MotoGP™: Quartararo’s Germany tire gamble pays dividends!
Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) claimed his second MotoGPTM victory in a row when the 2022 World Championship traveled to the Sachsenring for...
Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) returned to his winning ways with victory at the Motul TT Assen, Round 11 of the 2022 MotoGPTM World Championship. Second and third were Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) and Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing) who made it three different bikemakers and the same number of MICHELIN Power Slicks pairings on the podium. The French tires reveled in the weekend’s changeable conditions to establish new track-lap, race-lap and shortest-distance benchmarks for the Dutch venue.
Bagnaia led for all 26 laps after qualifying on pole for the fourth time this season thanks to a new track record (1m31.504s, an improvement of 0.310s over 2021). His mission on Sunday was helped when Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) crashed out of third place on Lap 5, taking Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) – then second – with him into the gravel.
Lapping on soft and hard MICHELIN Power Slicks front and rear, Bagnaia took advantage of the incident and his tires’ consistency to post a series of quick laps that took him comfortably clear of his remaining chasers.
Bezzecchi (medium and soft MICHELIN Power Slicks front and rear) also benefited from the Quartararo/Espargaro tangle to appear in second spot and ultimately collect his first top-three finish in motorcycle racing’s headlining class.
He was joined on the podium by the more experienced Viñales (medium/hard MICHELIN Power Slicks) who fought his way from 11
Another superb comeback was produced by Espargaro who had dropped to 15
Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Racing Factory) and Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) were fifth and sixth.
Michelin’s tires proved strong throughout, despite the weekend’s mix of dry and wet conditions, and four riders succeeded in bettering the former track record in qualifying.
Four of the six possible combinations of slick specs were chosen for the grand prix which Bagnaia completed in just 40m25.205s, 10 seconds faster than the race’s previous shortest duration.
Despite his fall, Quartararo still dominates the championship on 172 points, ahead of Aleix Espargaro (151) and Prima Pramac Racing’s Johann Zarco (114).
Assen also hosted Rounds 7 and 8 of this year’s 2022 FIM MotoE World Cup which were won respectively by Dominique Aegerter (Dynavolt Intact MotoE) and Eric Granado (LCR e-Team). The second race had been shortened to six laps and was eventually halted after Lap 3.
Next round: Monster Energy British Grand Prix, Silverstone, United Kingdom (August 5-7).