2022 Barcelona MotoGP Race Result: A Masterclass And A Rookie Mistake

The incessant heat of Barcelona was always going to cause some drama in the premier class but it was not quite the kind we expected to have. Despite all the talk about tyre preservation ahead of the 24-lap race, Fabio Quartararo set an impressive pace at the front of the field to take a dominating victory by over six seconds. Poleman Aleix Espargaro seemed to have the speed to take second place but a rookie mistake saw him celebrate one lap too early and allowed the Pramac Ducati duo of Jorge Martin and Johann Zarco to join Quartararo on the podium.

Although the bulk of the race was not particularly action-packed, it was bookmarked by significant events, starting with Quartararo getting the holeshot into turn one over Espargaro while just behind them, Takaaki Nakagami lost the front on the brakes and unluckily tagged both Pecco Bagnaia and Alex Rins, taking them into the gravel with him. That left the Pramac boys with the task of chasing the two race favourites left in contention, with Pol Espargaro and Joan Mir close behind – the Suzuki man particularly impressive coming from 17th on the grid. Luca Marini, Maverick Viñales and the Gresini boys completed the top 10 after the opening lap, with the factory KTMs knocking at the doors as well.

Quartararo’s early pace gave him half a second of advantage straight away, while Martin attacked Aleix Espargaro to lead the pursuit by lap three, dropping Zarco one second back. Another second behind the Frenchman, the younger Espargaro was under pressure from Mir and Marini, the duo quickly getting ahead of the Honda and frequently swapping places in the lead of the group, while Espargaro lost more positions to Bastianini and Viñales, dropping into the clutches of the factory KTMs and continuing to fade. However, Bastianini’s comeback did not last much longer, as he crashed out of seventh position on lap eight, swiftly followed by his teammate, Fabio Di Giannantonio, replicating the mistake at turn 13 by the end of that same lap.

Back at the front, Quartararo extended his advantage to over 2.5 seconds on lap eight, Martin leading the pursuit with Espargaro in tow. The Aprilia man managed to overtake the youngster at the start of lap 10 but had a 3.3-second gap to close if he wanted to challenge Quartararo as well. Although Zarco had rejoined the podium party and was close behind his teammate, didn’t really swap paint and were biding their time to retaliate against Espargaro. Meanwhile, Mir was dropping Marini in the fight for fifth and Alex Marquez had admirably joined the top 10 party as the standout Honda, with Nakagami and Bradl having crashed out and Espargaro steadily fading to the back of the field.

Although the pace started to settle at the halfway point of proceedings, Quartararo still managed to increase his advantage to four seconds, while Aleix Espargaro could not quite shake off Martin and Zarco. The status quo was maintained in the top 10 for the next few laps, with significant gaps from fifth place onwards, Espargaro the only rider under pressure at that stage. With nine laps remaining, Martin pulled alongside the Aprilia man into turn one and deposed his compatriot of second, but Espargaro was not keen to give up just yet, glued to the Ducati’s tail. Zarco kept close but was saving his first attack, hoping that the harder rear tyre would present an advantage at the right time.

With Quartararo off in the distance by five long seconds, all the attention was on the battle for second, where Espargaro returned the favour to Martin at turn one with four laps remaining. The poleman picked up the pace in an attempt to shake off the Ducatis and it seemed to work, Martin quickly dropping half a second back and out of overtaking range for the next couple of laps. There was still a smidgen of drama in store though, Espargaro’s maths failing him as he entered the final lap, disgruntledly waving to the fans and unintentionally gifting Martin and Zarco the remaining podium positions. By the time the Spaniard realised his mistake, Mir had gone past as well and although he snatched fifth back from Marini, it was a massive own goal in the world championship standings. Teammate Viñales came home in seventh position, ahead of the KTMs of Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira, while Alex Marquez rounded out the top ten as the top Honda, coming from last on the grid and after a massive tumble in practice.

Quartararo’s undisputed victory and Espargaro’s rookie mistake helped the Frenchman extend a 22-point advantage in the world championship standings, while Bastianini drops a sizable 53 points back, as the headliner of Ducati’s title bid, with Bagnaia dropping to fifth, 66 points back.

Results:

Pos No. Rider Bike Time/Diff
1 20 Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 40:29.3600
2 89 Jorge Martin Ducati 6.473
3 5 Johann Zarco Ducati 8.385
4 36 Joan Mir Suzuki 11.481
5 41 Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 14.395
6 10 Luca Marini Ducati 15.430
7 12 Maverick Viñales Aprilia 15.975
8 33 Brad Binder KTM 21.436
9 88 Miguel Oliveira KTM 26.800
10 73 Alex Marquez Honda 30.460
11 87 Remy Gardner KTM 32.443
12 40 Darryn Binder Yamaha 32.881
13 21 Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 33.168
14 43 Jack Miller Ducati 34.693
15 25 Raul Fernandez KTM 37.844
16 51 Michele Pirro Ducati 44.533
17 44 Pol Espargaro Honda 46.199
Not Classified
  4 Andrea Dovizioso Yamaha 29:23.8590
  49 Fabio Di Giannantonio Ducati 14:56.8140
  23 Enea Bastianini Ducati 11:55.3070
  72 Marco Bezzecchi Ducati 09:39.3690
  63 Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 04:29.5870
  30 Takaaki Nakagami Honda  
  6 Stefan Bradl Honda  
  42 Alex Rins Suzuki  
Round Number: 
9
2022
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Comments

What a first and last lap. Was Zarco gassed when he spoke in Parc Ferme? Burping and gasping, his posture doesn't look good either. I wonder whats up. As a Fabio fan I couldn't be more pleased. Taka needs to take a break. If I was him and I pulled that bone head move. I'd lay on the track even if I was fine and let them haul me away in the meat wagon just so I wouldn't have to face the press. Aleix... what can I say. I'm not a fan and was praying that Martin and Zarco would get past just so I wouldn't have to listen to him in Parc Ferme. At first I thought he ran out of gas. Frankly this could ruin him psychologically, he should see a shrink tomorrow. He needs to remember he isn't an alien, but a guy lucky enough to be on the best bike on the grid. What the hell was Carmelo doing in his box after that incident. Does he really think he brought value to the situation? Sheesh. Gotta love those steam punk trophies.

 

No drinks, but plenty of drugs. I am not adverse to learning however. Was the JZ comment so controversial or is there something else? It's funny, on 2nd watch I noticed it less. Perhaps I'm projecting. I reported to my Doc last week that I think my lung cancer has given me suffocation anxiety. Still there is something about JZ that seems different. Maybe purely fitness, anyone know ?

I have. It is NOT fun. And you don't recover immediately after getting off the bike. That's probably all it was. I agree he seemed a bit off, maybe just wanted to be somewhere else, lol.

That and higher (35 is what, 95F). Yes hauling the duck around could easily "wind" anyone. I seem to remember Merkel during his WSBK days saying how he would take his heart rate up to 150, just before puking. So yes there was a rhetorical aspect to my question. It was not a judgement call on JZs fitness. Im am a fan of his FWIW.

I am currently working with a patient that just had surgery removing part of his lung that had cancer. For SURE breathing struggles brings a physiologically based anxiety. We are doing some work on exhale focused awareness. At the end of exhale, there is a pause before inhale naturally starts. If you place awareness upon this, there may be a softening and dropping of the diaphragm. That is key. (One can also get agitated, a more irritated anxious flavor). 

Wishing you well with it. I too have people that bug me around the Paddock. Zarco is odd to me. Someone here joked once something like he always looks and sounds like he is holding in a fart. Must be the eyebrows poking up. Aleix is an externalizer of the ADHD sort, part of his mistake today likely. Martin in the presser was overly slack and casual, perhaps even a detriment to perceived professionalism - slouched over, eating a sandwich, hat backwards etc. Hasty answers. Or maybe Quartararo is just such a neat guy that next to him folks look like fart clench and sloucho.

I was viscerally embarrassed for Aleix. Those points may lose him a place in the Championship later! 

Poor Rins getting a second Taka incident in two races. He broke his wrist I think, and has a right to be mad. Mir had a good race finally, very happy to see that for he and Suzuki. About to do a rewatch. 

I tell my students that one can't inhale fully without the previous full exhalation. For some of them, it's a real change of understanding. The pause is always there, it's just how long we choose to make it.

All my best with your patient, motoshrink.

I’m honestly wondering what FQ would be like on a bike with a bit more grunt. Chassis seems to be what he likes and he is able to exploit that corner speed unlike anyone else, metronomic consistency just like Jorge! These last two tracks, especially Mugello rewarded speed. It’s a bit ominous to to see that ,  he (FQ) took P2 and P1 and these  tracks where he should have suffered……Not good for the competition ….

Fabio

2021: 341.7 kph -8.9 (Win)

2022: 337.5 kph -10.8 (Win)

Miller

2021: 350.6 kph +8.9 (finished 3rd)

2022: 348.3 kph +10.8 (finshed 14th)

Taka Naka still got a 300kph for his run to T1 ! Some drag race.

Imagine what Aleix would have been like if the shoe was on the other foot!

Is there any news on Taka besides he's staying overnight in hospital?

Rins will be even more pissed at him due to a broken wrist!

Would have been a much more interesting race if Taka had slept in this morning.

 

What is happening with Jack Miller from being very competitive to being way down at the bottom of the field in the last couple of races and practice has Ducati done the same as Honda has done with Pol Espargaro and taken all the good stuff off him since he was told by Ducati no place for him and he appears to be going to KTM.

He has good kit. Poor Jack looks to just be gutted that they let him go? That is my take but could be wrong. 

Pol didn't get good stuff taken from his bike, he just didn't get the development parts coming made available from Marc's bike. It makes sense to have bike development done by riders staying, it isn't entirely personal nor punishment. 

Wishing Jack well. Tough time.

The Suzuki thing has left a lot of folks looking shell shocked in the paddock, not just the folks working for Suzuki (Jack, Taka, Olivera, Pol, to name a few). If I was Olivera, I'd be a little less adamant, no? Jack? Well if there was any indication that the most important adjustment one has on a bike is the nut between the grips, there you have it.

What's up with Crafar? Why is Amy doing the interviews now?

We smiled when Matt (is he safe in the box?) said he'd "never seen" such a mistake as Aleix made. I guess he was in nappies when Roberts Jr did it?

Good to know.

Our fav journo David asked Q1 in the presser! "When do you know the race is over?" I wonder if AE's pit board was wrong?

No, he just blew it.

The TOWER goes from 1 to zero on lap countdown, Aleix says he had seen that and made the mistake from seeing the 1.

Why didn’t he look for the chequered flag ffs!??

 

Surely the laps to go are on the digital dashes they've all got?  It's basically the most important info of the race.  We already have a perfect distillation of all the crap that a rider needs to know and it's called a pit board.  Laps and gaps, that's what matters.  Aliex said he couldn't see his pit board and used the tower, that info should be on the dash surely?

I was gutted, he and Aprilia are the perfect underdogs and I'd love nothing more than him winning the title.  Hope he doesn't miss out by less than nine points!  I suspect I'm like many and never really rated Aliex before, but the way he's racing this year is pretty impressive.  Aside from losing Fabio early on, he rode a great race to what should have been another strong podium (depending on the other great what-if of the first corner).

When Fabio and Pecco were messing with Aleix's handlebar buttons after qualifying. Maybe one of them turned off his lap counter button thingys?

:-D

 

I just watched Rins and Pecco lobbying for a penalty against Taka. I can understand why, Pecco really didn't need a DNF and poor Rins now has a busted wrist. Totally Taka's fault, can't be any other way. Reminds me of Lorenzo taking out Dovi, Mav and Rossi same race 2019. Taka braked a tad deep, silly thing to do running into the first turn...but...the only difference between this and Pecco in Qatar is a number of laps and one extra bike. Also in both cases if they had been just that little bit more lucky or careful and not crashed they would both be the hero, same as any other rider who passes a rival. Extra hero for taking many riders off the start. If overtaking is becoming more difficult the start would be titled 'opportunity' in big bold flashing green letters. Rins said he thought the stewards do not deserve to be in this sport. Fate is going to pay this back.

Sure..because he took Pecco out ? I think, going into T1 lap 1 they should have some care. They are braking into a complex evolving mix. The similarities with 2019 keep popping into my head. What lessons can be taken by Taka and the rest of the field from this incident ? In 2019 Marc happened to dive up the inside of Dovi at that very same turn Lorenzo made a mess, nice aggressive and successful. If Marc hadn't took that risk right there and then he may well have been taken out by Lorenzo. Today Fabio was aggressive into T1. Ok, he wasn't in the Taka firing line and in making his move he had no other riders in front of him (Taka did) but still, a good aggressive move and into the lead. Pecco more circumspect. When Marc dived up the inside Dovi took a slower slightly wider entry hoping that Marc would run wide, watching and waiting a little. Maybe Pecco could have been on the rear tyre of Fabio, risky, could get caught up in any contact between Aleix and Fabio but he would have been at least a helmets width over to the right and escaped the carnage. Sometimes being more aggressive pays off in unforeseen ways. Unfortunately, aggressive is exactly what Taka was doing. Doesn't always work out. An easy mistake, it's round 9 of 20, I don't think any riders championship aspirations should come into it. This incident can not be viewed as destroying Pecco's championship bid, the previous 8 rounds may have something to do with that. It's all getting very tight. Maybe this will not be the last of the season.

On a lighter note, seeing as his injuries do not seem too bad (I hope that's correct), maybe we can give some credit back to Taka for actually managing to take out a MotoGP bike with a head butt.

Working under the assumption that what we have heard is correct and Taka is fundamentally OK, damn that crash sent a chill down my spine when I worked out he took down Pecco with his head!  The helmet being pushed into the rotating tyre could so easily have just snapped his neck.  Damn.

I do feel for Rins, that's three DNF's in a row that more or less aren't his fault.  What seemed like a pretty solid championship challenge looks pretty much derailed by now.  Hope the wrist isn't too bad and he's back for Sausagering, he was running really strongly there behind Marc before one of his customary (that year) unforced errors.  Could be a dark horse for that one if fit.

That was a seriously fcking stupid move from Taka. I rather like the guy, but I hope he gets shipped back to Japan next year.

Nakagami did get a killer start, almost passed eight riders into turn one, and hit the brakes before Quartararo did. But Taka probably tried to pass one rider too many, and bit off more than he could chew. Blame it on that dodgy RCV front. The Honda ain't no Yamaha. The Ducati is! At least when it comes to the rookies. Quartararo did say he took a big risk into the first turn, but he didn't crash. Just as easily could have gone the other way, with Quartararo skittling Espargaro and Nakagami benefitting. 

I agree that Zarco looks worn out after the races sometimes. He hints at how tiring riding a motogp bike can be. And his results average with the big bikes has been lower after the summer break than before. He may not be looking forward to the twenty race calendar. Just observations, I could be wrong. I like the guy. 

... looked slightly less killer. A little wheelie on the clutch release. Half a meter further down the track and Nakagami's head would have missed that his rear wheel. I'm with [sorry... insert previous commentator here] that Taka's neck is fortunate not to be broken.

around here. Racing means risks, and they can lead to either rewards or failures. First lap incidents happen. When they take out championship contenders or riders get hurt its a shame but its going to happen. Nakagami has a record the speaks for itself. The Japanese manufacturers want one of their kin in the field but it may be hard to justify based on results and outcomes, reagrdless of this mistake. There is a lot of talent out there.

Aleix is kicking himself and let the team down. Horrible loss for him, I wish him the best. He will fight for wins again and will not repeat this error. I have made this mistake when on the track in anger as have other racers of much higher caliber than anyone who posts on this forum. We should be careful in judgement.

Riding a motorcycle faster than all but 3 (2 if we discount AE) of arguably the fastest riders on the planet is hard work. Depending on your riding style, the heat and humidity, and how much you are fighting the bike it can be that much harder. JZ seemed worn out, he's entitled to be. He's also 8 or 9 years older than the guys that finished ahead of him. He gave his all, give the guy a break.

The one fact that keeps getting hammered home is that there is only 1 alien. FQ finished 27+ seconds ahead of all other Yammy's. Marc turned the Honda into his machine and dominated. Clearly both Honda and Yamaha need some key player insurance, too bad you can't get any. Or maybe you can... build a bike that everyone can go fast on. Oh, right, Ducati tried that with "the best bike on the grid" and its a failure. Interesting stuff... Poor KTM.

Pecco and Rins are understandably angry with Taka as this has cost them dearly, but both of them must be perfectly aware that, these days, your finishing position is hugely dictated by the position you’re in coming out of T1, so you have to go for it if you want a result. I imagine the ‘too hot’ vs ‘too careful’ line for T1 must be one of the finest judgements going, for riders, with 20-odd other bikes packed so closely. Me, I was just glad this didn’t become another fatality. Shades there of Marco Simoncelli’s accident.

I like seeing Quarty win, probably a Rossi-induced attachment to Yamaha, but I’m going to get mighty sick of seeing that perfectly waxed chest before much longer. I at least hope the waxing hurts like hell.

We’re almost halfway through the season now. Time was when a 50 point lead at this stage would mean the title was all but done. I’m discounting Aleix as I really don’t see him challenging for wins that often; probably always be up there in the top 3 or 4 this year, but the contest is between Quarty and Pecco. However, going back to the 50 point lead, it feels somehow different these days, perhaps because they are all that much closer to the edge and the likelihood of crashing seems higher. Or maybe because it’s not indicative of Quarty being so much better than everyone else as that others have made more mistakes or suffered greater misfortune. All things being equal, it’s Pecco that should have the 50 point lead by now, on that missile.

Bagnaia has been faltering, for whatever various reasons. Quarty is SUPER consistent. The French kid is going to be hard to catch when his bad days aren't so bad. 

to bring in "the cooler" for FQ. Otherwise, batta-bang batta-boom and another year bites the dust. And then if MM gets fixed... Well, where's Casey when you need him?

Pecco is on it now. Taka’s antics - the manoeuvre of a man under contractual pressure if ever there was one - have made Pecco’s task a lot more difficult of course but I still think he’s good enough to run Fabio close for the championship, and maybe clinch it. Let’s not forget that the bike wasn’t fully race ready at the start of the season, which immediately put him at a disadvantage against the same again Yamaha. It’s more fully developed now with more to come over the rest of the season against a Yamaha that’s already given of its best, capable of winning only in the hands of one very gifted young man. Can the second best rider on the best bike in the best team overcome the best rider on the third best bike with a 60 odd point lead in a mediocre team? With a bit of luck, I think he can. Or, to borrow a phrase David has been using this season, I wouldn’t bet against it. 

with your take on "best" teams I respect your opinion and like your approach. Pecco still has a shot for sure but Fabio better stop delivering the goods. Winners tend to win so the odds are not in his favor. Would be epic to see a comeback story for sure.

But you know the winners tend to win thing can become a real problem for a team when its flipped on its head. Loosers tend to loose, and I am sure that Piaggio coming in and bringing the goods does not help in a very Italian way. Might we start calling factory Ducati results "the curse of Casey"? For their sake I hope not. That being said, the way I see riders go from hero to zero makes me think the curse is self-imposed.

You give me pause for thought. Perhaps we are seeing Ducati overstretched and beginning to lose the initiative. The situation is certainly delicately poised. And who would begrudge Aprilia greater success, not this Motomutterer, not even if it came at Ducati’s expense. As for winners and losers, I see what you mean, after all I travelled half way round the world to watch Casey win the world championship (and on a Honda ffs). And yet, I hope it isn’t necessarily so because I have a soft spot for fast, fragile stars like Martin, Rins and Mav. And outsiders like Brad B. And I really want KTM to get itself properly in gear. I think they all have the capacity on their day to be winners - well, I hope so anyway - but maybe not all of them this year.

Especially about the "fast, fragile stars". I've no time for Vinales, but Martin, Rins, Casey in the day, Oliveira today ... like your thinking. And as for Brad B., I'd hardly consider him fragile! , but wish him and KTM all the best.

So are we generally of the opinion that it would be good to see Oliveira ona different bike now? And which? 

Forgive me if I am wrong, but I THINK Oliveira was seen going into the Lavender Gresini garage with his father/manager at Catalunya. Is my memory of who and where correct? Sound good to you? Does me.

on that bike and in that team. He knows that but so does the rest of the talent on the grid. It seems like as a rider the Italian brands are the bikes to be on. Of the Ducs, however, I'm not convinced the GP22 is superior to the 21. The results are baised by the experience of the riders on the 21's but clearly the Beast shows its a winner.

Got me thinking...

A 21/22 Duc is a good machine. We have to assume 23/22 wil be good as well. Thoughts on the 4 teams using the Ducs now. Who has the best shot at a rider's title for a guy looking for a ride? Me, I'd go... Pramac, Gresini, Factory, VR46 in that order. And I think the call between Pramac and Gresini is awfully close. I have to rank the factory squad third becuase the riders do not produce consistently good results commesorate with the investments (pressure is a huge issue I'm sure). VR46 is just too new. I am ignoring the pay here, just the guy who wants a title.

.....What is the penalty for exceeding track limits on the last lap? 3 seconds?

If so, AE41, should have been demoted to 7th place behind MV12!

AE41 finished 1second in front of LM10 and 1.5+ seconds in front of MV12!

Nope. If a rider exceeds the track limits on the last lap they must show a clear disadvantage. Aleix entered sector one in 2nd place, home town hero, six seconds behind Fabio. Aleix exceeded track limits because he thought the race was over, let us say, no excuse ! He finished sector one in 6th place having just been passed by Marini. Seeing as Marini finished the race 15 seconds behind Fabio we can have a rough guess and say Aleix lost 8 to 9 seconds in sector one. Aleix went on to finish the race in 5th place 14.3 seconds behind Fabio wearing a honorary novice hat. Quite the disadvantage.

Good point, but I think t is only applied when they are battling with another rider (I think there is even a rule of within x-seconds of another rider).  So if he ran the green AFTER waking from his slumber and getting back on it, and especially when trading places and/or defending against Marini then a penalty might apply.  I didn't notice whether he did that or not.  But if you're implying the way he ran the greens on turn 1-2, he lost 4 places and 8 seconds dithering about there so it would be ridiculous to penalise him for it and I think the rules have (thankfully) been drawn up to allow for it.

Sure. I'm not sure why so many people get excited with the last lap part. It's simple, they only get one strike and as it's the last lap so no chance to apply a long lap. Other than that it's exactly the same as the rest of the race. If a rider does not or cannot take the long lap penalty in the race then a time penalty comes their way. Fabio, Misano 2020 comes to mind.

If you leave the track during the race and show a disadvantage, it's ok, no penalty or addition to track limit tally...regardless of which lap. One way to measure 'a disadvantage' is time lost, I think it's minimum +1 second on that sector time. Fabio cut the track last year in Catalunya (there's no tally for missing a corner, corners are defined) because Fabio lost less than 1 second he got a penalty even though he was slower than a normal lap. If Fabio had lost more than 1 second, no penalty regardless of which lap. Aleix did the same thing and lost 8 seconds or so. The fact that it was the last lap makes no difference. The idea is that the race ends as it should have done so. The penalty is not a punishment, more a redress to sporting results. Which leads to the point that if a rider doesn't lose +1 second in that sector and a 3 second penalty means he finishes 1 second ahead of the next rider instead of 4 then neither losing +1 second or being given a 3 second penalty changes anything....they don't bother with the paper.