In a repeat to the start of last season’s campaign, Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) won the opening round of the 2019 MotoGPTM World Championship at...
Marc Márquez (Repsol Honda Team/Michelin) followed up his domination of free practice for the Gran Premio Motul de la República Argentina with an assertive win on race day. The Spaniard was joined on the podium of the 2019 MotoGPTM World Championship’s second round by Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP/Michelin) and Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati/Michelin).
With the track temperature standing at40°C, Márquez started the race from pole position on hard- and soft-compound MICHELIN Power Slicks front and rear. After holding his lead at lights out, he immediately set a blistering pace and posted his fastest lap of the afternoon second time around. His speed and consistency earned him a safety margin of eight seconds by Lap 10 and he went on to take the chequered flag almost 10 seconds clear of Rossi.
Dovizioso, who opted for the same tyre pairing as Márquez, and Rossi, who chose a medium rear, started from third and fourth on the grid but soon found themselves battling for second place. Dovizioso held the position for the first eight laps until his compatriot found a way past on Lap 9. The Ducati star then recovered second place on Lap 14, but the nine-time world champion tucked in behind and succeeded in out-braking his rival on the last lap to clinch second place and his first podium finish in nine races.
The best-placed independent team rider was Jack Miller (Pramac Racing/Michelin) who finished fourth overall, ahead of Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR/Michelin) who fought his way to fifth spot from 16
Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati/Michelin), Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda/Michelin), the day’s best rookie Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT/Michelin), Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini/Michelin) and Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing/Michelin) rounded out the top 10 which featured six different makes.
Five of the six tyre specifications provided by Michelin for the South American fixture were used and the combination of their consistency and grip notably allowed Márquez to complete more than half of the 25 laps in under 1m40s.
The Spaniard’s 45
Next round: Red Bull Grand Prix of The Americas, Austin, Texas, USA (April 12-14).