MotoGP Catalunya: Successes, disappointments and improvements – The FULL GAS Blog
FULL GAS: Our special, regular blog by Kermit Abadilla from the Philippines – taking a look back at the weekend’s race action and sharing other MotGP, Moto2, Moto3, and WSBK related stuff. A fan of the sport since 8, he is interested in fitness, sports, inspiring businesses and stories, reading, and likes daydreaming and helping. He also does social media & content writing.
There’s a saying that goes something like this: “Life is like a ferris wheel…sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down. In the end, you just have to learn how to enjoy the ride.” Ok, so what does that have anything to do with MotoGP? Well it has something to do with the current situations of some riders. In the most recent race in Catalunya, we’ve confirmed the riders who have been enjoying continuous success, piling up disappointments, and learning how to improve their riding again despite an up-and-down performance.
Last Sunday’s race saw Jorge Lorenzo, Johann Zarco, and Danny Kent win in their respective classes. Just like in Jerez, Le Mans, and Mugello, Lorenzo controlled and dominated the whole race and was never put in an uncomfortable situtaion by any of his rivals. The Spaniard held off a late charge from championship leader Valentino Rossi. Lorenzo now only trails Rossi by a single point. Just how strong is Lorenzo in his four consecutive victories? He’s led all the last 103 laps.
In Moto2, Johan Zarco remained cool, calm, and collected after a very poor start from pole position to steal victory away from Tito Rabat and Alex Rins on the final lap. His incredible comeback and perfectly timed overtake on Rabat allowed him to extend his championship lead over Rabat to 40 points. It’s also perfect timing and levelheadedness plus experience that Danny Kent used in the last lap to combat his aggressive opponents and take an epic Moto3 race win. The Grand Prix of Catalunya ended with winners who could be this year’s world champions. With their current form and consistency, Lorenzo, Zarco, and Kent are all championship material.
This season two riders are defending their titles, Marc Marquez and Tito Rabat. When Tito Rabat announced he’ll stay in Moto2, a lot of people thought he’s going to have a hard time defending his title. But there were a few people who thought the same for Marquez. Marquez dominated the MotoGP class last year, winning 13 out of 18 races. With stats like these, it looks like he’ll be unbeaten for years. But it’s Marc Marquez who’s having a disappointing season and his chances of taking the title for the third straight year is now very slim after suffering yet another DNF in the early stages of the race. Yes, the riders are not even halfway through the season and there are still a lot of points up for grabs, but even Marquez himself appears to have accepted defeat already by saying he has nothing to lose now. Don’t expect Marquez though to play it safe to catch the championship points leaders. “Sure I can finish the race 20 seconds behind them but you know it is not my style,” Marquez said.
The MotoGP World Championship is the biggest stage for the best motorcycle racers in the world and it’s also toughest place to win a race. Moto3 rookie sensation Fabio Quartararo might realize that so much more now. After such a strong start to his campaign, Quartararo’s last 3 race results have been disappointing – 2 DNFs and a 14th place. Catalunya is a track where Quartararo is very strong because he knows it a lot from his CEV days. He is expected to be fighting for victory but Quartararo just spent most of the race fighting to bring home even just a single point. The highly touted Frenchman could’ve just hit a speed bump in his young career and for sure he’ll be back on top soon.
Anytime there are riders improving their performances, that’s good news for the sport and the fans. A stronger field of racers equals more challengers for top positions and that usually results to more exciting races. Whilst they are not making the headlines, it’s good to see the likes of Luis Salom and Dominique Aegerter come to life after struggling to find their groove this season. Aegerter was one of the top candidates of Moto2 riders moving up to the MotoGP class in 2015 thanks to his results of 4 podiums, 1 win, 1 pole position, and 5th overall in the final standings. He is nowhere near the front of the championship yet but a podium in Italy and a descent result in Catalunya indicate that he is heading the right direction.
Meanwhile, Luis Salom equalled his season best finish in Mugello by taking another hard-fought 5th place in Catalunya. Salom, who almost won the Moto3 title two years ago, had a great start to his first year in Moto2. His results went downhill after claiming a podium finish in Mugello. However, a 4th place finish in Valencia suggested that he is back and could challenge for the title this 2015 season. It took him too long again to return to his old self but Salom can now be happy with his progress.