Press releases from the teams and Michelin after a thrilling Italian Grand Prix at Mugello:
Superb win by Danilo Petrucci at the Italian Grand Prix, Ducati reigns at Mugello for the third year in a row; Andrea Dovizioso (3rd) also on the podium. Michele Pirro in 7th
The Mission Winnow Ducati team enjoyed a Sunday to remember at the Mugello Circuit with Danilo Petrucci claiming the win at the Italian Grand Prix – his maiden victory in MotoGP – in a sprint finish to the line ahead of his teammate Andrea Dovizioso, third under the checkered flag, only three tenths of a second behind. For Ducati, this is the third win in a row at its home GP after those claimed by Dovizioso and Lorenzo in 2017 and 2018 respectively, an extraordinary result celebrated also by the many fans who filled the Ducati Grandstands to capacity.
Starting from first row, Petrucci immediately joined the leading group together with Dovizioso, who got off to a great start from third row and entered turn 1 in third position. Both riders exchanged overtaking moves repeatedly and towards the end, with only four riders left fighting for the victory, Petrucci defended the lead to precede Márquez on the finish line by only 43 thousandths of a second, with Dovizioso third quickly in tow. Michele Pirro took seventh place as a wild-card, mounting a strong comeback despite an issue with his forearm to recover many positions in the second half of the race.
Danilo Petrucci (#9 Mission Winnow Ducati) – 1st
"I really wanted this victory and when I realized the pace at the front wasn't too fierce and I was able to manage my rhythm in the leading group, I told myself it was the right time to go for it. I tried to control the race by staying in the lead to avoid the risk of losing too many positions in the battle, dictating the pace to preserve the energies and the tyres for the final rush. I was a bit worried about the slipstream as we entered the final lap, but I managed to brake really deep and find a small gap between Andrea and Marc to retake the lead, then I simply pushed as hard as I could until the checkered flag. A good chunk of this win came thanks to Andrea, who took me under his wing this winter and gave so many precious tips. Now we'll keep fighting together for the championship."
Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Mission Winnow Ducati) – 3rd
"It's been a really exciting race, as it's often the case here at Mugello. Until the very last lap, everything went to plan. I got off to a great start and I put myself in a good position to manage the tyres, staying always within the top three despite the many overtakes in the leading group. My plan was to seize the lead at the beginning of the last lap, but I had to pick up the bike out of turn one to avoid contact and I lost positions and points. I'm a bit disappointed because of that, but also very happy for Danilo, who really deserved this win. It would have been better to score a one-two finish, but Márquez was very competitive also here. As for us, we struggled a bit early on in the weekend but once again we managed to stay in contention until the very end during the race. We want more and we'll keep working to improve."
Michele Pirro (#51 Mission Winnow Ducati) – 7th
"The most important thing is that we won again at Mugello, for the third time in a row, because we couldn't take it for granted. As for me, I'm a bit disappointed because today during the race my Desmosedici GP was really competitive, but unfortunately I faced an issue with my forearm in the early laps, which slowed me down. Then, I simply tried to stay calm and I managed to climb back to seventh. I want to thank Ducati because, after last year's big crash on this track, we've done a great job together and I'm confident I'll be back to top form soon."
Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Motor Holding S.p.A.
"Winning is always fantastic, but to do it here at Mugello really has a special meaning. It's our home race, and on this wonderful track we can always count on the support of so many people from our company and thousands of passionate ducatisti. Until a few laps to go, we had as many as four bikes fighting for top positions. Danilo probably had a bit of an edge today, but both our factory riders fought for the win until the very last inch and I believe that Andrea deserves part of the credit for this victory, as he was the first to highlight Danilo's potential and he took him under his wing, doing a really excellent job."
Luigi Dall'Igna, Ducati Corse General Manager
"We all must be proud of the work done, because winning three times in a row at Mugello, in front of so many Ducati fans, is a dream come true. Danilo was really phenomenal, he rode a fantastic last lap, with an incredible pass at the beginning, and I'm really happy he took his maiden MotoGP win at his home race. I'm sorry for Andrea, who couldn't pass Márquez back before the checkered flag, but he rode a fantastic race as well and a podium is always a great result. I want to congratulate myself with all three of them, because they really put on a show."
After six rounds, Dovizioso is still second in the Riders standings with 103 points – 12 shy of the lead – while Petrucci climbs to fourth with 82. Ducati is second among Manufacturers with 115 points, while the Mission Winnow Ducati team leads the Team rankings with 185 points.
The Mission Winnow Ducati team will resume action in two weeks' time at Montmeló for the Grand Prix of Catalunya, scheduled for June 14-16 on the track just outside Barcelona (Spain).
Marquez fights fiercely for Italian GP second, Lorenzo grabs more points
Just 0.043s separated Marc Marquez from victory at an explosive Italian GP as his Repsol Honda Team teammate Jorge Lorenzo collected more world championship points.
The hottest conditions of the weekend, the track at almost 50°C, awaited the MotoGP World Championship as they 23-rider field lined up for the Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley. From a record-breaking pole position, Marc Marquez made a perfect launch to lead from fellow Honda rider Cal Crutchlow.
A race-long battle for victory saw Marquez fending off Petrucci, Dovizioso and Rins for the majority of the race. In true Mugello style it all came down to the final lap of the race, the reigning world champion saving himself for a late attack. A small mistake at San Donato opened a gap to Petrucci that was fractionally too big to close, Marquez taking second by 0.043s as they roared across the line.
With a haul of 20 points, Marquez extends his championship lead to 12 points over Dovizioso. Honda have a six point advantage over Ducati in the Constructor Championship.
A strong launch off the line saw Jorge Lorenzo move into 15th on the opening lap and with some clear space on track. Able to lap consistently, Lorenzo was able to avoid trouble and steadily gained positions during the course of the race. Crossing the line in 13th, Lorenzo picks up more valuable championship points and experience on the RC213V.
LCR Honda Rider Takaaki Nakagami achieved his best finish to date on the Honda RC213V, crossing the line in fifth and as the first Independent Team rider.
The MotoGP World Championship now enjoys a week off before the Catalan GP, the home race of both Jorge Lorenzo and championship leader Marc Marquez. There’s not long to wait until the lights go out on the Catalan GP on Sunday, June 16.
“Today was time to defend, and we did it in the best way we could because usually this is not one of our best circuits. I stayed calm and waited to try something in the last lap. I was able to try but I missed the apex on the first corner and then both Ducati overtook me. Petrucci rode very well at the front today, congratulations to him. My goal was to finish in front of Dovizioso and Rins and we did this so I’m happy. Also congratulations to my brother Alex, he had a great race today too. As always, thanks to the Repsol Honda Team as they have worked hard to allow us to fight for victory here.”
“Today was more or less what we expected. I didn’t have the pace and wasn’t as comfortable on the bike to be more competitive. We made a change in the Warm Up and it improved some areas. Not better or worse than we expected but neither myself nor Honda give up on making progress and finding a solution together. Now I will go to Japan to work with Honda on some improvements to come back stronger.”
FANTASTIC FOURTH FOR RINS IN MAD MUGELLO GRAND PRIX
Team Suzuki Press Office - June 2.
Alex Rins: 4th (+ 0.535)
Joan Mir: 12th (+ 20.544)
• Alex Rins fights back at the front for 4th.
• Joan Mir overcomes setback for great 12th.
• Team SUZUKI ECSTAR acknowledge achievements after hard work.
The usual electric atmosphere filled the hills around Mugello Circuit for the 6th round of the 2019 MotoGP Championship, and a thrilling race was witnessed by 84,000 excited fans.
In the morning warm-up session both Joan Mir and Alex Rins found useful improvements and placed themselves 2nd and 4th respectively, providing an extra confidence boost for the pair ahead of the race.
The sizzling circuit saw Alex and Joan start on the hard-medium combination for the 23-lap battle. The Spanish duo both made impressive starts from their tricky grid positions; Rins quickly slotted into 7th, while Mir was 13th.
Class rookie Mir was looking confident and keen to progress but just a few laps into the race he was hit from behind and taken into the gravel trap. After rejoining the track, the youngster was determined to prove his pace once again, he kept his head down and managed a great 12th place at the finish line.
Just one lap into the race, Rins was already up with the top group and ready to do battle. With 14 laps to go he had impressively taken the lead, and it became clear that he was ready for another strong result. An intense fight among the top four saw Alex stay close to the victory, and the title hopeful crossed the line in a very useful 4th place - holding onto 3rd in the championship standings.
Ken Kawauchi - Technical Manager
“Alex did an excellent job considering the grid position yesterday, he put together a great race. I want to apologise to him because it was hard to keep up with the others on the long straight, we have improved the bike and we will continue to work hard for this. Joan picked up some points today and he did a very good race, without the runoff it could have been even better, so we’re happy with the work he did today.”
Davide Brivio - Team Manager
“Alex did a really great race, recovering so well from 13th position on the grid. We’re slightly disappointed for him, because he did everything he could, and it was not enough to stay right with the others. But we know how competitive we are, and there are some other circuits which will suit us better. Anyway, we’re really pleased with this 4th place. Joan started from 20th and he did a great job, getting into points scoring positions, until he had the coming together with Valentino which cost him a lot. But he did so well to recover 12th place. It’s been positive for both riders today.”
“I don’t think I could have had a better result with a better grid position, I recovered a lot of places on the first lap, but I was losing a lot of time on the straight. We knew it would be a tricky part of the track for us, and it’s a bit of a pity. But I gave 100% and pushed really hard, I tried to pass Dovizioso on the last corner, but he had a bit more traction than me. Anyway, I’m happy with this 4th and it all helps with the championship!”
“I’m glad to pick up some points today, even if it wasn’t in the position that I wanted or that I felt I could achieve with my potential this weekend. The touch between Valentino and I cost me around seven seconds, and that’s what prevented me from getting a Top 10 finish. Anyway, I want to thank the team for all the great work done this weekend, I feel good and I know the results will come.”
DETERMINED VIÑALES COLLECTS CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS AT DEMANDING ITALIAN GP
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Maverick Viñales secured a hard-fought sixth place today in a hot and challenging Gran Premio d‘Italia Oakley. Valentino Rossi suffered an NC, his first this season, due to an unlucky crash on lap 7.
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Maverick Viñales showed great stamina and character in today‘s sweltering Gran Premio d‘Italia Oakley, riding back from a provisional 12th to take sixth place at the chequered flag. Valentino Rossi was fortunately unharmed but unable to continue after an unlucky fall on lap 7.
Starting from P7, Viñales lost a few positions in the tussle of entering the first corner and settled in twelfth position. After a few laps he gained two places and tucked in behind fellow Yamaha rider Fabio Quartararo, hoping to join the rider group of nine in front.
With relentless focus he reeled them in and tapped them on the back lying in ninth place when Francesco Bagnaia crashed out with 11 laps to go. But soon the group was pulled apart again. The Spaniard, however, used his experience and kept his head cool. Like he predicted yesterday, he managed the tyres and used his great physical fitness to bring a strong challenge to the riders ahead of him in the final stages.
With eight laps to go he gained a place as Jack Miller ended up in the gravel, which was the no.12 rider's cue to start his late charge. Over the next two laps he overtook Quartararo and Crutchlow, moving up to sixth place. With an over 1s-gap to the rival in front of him, the Yamaha man pushed to the max but was unable to inch close enough. He finished sixth, 7.481s from first.
Rossi had a decent start from P18 and, despite the flurry of activity in the busy rider field, gained two positions before crossing the line for the first time. The home hero began his chase, showing good pace, but with 19 laps to go he had to do the work all over again. Having taken 15th from Jorge Lorenzo, he was in the groove but clipped the rear of Joan Mir going into Turn 4 and had to skillfully steer his YZR-M1 through the gravel trap. He rejoined the track in 22nd place.
The Doctor soon moved up a position again as a rival crashed out, but it wasn't to last. Bad luck struck twice when he restarted his hunt. He suffered a crash in Turn 9 with 16 laps to go and was unable to continue his home GP.
Today's unlucky 0-point finish pushed Rossi down to fifth position in the championship standings, with a 43-point gap to first. Viñales‘ sixth place result moves him up from tenth to eighth in the rankings, with a 75-point margin to the top. Yamaha is now fourth in the constructor standings, whilst Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP continues to hold third in the team classification.
The team will be back on the track in two weeks‘ time for the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya, held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
“Naturally we are very disappointed. We knew this weekend was going to be really difficult, but we had higher hopes for our team‘s home GP than the results we got today. We have to give credit to Maverick though. His start was far from ideal, but he fought his way back to sixth, which was realistically the best could do, considering his race pace. Valentino had a nightmare of a day… It was going to be hard starting from 18th on the grid, but the incidents on track ended his race. All in all, it's a GP to forget for him. We as a team, however, will be doing the opposite: we have to learn from this and find something for the next race in Catalunya in two weeks‘ time.”
"Today I struggled a lot. I had no feeling with the bike during the race and the tyres were very slippery. I tried to push in the correct way and manage the tyres in the best way I could, but anyway it wasn't enough. I don't think we should be on the level of getting sixth places, we need to push more. I really don't know what to expect for Montmeló. For sure, during the practices we can be there, but in the race it's a different story. Our bike suffers a lot when we don't have grip. So, we need to keep working to see if we can improve the feeling and take steps forward."
"It was a very difficult weekend, because I was always very slow. We expected to be more competitive, so it was difficult to manage. We also made some mistakes in the practice: I made a mistake in FP3 and because of it I started very far towards the back of the grid. In the race, my pace wasn't fantastic. I tried to overtake Mir, but he tried to defend his position, and unfortunately we touched. Luckily, we didn't crash, but we went onto the gravel. After that I tried to push to recover and I lost the front and crashed, so it's a bad end to a difficult weekend, especially since it's in Mugello. But that's the way it is. We will try to do better."
Spirited 9th place for Espargaro at Mugello
MotoGP 2019 Round 6 of 19, Mugello (ITA) - RACE
For the second Grand Prix in a row Red Bull KTM were able to take another top ten MotoGP finish thanks to Pol Espargaro’s battling performance around a hot and fast Mugello circuit to capture 9th position. Johann Zarco opted for a strategic tyre choice and finished 17th.
The hottest day of the Gran Premio D’Italia at Mugello saw ambient temperatures top 30 degrees and hit a track figure of 50 degrees for 23 fast and demanding laps of the Italian course for the sixth MotoGP fixture of the season.
Starting from 11th on the grid, Pol Espargaro attached the #44 machine to the back of the second group and fought with other factory riders on the fringes of the top ten. Crashes for the likes of Francesco Bagnaia and Jack Miller opened up the dispute for the top of the leaderboard and Pol maintained his speed in fine fashion. The Spaniard attacked Fabio Quartararo on the final lap and passed the Frenchman for 9th place: his fourth result inside the top ten this season and – once more – a much faster total race time compared to 2018.
Johann Zarco chose a Soft rear tyre in order to circulate at his best speed in the first half of the race. The Frenchman suffered in the last stages as the grip level of the rubber deteriorated in the heat and he classified 17th; nevertheless with more understanding and information of his #5 machine ahead of the next round in Catalunya which will be followed by two days of testing.
Red Bull KTM Tech3’s Miguel Oliveira just missed the points with 16th spot by the chequered flag. Teammate Hafizh Syahrin pulled into the pits after several near-crashes and chose not to complete the race.
Pol Espargaro: “We knew our position would be around 7-10 and we were not expecting these temperatures. With the Medium tyre we were in a very low grip situation and we knew our job would be a little bit harder. I was fighting a lot at the beginning of the race with [Franco] Morbidelli, [Alex] Rins even and [Fabio] Quartararo. It was hard, hot and with many changes of direction. It was a physical track and we saw many riders by the end were dropping and we could keep our pace. Anyway we were fourteen seconds faster in our total race time in 2018 and in the end I think we can be happy.”
Johann Zarco: “I wanted a bit more consistency so I chose the Soft tyre but by the end it was finished. I wanted to be able to fight at the beginning and understand what my opponents can do better than me or not. I was able to get some good information even though I suffered at the end of the race and I finished slowly. We know we are suffering and I must wait to have some new things on the bike. I know I need to change my style but even by trying to do this I have the same limits as before. We can only get better from here and now I have six months experience. I think the team has good information for the way to work.”
Miguel Oliveira: “It was a tough race in the beginning and hard to manage the bike with the full fuel tank. Then I started to find my pace and it was quite OK. The last five laps where very difficult again as I was missing grip and I could not manage to attack the points scoring positions. But, in general, the gap to the front was not too big and also the one to Pol was not huge. After the tough weekend, I think we didn’t expect to be so competitive in the race, so it was positive.”
Hafizh Syahrin: “I felt very good with the bike in the beginning of the race but in Turn 9 I had a huge low side and was lucky to save this. I tried to push again but couldn’t find the same feeling as in the beginning. I wanted to do more laps but with this feeling it was impossible not to go down, so I decided to retire. It’s a pity, especially because I’m convinced that we could have scored points here but sometimes this just happens. Even if this was not our day and I’m truly sorry for everybody, we keep working hard for the next race. Barcelona is my favourite track, so I will for sure give more than 100 percent again.”
Mike Leitner, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “A top ten was the target for us and we achieved that here with Pol, which was very good. A positive point was that the bike had good potential all weekend. Mugello and Barcelona have been difficult tracks for us in the past and with our current package, so to make the top ten so far is very good. With Johann we made some improvement on Friday but he crashed on Saturday and took a gamble with tyre choice for the race, and the Soft rear could not stay until the end. We’ll be looking forward to trying for another top ten in Catalunya.”
THE APRILIAS MAKE UP GROUND AND BOTH FINISH IN THE POINTS AT MUGELLO
ALEIX, HINDERED BY CONTACT AT THE RACE START, JUST MISSES A TOP-TEN FINISH, ANDREA RIDES A GREAT COMEBACK FROM BEHIND
As always, the race has the final say on how a MotoGP weekend has gone. And so, the Aprilias were able to come back after difficult qualifiers, both finishing in the points and, especially in Andrea’s case, taking home important indications for the growth of the RS-GP project.
Starting well from the fifth row, but the victim of contact on the first lap, Aleix found himself in a position where he had to come back from 18th place. He did it, establishing a much better feeling with his Aprilia than he had in practice but, despite having a much better pace, he struggled to get past Lorenzo. By the time he succeeded, it was too late to try for better positions that were not that far off. In any case, he finished with a respectable 11th place and sensations that were decidedly more positive than the day before.
Andrea was not intimidated by his starting position and, also aided by a few crashes, began the hunt for a points finish straight away. In the end, his efforts paid off, duelling long and hard with Mir, Zarco and Oliveira and finishing ahead of the latter two. This resumes the path that Andrea had begun which was put on hold with his injury in Jerez.
"I started well, but unfortunately, during the first lap Zarco made some pretty bold contact, causing me to lose time. In terms of pace, I had plenty to battle with Pol and Pirro in the top 10, but despite feeling very good today, I struggled to overtake. It’s a pity. Without the initial contact, a top-ten finish would most certainly have been within our potential. The conditions were demanding today. It was very hot and there wasn’t much grip and, considering our starting position, the 20-second gap behind the leader is a good result."
"I am rather satisfied, especially with the pace in the early part of the race. Starting so far behind, I was able to battle and make up a lot of ground, even on Aleix who is certainly my point of reference. Unfortunately, on the final laps with Mir and Zarco, we held one another up, losing time and also letting those who were behind us get close. This was clearly not the Mugello I expected, but our goal is long-term - to get to know the bike better and better and to develop it."
TAKA TAKES FIFTH TO FINISH AS TOP INDEPENDENT AT MUGELLO
PRESS RELEASE: 02 June 2019 | Mugello Grand Prix
Takaaki Nakagami produced a brilliant ride to take fifth place at the Italian Grand Prix, his best-ever finish in the MotoGP class. Starting from tenth on the grid, the LCR Honda IDEMITSU star was composed and consistent throughout as he finished as the top independent rider on a memorable day at Mugello.
Having struggled with his starts in previous rounds, Taka made a good getaway on Sunday as he moved into sixth position by the first corner. He remained part of the leading group for much of the race, before a group of four riders pulled clear at the front. But the LCR man showed impressive speed to move past his rivals in the battle for fifth and held that position to claim the most notable result of his career so far.
Takaaki Nakagami – 5th
“It was an amazing day and an amazing race. I was really strong from the start and I know that this is a weak point for me. In all the races after a couple of laps I’ve dropped positions and then fight back in the middle and at the end. But today, I was really strong at the beginning of the race and then tried to keep the position. At the end I knew that (Maverick) Vinales was really pushing hard, but I never gave up and fought hard. It’s the best result for me, I was the second Honda and fifth place is amazing. I didn’t expect it, it’s a fantastic weekend for me and I want to thank the team who did a really great job all weekend, the bike worked really well.”
EIGHTH PLACE FOR CRUTCHLOW AT MUGELLO
PRESS RELEASE: 02 June 2019 | Mugello Grand Prix
Cal Crutchlow had to settle for an eighth-place finish at the Italian Grand Prix on what proved a disappointing day for the LCR Honda CASTROL rider at Mugello. Starting from sixth on the grid, the Briton had high hopes to challenge for the podium after making a superb start at the legendary Italian circuit.
Crutchlow moved into second spot by the first corner, but things went downhill from that point. Around the midway point of the race the LCR man started to suffer with rear tyre issues and gradually fell away from the lead group. He battled hard to ensure he finished in the points, but could not hide his disappointment afterwards having seen another promising opportunity pass him by.
Cal Crutchlow – 8th
“Today was a very difficult day, quite possibly my worst race of the season. Again I was in the front group, but then got dropped from the front group which has not normally happened to me in previous years. I had a bad feeling with the bike when I was changing direction, which was happening all weekend, and I was not able to be competitive in that area. Then with about 14 laps remaining I felt a big drop in the rear tyre and was unable to keep my pace throughout the rest of the race. After the race we assessed the situation with the team and Michelin and found an unusual rubber wear on the rear tyre. So we’ll continue to evaluate it and I’m sure Michelin will investigate why this happened. I’m pleased to finish and get some points on a tough day, but that’s not where I need to finish at all.”
Top ten form continues for Quartararo at Italian GP
French rider places tenth at Mugello, whilst team-mate Franco Morbidelli suffers a crash on lap 6.
PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team had a bittersweet Sunday at the Italian GP. Fabio Quartararo added another top ten finish to his tally after starting from second on the grid, consistently maintaining his position throughout the 23-lap race. Franco Morbidelli suffered a crash on the sixth lap when in ninth position.
Quartararo has now placed inside the top ten on four occasions this season, with his latest coming with a tenth place at Mugello. The Frenchman had a difficult start, in which he lost several positions, but recovered thanks to his solid race pace, reaching the second group and battling amongst them for much of the race. He occupies 12th in the overall standings with 31 points, and is the top rookie in the premier class.
Morbidelli was forced to retire from the race after an early crash, losing the front end of his bike when coming into Turn 15 of the sixth lap. He was in ninth place when the incident occurred, and could not remount. He is 11th in the MotoGP World Championship with 34 points.
The next challenge for the PETRONAS Yamaha SRT riders will be the Catalan GP, which will take place at the Barcelona-Catalunya Circuit from June 14th -16th.
Razlan Razali - Team Principal
"In MotoGP we have mixed feelings about the race today. Franco Morbidelli was doing very well, until he crashed, but we are happy with his performance. We're also happy with the tenth position for Fabio Quartararo, because the goal for him is still to be the best rookie in the class. Clearly we weren't able to match the fastest bikes on the straight today, but we move on and take the positives. We have learned a lot and we have seen our two riders riding with the frontrunners. Now we have to prepare for Catalonia.
In Moto2, we expected a little more at Mattia Pasini’s home GP. However, 11th place is still the best result we have achieved since we came into Moto2 and we are very satisfied with this.
In Moto3, we made some good comebacks. John McPhee did great job to go from 17th position to 6th, fighting with the top riders throughout the race. Ayumu Sasaki improved a lot this Sunday, but he also had very bad luck. The crash that happened in front of him was impossible for him to avoid and he couldn't finish, but it's been a positive GP for him."
Wilco Zeelenberg - Team Manager
"We've learned a lot from today's race. In this World Championship there are at least 15 riders who can fight for the podium. In practice we are clearly part of that group, but we have to be realistic. We finished tenth with Fabio and Franco crashed. We were in the group, but we weren't able to fight until the end. It's good to have picked up points and I think we showed good performance in practice, but we must improve in the race."
#21 Franco Morbidelli
"I had a good start for the first few metres, but then I lost a lot of ground for some reason. After that I started to recover, and little-by-little I felt faster. However, on the sixth lap I made a mistake on the last corner and I lost the front end. It was a shame because I was going fast, and I think I could have fought for a place in the top five. It's been a good weekend in any case. We suffered on Friday but we were fast on Saturday, and at least over the first five or six laps today we showed great potential. I'm looking forward to the Catalan GP."
#20 Fabio Quartararo
"I struggled right from the beginning. My start wasn't bad, but I did a small wheelie that made me lose several positions. As the race progressed, the front tyre pressure increased a lot and unfortunately I couldn't find a good feeling with the front. Our pace during the weekend was good, but we couldn't get a great result. The goal is to be the best rookie, and today we achieved that. I don't want to rush and I want to go step-by-step. Now we are going to Barcelona, which is one of my favourite circuits and I can't wait to ride there with a MotoGP bike."
#ItalianGP Race. Thanks anyway guys! Jack and Pecco crashes after being great protagonists in a fantastic race won by a stunning Petrux.
It was an extraordinary Mugello. A great race that made everyone excited. Jack fights great with the leading group, challenging first Marquez then Petrucci, Dovizioso and Rins. His race pace is competitive and on lap 15 he set the best time. Then unfortunately he crashes at turn 5.
Pecco's start is not incisive but the Italian rider is very good at recovering positions on positions. On lap 2 he is 11th after having passed Vinales, and on lap 8 he passes Nakagami to conquer the 7th position. Bagnaia got close to the leading group but he crashed when he seemed able to overtake Crutchlow.
DNF – Pecco Bagnaia
It's a shame we couldn't finish the race. Our goal was to stay in the Top 10 and the race pace was very good. I am still satisfied because in the last three races we have made great steps forward. We'll try again in Barcelona.
DNF – Jack Miller
It was a very exciting race. I was with the front group and it was a fantastic battle. The feeling with the bike was very good and I started to push after seeing Petrucci and Marquez trying to make the gap. I tried to overtake Rins but then I crashed.
Oliveira delivers brave effort in Italian GP - Syahrin forced to stop early
In an intense 23 laps race at the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello, Red Bull KTM Tech3’s MotoGP rookie Miguel Oliveira showed a strong performance. The Portuguese was fighting for points all race long and recovered after some difficult first laps to narrowly miss out on P15 on the line.
On the other side of the Red Bull KTM Tech3 garage, Hafizh Syahrin did some strong initial laps as well and was progressing step by step, but unfortunately, the Malaysian had to return to the pits after ten laps as he had a huge moment and didn’t want to risk a crash.
“It was a tough race in the beginning and hard to manage the bike with the full fuel tank. Then I started to find my pace and it was quite ok during the race. The last five laps where very difficult again, as I was missing grip and I could not manage to attack the points scoring positions. But in general, the gap to the front was not too big and also the one to Pol was not huge. After the tough weekend, I think we didn’t expect to be so competitive in the race, so it was positive. We learned more about the bike and take more experience to Barcelona.”
“I am really disappointed. I felt very good with the bike in the beginning of the race, but in turn nine – the place where Rossi crashed – I had a huge low side and was lucky to save this. I tried to push again, but couldn’t find the same feeling as in the beginning. I wanted to do more laps, but with this feeling it was impossible not to go down, so I decided to retire. It’s a pity, especially because I’m convinced that we could have scored points here, but sometimes this just happens. Even if this was not our day and I’m truly sorry for everybody, we keep working hard for the next race in Montmelo. I hope I can do the same as here and maybe even better. Barcelona is my favorite track, so I will for sure give more than 100 percent again.”
“To finish a weekend without a point, is always a disappointment, because this is a reward for the hard work of the whole team and the riders. But still I believe, we did a good weekend. We were quite competitive in the race. Hafizh had a big moment and that was a real shame, because until then, that was for sure the best start of the year for him and he could have been fighting for points, but unfortunately lost the front, he tried to stay on track, but was close to crash. He aimed to carry on a bit more, but lost the front a few more times and I understand his idea that is was safer to come in, but it was a huge disappointment as it was by far the best Hafizh we saw since the beginning of the year. Miguel was lapping really consistently. We knew he would be strong all race long, because I think the tyre choice was the best one. We passed quite a few guys, including Johann Zarco and for a part of the race, we were in the points, but unfortunately Abraham was a bit quicker in the end and passed us, which didn’t allow us to score that point, that would have been a decent end to a quite constructive weekend. Nevertheless, we have to remember that the Warm Up crash didn’t help, so for sure, in the early part of the race Miguel was a bit cautious. He’s got a small injury on a finger of his left hand. Ok, this is not, what we want to do, but we were not too far. We saw that Pol Espargaro could finish in front of some top factory guys, so we need to keep on working. Today we finished second of the KTM MotoGP department. Overall, we have mixed feelings, but let’s take the positive ones, gather all the information we have and get more confidence and head to Barcelona with a good feeling, where hopefully we can score points with both of our guys.”
Face and cross for the riders of Reale Avintia Racing Team
Karel Abraham leaves the Italian Grand Prix satisfied with the work done while Tito Rabat is forced to abandon.
After a very positive weekend, Tito Rabat faced the race with hope and optimism. The Italian Grand Prix brought the Reale Avintia Racing Team riders the direct path to good results. On Saturday in the QP, Rabat marked his best grid result so far this season, 14th, coming to fight face to face with the official Ducatis. But the good way has been truncated by the electronic problems that Tito Rabat has suffered at the start of the race. Having to start from Pit Lane, Tito was forced to abandon the race after the first lap.
The face of this Grand Prix for the Reale Avintia Racing team was the Czech, Karel Abraham. Karel left from the 16th position and although the hard conditions of the track he faced the race with positivity. With the temperature of the track so high, the race was hard. In spite of the drawbacks, Abraham has been able to get over himself and overcome the challenges. Thanks to all the team’s work and perseverance, Abraham has managed to enter the points zone for the first time this season and is happy to Mugello.
”Happy because we have found the way with the bike, because we can be competitive and fight with the best but frustrated by the problem today. Now we just have to think about Montmeló”
Karel Abraham | P14
”To be honest the race was almost what I expected. I knew that we are capable to fight for the point today I knew we were strong same as Le Mans but it didn´t work. But I know also very well that the conditions changed for the race today, the track was hot, the air was hot this means it will be a lot more difficult for the tyres, for the bike but also for the rider. For me especially because I do not like hot conditions. After the start of the race it was not very good in identity very well with the tyres, because the front and the rear was slaiding quite a lot. But after a 4 laps I took the confidence and the bike work better. And I stay to overtake everybody. The race was very hard. I knew my tyres were dropping specially in the end but I could see everybody stay was dropping because I start to catch the otherones. So I was very good finally we made 2 points I think we deserve because we work really hard all weekend. And all my team we deserve the points, thank you very much to everyone. I´m super happy we ended finally the weekend like this”
MICHELIN GETS A NEW WINNER AS PETRUCCI TRIUMPHS IN MUGELLO
Michelin saw the 11th different winner on its tyres since returning to MotoGP™ in 2016 as Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati) took victory in an exciting Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley from the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello in Italy.
The 5,425m Mugello circuit has been a demanding venue all weekend, not just because of its layout, but this year the surface was more abrasive and had a lot more bumps than recent years. This meant tyre consumption was increased and the choice for today’s race was a very important decision, one which saw five of the six available MICHELIN Power Slick compounds being used.
Reigning World Champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) started from pole position after a stunning qualifying on Saturday saw him smash the outright lap-record with a time of 1’45.519, he got the holeshot and led for the first four laps, but then a fantastic race unfolded which saw four different leaders throughout the remaining 19-laps. The battle at the front witnessed a train of many riders all challenging for the lead, with Marquez, Petrucci, Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) and Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR) all taking turns in first place. The riders pushed their respective Michelin rubber to the limit in the hot conditions, as temperatures reached almost 50°C on track numerous overtaking manoeuvres were completed as the riders battled to get supremacy over their adversaries. A final lap encounter decided the result as the leaders went into turn one together, before Petrucci came out in front, Marquez was second and Dovizioso pushing hard in third, despite efforts from the two chasing riders these positions stayed the same to the flag and Petrucci took his maiden victory, making him the fourth winner of the season and the eleventh since Michelin made a return to MotoGP. Marquez’s second place helped increase his lead in the championship, whilst Dovizioso had the reward of recording 356.7Km/h through the start/finish speed trap this weekend, which is the highest speed ever recorded in MotoGP and one that also highlights the stability and straight-line performance of the MICHELIN Power Slick tyres.
Michelin’s whole range of slick tyres were tried in the practice sessions, as the field worked to find the best pairing for their respective machines, the high temperatures and challenging surface made today’s race a real test for the rubber, but performance, grip and consistency were on show throughout the whole race, with the fastest circulation coming on lap-15 from Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) as he narrowly missed setting a new record despite the poor condition of the track. A crowd of 83,761 bathed in the warm sun and were treated to not just the battle at the front, but other encounters throughout the field. Rins was fourth over the line, with Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda) recording his best finish in the MotoGP class with fifth place and the title of First Independent Rider. Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) took sixth, with wild-card and Ducati Test Rider Michele Pirro (Mission Winnow Ducati) finishing in an impressive seventh. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) was eighth, Pol Espagaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) was ninth – making five different manufacturers in the top-nine – with Fabio Quatararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) in tenth.
Michelin will now head to Spain for the Catalunya Grand Prix at Montmelo near Barcelona on Sunday 16th June, an event which will also see the second in-season official test of the year take place on the Monday after the race.
Danilo Petrucci – Mission Winnow Ducati:
“The tyres were just perfect for the whole race. We almost did the fastest lap and the end of a very fast race. The point was that until this morning I was trying to do the race with the soft tyre and in the end we did the race with the medium and some also used the hard, so the really good point was that all three rear tyres could be used in the race, which is unbelievable because yesterday we did lap-record pace with that soft tyre and today you can use it in the race. If the temperature had been a bit cooler like yesterday, I would have felt better about using the soft for the race, which was the same as the one I used for the time attack in qualifying, which is a very good point for me. I had no issues with the front tyre. It is really good and we can brake hard, you need to understand the tyre, but when you do it is amazing as it lets you push right until the last lap.”
Piero Taramasso – Michelin Motorsport Two-Wheel Manager:
“Today was a fantastic spectacle to what has been both a very tough, but also extremely rewarding weekend. The whole array of tyres were used in the practices and five of the compounds were raced today. The track was in poor condition compared to last year, but the tyres all worked well and we had some very fast lap-times, plus a new outright lap-record, the fastest speed from a MotoGP bike and the race was 10-seconds quicker than last year. We have learned a lot though and will need to look at how the tyres behaved in the race and reassess the compounds for next season to take into account the extra abrasiveness. Overall we are very pleased and now we head to Catalunya for another important race and a test on the Monday where we will be trying some tyres for 2020.”