Coming off his maiden win the previous weekend at Jerez, Spain, Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s Fabio Quratararo made it two in a row during yesterday’s 2020 Moto GP race. Hailing from Nice, France, Quartararo started from pole position and won the race 4.495 seconds ahead of second place finisher Maverick Vinales, riding for Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing.
In third place, and finally back on the podium, was crowd favourite Valentino Rossi, also of Monster Energy Yamaha. This marks the first Yamaha one-two-three race finish in MotoGP since 2014 when Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, riding for Movistar Yamaha Racing finished first and second while Bradley Smith of Monster Yamaha Tech3 was third.
Incumbent MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez was certified fit to race after breaking his right humerus in a high-side the previous weekend. However, during practice, Marquez, riding for Repsol Honda, elected not to start the race, saying he preferred not to risk aggravating the fracture.
With two races down, Quartararo is at the top of the championship standings with 50 points, trailed by Vinales and Andrea Dovizioso of Mission Winnow Ducati Team with 40 and 26 points, respectively. The MotoGP circus moves to Brno for the Czech Republic Motorcycle Grand Prix on the weekend of August 9.
This year’s racing season is extraordinary for several reasons, the topmost of which is the restrictions posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. The calendar started in July, and will have only 13 races, with four fly-away rounds in Asia yet to be determined till end July.