Nine time World Champion Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) rode a superb race in front of his home crowd at Misano on Sunday taking his first victory since Assen 2013. Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa completed the podium.
35-year-old Rossi took the lead early in the race getting in front of pole man Lorenzo and then asserting his authority in an early battle with Marquez.
The Repsol Honda rider lost the front at T4 on lap 10 and although the crash was at a slow corner, the engine stopped and by the time he got it restarted he was almost a full lap behind. Nothing daunted, he pressed on, finally claiming a single point when he gained 15th place on the final lap.
From that point the Doctor was unstoppable, building a gap of over two seconds to his chasing team-mate, taking command of the race to the finish line.
Valentino Rossi: “I’m very happy for sure because it’s very special to win here in Misano in front of all the crowd and my family and friends. I’m very proud. I made it five years after the last time here, in the same way, fighting with Jorge. During the practice it looked like our Yamaha worked very well so we had a small advantage. I tried to the maximum and so I knew we could fight for victory, I knew for sure I would have to battle with Dani and Jorge and Marc. I tried to push from the start and at the end it was great to have the win more than one year later from my last. I always work hard and never give up and trust that days like this can happen. I have to say thank you to Yamaha, to all my team, to all my friends and all the crowd who support me, especially here in Misano.”
Lorenzo rode with determination to take another podium result and finished in second place for the fourth successive race.
Coming from fifth on the grid, Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) took his ninth podium finish of the season in third place, crossing the line 1.234s ahead of the hard working Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team).
Jorge Lorenzo: “It’s been a tough race for me because we finally took a risk with the harder tyre. I’m happy with another podium but a bit disappointed because we thought we could fight for the victory. Right at the beginning, despite a good start I felt the front tyre didn’t give me the confidence to lean and also on braking. In Brno we risked also changing the tyre and the result was good but here we struggled much more. For me it was impossible to get the victory. Even if I tried to push at the maximum, when I saw Marc crash, I knew Valentino had a better pace today. Valentino had a perfect weekend at home and he deserved the win, it’s unbelievable at the age of 35!”
Dani Pedrosa: “Today’s race was a very difficult one, and it was hard to do any more. Marc attempted to keep up with Valentino and Jorge but eventually he crashed trying – they were very strong here. This race also saw many problems for us with the front and rear, so there was little that we could do. From the opening laps I lost a lot of time in traffic, and that affected my entire race. I tried to do the best I could and still had difficulty passing Dovizioso, because he also lapped very quickly; eventually we were going as fast as Valentino and Jorge. Now we have to take the positives from this weekend and hope that for the next race at Aragon, which is a track that I like, we have a better feeling and a better race.”
It was another good ride for Dovizioso in front of the home crowd as he got the Ducati across the finish line 5.5s behind winner Rossi. Likewise, Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) impressed in fifth place with another solid result.
Rookie Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3) rode well again to secure sixth place, 4.1s ahead of his team-mate Bradley Smith.
Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini), Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team) and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing) completed the top ten.
Marc Marquez: “I’m happy with how today went, despite the crash due to my first mistake of the season, because yesterday I did not think that I would be capable of sticking with Valentino and Jorge. They had a little bit more pace, but today we were able to get fairly close to them. I saw the possibility of fighting with Valentino for the victory, but that was not possible in the end because of the mistake; I was riding over the inside of the rumble strip and that meant that I lost the front. Luckily I was able to rejoin the race, continue with a good pace and score a point that could always come in handy in the future.”
Mike Di Meglio (Avintia Racing) was an early crasher, as was Danilo Petrucci (Octo IodaRacing Team). Di Meglio suffered a displaced fracture of the fourth and fifth metacarpus of his left hand and will require surgery. Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP) also fell out of the top ten. Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing) crashed on the final lap. All the riders other than Di Meglio were not injured.
1. Valentino Rossi ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 44m 14.586s
2. Jorge Lorenzo ESP Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 44m 16.164s
3. Dani Pedrosa ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 44m 18.862s
4. Andrea Dovizioso ITA Ducati Team (Desmosedici) 44m 20.096s
5. Andrea Iannone ITA Pramac Racing (Desmosedici) 44m 26.357s
6. Pol Espargaro ESP Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1)* 44m 33.585s
7. Bradley Smith GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1) 44m 37.686s
8. Alvaro Bautista ESP Go&Fun Honda Gresini (RC213V) 44m 51.044s
9. Cal Crutchlow GBR Ducati Team (Desmosedici) 44m 53.066s
10. Yonny Hernandez COL Pramac Racing (Desmosedici) 45m 0.464s
11. Karel Abraham CZE Cardion AB Motoracing (RCV1000R) 45m 9.351s
12. Hiroshi Aoyama JPN Drive M7 Aspar (RCV1000R) 45m 11.361s
13. Scott Redding GBR Go&Fun Honda Gresini (RCV1000R)* 45m 17.320s
14. Alex De Angelis RSM NGM Forward Racing (Forward Yamaha) 45m 28.132s
15. Marc Marquez ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 45m 30.534s
16. Leon Camier GBR Drive M7 Aspar (RCV1000R) 45m 35.346s
17. Michael Laverty GBR Paul Bird Motorsport (PBM-ART) 45m 41.008s
18. Broc Parkes AUS Paul Bird Motorsport (PBM-ART)* +1 lap
19. Hector Barbera ESP Avintia Racing (Avintia) +1 lap
Aleix Espargaro ESP NGM Forward Racing (Forward Yamaha) DNF
Stefan Bradl GER LCR Honda MotoGP (RC213V) DNF
Danilo Petrucci ITA IodaRacing Project (ART) DNF
Mike Di Meglio FRA Avintia Racing (Avintia)* DNF
1 Marc Marquez Repsol Honda Team 289
2 Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda Team 215
3 Valentino Rossi Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 214
4 Jorge Lorenzo Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 177
5 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati Team 142
6 Pol Espargaro Monster Yamaha Tech 3 98
7 Andrea Iannone Pramac Racing 92
8 Aleix Espargaro NGM Forward Racing 92
9 Stefan Bradl LCR Honda MotoGP 74
10 Bradley Smith Monster Yamaha Tech 3 74
11 Alvaro Bautista GO&FUN Gresini Honda 64
12 Scott Redding GO&FUN Honda Gresini 54
13 Cal Crutchlow Ducati Team 47
14 Hiroshi Aoyama Drive M7 Aspar 43
15 Yonny Hernandez Emergy T.I. Pramac Racing 38
16 Karel Abraham Cardion AB Motoracing 33
17 Nicky Hayden Drive M7 Aspar 29
18 Colin Edwards NGM Forward Racing 11
19 Michele Pirro Ducati Team 11
20 Broc Parkes Paul Bird Motorsport 7
21 Danilo Petrucci IodaRacing Project 4
22 Mike di Meglio Avintia Racing 4
23 Alex de Angelis NGM Forward Racing 3
24 Michael Laverty Paul Bird Motorsport 2
25 Hector Barbera Avintia Racing 2
26 Leon Camier Drive M7 Aspar 1
Moto3 – Miller finishes third in Misano
Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Ajo) managed to hold on to a podium third in Round 13 of the Moto3 World Championship, the GP of San Marino on Sunday at the Misano circuit. The Australian followed Alex Rins and Alex Marquez across the line to claim the final podium place and to stay nine points ahead in the title fight.
Miller started from pole, his seventh of the season and got away very well at the start just in front of Husqvarna rider Niklas Ajo. But as early as the second lap he was challenged hard by the Rins, Marquez duo and these three riders dominated the rest of the race. With three laps to go Miller was trailing the two front riders by about three seconds and was experiencing difficulties due to tire wear. With a comfortable gap to the fourth place behind him, he decided to settle for third.
Miller admitted he had had a ‘big moment’ in the early part of the race coming out of the third corner and said on balance he was happy to finish in third and hold on to the lead going into the next round in Aragon Spain, in two weeks time.
Two other KTM riders, Isaac Vinales of Spain and the talented young Italian Enea Bastianini rounded off the top five. Miller’s factory team-mate Karel Hanika crashed out in Lap 16 of the 23-lap race after running in a solid mid field position from the start of the race.
Jack Miller: “I’m happy to have been able to get on the podium, especially after the little mistake I made on the fourth lap. I was having a good race, I felt comfortable and luckily I was able to stay on the bike. When Efren and Isaac passed me, I had to work very hard to reduce the small advantage that they had. I went step-by-step, but it was not enough to get the win. I pushed hard and with five laps to go I tried to keep up the pace, but the tires were shot by then. We have to be satisfied with the final result of this race.”
Miller, who has led the chase for the title since the opening GP must now concentrate on trying to extend his points lead in the remaining rounds as the competition continues to tighten in what is one of the hardest fought class in the world championship.
16-year-old Remy Gardner, son of 1987 500cc world champion Wayne Gardner, was making his grand prix debut as a replacement for the injured Luca Grunwald at the Kiefer team. He finished in 27th place.
1. Alex Rins SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (Honda) 39m 50.694s
2. Alex Marquez SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (Honda) 39m 50.736s
3. Jack Miller AUS Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 39m 54.097s
4. Isaac Viñales SPA Calvo Team (KTM) 39m 55.153s
5. Enea Bastianini ITA Junior Team GO&FUN Moto3 (KTM) 39m 55.179s
6. Brad Binder RSA Ambrogio Racing (Mahindra) 39m 55.365s
7. Alexis Masbou FRA Ongetta-Rivacold (Honda) 40m 0.100s
8. Andrea Migno ITA Mahindra Racing (Mahindra) 40m 0.237s
9. Juanfran Guevara SPA Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3 (Kalex-KTM) 40m 0.400s
10. Efren Vazquez SPA SaxoPrint-RTG (Honda) 40m 0.737s
1 Jack MILLER KTM 195
2 Alex MARQUEZ Honda 186 -9
3 Alex RINS Honda 175 -20
4 Efren VAZQUEZ Honda 151 -44
5 Romano FENATI KTM 140 -55
6 Alexis MASBOU Honda 134 -61
7 Isaac VIÑALES KTM 112 -83
8 Enea BASTIANINI KTM 98 -97
9 Miguel OLIVEIRA Mahindra 84 -111
10 Brad BINDER Mahindra 77 -118