MotoGP of Italy: Quartararo ends Ducati dominance with emotional Mugello victory | MotoGP

Fabio Quartararo survived an early challenge to take the lead from Francesco Bagnaia and then let go of Ducati dominance on their home track with an unparalleled win at the MotoGP Italian Grand Prix at Mugello, round six of the championship.

The race was preceded by a minute’s silence in memory of Moto3 rider Jason Dupasquier, who succumbed to injuries in qualifying. His death was announced shortly after the first race of the day.

Quartararo started from pole position, but was immediately under pressure from home driver Bagnaia. An unforced mistake by the Ducati man knocked his main rival out of the race as early as the second lap, and from there the Yamaha rider was able to break the checkered flag three seconds behind.

The Frenchman’s third win of the season ended Ducati’s dominance at Mugello, where they had won the last three races on the track, and thus extends his title lead – he now has a total of 105 points, while Zarco is second with 81 points.

Red Bull KTM’s Miguel Oilveira saw Johann Zarco struggle with his tires in front of him and took advantage of catching up with the Pramac rider to finish second but was unable to catch a distant Quartararo.

After the race, the Portuguese was downgraded one place for exceeding the track limit, but was reinstated when third-placed Joan Mir did the same.

All those on the podium dedicated their appearances to the late Dupasquier with touching, heartfelt speeches.

On the subject of matching items

Behind the winner, the duels were pretty defined until the end of the race, with Zarco and Oliveira at war while the Suzuki duo battled each other.

Rins made a late mistake that slipped him out of the race on lap twenty while the fading Zarco saw his tires were tough to maneuver as he lost positions.

Reigning champion Mir rallied for the final podium while Zarco, who rode a damaged motorcycle after Enea Bastianini crashed into him at the end of the warm-up lap as the starting grid was forming, still scored valuable points in fourth.

On the subject of matching items

Last two lap winner Jack Miller was initially pursued by the Suzuki pairs but when they left he caught the interest of Brad Binder, who finished fifth in the second Red Bull KTM outing.

The Australian brought the Ducati home in sixth, almost two seconds ahead of Aleix Espargaro, who put Aprilia in the top 7 despite his arm pumping problems that emerged on such a twisting track.

Maverick Vinales was unable to recover from his poor qualifying, which resulted in him not progressing from Q1 and starting 13th. The new father finished the race in eighth place after picking up a few riders in front of him and benefiting from several falls early in the race. A long battle with Michele Pirro came to an end when the couple received a route limit warning.

As there was no Mugello race last year, the youngest winner on the track was the 2019 winner Danilo Petrucci. This time he finished ninth for Tech 3 KTM.

Although Valentino wasn’t in the same universe as his seven straight wins at the Italian Grand Prix, he still put on a show on race day. In his cow helmet with a Moo Gello motif, he wanted to give his absent fans something to cheer for. With his late move to Iker Lecuona, he ended a very difficult weekend with a top ten finish for Petronas Yamaha.

That brought Lecuona back from Tech 3 to eleventh place, ahead of top Honda finisher Pol Espargaro on the factory bike in twelfth place. In memory of Dupasquier, the Spaniard drove the race with the number 50 on his Minion helmet.

A late run through the gravel left Pirro in 13th place for Jorge Martin in Pramac.

The last points went to Alex Marquez (LCR Honda Castrol) in 14th and Gresinis Lorenzo Savadori in 15th.

Franco Morbidelli finished 16th, but saw his chance for a points place lost when he had to avoid a falling Marc Marquez at the beginning of the race and had to run far in the gravel. Marquez had tried to fit into a space filled by Binder and had pinched the motorcycle in front of them.

Taka Nakagami had finished eighth as the top Honda and was just setting the fastest lap when he ran far at turn fourteen with three laps to go.

The MotoGP paddock is moving straight to Barcelona for the Catalonia Grand Prix next weekend.