bit. I couldn’t get away from Jack [Miller] the way I would have liked, no matter how hard I tried, and I knew it would be. a tough competitor if he came close to me. You had to outdo yourself in the last lap and that’s what we both did. We had a very nice and clean battle. I always liked to fight against Jack because he’s tough but clean in his fights, and he was strong today, congratulations to him. I’m very happy to win today, I also have to thank the team. I also want to congratulate Joan [Mir] for his title this year: he was very strong ".
MNC Note: Pole position Saturday, victory Sunday … Franco had an almost perfect weekend since it was Jack Miller who slammed the fastest lap of the race (a quarter of a second from Marquez’s record). The main thing, however, was to get ahead of your only opponent under the checkered flag: after their sublime last lap, the two rivals were only 93 thousandths of a second apart … Nice, the little dedication to Marc Marquez.
There is still one race to go so the time has not yet taken stock. However, the Italian-Brazilian rider can be proud: eclipsed by our "Fabio-lous" rookie last year and by the same tasty "20 French" at the start of the season, the Italian returns to equality of victories … and pass in front of the provisional! Whatever the outcome of the race next Sunday in Portimao, the Yamaha Petronas SRT team has already won: with six (or seven?) Successes, it will remain the most victorious of this strange 2020 season.
2nd: Jack Miller, Ducati n ° 43 (P2 in qualifying)
"I’m very happy, I had fun from the first lap. It’s one of the best races of my life … Too bad because by overtaking Morbidelli, I thought I could win. But you can only be happy to finish a race with a good duel. A special thank you to my team who worked very well ".
MNC Note: Jack Miller has tried everything … Starting by distinguishing himself from most of his opponents by putting on a medium rather than a hard front tire. His Machiavellian plan to "overtake Franky in the straight one lap from the end, and voila!" did not work. He can nevertheless be delighted to be the first Ducati rider to cross the finish line, almost 20 seconds before the pre-retired Andrea Dovizioso. ?…
For "Jackass", a first dry victory in MotoGP this Sunday would certainly have become the most beautiful race of his life. Despite this formidable duel – lost – and this new 2nd place in Valence – after that in "Styria" this summer – his victory in the wet at Assen in 2016 or his podium at Phillip Island last year remain for the Australian of best experiences…
3rd: Pol Espargaro, KTM n ° 44 (P5 in qualifying)
"It was fantastic. I’m super happy. We weren’t expecting a podium this weekend. We thought we deserved it, but Nakagami was putting a lot of pressure on me before he fell. We were great from start to finish. the end and I couldn’t have had a better pace. I didn’t make any mistakes. We’re on the podium again, the fifth of the season. It’s amazing ".
MNC Note: Author of a second pole and a new third place this season at the European GP (last weekend already in Valencia …), the No. 44 KTM thought to fight more this weekend against opponents better tuned machines. In fact, Pol was classified "only" fifth in qualifying on Saturday … The next day he was never able to worry the two leaders, Morbielli and Miller, "who else?"
P.Espargaro was also slower than Nakagami, but unlike the Japanese, he was able to identify and respect the limits of his machine to finish! Would RC16 be more considerate than RCV? Next Sunday precisely, "Polyccio" will compete in its last race for KTM before joining the Honda Repsol team this winter … and Marc Marquez? Not 100% sure, or even 93% sure: the use of a bone graft to consolidate his humerus could further delay the return of the former champion.
4th: Alex Rins, Suzuki n ° 42 (P14 in qualifying)
“I didn’t manage to get the title in the end, but I’m so happy for Joan and the whole Suzuki team! It’s amazing that he won the championship in his second year, and the whole team has worked so hard to get there. So it’s an amazing feeling even for me. Today Franco had a really strong pace and I was only able to finish 4th. however, I’m still struggling to get second place in the championship, so I’m happy with the result. I hope to end the season in style when we are in Portimao! "
MNC Note: Suzuki leader at the start of the season, Rins was finally beaten by his slightly younger and less experienced teammate: Joan Mir, who turned 23 on September 1, was playing his second season in the premier class. Alex will be 25 years old on December 5 and rode an additional year in MotoGP, still at Suzuki.
There are many consolations for n ° 42: in addition to being in the front row to witness the coronation of a Suzuki driver in Grand Prix, 20 years after Roberts Jr, Rins participated in the success of the team, which was sure to finish at the top of "his" world ranking. Personally, he can still win the silver medal in Portimao provided he scores 4 more points than Morbidelli on Sunday … and improves his place on the grid the day before !
5th: Brad Binder, KTM n ° 33 (P9 in qualifying)
“It was a good race for us. I didn’t get the best of the starts but I managed to find a good pace, pass a few guys and make my way through. I gave the best of myself today and unfortunately it wasn’t enough to get us to the podium. Overall I’m happy with the way we have progressed this weekend, from Friday to racing. We still have a lot to learn, but we are already looking forward to being in Portimao. Thank you to the team and everyone for their hard work. We will attack again next week "
MNC Note: Winner in the Czech Republic on August 9, then 4th the following weekend in Austria, Brad Binder climbed into the World Top 5 for the third time yesterday in Valencia. The 11 points that he amasses as a result allow him to distance his main rival in the championship, Alex Marquez, who is also aiming for the honorary title of "rookie of the year": a gap of 20 points now separates them…
Speaking of rookie, the third of this strange 2020 season, Iker Lecuona, was once again deprived of competition … Still positive for Covid-19, the Spanish n ° 27 had to follow on television the magnificent performance of his teammate at Tech 3: Miguel Oliveira who posted the third KTM in the Top 6! Next weekend, the Portuguese n ° 88 will drive at home … but not in front of his own, alas.
7th and world champion: Joan Mir, Suzuki n ° 36 (P12 in qualifying)
“World champion? Sounds really great! It’s really hard to find the words right now, but I have to say thank you to so many people: to Suzuki for this opportunity, I am so happy to give them a title! To be the one who brings them a new crown 20 years later is an incredible feeling and a true honor. The whole team has done an incredible job, and I’m absolutely delighted with this championship victory. I’ve come a long way, since the child who ran out of money to run: my family should be thanked. I worked really hard to get to the top and this reward is incredible. Today’s race was not easy, but I got the result I needed and I hope to enjoy a nice conclusion in Portimao. It’s time to celebrate, but we have to do it responsibly ".
MNC Note: Five small seasons. That’s all it took for Joan Mir to become MotoGP champion! Arrived in 2016 in the Leopard team of Moto3 on KTM (three podiums including one victory), titled the following year in the same team but on Honda (10 victories!), Joan Mir only rode one year – on the three planned – in Moto2 at Marc VDS (seven Top5 including four podiums), before joining the Suzuki factory team in the premier class…
Twelfth in the MotoGP championship last year, the n ° 36 became the new "number one" yesterday. Fourth Spanish champion in the queen category after Criville (1999), Lorenzo (2010, 2012, 2015) and Marquez (2013, 14, 16, 17, 18, 19!), Will Joan carry the n ° 1 plate in race, like Alex or Jorge? Marc himself, has never left his n ° 93. The six-time MotoGP champion also congratulated his successor. Mir wished him in return a speedy and complete recovery: it would be good indeed, that the two champions face each other in good shape, during a normal season….
Fall: Johann Zarco, Ducati n ° 5 (P4 in qualifying)
“An unfortunate race today with this crash in the first corner after a few laps. I couldn’t have had the chance to get a good result. I will analyze this error to understand even more things. next in Portimao! Congratulations to Joan Mir! We weren’t expecting you so soon and you are world champion! Well done!.
MNC Note: A week ago after the European Grand Prix, Johann Zarco regretted his lack of aggressiveness at the end of the race, which had earned him the loss of a few places … Yesterday afternoon, the n ° 5 was therefore more aggressive with his opponents (good!), but a little too much with his front tire (ah, less good).
Dispossessed of his sixth place at the very end of the 5th lap by Alex Rins, our two-time Moto2 champion took advantage of his better exit from the corner to retaliate in the straight line, then adopted a defensive trajectory in the first corner of the 6th lap. Slightly shifted inward at the start of the curve, the n ° 5 has lost the front edge. And with him, all hope of entering the final world Top 10.
Fall: Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha n ° 20 (P11 in qualifying)
“Unfortunately, there was nothing I could do today to prolong the championship fight until the final. We just didn’t have the pace. I was pushing harder today. 10th place was maybe. be possible today, but wanted more than that and made those mistakes. We’ve had some good times this year and we have strengths for the future, but at this moment it’s hard to accept that our loss this year. It is true that we could have done better, but it is easy to say now. Joan [Mir] has been very strong as well and very consistent, so he deserves this title and I give him my congratulations. I hope we can end this season satisfactorily in Portimao ".
MNC Note: This is the end of the title hopes for Fabio Quartararo …. in 2020, with the remarkable satellite team SRT Petronas, second in the team standings! In 2021, the "Fabio-lous" French rider will replace Valentino Rossi within the Yamaha factory team who wants and must react: the valve glitches have earned the Iwata firm a penalty of 50 points, thus the constructor’s title. !
With seven victories in thirteen races (three for n ° 20, as many for n ° 21 now, only one for n ° 12 and zero for n ° 46), the M1 is nevertheless the most efficient machine this season. The GSX-RR (the only other machine to use an in-line 4-cylinder) and the Desmosedici (feared for its powerful V4 and renowned for its avant-garde) are tied: 201 points and two wins each. The final in Portimao will decide between them. But who knows, maybe an M1 will win an eighth time ?!
MotoGP results of the 2020 Valencia GP
MotoGP provisional classification after Valencia
- Joan MIR Suzuki SPA 171 points
- Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha ITA 142 points
- Alex RINS Suzuki SPA 138 points
- Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha SPA 127 points
- Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha FRA 125 points
- Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati ITA 125 points
- Pol ESPARGARO KTM SPA 122 points
- Jack MILLER Ducati AUS 112 points
- Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda JPN 105 points
- Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM POR 100 points
- Brad BINDER KTM RSA 87 points
- Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati ITA 78 points
- Johann ZARCO Ducati FRA 71 points
- Alex MARQUEZ Honda SPA 67 points
- Valentino ROSSI Yamaha ITA 62 points
- Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati ITA 47 points
- Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia SPA 34 points
- Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda GBR 29 points
- Iker LECUONA KTM SPA 27 points
- Stefan BRADL Honda GER 18 points
- Bradley SMITH Aprilia GBR 12 points
- Tito RABAT Ducati SPA 10 points
- Michele PIRRO Ducati ITA 4 points
- Lorenzo SAVADORI Aprilia ITA
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