Italian MotoGP: Quartararo extends his lead with Mugello victory and Márquez crashes again

Reigning MotoGP season leader Fabio Quartararo has further consolidated his position after claiming his third victory (Doha y Portugal) of the year at the Italian MotoGP this Sunday. The Frenchman dominated the race with great authority at Mugello, stretching his lead of the standings to 26 points. 

A remarkable Miguel Oliveira claimed second place. The Portuguese pilot has won the first podium of the year for KTM opening the door of recovery for the orange bikes.

Third place has gone to crown holder Joan Mir (Suzuki) who is starting to show his claws. Mir has visibly grown through the race, achieving a handful of points that could become crucial at the end of the season. 

Johann Zarco (Ducati Pramac Racing), now second in the standings, and the other KTM of South African Brad Binder completed the top five. Freshly renewed and winner of the two previous rounds (SpainFrance), Jack Miller had to settle for sixth following a somewhat lacklustre performance. 

Marc Márquez and Álex Rins also endured another day to forget with a repeat of the FrenchGP crashes. The six-time champion has not been able to regain the rapport with his wild Japanese bike since returning from the year-long convalescence that followed a very serious injury to his right arm. 

For Rins (Suzuki) things are looking even bleaker. In Italy, he crashed for the fourth time this season and his performance is in strike contrast to that of his also Spanish teammate. 

The greatest loser this Sunday, however, has been Pecco Bagnaia. The Ducati pilot went to the ground just as he was commanding the race on the second lap. 

The rider from Turin arrived at his home race one point behind the leader and with every intention of dethroning Quartararo. In the end, he leaves Italy 26 points down from the Frenchman and third in the standings behind Zarco.

A single bad performance can be decisive in the upcoming battle for the title. What happened to Bagnaia in Mugello today exemplifies that one mistake at a key moment, especially when circumstances are so favourable, can be catastrophic. 

Unexpectedly, the Desmosedicis have not been any superior at their home track. After prevailing in the three previous editions of the Italian MotoGP (2017, 2018, 2019) and taking two of the first three places in the classification round on Saturday, they did not produce the expected results. 

‘El Diablo’ (Quartararo) took the lead of the race in the second lap after Bagania’s crash and never looked back, all rivals behind struggling to keep the pace. His dominance was so blatant that most of the excitement surrounded the battle for second and third.

Oliveira, in the end, was able to defend the second place he snatched from Zarco despite having the Suzukis of Mir and Rins hot on his heels before the latter also crashed at five laps from the finish line. Mir, for his part, performed a very smart comeback from ninth to third.  

The development of the MotoGP this Sunday, however, was overshadowed by the news of Jason Dupasquier passing. The 19-year-old Swiss pilot suffered a very serious accident during qualifying on Saturday and succumbed to his injuries in hospital a day later. May he rest in peace. 

Images of Italian MotoGP: MotoGP.

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