Quartararo dominates German MotoGP, Miller on podium

Fabio Quartararo. Picture: MotoGP.com

Fabio Quartararo has taken a stranglehold on the MotoGP title race after winning the German Grand Prix as Francesco Bagnaia crashed out and Jack Miller claimed an unlikely podium.

Bagnaia had qualified on pole at the Sachsenring but Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha) outbraked him at the first corner to take the initial lead, and was forceful in criss-crossing the Italian when he thought he had made the pass a lap later.

Then, in what seemed to be a pressure mistake, Bagnaia dropped his Desmosedici at Turn 1 on Lap 4 and he was out of the contest, a hammer blow to his title hopes.

There was a setback also for Ducati Lenovo team-mate Miller when the Queenslander served a long lap penalty on Lap 5, a punishment he was hit with after crashing under a yellow flag in practice.

Having inherited fourth spot as a result of Bagnaia’s spill, Miller himself nearly went down on the dirty track surface in the penalty loop before resuming in seventh.

He made light work of Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Ducati) and, once he had also cleared Fabio Di Giannantonio (Gresini Ducati) on Lap 12, ‘Jackass’ quickly moved up towards the two Aprilias.

Maverick Viñales was fourth at that point but ran well wide on Lap 18 at Turn 8 and handed the spot to Miller.

As it turned out, the rear ride height device on his RS-GP had become stuck and he would soon retire from the race.

Quartararo’s lead was more than two seconds at that point while Johann Zarco (Prima Pramac Ducati), who had overtaken Aleix Espargaro on Lap 2, ran in second place with an even bigger margin over the sole remaining Aprilia rider.

Quartararo got as much as 5.4s to the good before cruising to a 4.9s victory, his second in a row, with Zarco on his lonesome as he racked up another podium.

The fight for the final step of that podium was genuinely contested, however, with Miller twice firing his Ducati down the inside of Espargaro’s Aprilia at Turn 1, only to fail to stick the move when he ended up too deep.

However, then the Spaniard, who was wanting for rear grip, also ended up wide of the line on Lap 28 and #43 did not waste that chance.

Miller thus finished third and Espargaro fourth, ahead of Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Ducati), Martin, Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM), Di Giannantonio, Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM), and Enea Bastianini (Gresini Ducati).

Remy Gardner scored the final point by finishing 15th, three positions behind Tech3 KTM team-mate Raul Fernandez.

Only one of the Hondas made the chequered flag and that was Stefan Bradl (Repsol Honda) in 16th, meaning no points for the marque which had enjoyed a stranglehold on the Sachsenring courtesy of the currently injured Marc Marquez.

Quartararo looks more and more like joining Marquez as a multiple world champion given he is now more than a full race clear at the top of the points table with 10 rounds down and 10 to go.

Espargaro is 34 points back in second and Zarco 61 points or more than two full races in arrears in third, while Bagnaia is tied with Miller in sixth position at 91 points off the pace.

The Dutch TT takes place at Assen next weekend (June 24-26).

Race results: German MotoGP

Pos Num Rider Nat Team Bike Time/Gap
1 20 Fabio QUARTARARO FRA Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 41:12.816
2 5 Johann ZARCO FRA Prima Pramac Racing Ducati +4.939
3 43 Jack MILLER AUS Ducati Lenovo Team Ducati +8.372
4 41 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP Aprilia Racing Aprilia +9.113
5 10 Luca MARINI ITA Mooney VR46 Racing Team Ducati +11.679
6 89 Jorge MARTIN ESP Prima Pramac Racing Ducati +13.164
7 33 Brad BINDER RSA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +15.405
8 49 Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO ITA Gresini Racing MotoGP Ducati +15.851
9 88 Miguel OLIVEIRA POR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +19.740
10 23 Enea BASTIANINI ITA Gresini Racing MotoGP Ducati +21.611
11 72 Marco BEZZECCHI ITA Mooney VR46 Racing Team Ducati +23.175
12 25 Raul FERNANDEZ ESP Tech3 KTM Factory Racing KTM +26.548
13 21 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +29.014
14 04 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team Yamaha +30.680
15 87 Remy GARDNER AUS Tech3 KTM Factory Racing KTM +30.812
16 6 Stefan BRADL GER Repsol Honda Team Honda +52.040
DNF 44 Pol ESPARGARO ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda +8 laps
DNF 12 Maverick VIÑALES ESP Aprilia Racing Aprilia +11 laps
DNF 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN LCR Honda IDEMITSU Honda +24 laps
DNF 73 Alex MARQUEZ ESP LCR Honda CASTROL Honda +24 laps
DNF 40 Darryn BINDER RSA WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team Yamaha +25 laps
DNF 63 Francesco BAGNAIA ITA Ducati Lenovo Team Ducati +27 laps
DNF 36 Joan MIR ESP Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +27 laps

Race winner: 30 laps

Riders’ championship

Pos Rider Nat Pts
3 Johann ZARCO FRA 111
5 Brad BINDER RSA 82
6 Francesco BAGNAIA ITA 81
7 Jack MILLER AUS 81
8 Alex RINS ESP 69
9 Joan MIR ESP 69
10 Miguel OLIVEIRA POR 64
11 Jorge MARTIN ESP 61
12 Marc MARQUEZ ESP 60
13 Luca MARINI ITA 52
14 Maverick VIÑALES ESP 46
16 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN 38
18 Alex MARQUEZ ESP 26
21 Darryn BINDER RSA 10
22 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA 10
25 Michele PIRRO ITA 0
26 Stefan BRADL GER 0
27 Lorenzo SAVADORI ITA 0

Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section

Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]