Quartararo dominates British MotoGP, Miller fourth
Sunday 29th August, 2021 - 11:05pm
Fabio Quartararo has run away with the British MotoGP while Jack Miller just missed out on the podium.
Quartararo took the lead for the first time on Lap 5 at Silverstone and, with his title rivals struggling, rode his Monster Energy Yamaha to a victory which puts him 65 points up in the championship.
Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins claimed second from 10th on the grid, and Gresini Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro prevailed in a late battle with Ducati Lenovo’s Miller for third.
At the start, Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda) led the field away from pole position, with Quartararo second and Aleix Espargaro jumping to third by the time they reached Maggotts.
Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) had begun the day in a tie for second in the championship with Joan Mir, and that was where the Italian sat in the race after a successful divebomb into Stowe on Lap 1, while Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) and Jorge Martin (Pramac Ducati) made contact just behind.
They survived that, but a second touch, when Marquez tried to pass Martin off Vale and into Club, took both down and out of the race.
Aleix Espargaro then passed Bagnaia at Brooklands and thus, at the end of the standing lap, they were second and third respectively, from Quartararo, Miller, Valentino Rossi (Petronas SRT Yamaha), Mir (Suzuki Ecstar), and Rins.
Aleix Espargaro dived at Pol Espargaro at Stowe on Lap 3 but could not make the move stick, before Quartararo took third off Bagnaia into Village later that lap.
Quartararo passed Aleix Espargaro for second at The Loop on Lap 4, and Bagnaia also moved by #41 down the Wellington Straight, but would soon cede third to the Aprilia rider again.
On Lap 5, Quartararo hit the front when he sliced past Pol Espargaro at Farm, and quickly set about gapping the #44 Honda.
Meanwhile, Miller, still running fifth, had fended off one attack from Mir when he made a mistake at the start of Lap 6 and both Suzukis went through.
Aleix Espargaro overtook Pol Espargaro for second at Vale on Lap 6 but Quartararo was already moving to a full second clear of the chasing pack.
Like team-mate Miller, a Bagnaia error gave an easy position to each of the Suzukis, before Rins passed Mir for fourth into Stowe on Lap 7.
Rins was into the podium positions when he got through on Pol Espargaro at the Loop on Lap 8, while Quartararo was three seconds ahead of second-placed Aleix Espargaro with 11 laps down and nine to go.
Rins caught up to the Aprilia and when Aleix Espargaro ran wide at Stowe on Lap 12, #42 was through.
As Mir and Bagnaia started to seriously struggle for pace, Miller was on something of a resurgence, getting himself back into the top five and then closing up to Pol Espargaro.
The pole-sitter also ended up wide of the race line at Stowe, on Lap 15, and ‘Jackass’ rode through the gap to put the #43 Ducati into fourth position.
With two laps to go, Miller became a threat for a podium as he reduced the margin to Aleix Espargaro, while Quartararo was cruising at well over three seconds ahead of Rins.
On the final lap, Miller went down the inside of Aleix Espargaro at Village but #41 snatched the spot back almost immediately, through Aintree.
Quartararo took the chequered flag with a margin of 2.663s over Rins, while Aleix Espargaro’s podium is Aprilia’s first in the MotoGP era.
Behind Miller, fifth through ninth was Pol Espargaro, Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM), Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM), Alex Marquez (Castrol LCR Honda), and Mir, the latter of whom is still second in the championship.
Danilo Petrucci (Tech3 KTM) took 10th, ahead of Johann Zarco (Pramac Ducati), Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama Ducati), Takaaki Nakagami (Idemitsu LCR Honda), Bagnaia, and Luca Marini (Sky VR46 Esponsorama Ducati).
Finishing outside the points were Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM) in 16th and the other three on YZR-M1s, namely Cal Crutchlow (Monster Energy Yamaha) from Rossi and Jake Dixon (Petronas SRT Yamaha).
Martin and Marc Marquez would be the only non-finishers, while Lorenzo Savadori (Gresini Aprilia) had been withdrawn before Saturday action commenced.
Round 13 is the Aragon Grand Prix, at MotorLand Aragon, on September 10-12.
Race results: British MotoGP
|1||20||Fabio QUARTARARO||FRA||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||40:20.579|
|2||42||Alex RINS||ESP||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||+2.663|
|3||41||Aleix ESPARGARO||ESP||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||+4.105|
|4||43||Jack MILLER||AUS||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||+4.254|
|5||44||Pol ESPARGARO||ESP||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||+8.462|
|6||33||Brad BINDER||RSA||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+12.189|
|7||27||Iker LECUONA||ESP||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+13.560|
|8||73||Alex MARQUEZ||ESP||LCR Honda CASTROL||Honda||+14.044|
|9||36||Joan MIR||ESP||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||+16.226|
|10||9||Danilo PETRUCCI||ITA||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+16.287|
|11||5||Johann ZARCO||FRA||Pramac Racing||Ducati||+16.339|
|12||23||Enea BASTIANINI||ITA||Avintia Esponsorama||Ducati||+17.696|
|13||30||Takaaki NAKAGAMI||JPN||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||Honda||+18.285|
|14||63||Francesco BAGNAIA||ITA||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||+20.913|
|15||10||Luca MARINI||ITA||SKY VR46 Avintia||Ducati||+21.018|
|16||88||Miguel OLIVEIRA||POR||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+22.022|
|17||35||Cal CRUTCHLOW||GBR||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||+23.232|
|18||46||Valentino ROSSI||ITA||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||+29.758|
|19||96||Jake DIXON||GBR||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||+50.845|
|DNF||89||Jorge MARTIN||ESP||Pramac Racing||Ducati||19 Laps|
|DNF||93||Marc MARQUEZ||ESP||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||0 Lap|
Race winner: 20 laps