Alex Marquez 9th and Fabio Di Giannantonio 16th in #PortugueseGP Sprint race
Portimao was the stage for the first, spectacular sprint race ever, which also marked the opening encounter of 2023. After a disastrous qualifying, with Alex Marquez only 13th and Fabio Di Giannantonio all the way down in 21st place, both Team Gresini Racing MotoGP riders managed to make amends by finishing the race – with the Spaniard also able to score a point thanks to a ninth-place finish.
A mistake towards the halfway point of the race prevented the Spanish rider from battling with today’s fastest riders, but Marquez still did a good job to attack and at the same time to fend off Quartararo’s attacks – as he wrapped up the Sprint Race point-scoring top nine.
Fabio Di Giannantonio also did a good job as he tried to recovered the lost confidence as he made up several positions while also staying upright aboard his Ducati #49. The first full race of the season will get underway tomorrow at 14:00 local time (GMT +1).
9th – ALEX MARQUEZ #73 (1 point)
“Everyone was a bit nervous and the race was a complicated one, especially as we started from 13th place on the grid. Too bad for that mistake at halfway point at turn five, as without that I could have raced with the front group. Too bad that I didn’t overtake Zarco, we had the pace to do it, but it was important to start with confidence and without mistakes. We know now what we need to work on and on paper we have a pace to do better tomorrow.”
16th – FABIO DI GIANNANTONIO #49
“The good thing is that it was a fun race and we managed to battle a little. Unfortunately we started on the backfoot this weekend compared to the other riders, and we need to make up some ground for the race. Let’s put the first sprint race in our CV and let’s keep working.”