Imagine being a rookie on the premier MotoGP circuit. A rookie, who not only overtook the reigning world champion, Marc Marquez, to start from pole position but also broke a record previously held by him.
This was the perfect start to the Spanish GP for Petronas Yamaha SRT’s Fabio Quartararo, but the Gods were not in his favour when the rookie failed to finish the race due to a mechanical failure and Marquez eventually walked away with the win.
Bad day at the office
After Petronas Yamaha’s Quartararo and teammate Franco Morbidelli qualified in P1 and P2 on Saturday, the satellite Yamaha team were looking to get some good results come Sunday afternoon in Jerez (or at least finish the race). The new kid on the MotoGP block, Quartararo became the youngest rider on pole position in the premier class when he qualified in a time of 1:36:880 ahead of Morbidelli and Marquez. The 20-year-old rookie was hoping to go into the race with the same sort of success that had on qualifying day. Instead, a distraught Quartararo headed back to the garage after a suffering a problem with his gear shifter and all hope of finishing on the podium was taken away from the newest Yamaha rider.
“I felt very good on the bike and it was fantastic to ride with the top riders. None of us expected to be fighting for the podium and to get a fourth position in the fourth race of the year, so we should be happy with the work that is being done here,” said Fabio Quartararo.
Another day at the office
Marc Marquez said he quickly recovered from the disaster that took place in round three of MotoGP at the Circuit of the America’s when he crashed out in the lead and turned his focus to the next races – and this really shows. The five-time MotoGP champion finished the race at the Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto in regular Marquez fashion in first place after breaking away at the front. Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins and Monster Energy Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales finished in second and third place, respectively. Mission Winnow Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso finished in P4 while Valentino Rossi managed to finish in sixth place after starting in 13th position.
As it stands
Marquez now finds himself in his favourite position at the top of the standings, but it’s not a comfortable lead at the top with Rins hot on his heels in second place with only a point’s difference. Dovi is in third place with The Doctor rounding off the top four. Next, MotoGP heads to Le Mans where Marquez won the race in 2018 – will he extend his lead in the next race or will the new kids give him a run for his money? We’ll have to wait and see in two weeks!