MotoGP riders and Team Managers reflect on Misano II

2020 MotoGP Round Eight – Misano II

MotoGP Rider Quotes

Maverick Vinales – P1

“We did an amazing job this weekend, and we prepared really well for this race. Pecco was very fast, and I was pushing a lot throughout and trying to save a bit of tyre for the last ten laps. Then I started to push at the end, and I thought I was catching up with Pecco. But after he made a mistake, I just focused on keeping the bike with both wheels on the ground, trying to not crash and take the maximum amount of points. It‘s fantastic! I‘m very happy, because my mentality is exactly the same as it was last weekend and during the last races, but we just found a set-up that‘s a bit better for when we ride with 20 litres at the beginning of the race. I actually made a mistake in Turn 4. I was pushing a lot in the beginning, trying to open the gap. But when we were with only two riders, it was good. I want to say ’Thank you‘ to all the people who are supporting me at home. They know we‘ve had some tough times in our team, but it seems like we‘ve passed it, right now we have some good luck, and that‘s what counts. I‘m very happy and appreciate all the work from the team, and we need to continue like that, pushing very hard, because we have a lot more potential.”

Maverick Vinales
Joan Mir – P2

“It feels so nice to be here on the podium again! I know I need to improve my qualifying results, and that’s something we’ve been trying to work on, but I’m so glad that I was able to fight through for the podium despite starting 11th. I just kept trying to close the gap and stay focused, and it paid off. I’m so happy and I really hope I can enjoy another good result next weekend in Barcelona!”

Joan Mir
Pol Espargaro – P3

“We knew we were taking a gamble with the rear tire but I wanted to really enjoy the race. I also knew we’d have to deal with some drop-off in performance but that came much earlier than we expected. I was very fast at the beginning – with a bike I love – and I kept pushing and keeping Maverick close for some time. In the end I wanted to keep the others behind me and defend my position: that big effort paid off. With Fabio’s penalty we were able to do it…that’s why I never give up.”

Pol Espargaro and Fabio Quartararo
Fabio Quartararo – P4

“I’m really happy about my race, because it is important to finish in third position after all the weekends that we struggled. I received the long lap penalty, but I didn’t receive any messages about track limit warnings on my dashboard so I was a bit surprised by it. I know I had three times where I went over track limits, but the last two ones I didn’t know where they happened at the time. It is disappointing and frustrating to have this penalty, but I am looking forward to Barcelona. Overall I’m happy with my race because I had a good pace and, although it was difficult for us to overtake, I was fighting until the end to be on the podium. Also the start was much better and I feel like we have improved it a lot. Let’s see what we can do in Barcelona next weekend.”

Pol Espargaro and Fabio Quartararo
Miguel Oliveira – P5

“I’m happy about the race. We started far behind and we could manage to gain a few positions and also benefit from a couple of crashes. Our potential was there, we had a very good pace, I felt good with the bike and I made no mistakes, so I kept concentrated all the race. We managed to come out with a top 5, which was our goal from the beginning, plus scoring important points for the championship and now we go to Barcelona, can clean our minds now and have fun also there. I think we can have another good weekend!”

Miguel Oliveira and Danilo Petrucci
Takaaki Nakagami – P6

“I’m pretty happy to finish P6 again, inside the top six which from P12 on the starting grid was really tough, especially at the beginning of the race when there was a big group and I was struggling with my feeling with the front tyre as the tyre performance is not the best behind some bikes. But I was quite strong in sector three and I overtook some riders in sector four and my lap times were quite consistent until the end. We made another P6 so I’m happy and I want to say a big thanks to my team, because yesterday we had two crashes and they prepared my bike overnight and I really appreciate all their effort, this was a big team effort. Also a big thanks to all my sponsors and the team as they did a great job over these two weekends.”

Takaaki Nakagami
Alex Marquez – P7

“Last Sunday, and especially after the test, we managed to make some improvements. We were able to carry these improvements into this weekend and all weekend I have felt very strong. Throughout the weekend we had constant steps. In the race I started well and was aggressive early, which I am happy with. In the first laps I felt good and I was able to keep Dovi behind me for the race. Three laps from the end I had a big moment which allowed Nakagami to get through. Even with this I am pleased as I think we certainly had the pace for the top ten. I want to say thanks to the Repsol Honda Team for their hard work, we are coming stronger and now I am looking forward to Catalunya.”

Alex Marquez
Andrea Dovizioso – P8

“It was a complicated race. Unfortunately, when you start from the back, there is always the risk of wasting time, especially in the first laps. After the start there was a bit of confusion: at Turn 8 two riders fell in front of me and I had to brake, leaving room for two other opponents who overtook me. After a few laps, I finally found my rhythm, and I just thought about trying to stay constant. I felt better than last week, but I didn’t have a great pace and being so far behind, I couldn’t do any strategy. In the end, today we scored some points, and for now, we are still leading the standings, but of course, we cannot be satisfied with today’s result.”

Andrea Dovizioso and Takaaki Nakagami
Franco Morbidelli – P9

“I’m still trying to recover from my stomach bug, I have been feeling very sick. I have to say thanks to my dietician who has been able to give me the right foods to have enough energy for this race. Over the weekend I have been getting better, but I will go home and get checked just to see if there is something to aid recovery further. I hope to be at 100% in Barcelona. Despite this, I think we had the chance to be on the podium this weekend, but unfortunately another rider on the first lap took me out. I lost a lot of time there and I had a small issue with the bike, but I was able to make a good recovery. I’m happy though as I wasn’t expecting to finish ninth, so thanks to the team as well because they have done an unbelievable job with very little input from me this weekend. We now aim to arrive in Barcelona well prepared and ready to attack.”

Bradley Smith and Franco Morbidelli
Danilo Petrucci – P10

“It was another tough race. Right from the start, I didn’t find the same feeling I had in the practices. I started well, but I didn’t have confidence on the front, and I couldn’t stop the bike. Too bad because I felt I could have a good race today. I am happy with the progress we have been able to make compared to the previous races, but it is clear that we are still missing something. Fortunately, next week we will be back on track in Barcelona, where we will try to redeem ourselves.”

Danilo Petrucci
Johann Zarco – P11

“One race more finished, although it has been a difficult situation to handle. The choice of the rear tire was crucial, we chose an option thinking that it would give us some advantage from the second half of the race but this has not been the case. The pace has been very constant but a bit slow compared to the Top-10. Looking forward to Barcelona to continue improving.”

Johann Zarco
Alex Rins – P12

“Today was very difficult for us, I was struggling to stop the bike and also to maintain speed on corner entry. I felt this much more in the race than during the practices or qualifying. We have a few days before we’re back on track in Catalunya, so we’ll try to find the solution. I’m motivated to find the problem, and also to go to a new track, especially one that I like very much where I’ve had good results in the past.”

Alex Rins
Bradley Smith – P13

“The final result is okay, but I’m a bit disappointed with the wide gap behind the leader. The first stage of the race wasn’t bad and I was able to stay with the group. But today we started with an entirely different setting and I didn’t know what to expect, so the last 10 laps were rather difficult. These have been two peculiar weeks for us, with a lot of different sensations. I’ll take the good from the first 16 laps, done at a good pace, and we’ll have to start from them to tackle a vastly different track like Barcelona.”

Pecco Bagnaia – DNF

“It’s a pity , we were very fast, I had a good gap from Maverick, I wasn’t at my limit, I felt that all was perfect with my bike. I managed the tires for the last laps because I know that Maverick is very fast in the last part of the race. At the corner six I crashed and I didn’t know the why. We studied the data and we saw that I didn’t do anything wrong, the lines were the same and the inclination too. We think that I touched something strange like in that corner, we don’t know what it was, but there was something that dropped me. I was very sure while I rode, I managed the race lap by lap and I didn’t need to be aggressive with the tires. I’m looking forward to be in Barcelona in one week because we want to bounce back.”

Pecco Bagnaia
Jack Miller – DNF

“I’am very sad because I had started well and we could have had a good race, we had all the right conditions to make it. Unfortunately it was nobody’s fault, it was a very unlucky day because a tear-off entered the air box. I’am also sorry for the team that had worked very hard and well. We will come back to Barcelona even stronger.”

Jack Miller
Valentino Rossi – DNF

“For sure, it’s a shame that I made a mistake on the second lap. There was a bit of confusion in that moment, because all riders were close together. Unfortunately, I lost the front in Turn 4. It’s a pity because we lose some points. After the mistake I continued. I did some other laps to try to understand the rhythm, because we changed the setting of the bike a bit this weekend. It’s a shame, but this is the way it is. On the bright side, we have another race next week in Barcelona. That is a very good track, I like it a lot. The asphalt and grip level will be very different there. We hope that we will be competitive again. The championship is still long, so anything can happen.”

Valentino Rossi
Brad Binder – DNF

“I felt really, really good today. I made a decent start but then lost the front into Turn 11 and had a big head shake of the bike. I was thinking ‘that was close’ but then tucked the front going into Turn 13. I was a little bit wild. I tried to restart but then crashed again. So, not a great race but I’m happy because I had such a good feeling with the bike, and we’ve worked hard to get to that. Unfortunately we go home with nothing today but we’ll try again in Barcelona. We’ll need to learn quickly there and if I take one thing from this weekend then it’s that a good qualification makes life so much easier! We’ll try for that again next weekend.”

Iker Lecuona – DNF

“I need to say sorry to the team. I finally had a very good Qualifying and a very strong pace in the race. I overtook some riders and had the speed to fight for the top 6, following Miguel was great. I didn’t make any mistakes until three laps to go but finally did a big one and lost the front. I was three seconds ahead of the guys behind me. It’s frustrating for me because I could have taken my best position. Sorry to the team, let’s move on to the next race.”

Tito Rabat – DNF

“From today’s crash we will look on the bright side as always. Our fastest race lap was only one tenth slower than my teammate’s. The track conditions today were very strange and we still had a 1.33 pace. The crash was the result of trying to follow the group in front, as I was forcing it closed from the front and I crashed. Now we have our sights set on next week’s home race.”

Aleix Espargaro – DNF

“First of all, I want to apologise to Morbidelli, because my crash cost him a lot of positions, and to my team, since, considering our performance as compared to the others, we could have finished much better. I knew that I would have to go all-in on the first laps. My pace was very good but, starting from so far back, I had to risk. Difficulty overtaking is our weak point and that makes it hard to recuperate. It’s a pity because I was able to get into the top 10 anyway and I was really feeling good. This crash was not what we needed.”

MotoGP Team Managers

Massimo Meregalli – Monster Yamaha Team Director

“I‘m really happy. I think this win is well deserved, both by Maverick and the team. Maverick’s effort was fantastic. Yesterday he got pole, and today he finished the job. He had an aggressive start and kept a very high rhythm, pushing Bagnaia to make a mistake. It‘s a great confidence boost for the next race. These 25 points are a testimony to the hard work the team did on Saturday during FP3 and are very useful for the championship. Maverick made a huge step in the standings and is close to the top. Of course, there are also mixed feelings. It‘s a great shame to see Valentino‘s chance for a podium end so early on, especially because it was his home race, and he was feeling very competitive. It‘s a pity, but these things happen in racing. On the bright side, we have another race weekend coming up. The entire team is determined to keep the progress going in Barcelona.”

Maverick Vinales
Ken Kawauchi – Suzuki Technical Manager

“It was a good race for Joan, but not so good for Alex. It was great that Joan was able to get second position today and I want to say thank you to him, to all the team and for our people working from home for this result. Alex couldn’t show 100% of his potential in this second race at Misano, but we’ll check all the data and see what we can do in Barcelona next week.”

Team Suzuki excited to watch Mir cross the line for second place
Davide Brivio – Suzuki Team Manager

“What a race from Joan! Once again he did a great job, he started a bit far back but he kept his head down and kept fighting throughout the race, and he was rewarded for his efforts with this podium. He did some fantastic over-takes to get this second place and we’re really happy for him. Alex couldn’t use his full potential, or the potential of the bike, today and he struggled a lot during the race. We need to try and understand what happened but we’ll go to Barcelona feeling positive and ready to fight again.”

Davide Brivio and Joan Mir
Hervé Poncharal – Red Bull KTM Tech3 Team Manager

“Finally, we had a very positive day today at Misano for the Gran Premio Tissot dell’Emilia Romagna e della Riviera di Rimini. Although the Qualifying was again not what we were expecting, clearly, we knew our race pace was strong and we just hoped for a good start and eventually half way through the first lap, Miguel was in a strong position and we recovered quite a lot. Iker was ahead of him, so we were really pleased. From that moment, we kept our heads down, both Miguel and Iker had a great race. Iker was leading the first half race and Miguel passed him. We were pleased, because Iker could follow Miguel and try to rest a bit. Eventually, Miguel crossed the line in fifth position, which is a great result. We are first KTM in the championship, which is a big pride for us, but we can’t be 100 percent happy, because Iker was right behind him, having a three seconds advantage on the guy following him and less than three laps to the finish, he made a mistake and crashed, which is very unfortunate. It would have been a great team result, fifth and sixth, best result by far for Iker this year. Anyway, the poor Iker is devastated and is so angry with himself. I don’t want to add anything. He did a great weekend and a beautiful race until two laps to the end. Let’s take the positives, they were fifth and sixth with three laps to go, Miguel gets the 11 points for the fifth position, KTM is on the podium today with Pol (Espargaro) and we are closing the gap always. It doesn’t matter how the track is. Thank you to all the guys inside the Red Bull KTM Tech3 garage, thanks to all the guys working in Mattighofen to push and develop the KTM RC16. Just a few days and we are in Barcelona for the next race, so let’s keep our heads down, take a rest and let’s keep the positive vibes, that are inside the team at the moment.”

Red Bull KTM Tech3 duo
Mike Leitner – Red Bull KTM Race Manager

“In general we’re super-happy with the results because a podium was hard to achieve here and especially with the competitiveness of the MotoGP class. We had a really good test on Tuesday and found some technical solutions for the Grand Prix but we had some hard sessions in practice with a few crashes and a front tire that was on the limit. It was important to improve our grid position and it was great to get up to 4th and 6th. Pol did a great race with the soft tire and deserved that 3rd place. We were sorry for Brad: he had been great all weekend but it was a rookie mistake and he’ll learn from that. Both Miguel and Iker did really well also, just a shame Iker could not confirm that 6th place but he again showed his potential. Now we’ll go to Barcelona and focus for the next GP.”

Razlan Razali – Petronas SRT Team Principal

“Not the kind of results we expected after a great Misano last time. We are disappointed but there are positives. Clearly we are disappointed with the penalty that was given to Fabio, but it is what it is. We have to accept the fourth position and that we are still second in the championship. Franco recovered well after the lap one incident to finish ninth, and move to fifth in the championship. We are happy with this, we just need to do better next weekend and maintain consistency. There are still seven races to go, in which we can fight for the championship.

Piero Taramasso – Michelin

“Another busy weekend and another record-breaking one. It has been a great weekend for the performance of all the tyres across both MotoGP and MotoE. We had a test here on Tuesday and the Grand Prix riders were able to work on the set-up in readiness for this weekend and it showed that they took things to another level and found even more grip from their tyres. We set records across every sector in the two disciplines and witnessed exciting and unpredictable racing all weekend. The MotoGP riders are still learning to interpret the new rear construction tyre and how to get the maximum performance from it and this is also leading to them having many options when it comes to race day, which is something we aim to achieve – to give a choice to all riders and manufacturers. Six winners in seven races shows that we are providing tyres that different riders can win on and we have had three different manufacturers winning and I am sure it won’t be long before we get another new winner from a different marque, which again highlights the diversity that the Michelin tyres provide. This has been a very successful weekend, but we now have to go directly to Spain and start all over again.”

2020 Misano II MotoGP Race Results

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 41m55.846
2 Joan MIR Suzuki +2.425
3 Pol ESPARGARO KTM +4.528
4 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha +6.419
5 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM +7.368
6 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda +11.139
7 Alex MARQUEZ Honda +11.929
8 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati +13.113
9 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha +15.88
10 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati +17.682
11 Johann ZARCO Ducati +23.144
12 Alex RINS Suzuki +24.962
13 Bradley SMITH Aprilia +30.008
Not Classified
DNF Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 7 Laps
DNF Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 12 Laps
DNF Tito RABAT Ducati 15 Laps
DNF Jack MILLER Ducati 20 Laps

2020 MotoGP World Championship Standings

Pos Rider Bike Points
1 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 84
2 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 83
3 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 83
4 Joan MIR Suzuki 80
5 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 64
6 Jack MILLER Ducati 64
7 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 63
8 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 59
9 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 58
11 Brad BINDER KTM 53
12 Alex RINS Suzuki 44
13 Johann ZARCO Ducati 36
14 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 31
15 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 29
16 Alex MARQUEZ Honda 24
17 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 18
18 Iker LECUONA KTM 15
19 Bradley SMITH Aprilia 11
20 Tito RABAT Ducati 7
21 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 7
22 Michele PIRRO Ducati 4


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