2022 Phillip Island MotoGP Race Result: Another Phillip Island Special Edition

The Island ruled that the premier class shall enjoy summer for their 27-lap-long shenanigans, the gloomy downpour of a few hours prior quickly forgotten and action getting underway on a dry track under blue skies. And the crowds were treated to more than excellent weather, riders putting on a great show – from a lightning start to a last lap overtake for victory and ending with a cava-drenched-shoe-throwing competition on the podium. The most important of those achievements went the way of Alex Rins, who returns to the top step of the podium after a fourth row start and a race-long squabble with his fellow podium men, which concluded with him becoming the seventh different winner of the season. Marc Marquez also makes a long-awaited return to the podium, for the 100th time in the premier class, after gambling on a soft rear tyre and putting it to good use in countless overtakes on his way to second place. Pecco Bagnaia had to trade the first place trophy for the third place one on the final lap, but still leaves Australia as the championship leader, after a nightmare Sunday for Fabio Quartararo.

The spotlight was firmly on Jorge Martin once the lights went off, the poleman making a great launch ahead of Marc Marquez, the duo stretching almost a second’s advantage over the opening lap. They were somewhat helped by Aleix Espargaro attacking Bagnaia straight away and the Italian having to retaliate and take control of the chasing pack. Quartararo survived a mistake-laden second lap but eventually had to concede fifth place to a charging Jack Miller, while Alex Marquez was fending off the VR46 and Suzuki duos in the remaining top 10 positions. The notable absences from the limelight in the early laps were Enea Bastianini, who lingered in 17th position and Johann Zarco, who struggled with the start and dropped to 19th.

The gap at the front was short-lived, Martin and Marquez quickly reeled in by the sizeable group led by the two factory Ducatis, but that group no longer included Quartararo by lap four, the Frenchman having a big moment at the newly-baptised Miller Corner and dropping to 22nd position, some six seconds behind the leader. Talking of Miller, the home hero was busy putting pressure on his teammate in the early podium battle, the occasional exchanges giving Martin and Marquez a smidgen of breathing room at the front. But it wasn’t just Miller who was on a charge early on, Rins quickly climbing up to fifth by lap six and attacking the Australian for fourth next time around, in one of many successful moves at the Southern Loop. The Suzuki man pulled a duplicate overtake on Bagnaia one lap later, while Aleix Espargaro saw an opportunity to attack Miller as well, the Australian appearing to lose ground after the fast start. However, it’s hard to say how the race wouldn’t progressed for the home favourite, as Alex Marquez misjudged his braking turn four and barged into an unlucky Miller at his own corner. The incident left Marco Bezzecchi, Brad Binder, Luca Marini, Maverick Viñales and Remy Gardner in the remaining top 10 places, with Bastianini making some progress in 13th and Quartararo re-joining point-scoring positions. However, the Yamaha man didn’t get to enjoy the comeback for long, dramatically crashing out at turn two just one lap later.

While all that was unfolding, Rins had been sniffing around Marquez for a couple of laps and eventually made his move with 18 laps to go – then immediately having a go at Martin but less successfully. A decisive move did eventually come at his favourite turn two with 14 laps remaining, Rins taking control of proceedings, while Bagnaia, Marquez and Bezzecchi profited to demote Martin by the end of that same lap. That was the beginning of a long series of exchanges between the three main protagonists, but while the trio stole the spotlight past the halfway point of proceedings, the likes of Bezzecchi, Martin, Espargaro, Binder, Marini, Zarco and even Bastianini were still within the 10-man leaders’ group.

With Bagnaia back in a familiar position - untroubled at the front - Rins kept Marquez entertained in the battle for second, the Suzuki man getting ahead of his compatriot with 10 laps remaining, as did Martin at turn eight, the poleman returning onto the provisional podium – at least for a couple laps, until Bezzecchi mugged them both at turn one with eight laps remaining.

Rins went on to reclaim the lead that same lap, but it was a tough ask to maintain it with a gaggle of Ducatis on his tail, plus Marquez. Just on cue, both Bagnaia and Bezzecchi got ahead next time into turn one, Marquez following their example a couple corners later, demoting Rins to fourth in the blink of an eye. It was nowhere near the end of that podium story, with 10 men still in contention in the leading group with half a dozen laps left. Marquez had a particularly eventful few laps, peppered with a couple of close encounters with the likes of Rins and Martin, but the Honda man kept finding his way back near the podium. Marini also started to become a factor with five laps remaining, the Italian finally breaking into the top five at the expense of Martin.

Bagnaia and Bezzecchi started the final four laps unchallenged for a good few minutes, but Rins and Marquez still looked like a threat and the Spaniards overhauled the rookie at turn four one lap later and distanced him slightly. The continuous squabble between Marquez and Rins prevented them from making any significant moves on Bagnaia, until Rins attacked decisively at the start of final lap. Marquez smelled blood and immediately got past Bagnaia as well. He then tried his best to find a gap around Rins, forcing his Honda into some pretty alternative lines, but the Suzuki man defended beautifully to secure his team's first victory of the season, while Marquez settled for second and some light crowd surfing at turn 10. Bagnaia resigned to taking third, while Bezzecchi took the title of Rookie of the Year with fourth place. Bastianini’s habitual late race pace helped him take fifth ahead of Marini, while Martin settled for seventh, only eight tenths behind the victor. Aleix Espargaro faded to ninth in the final couple of laps, with Binder rounding out the top 10.

Although he missed out on victory, Bagnaia leaves Australia as the championship leader, but although Quartararo didn’t do himself any favours, Rins and Marquez inadvertently helped him out with their last lap adventures, limiting his deficit to 14 points. Aleix Espargaro is now trailing the Italian by 27 points, while Bastianini is still in mathematical contention with a 42-point deficit.

Results:

Pos No. Rider Bike Time/Diff
1 42 Alex Rins Suzuki 40:50.6540
2 93 Marc Marquez Honda 0.186
3 63 Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 0.224
4 72 Marco Bezzecchi Ducati 0.534
5 23 Enea Bastianini Ducati 0.557
6 10 Luca Marini Ducati 0.688
7 89 Jorge Martin Ducati 0.884
8 5 Johann Zarco Ducati 3.141
9 41 Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 4.548
10 33 Brad Binder KTM 5.940
11 44 Pol Espargaro Honda 11.048
12 88 Miguel Oliveira KTM 13.606
13 35 Cal Crutchlow Yamaha 13.890
14 40 Darryn Binder Yamaha 14.526
15 87 Remy Gardner KTM 19.470
16 25 Raul Fernandez KTM 20.645
17 12 Maverick Viñales Aprilia 22.167
18 36 Joan Mir Suzuki 23.489
19 45 Tetsuta Nagashima   39.618
20 49 Fabio Di Giannantonio Ducati 39.633
Not Classified
  21 Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 32:00.0870
  20 Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 15:15.7220
  73 Alex Marquez Honda 12:10.9700
  43 Jack Miller Ducati 12:10.4840
Round Number: 
18
2022
Tweet Button: 

Back to top

Comments

So pleased for Rins and Suzuki! Pecco said that his front tire was wearing more than he expected. It seems like he thought the pace was high, while Alex thought the pace was slow? Pecco certainly left the door open at turn 2 where Alex and Marc were so good. Thrilling race! We need more natural tracks like that and fewer Tilke Tron Tracks.

On the beach that's where Fabio Q's championship ended, in the sandpit graveltrap.

The Suzuki riders & Remy made their best efforts to enjoy what time remains to them, knowing they are doomed.

Great ride from Alex Rins, The Marc is back bringing the recalcitrant RCv with him.

Pecco did what he needed to do and took advantage of Fabulous Q scoring zero, again. Surprisingly cool head for PB 63.

Bez is a champion rookie and replacement tailgunner taking Jack's role.

Five Ducatis in a row? Lined up behind Francesco, No?

How many tail gunners does he need? Doesn't matter Alex Rins & Marc Marquez came through anyway.

 

I think only Bez played that game. The others finished where they finished but were never in a position to play tail gunner to Pecco. When there's eight Ducati and they are fast, you'll get long lines of Ducati.

the MSMA members see the numbers game as an advantage to the series or a hindrance. I would think that an agreement amongst the factories on a max number of bikes on the grid (say 4 - 2 factory, 2 satellite) would have appeal to the majority of factories. Dorna would likely oppose such a move. Perhaps MSMA has no say on these limits or it takes only a single member to veto. Regardless, the current state puts the series in a high degree of risk from a single manufacturer pulling out. Suzuki yanks 2 bikes and exits is one thing. Ducati exits with 8 and its an existential crisis. This also means that Ducati effectively have greater control over the series. Some may consider this a good thing but I doubt the other manufacturers do. 

On the one hand yes, Ducati having 8 bikes on the grid gives them a troubling level of power. On the other hand, 17 years ago there were 7 full time Hondas. Honda and especially Yamaha chose to restrict supply, nobody made them offer only year old hand me down equipment. Ducati offer a race winning package to anyone who can pay, even last year's bike gets the 'good' engines and tech support, none of the 'your bike, your problem,' nonsense bestowed upon Tech 3 in the past. It's up to the rest of the MSMA to match Ducati's offer.

I think a limit on numbers would only happen if there was a commitment from manufacturers to field that number. Not sure how that would work out when a manufacturer left the championship. It might also be slightly unfair to independent teams. They would have to draw straws to see which team was supplied with the bogey bike of the era. Currently, if you are going to spend your money, you would do well to spend it on a Ducati.

It was so good to be back at the Island. Spent every session front and centre at T2 and it paid off handsomely. 

Amazing race and keen as for the discussion here in the wash up. Eyes are bleeding now though and need sleep! 

I hope to get there some day! T2 seems an ideal location. Are there good organizers to recommend or is self-planning better.

Good question Jerry Neal. I always stay with a friend since my first time. Message me, contact in my profile.

There are many good points to watch the action from. It's good to be there Friday or Saturday and wander around the circuit. Visit different viewing locations. You can see half the track from T2 Southern loop and elsewhere.

Self plan Jerry! Apical knows the place as well as anyone. 

My advice is get yourself the best undercover grandstand seat that you can and make that your base for the weekend. You can go and stand anywhere you like all weekend with that ticket and it's around 5km to walk the whole perimeter at your leisure. If the weather goes bad you still have your throne to sit on.

Go all three days if you can and spend the extra bit for a paddock pass if you can stretch it too. Friday you can get all the merch and expo stuff done without the crowds and get your bearings and plan of attack ready for Sat/Sun.

Hope to see you there mate! 

Yes, by all means get there early and take the time to wander the track!

I was at PI for the last 2-stroke round, and did some watching on the field on the front straight, I think on Friday? It was interesting to note the difference in the exhaust notes from different brands. All 500cc 2-strokes, but very different exhaust notes at full song!

And I spectated from the stands at Siberia corner, and it is every bit as cold as the name suggests!

One thing that still remains with me from that day was the brilliance of Daijiro Kato (RIP) and how he opened the throttle in that corner many yards earlier than the rest of the 250cc field!

Since the track was repaved, only 2018 had a slower race time (1 second). Bastiannini crossed the line 20th on lap three, and still finished the race placed 5th. Quartararo was following him through the field when he crashed out, and could have finished somewhere in the front group, which would have been a minimum of eight points. Bez is a true wingman and the Ducati armada controlled the pace à la Dovi. Gigi has one iron fist on the rider's trophy. 

The exciting racing at PI is as much due to the track surface as the layout. The racing tends to be a jostling affair as riders try to conserve tires before a breakaway occurs after two-thirds distance. Can't help but wonder what the race would have been like if Michelin had brought tires that would have gone the distance. 

Of note, there was also a large damp patch near the entry apex of T2. You can't see it on the telly but even when the track was bone dry there is a crack in the pavement and the ground water (thanks to the flooding mid week) was still managing to seep upwards and create a patch of grease. The ground crew were trying to give it a work over before the big boys came out and I initially thought it was something to do with Fernandez dumping it. Nope, just a really tricky spot. 

devices sure do ruin the racing ;)

So good to have the cat amongst the pigeons again and Rins on pace without throwing it away! Shame for Miller but he appears ok. The Beast... still has to figure things out but the choice over Martin looks to have been the right one (this is in no way an indication that the call on Miller was right).

This has to be horribly difficult for FQ's head. He's still a winner, he has to believe it. That's been growing harder with each race. Odds did not favor a PB championship but they definitely do now.

Team red has done their best to buy the series. Very telling that Suzuki got the win. Produce a reasonably competitive bike, have a solid team, and its always the rider on the day that gets you the wins.

the very logical conclusion after years of failing to win championships with a limited number of bikes/ancient bikes on the grid... they would invest in expansion in order to win. This endeavor is most likely not profitable from monetarily, just a cost of doing business to win the title. The data from satellite teams surely feeds to the factory and further leads development. More bikes on the grid also means more power in the series for the manufacturer and more risk for the series as an independent entity. The Ducati exclusive agreement for moto-E must also be included here.

To play devils advocate, the one track where aero and ride height devices make the least difference is the track that one of the GOAT races just wrapped up. 

Tire conservation played a role, too. The Michelin folks told the riders to take it easy because they had no race data with the new construction. And they were correct in being wary - the left side of the fronts look wasted in the photos. But yeah, a classic track layout with only a couple of slow corners requiring hard braking offered up a classic race. There have been several in recent years at PI, but this one had the biggest, most tightly bunched group of riders at the finish line. A very exciting race.

I'm so happy for Rins for what will most likely be Suzuki's last MotoGP win.  He's a gentleman and a racer's racer, never dirty, super smooth, a class act as Simon likes to say.  I'm still gutted that the Suzuki bean counters have pulled the rug out from the team after their success and in building one of the best handling bikes on the grid.  

Fabio - I'm gutted for him as well but he's riding the slowest bike on the grid and riding the wheels off it as best he can.  He's obviously feeling the pressure but there's not much that can be done in a veritable unfair SEA of Ducatis on the grid.  Dorna, if Ducati has such an advantage, why not make the entire grid Ducati and turn it into another IROC series??  I own a Ducati but do not like their unfair advantage.  Even in WSBK.  We need a more level playing field.  

Yes, any other manu could potentially pony up the same well of funds to buy a third of the grid, so in that way it's equal - but looking at a train of 5 bikes behind Pecco none of whom would put a hard pass on him during the race yesterday made it a bitter pill to swallow. I think Bezz would definitely have at least tried to push up the inside of anyone else. 

I’ve been reading this a couple of times this weekend. Ducati buying the grid.
Honestly I don’t understand these statements nor do I agree.

Non-factory teams are free to pay for whatever machine they want.
a. They want the best package (can’t disagree the duc is currently the hottest property)
b. They want the most affordable package that can return their investment (again, the duc looks the prettiest girl at the prom)
c. The fact that Aprilia will sell 2 extra bikes is proof of the above

So I don’t see it on that side.

On the other hand, Ducati has
a. Taken YEARS to get to the level where they are at the moment
b. Spent tons of money, it’s their prerogative no? Honda and KTM do the same, I don’t see the same comments
c. Recognized, again years ago, that having more bikes meant having more data and ways to test/develop, which allowed them to improve quicker which in turn attracts interest from both teams and riders to get hold of a red bike. All that time exploiting the concessions and rules to the maximum. Why blame em?

All I see is a clever strategy, the desire to think out of the box, the will to spend money and a determination to reach their goal which clearly is to win the rider championship. If you have invested all they did (time, money and energy), you sure as hell want to reach your goal.

These past years, people were praising Ducati for their relentless efforts, their cleverness and let’s not forget Gigi for his engineering prowess.
Now that they have one hand on the trophy, all of a sudden they’re the bad guys?

Last thoughts, got to get to work…
It’s not their fault Suzuki never got extra bikes on the grid and are now pulling out all together.
It’s not their fault both Honda and Yamaha, the biggest factories in the small world of MotoGP, have underachieved massively in terms of development the last couple of years. Combined with putting all their eggs in one basket. You reap what you sow.
Nor that KTM have yet to deliver while spending enormous amounts of money too.

I’ll ask again, explain to me how they bought the grid?

Cheers

Agreed.

Might also be worth pointing out that Pecco has never been handed a victory through team orders this year. He has six wins. Enea has four wins and Jack has one. Ducati grand total of 11 wins. None of the Ducati wins this season have been given. Without Pecco and Enea Ducati would only have 3 wins. Neither Pecco or Enea have been handed a victory. So far this year every manufacturer has at least one win.

On the point of 'buying a third of the grid', VR46 (maybe the boss had a good view of the offer in 2021) made quite a good choice of where to spend their money as did Gresini. The only other wise choice would have been Aprilia but that was an unknown pre 2022. I, as always, would also say that Yamaha would have been a good choice. Would have been, past tense. Looking across 2019/2020/2021 Yamaha looks good. However, the performance of RNF has been very disappointing as has the performance of Franco. On balance, if I had to pay the bills, Ducati all the way. Especially impressive is the quality of machinery and support given to all Ducati customers/partners.

Also worth noting that the top three in the teams championship is Ducati Lenovo, Aprilia Racing and KTM factory teams.

The top three places in the riders and teams championships are still occupied by three different manufacturers. The top ten riders include all manufacturers, ok half of them are Ducati. Twenty five years ago, 1997 the top 5 places in the final standings and 7 of the top ten were Honda.

***** WaveyD, well said!

Ducati and the rulebook even, have to give them hats off with their NASA bike getting the rulebook nod.

I do not like shapeshifters, but damn Duc has been repeatedly the tech spearhead. Even more so since Gigi. Their adaptation to the Michelins was BRILLIANT. 

The Red bike just plain beat the snot out of everybody. But, thankfully for us they don't have an overdog rider like Aliens Marc or Quarty. 

We get to enjoy their "who is Top Dog at Ducati?" subplot, with "who is getting the 2nd Red seat?" AND who is going to move up into the big $ Duc contracts into the mix to compete for a Red seat even.

Bezzecchi and his speed, defensive lines and efforts to support his Ranch cousin Bagnaia? Cool to watch. He played it perfectly and was FAST yesterday. 

Rins and Suzuki, Marc and the Honda, even Quartararo overriding Blue into the dirt - BRILLIANT in the midst of the Duc Armada. 

^ Wavey, you nor I being a Ducati fan in particular puts on on the same page about them consistently. I appreciate it! I am not a Yamaha fan either, so when we are considering  Blue it can get less congruent, but no less interesting.

Looking fwd to more Honda discussions moving fwd now that The Marc is really back and the bike is getting developed. That bike is not far off, it gas LOTS of potential. Updates are coming. He is going to be a 2023 Title contender, is he not folks?

Me? Wearing my brand new Aprilia jersey today at work doing phone-based sessions until patiens are here late afternoon. Viva Black! But what manufacturer, Team, or even RIDER am I a fan? 

Raul next year. Honda too! Pecco right now. For sure Bastiannini and the Lavendar non - Yellow Gresini Italian squad. Suzuki for sure. Binder! Miller last Sunday. Et al...

ALL OF THEM in MotoGP. (Now, about that Triumph in WSS...)

v Hey Cloverleaf, thanks for that email a bit ago - sorry I didn’t get to responding before it left top of the pile awareness. Enjoying the racing? Fancy your chances for Top 5 2022?

v v Matonge is right, Bagnaia is here to stay and career trajectory on a climb with bumps in it after a LONG low approach in to adapt. Isn't "Astronauting" cool to watch? Could he hang with the Aliens as their bikes catch up to his? And heck, who else is joing the pointy business?! Rins once. Oliveira once a week ago. TEN riders could podium in Sepang in a week, if not 12. Half dozen could win. 

Hot? Layout change? Here come tire choices and a fresh set of challengers coming from mid pack. 

:)

Thanks for the star rating. I don't think Ducati are quite so dominant. As I mentioned, without Pecco and Enea, Ducati would have only three wins. That's eight less than their current total of 11. That means that on eight of the occasions when Pecco or Enea won, it would not have been a Ducati inheriting a win as a result of their demise. Instead...

Qatar -> KTM, Brad Binder +1

COTA -> Suzuki, Alex Rins +1

Jerez, Mugello & Spielberg -> Yamaha, Fabio Quartararo +3

Silverstone & Misano -> Aprilia, Maverick Vinales +2

Aragon ->Aprilia, Aleix Espargaro +1

A totally different (fantasy) season, a totally different view on the Ducati. Having a Ducati, even a very well supported one, does not guarantee success. It's not that far ahead. Pramac + Zarco & Martin + Ducati would still have zero wins even if Enea, Pecco and Jack had crashed out of every single race. It's not a 2003 Honda which won all but one race. In 2003 even if Rossi had crashed out of every race Honda would still have won all but 3 races (good on you Loris)....but then again....in 2003 Honda had a great bunch of riders - Rossi, Gibernau, Biaggi and Hayden. That's four of your top five championship positions sorted (Never forget Kato, Ukawa and Tamada). I think Ducati have two great riders this year. Without Pecco, Ducati do not win the title. That's not just chance or fortune (Pecco has had more than his fair share of misfortune) that's doing the job, the job the other Ducati riders cannot do this year....winning. The Ducati is, I guess, dominating but the margins are very tight these days. Next year...the error bars remain large which is great news for the sport. Eight bikes or ten bikes, they will not dominate...a rider or riders may.

Great analysis WaveyD1974.
I’m a numbers/stats guy, keep em coming.

This is why I’m a subscriber of Motomatters and all that comes with it. Top level content and interesting contributions from readers.
And Shrinks’ multiple high speed trains of thoughts, can’t forget those ^_^

Pecco is the real deal, it shows. On track and numberswise