When your weekend wardrobe hasn’t got Alpinestars leathers on the list! #datenight

When your weekend wardrobe hasn’t got Alpinestars leathers on the list! #datenight
Source: Jonathan Rea On Facebook

Riders reflect on Sepang MotoGP | Quotes from whole field

2018 Malaysian MotoGP Rider Quotes

Marc Marquez – P1

“It was a hard race, first of all because I was starting from seventh place. I didn’t get a perfect start, and then my first lap was good but not one of the best of my career. Step by step, I overtook some riders and got to second place. I saw that Valentino was pushing and I started to chase him, lapping at qualifying pace! But in the process, I overheated the rear tyre; the front was also warming up quickly and the feeling wasn’t good. So for a few laps, I just tried to cool down and in so doing I began to feel better and better. I saw I was getting closer to Valentino and honestly that gave me extra motivation. At that moment, it was just a matter of instinct and pushing, something that you can do when you’ve already got the Championship. Unfortunately, he made a little mistake in turn one, which is a shame as it would have been nice to see how the duel would have ended. Anyway, when I saw him crash, I just cooled down and focused on finishing the race. We won, and that was the best way to seal the Constructors Championship. I would also like to congratulate Jorge Martin and “Pecco” Bagnaia for taking Championships. We’ll celebrate together in Valencia.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Marquez
Marc Marquez and Repsol Honda celebrate the win and the constructor’s championship

Alex Rins – P2

“I feel very happy because our race pace was strong and I was able to close the gaps to the other riders and pass them during the race. I still had very good pace even in the last few laps because I was able to manage the tyres well, but I lost time earlier in the race so that made it more difficult. We’re working really hard and we have found important things and learned more for next year. I’m very excited to go to Valencia, especially as we are feeling very strong with the bike now, and Suzuki deserve to end the season on a high.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rins
Alex Rins

Johann Zarco – P3

“I’m pretty happy, it was a fantastic race! But also difficult like usually in Malaysia. I was tired at the end, but the energy is coming back already. I think the key for that podium was the beginning of the race. I was thinking about overtaking Valentino (Rossi), but he was fast and it was good to be behind him. I could go away, but did a little mistake, when Marc overtook me. I tried to stay behind Marc, had a little gap, but was able to keep a good pace and then Valentino crashed, so I was second. I thought I can control, but four laps to the end Alex (Rins) was faster than me. Even if I was controlling the race well, when I tried to push a little bit more on the last laps, but I just got three tenths faster, which was not fast enough to keep the gap. He overtook me on the last lap. I tried to fight again, but I didn’t have any rear grip anymore. Anyway, the third place is a good finish.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Zarco Miller
Johann Zarco

Maverick Vinales – P4

“I already said yesterday that we lost the race in qualifying. This morning I went out in the wet again and I finished first. Everything in MotoGP is so close now, so you have to start at the front. The tyre wear also gets worse when you’re fighting your way up from the back, you destroy the tyres. I was close to the podium, but with four laps to go the tyre dropped a lot and I couldn’t do anything about it. The team worked very well this weekend, they provided me with a really good bike. I think that, if I had started from the front, I would have been fighting for the race. I’m actually really happy that at three different tracks I was in contention to win. I think there are still many things that we can improve on, but things are better compared to before, and now I can be more consistent. I think Valencia will be a good track for us, I really like the track, it’s good for my riding style, so let’s see.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Vinales
Maverick Vinales

Dani Pedrosa- P5

“Today I focused a lot on the start because I was very far back on the grid. The start itself wasn’t perfect, but then I was able to recover a few places in the first corner. Unfortunately, I lost some ground with Dovi and Marc just a couple of turns later. Anyway, the feeling at the beginning of the race was good enough and I was able to stay there close to the front. On the other hand, toward the end I began struggling with grip again and I was passed by Rins and Viñales. All in all it was a little bit better race than usual. I would like to congratulate Martin for his title. He was able to overcome some difficulties this year, an injury and other issues, and he had a strong race today. He totally deserves this result.” 

MotoGP Malaysia Race Start
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

Andrea Dovizioso – P6

“I have to admit that today I’m disappointed because I wasn’t able to do the race I expected and suffered a lot with a lack of grip. As I said on Thursday, I had hoped for a dry race because we have always gone well in testing and practice in these conditions, but today I really struggled a lot and now we have to understand exactly what happened. In the end, thanks to Rossi’s error, we succeeded in taking home second place overall both in the Riders’ and Constructors’ standings, and I’m happy with this result even though this year we weren’t really able to oppose Marquez. I wish to thank the team because we have managed to do a great job, especially from mid-season onwards, but it’s not enough and we will still have to continue to work with commitment.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Dovizioso Rins Miller
Andrea Dovizioso

Álvaro Bautista – P7

“I struggled quite a lot with rear grip, I was losing a lot of traction on the exits of the corners and the bike was sliding around and running wide. I was quite limited with what I could do but I gave the maximum I could. We have finished as the second Ducati, four seconds behind Dovizioso on the factory bike, which I think is a good result and it keeps up my recent run of top ten finishes. It has been a good spell for us here in Asia.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Bautista
Álvaro Bautista

Jack Miller – P8

“We chose to use the medium tyre at the rear to try to do something different than the others. But we didn’t get the results we hoped for. From the beginning, I felt a lot of vibrations that didn’t allow me to have a competitive race pace. Honestly I expected more from this race”.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Miller
Jack Miller

Danilo Petrucci – P9

“I’m not happy with the way things went today. We had a good pace throughout the weekend but today I couldn’t manage the tyres and I struggled since the start. I tried to do my best but the temperature didn’t help. Conditions will be different at Valencia and I hope to get a good result to finish the season”.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Petrucci
Danilo Petrucci

Hafizh Syahrin – P10

“It’s just unbelievable! First of all, I want to say thank you very much to my team, because they always believe in me and give me great motivation. Yesterday has been a disaster for us, but we made up for it. In the starting grid, I saw my father and was just emotional and had to hug him. I want to thank everybody that came here. To arrive in the top 10 for my home GP was my target, but to be honest, I didn’t believe it was possible. But in the end, we did it, which is incredible. I want to thank everybody; I love my family and my fans. I’m so happy!”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Syahrin
Hafizh Syahrin

Aleix Espargaro’ – P11

“This was certainly one of the three most physically demanding races of my entire career. I started very badly and lost a lot of positions on the first turn, so I had to make up ground. After a few passes, a gap formed behind my brother, Pol. I managed to overtake him after a good battle. At that point, I was making up ground on the tenth place rider, but there were only a few laps left. Today’s result is positive, but we want to do more and we know we can, so we need to keep working and preparing our 2019 season as best we can.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Aleix Espargaro
Aleix Espargaro’

Franco Morbidelli – P12

“I am happy with this result, it was a nice recovery to gain so many positions after starting from 19th on the grid. I am very satisfied with the work the team did this weekend and now I am really looking forward to the final race in Valencia.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Start
Malaysian MotoGP

Stefan Bradl – P13

“I’m happy, we finished in the points and that was my target. Of course, it was a tough race as I’d not ridden the bike in almost two months and then I arrived here in Malaysia and the conditions were unbelievably hot. Also the weather was inconsistent, so overall I think we did a good job and I’m happy with the team because they helped me a lot. As soon as I started with them this weekend it felt like I was back home, so I have to thank Lucio (Cecchinello) and the guys in the garage who did an incredible job. A big thanks to HRC as well as they built up a test schedule this year which allowed me this opportunity. Also I want to wish Cal (Crutchlow) a speedy recovery, I hope he’s recovering well and can come back as strong as he was before.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Starts
Malaysian MotoGP

Takaaki Nakagami – P14

“The race was a bit of a struggle. The track temperature was quite good, although the condition wasn’t perfect. We chose a medium tyre for the front and a soft for the rear and I think that was the correct choice for us. But we couldn’t find the same kind of performance as in FP3 when we had a strong pace, around 2’01 laps. I wasn’t able to do that in the race and for me it was difficult to find the rear grip. The team did a great job all weekend and hopefully we can get our best result of the season in the last race in Valencia.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Nakagami
Takaaki Nakagami

Bradley Smith – P15

“We were lacking performance all race with some technical issues which meant I couldn’t set my normal lap-times. I could still finish the race and took a point, which was a positive and there are just five points between Pol and me going into the last race. Five points is difficult to gain but it is still fun to be going into that situation. We worked well all weekend and the guys clearly know what they need to do and what they need to fix. I’m quite excited about Valencia. It will be my last Grand Prix and it is a track I enjoy. We’ll go there optimistic and keen to finish this chapter with KTM in a positive way.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race KTM Smith
Bradley Smith

Tom Luthi – P16

“It was a hot race and I was struggling a little for the first two laps with rear edge grip and I nearly went down at the final corner. But then I found a good pace and felt good on the bike but later I struggled again with rear grip and I lost time which cost me a chance of some points. I was very close and so a pity that again I am in sixteenth place.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi Rins
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

Xavier Simeon – P17

“I knew that it would be a difficult race in dry conditions. Even though my start was better than in Australia, it still wasn’t good and I lost all the advantage I had with my starting position. But all in all, I am still satisfied with the outcome of the race, because I hadn’t felt comfortable in dry conditions before and in the race, my pace has been quite consistent and similar to the riders that finished close to the Top 10. Considering this, I am a little frustrated, because I did most of the things right to achieve another place within the point rankings, but I still struggle to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. In MotoGP, everything needs to be perfect and little details can make all the difference. Apart from that, the team has done a great job once again and I reduced the gap to the front runners a lot. In fact, I didn’t expect to be that close. Now we have to wait and see what will happen at Valencia. I hope Tito can ride again and for myself, I hope to enjoy my last race in MotoGP with the team.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Simeon
Xavier Simeon

Valentino Rossi – P18

“It was a great shame because this was my best race of the season. I felt comfortable, I had a good pace, I pushed, and I had the chance to win, but unfortunately with four or five laps to go I fell – I don’t understand what happened. I made a mistake, because I crashed. It’s such a pity, but it still remains a good weekend, because we improved the setting of the bike. I think we have to do some more work, but it looks like we were able to use the bike in a better way in the last few races. This is good, but we have to see if we’re also strong in Valencia. It’s a difficult track for us in general, but we have to try.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Starts
Valentino Rossi

Scott Redding – P19

“Unfortunately, my race today ended after six laps. We had problems with grip throughout the weekend and as soon as the tyres began to wear a bit, it was impossible for me to push. Riding very aggressively, the improvement in times was minimum, so I was forced to set my sights on just finishing the race.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Start
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

Michele Pirro – DNF

“The fact that I only did one session on a dry track, with the race today being dry, for sure put me at a bit of a disadvantage. I started quite well and bit by bit was making up places when I lost the front at the last corner, probably because I pushed a bit too hard, and I crashed. I didn’t expect that to happen because I was trying to do a consistent race. I’m sorry for the team, and it’s a pity to finish the race in this way, because I could have got into the top 10 and instead I wasn’t able to bring home any points for the team.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Pirro
Michele Pirro

Andrea Iannone – DNF

“I’m a bit disappointed because we had the chance to take another podium, but I don’t want to focus on what happened today. I always try to think positively, and the good things are that I had strong pace and I had a really good feeling with the bike after the team and I worked hard together. So I’ll just remain focused on the last race of the season and I will give my all to have a good result there.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Iannone
Andrea Iannone

Pol Espargaro – DNF

“I was losing power while I was eleventh and we don’t know at the moment what the problem was, the guys are checking. It has been a tough couple of weeks: we didn’t have a good feeling in Japan and in Australia we were fast but the tyre blew and now we’ve had this issue. It has a been a tough end to the season but we’ll go to Valencia looking to finish things in a good way before we already think about 2019.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race KTM Espargaro Brothers
Pol Espargaro

Karel Abraham – DNF

“It is incredible how much bad luck we have had this weekend. We had a technical problem on the first day, I had a crash as soon as it started raining yesterday and that left me in pain for today, when we had an electronic problem that shut the bike down and wouldn’t restart. I was feeling better this morning and I was close to the top ten in warm-up. I didn’t get a great start in the race but I had passed a couple of riders and was closing on Nakagami, who ended up fourteenth, when the bike stopped. We will work out the problem but I am disappointed because I think we could have repeated the performance from Japan and picked up some points, but unfortunately we go home with nothing.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Abraham
Karel Abraham

Team Managers

Herve Poncharal – Tech3 Yamaha Team Manager

“What an unbelievable day today here in Sepang Malaysia. I think the race direction took the right decision to move everything forward two hours. We had great sunshine, a beautiful race and regarding Monster Yamaha Tech3, I’m very proud. For Johann, after getting that great pole position last night, he got a great start, put his head down, followed Valentino (Rossi) for quite a few laps, then Marc (Marquez) came into that group and this trio has been almost leading the race for two thirds, then Johann dropped a little bit, but he was always in contention for that so dearly awaited podium, where we haven’t been since Jerez. I feel very sorry for Valentino, but he crashed, although I think he was doing a great race. At that moment we thought, the podium is almost in the bag and second position was quite easy and then we saw Rins coming from nowhere, doing incredible lap times. Congratulations to him. He passed us, but we are anyway very happy with the podium, a really strong weekend. It was a tough day today with the heat, with managing the body for the riders and also the tyres, so this is great. We are now leading the independent riders’ championship, which is the main target for us now – in fifth, joint with Alex Rins, so Valencia is going to be something to challenge for us. But of course, this is only one part of the garage. On the other side, I was feeling very sorry last night after Qualifying for Hafizh, because I know how important this Malaysian Grand Prix was for him. I know the effort he put in to reach MotoGP and finally for his first home GP he was so disappointed, so sad. I tried to cheer him up this morning, I tried to cheer him up on the grid and – I don’t know if there is a link in between what I told him and what he did, but the start was unreal. Maybe one of the best starts I’ve ever seen, at least this season and from that moment he was fighting with Miller, Petrucci and even Viñales at some stage. He finished the race in 10thposition, which is a dream for us and for him and I’m so happy, because Hafizh is not only an incredible team player, but he is a charming young man and he is the best ambassador Malaysia could have in MotoGP. I could feel how disappointed he was to see all the people coming to support him and him not delivering. Finally he did deliver and this is the cherry on the cake. We are going to fly back home after five weeks on the road, but we go home happy, positive in mind and ready to challenge what we have to do in Valencia.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Zarco
Johann Zarco

Massimo Meregalli – Yamaha Team Director

“For sure this is not the ending we had hoped for this weekend. The final results don‘t do justice to the pace of our riders, because they both had really strong form this weekend. Maverick had to start from the fourth row and make up a lot of ground. If he had started a bit more towards the front, he would have been a top contender today, because his pace matched Vale‘s. Valentino did exactly what he needed to do at the start. He was leading the race perfectly, so it‘s a great shame it ended the way it did. Nevertheless, we can take some positives from these last three races, as we made a step with the bike and were consistent in our performance. Today we were competitive at a circuit that doesn‘t necessarily play to our bike‘s strengths. So, with that in mind, we head to Valencia eager to fight at the front again during the season finale.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

Ken Kawauchi – Suzuki Technical Manager

“Finally everything was OK and we did a good job. Today is a bitter sweet feeling because both riders had great pace but sadly Andrea couldn’t finish the race – I’m sure he would’ve also fought for the podium. But Alex managed to achieve 2nd and we’re so happy because it’s our third consecutive podium and we’ve had two second places in a row. I really want to thank everyone involved in this project, this season has been so positive. In the final race we hope to achieve that one thing we’ve been missing…”

MotoGP Malaysia Rins Suzuki
Alex Rins and Team Suzuki celebrate

Davide Brivio – Suzuki Team Manager

“Of course we’re very happy! We took another podium, our eighth of the season! It’s great that our riders have had four podiums each, it’s good news for us and for all of Suzuki. I want to congratulate Alex for keeping his head down and fighting until the end to take 2nd position, it was excellent. I’m very sorry for Andrea because he could’ve been fighting for the podium too but he incurred in a very unlucky crash. I would like to say a big thank you to all the Team staff that are working very hard on improving our level and of course to all the Japanese guys back in the factory. We are living a positive moment and now we look forward to the last race of the year!”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Suzuki Rins
Alex Rins and Team Suzuki celebrate

Mike Leitner – KTM Team Manager

“Disappointing today. Pol had good pace in the middle of the race and was going for tenth place but then we had a technical problem and we are still looking into the cause. Bradley got one point and while we cannot be happy with that we know that he gave his best. We’ll keep our motivation up for Valencia and look towards our next chapter in 2019. I think moments like these and the difficult first seasons are part of the learning process; it is a challenge, and we chose to be here. In Moto2 and Moto3 we were fighting until the end for the titles but it didn’t happen and we’ll look at things this winter and see what we can do better for next year.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race KTM Espargaro Smith
Pol Espargaro and Bradley Smith

Piero Taramasso – Michelin

“This has been another Grand Prix where we have seen the tyres tested to extremes. The weekend began with lower temperatures than expected for Sepang on Friday – although still quite high – and the tyres performed really well and some very fast lap-times were set. This continued on Saturday morning and it looked like we were in a position to break the outright record in qualifying, but then it rained very heavily. This meant the MICHELIN Power Rain tyres were used in anger for one of the few times this year and again they gave excellent results in the difficult conditions. The times were quick and the grip was really good and it produced an exciting qualifying. Today then saw temperatures rise to more than we had seen all weekend and with the information the teams had and with the assistance from their respective technicians, the best tyres were chosen. This produced a fast race which saw us break the duration record, this is one of the most important time benchmarks for us, as it shows the durability and consistency over race distance. There were also three different manufacturers on the podium, which is again a very important marker for Michelin, as it shows performance for all types of bikes. This has been a long trip, but we have had some very good results, learned a lot about the overall performance of the slick and wet tyres and the different compounds in many changeable conditions. We now head back to Europe for the final round and then get ready to start testing for 2019.”

2018 MotoGP Sepang Results
Pos Rider Team Laps
1. Marquez M. Repsol Honda 40:32.372
2. Rins A. Team Suzuki Ecstar +1.898
3. Zarco J. Monster Tech 3 +2.474
4. Vinales M. Movistar Yamaha +4.667
5. Pedrosa D. Repsol Honda +6.190
6. Dovizioso A. Ducati Team +11.248
7. Bautista A. Angel Nieto Team +15.611
8. Miller J. Alma Pramac Racing +19.009
9. Petrucci D. Alma Pramac Racing +22.921
10. Syahrin H. Monster Tech 3 +26.919
11. Espargaro A. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +29.503
12. Morbidelli F. Marc VDS Racing Team +30.933
13. Bradl S. LCR Honda +35.322
14. Nakagami T. LCR Honda +37.912
15. Smith B. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +39.675
16. Luthi T. Marc VDS Racing Team +41.820
17. Simeon X. Reale Avintia Racing +43.978
18. Rossi V. Movistar Yamaha +58.288
19. Redding S. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +1:00.191
DNF Espargaro P. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Retired
DNF Pirro M. Ducati Team Accident
DNF Abraham K. Angel Nieto Team Retired
DNF Iannone A. Team Suzuki Ecstar Accident
2018 MotoGP Sepang Standings
Pos Rider Team Points
1. Marquez Marc Repsol Honda Team 321
2. Dovizioso Andrea Ducati Team 220
3. Rossi Valentino Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 195
4. Vinales Maverick Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 193
5. Rins Alex Team Suzuki Ecstar 149
6. Zarco Johann Monster Yamaha Tech 3 149
7. Crutchlow Cal LCR Honda 148
8. Petrucci Danilo Alma Pramac Racing 144
9. Iannone Andrea Team Suzuki Ecstar 133
10. Lorenzo Jorge Ducati Team 130
11. Pedrosa Dani Repsol Honda Team 106
12. Bautista Alvaro Angel Nieto Team 105
13. Miller Jack Alma Pramac Racing 91
14. Morbidelli Franco Marc VDS Racing Team 50
15. Espargaro Aleix Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 44
16. Syahrin Hafizh Monster Yamaha Tech 3 40
17. Rabat Tito Reale Avintia Racing 35
18. Espargaro Pol Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 35
19. Smith Bradley Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 30
20. Nakagami Takaaki LCR Honda 23
21. Redding Scott Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 15
22. Abraham Karel Angel Nieto Team 10
23. Kallio Mika Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 6
24. Bradl Stefan Honda Racing Corporation 3
25. Nakasuga Katsuyuki Yamaha Factory Team 2
26. Simeon Xavier Reale Avintia Racing 1
27. Pirro Michele Ducati Team 1
28. Luthi Thomas Marc VDS Racing Team 0
29. Torres Jordi MV Agusta Reparto Corse 0
30. Jones Mike Reale Avintia Racing 0
31. Guintoli Sylvain Pata Yamaha Official WSBK Team 0
32. Ponsson Christophe Ponsson C. 0
MotoGP Team Standings
Pos Team Points
1. Repsol Honda Team 427
2. Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 388
3. Ducati Team 363
4. Suzuki MotoGP 282
5. Alma Pramac Racing 235
6. Monster Yamaha Tech 3 189
7. LCR Honda 174
8. Angel Nieto Team 102
9. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 65
10. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 59
11. Estrella Galicia 0,0 50
12. Reale Avintia Racing 36

Source: MCNews.com.au

Malaysian MotoGP Race Reports | Results | Points | All Classes

2018 Malaysian MotoGP

Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) claimed his 70th career win after taking victory at the Shell Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix. The 2018 Champion looked set to lock horns with nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) in the final stages, but the race would end in disaster for ‘The Doctor’ as he crashed out with four to go.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Marquez
Marc Marquez and Repsol Honda celebrate the win and the constructor’s championship

Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) and Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) completed the podium at Sepang International Circuit, the latter from pole, and home hero Hafizh Syahrin (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) stormed from the back of the grid to the top ten in a race to remember in Malaysia.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

When the lights went out it was Rossi who got a stellar launch from P2, with pole man Zarco slightly sluggish off the line and ‘The Doctor’ getting a comfortable holeshot ahead of the the Frenchman, who managed to brake late to slot into P2. Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing) was able to leapfrog Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) into P3 at the start, with Marquez making up one position into P6.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Start
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

The premier class riders then settled, but this came after Marquez and teammate Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) exchanged paint on the opening lap. The 2018 Champion would soon start to make his way forward though, despite a hairy last corner moment at the end of the opening lap that led to Iannone crashing out directly behind the seven-time Champion.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Starts
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

Back at the front, Rossi and Zarco were off as Yamaha had a 1-2 in the opening exchanges, but Marquez hunted them down after making his way past Miller. The Honda rider was on the exhaust of Zarco’s M1 machine and soon enough he managed to slice his way through. Turn 14 was the chosen destination after a slight error from the number 5 machine, with arch-rival Rossi now in his sights. But the number 46 was in an excellent rhythm at the front as the gap between the duo hovered at 3/4s of a second, with Zarco beginning to lose touch at the halfway stage of the race as Rossi continued to press on. 1.1 seconds was the gap to Marquez as 10 laps ticked over at Sepang.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi Rins
2018 Malaysian MotoGP

With eight to go, Rossi was still pumping in the lap times to keep the gap above a second to Marquez, with Zarco now over three seconds behind his fellow Yamaha rider. However, the gap then dipped below the one-second barrier with seven to go and the seven-time Champion was hunting down the nine-time Champion. As ever, Marquez was pushing the limit and there was a slight scare for the number 93 at Turn 5; a ‘mini Marquez moment’, let’s say.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

With five to go at Sepang, the gap was just 0.7, as we set ourselves for a grandstand finish between two of the sport’s all-time greats. But then, disaster struck ‘The Doctor’. A return to victory after 26 races went begging as he lost the front of his YZR-M1 at Turn 1 with four laps to go and he picked up his stricken Yamaha in front of the Rossi grandstand, leaving Marquez with a lonely ride home to the win. The result also sealed the Constructors’ crown for Honda, adding yet more to celebrate for the number 93 and his factory.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Marquez
Marc Marquez

The battle for P2 and P3 between Zarco and Rins was far from finished, however. As the last lap began, Zarco led but Rins was soon past, with the Frenchman having no answer for the Suzuki and the Spaniard crossing the line to take his fourth podium of the season. Zarco took his first since Jerez in third, not able to quite strike back but completing a top weekend for both.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Podium Marquez Rins Zarco
Sepang MotoGP Race Results
1 – Marc Marquez (SPA) HONDA 40’32.372
2 – Alex Rins (SPA) SUZUKI +1.898
3 – Johann Zarco (FRA) YAMAHA +2.474

After a less than impressive start, Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) recovered to string together a strong latter half of the Grand Prix to finish P4, with Pedrosa crossing the line P5 on his final racing visit to the Sepang International Circuit. It was a subdued race for one of the pre-race favourites Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team), however, as the winner here for the last two seasons couldn’t replicate those results and took P6. After Rossi’s crash though, the Italian has sealed P2 in the Championship.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Dovizioso Miller
Andrea Dovizioso

Angel Nieto Team’s Alvaro Bautista was P7 in his penultimate MotoGP race and he led fellow Desmosedici rider Miller as the Australian slipped down to P8 after a good start. P9 was his teammate Danilo Petrucci, but arguably ride of the day went to a certain Malaysian: Hafizh Syahrin (Monster Yamaha Tech 3).

MotoGP Malaysia Race Syahrin
Hafizh Syahrin

Starting P23, the home hero was able to get a stunning start as he got himself up to P12 on the opening lap, eventually claiming P10 to close Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) down in the battle for ‘Rookie of the Year’. Emotional before and after the race, it was the first time a Malaysian had ever competed in the premier class and Syahrin marked the occasion in style – even heading out onto the main straight to throw his gloves into a deservedly adoring crowd.

Morbidelli took P12 to limit some of that damage in the standings and remains ahead, just behind Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini). LCR Honda Castrol replacement rider Stefan Bradl claimed P13 and points, the German finishing just ahead of teammate Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu), with Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) completing the points.

A scorching encounter in Sepang ends with Marquez on top once more, with Rossi left to ponder on what could have been. Valencia in a couple of weeks’ time brings to 2018 Championship to a close.

2018 MotoGP Sepang Results
Pos Rider Team Laps
1. Marquez M. Repsol Honda 40:32.372
2. Rins A. Team Suzuki Ecstar +1.898
3. Zarco J. Monster Tech 3 +2.474
4. Vinales M. Movistar Yamaha +4.667
5. Pedrosa D. Repsol Honda +6.190
6. Dovizioso A. Ducati Team +11.248
7. Bautista A. Angel Nieto Team +15.611
8. Miller J. Alma Pramac Racing +19.009
9. Petrucci D. Alma Pramac Racing +22.921
10. Syahrin H. Monster Tech 3 +26.919
11. Espargaro A. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +29.503
12. Morbidelli F. Marc VDS Racing Team +30.933
13. Bradl S. LCR Honda +35.322
14. Nakagami T. LCR Honda +37.912
15. Smith B. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +39.675
16. Luthi T. Marc VDS Racing Team +41.820
17. Simeon X. Reale Avintia Racing +43.978
18. Rossi V. Movistar Yamaha +58.288
19. Redding S. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +1:00.191
DNF Espargaro P. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Retired
DNF Pirro M. Ducati Team Accident
DNF Abraham K. Angel Nieto Team Retired
DNF Iannone A. Team Suzuki Ecstar Accident
MotoGP Malaysia Race Marquez
Marc Marquez and Repsol Honda celebrate the win and the constructor’s championship
2018 MotoGP Sepang Standings
Pos Rider Team Points
1. Marquez Marc Repsol Honda Team 321
2. Dovizioso Andrea Ducati Team 220
3. Rossi Valentino Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 195
4. Vinales Maverick Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 193
5. Rins Alex Team Suzuki Ecstar 149
6. Zarco Johann Monster Yamaha Tech 3 149
7. Crutchlow Cal LCR Honda 148
8. Petrucci Danilo Alma Pramac Racing 144
9. Iannone Andrea Team Suzuki Ecstar 133
10. Lorenzo Jorge Ducati Team 130
11. Pedrosa Dani Repsol Honda Team 106
12. Bautista Alvaro Angel Nieto Team 105
13. Miller Jack Alma Pramac Racing 91
14. Morbidelli Franco Marc VDS Racing Team 50
15. Espargaro Aleix Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 44
16. Syahrin Hafizh Monster Yamaha Tech 3 40
17. Rabat Tito Reale Avintia Racing 35
18. Espargaro Pol Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 35
19. Smith Bradley Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 30
20. Nakagami Takaaki LCR Honda 23
21. Redding Scott Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 15
22. Abraham Karel Angel Nieto Team 10
23. Kallio Mika Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 6
24. Bradl Stefan Honda Racing Corporation 3
25. Nakasuga Katsuyuki Yamaha Factory Team 2
26. Simeon Xavier Reale Avintia Racing 1
27. Pirro Michele Ducati Team 1
28. Luthi Thomas Marc VDS Racing Team 0
29. Torres Jordi MV Agusta Reparto Corse 0
30. Jones Mike Reale Avintia Racing 0
31. Guintoli Sylvain Pata Yamaha Official WSBK Team 0
32. Ponsson Christophe Ponsson C. 0
MotoGP Malaysia Race Marquez
Marc Marquez and Repsol Honda celebrate the win and the constructor’s championship
MotoGP Team Standings
Pos Team Points
1. Repsol Honda Team 427
2. Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 388
3. Ducati Team 363
4. Suzuki MotoGP 282
5. Alma Pramac Racing 235
6. Monster Yamaha Tech 3 189
7. LCR Honda 174
8. Angel Nieto Team 102
9. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 65
10. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 59
11. Estrella Galicia 0,0 50
12. Reale Avintia Racing 36

Francesco Bagnaia (Sky Racing Team VR46) clinched the 2018 Moto2 World Championship at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix after finishing P3 at Sepang, with title rival Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) just up the road in second. Bagnaia’s teammate Luca Marini made it an even more memorable day for Sky Racing Team VR46 as he secured his maiden Grand Prix victory in style after coming so close on a number of occasions.

As the lights went out, both of the Championship rivals got off to a flyer but it was Marini who led coming out of Turn 1 after a messy opening corner for his fellow front row starters; Fabio Quartararo (MB Conveyors – Speed Up) and Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) both running in hot. This allowed Bagnaia and Oliveira to slip through up the inside to get into P2 and P3; pretty much the perfect getaway for ‘Pecco’, who slotted in behind teammate Marini.

Marini then got himself into a rhythm at the front, with Bagnaia and Oliveira battling away for P2 – the title firmly in Bagnaia’s hands at this early stage of the race, even with Oliveira making a pass stick at Turn 4 with 12 laps to go. The Portuguese rider then locked his radar on race leader Marini, who now had a one second lead, with Bagnaia starting to slip into the clutches of compatriot Mattia Pasini (Italtrans Racing Team). Polesitter Marquez and Lorenzo Baldassarri (Pons HP40) were also in hot pursuit of the Championship leader.

Oliveira had reeled in Marini 11 laps remaining, with a win for the KTM rider enough to take the title chase down to Valencia if Bagnaia dropped below the podium positions. With six to go, it seemed the battle for the win was between Marini and Oliveira, with both Baldassarri and Marquez losing touch in the fight for the final podium spot – and Pasini still 0.4 behind countryman Bagnaia.

In sweltering Sepang conditions, Marini was being made to sweat by Oliveira as the continued to look strong for a first Grand Prix win. But the Italian was on rails as he soaked up the pressure from the KTM behind and with two to go, a 0.7 gap had appeared. Going into the final lap, Marini had the biggest lead he’d had for a while, with Bagnaia sitting comfortably in a Championship clinching P3 – and with over a second cushion back to Pasini.

As the chequered flag was waved it was double delight for Sky Racing Team VR46 as Marini took a magnificent maiden Grand Prix victory, with Bagnaia coming home third to seal the 2018 Moto2 World Championship. Oliveira didn’t go down without a fight as he took P2 at the Sepang International Circuit – and his 11th podium of the season, but it wasn’t quite enough.

Moto Podium Luca Marini
Sepang Moto2 Race Results
1 – Luca Marini (ITA) KALEX 38’25.689
2 – Miguel Oliveira (POR) KTM +1.194
3 – Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) KALEX +3.020

Pasini crossed the line in P4, with Quartararo rounding out the top five after getting the better of sixth place Baldassarri and seventh place Marquez in the latter stages. Australian GP winner Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) took P8 in Malaysia after struggling with grip, with Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) and Joan Mir (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) rounding out the top ten in P9 and P10 respectively.

Iker Lecuona (Swiss Innovative Investors), Xavi Cardelus (Marinelli Snipers Team), Remy Gardner (Tech 3 Racing), Tetsuta Nagashima (Idemistu Honda Team Asia), Niki Tuuli (Petronas Sprinta Racing) and Augusto Fernandez (Pons HP40) crashed out.

Remy Gardner looked set for a top six finished until a crash with thirteen laps to go.

Remy Gardner

“I was really pushing but just didn’t have the grip and was sliding all over from the very first corners. Marquez made a clean pass but it put me onto the dirty part of the track and I tucked the front. Another unlucky incident but I’m proving that I have the speed to race with the top guys which is encouraging for the final race and for next year. I can take the positives from the weekend after qualifying fourth. Big thanks to all the tweets and support from everyone around the globe. See you in Spain!”

MotoGP Malaysia Moto Gardner
Remy Gardner #87

Just like the lightweight class, the 2018 intermediate class crown was decided in Malaysia and it went the way of ‘Pecco’. A stunning season for the Italian, with teammate Marini continuing his fantastic 2018. 

2018 Moto2 Sepang Results
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Marini L. Sky Racing Team VR46 38:25.689
2. Oliveira M. Red Bull KTM Ajo +1.194
3. Bagnaia F. Sky Racing Team VR46 +3.020
4. Pasini M. Italtrans Racing Team +4.497
5. Quartararo F. Beta Tools-Speed Up Racing +5.250
6. Baldassarri L. Pons HP40 +5.305
7. Marquez A. Estrella Galicia Marc VDS +7.690
8. Binder B. Red Bull KTM Ajo +8.943
9. Schrotter M. Dynavolt Intact GP +9.687
10. Mir J. Estrella Galicia Marc VDS +18.547
11. Vierge X. Dynavolt Intact GP +18.816
12. Locatelli A. Italtrans Racing Team +19.739
13. Navarro J. Federal Oil Gresini +21.177
14. Aegerter D. Kiefer Racing +21.960
15. Lowes S. SWI +26.875
16. Corsi S. Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 +28.515
17. Pawi K. I. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +28.802
18. Roberts J. NTS RW Racing GP +29.791
19. Raffin J. Garage Plus Interwetten +30.557
20. Pons E. Pons HP40 +31.069
21. Odendaal S. NTS RW Racing GP +38.430
22. Danilo J. SAG Team +42.930
23. Pratama D. E. Federal Oil Gresini +57.507
24. Vinales I. Forward Racing Team +57.910
25. Fuligni F. Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 +1:03.737
26. Sucipto R. T. QMMF Racing Team +2:04.066
DNF Fernandez A. Pons HP40 Accident
DNF Tuuli N. SIC Racing Team Accident
DNF Nagashima T. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia Retired
DNF Gardner R. Tech 3 Racing Retired
DNF Cardelus X. Team Stylobike Retired
DNF Lecuona I. SWI Retired
Francesco Bagnaia Moto Champ
Francesco Bagnaia
Moto2 Championship Standings
Pos Driver Team Points
1. Bagnaia Francesco Sky Racing Team VR46 304
2. Oliveira Miguel Red Bull KTM Ajo 272
3. Binder Brad Red Bull KTM Ajo 201
4. Baldassarri Lorenzo Pons HP40 162
5. Marquez Alex Estrella Galicia Marc VDS Team Moto2 157
6. Mir Joan Estrella Galicia Marc VDS Team Moto2 155
7. Marini Luca Sky Racing Team VR46 147
8. Schrotter Marcel Dynavolt Intact GP 138
9. Vierge Xavi Dynavolt Intact GP 131
10. Quartararo Fabio Beta Tools-Speed Up Racing 128
11. Pasini Mattia Italtrans Racing Team 128
12. Lecuona Iker Swiss Innovative Investors 60
13. Navarro Jorge Federal Oil Gresini Moto2 58
14. Lowes Sam Swiss Innovative Investors 49
15. Corsi Simone Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 47
16. Locatelli Andrea Italtrans Racing Team 45
17. Aegerter Dominique Kiefer Racing 42
18. Fernandez Augusto Pons HP40 37
19. Gardner Remy Tech 3 Racing 29
20. Nagashima Tetsuta Idemitsu Honda Team Asia 23
21. Fenati Romano Marinelli Snipers Team 14
22. Barbera Hector Pons HP40 10
23. Raffin Jesko Garage Plus Interwetten 9
24. Manzi Stefano Forward Racing Team 8
25. Kent Danny Beta Tools-Speed Up Racing 8
26. Vinales Isaac Forward Racing Team 7
27. Roberts Joe NTS RW Racing GP 5
28. Bendsneyder Bo Tech 3 Racing 2
29. Pawi Khairul Idham Idemitsu Honda Team Asia 1
30. Pons Edgar Pons HP40 1
31. Odendaal Steven NTS RW Racing GP 1
32. Tuuli Niki SIC Racing Team 1
33. Warokorn Thitipong APH PTT The Pizza SAG 0
34. Granado Eric Forward Racing Team 0
35. Danilo Jules SAG Team 0
36. Garzo Hector Garzo H. 0
37. Tulovic Lukas Kiefer Racing 0
38. Fuligni Federico Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 0
39. Staring Bryan Go & Fun Honda Gresini 0
40. Cardelus Xavi Team Stylobike 0
41. Pratama Dimas Ekky Federal Oil Gresini Moto2 0
42. Medina Alejandro SAG Team 0
43. Morais Sheridan Willirace Racing Team 0
44. Perolari Corentin Promoto Sport 0
45. Khairuddin Zulfahmi SIC Racing Team 0
46. Sucipto Rafid Topan QMMF Racing Team 0
47. Tangre Cedric Yohan Moto Sport 0

Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) was crowned the Moto3 World Champion at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix after claiming a stunning Sepang International Circuit victory, with main Championship rival Marco Bezzecchi (Redox PruestelGP) slipping down to P5 on the final lap to hand the title to the Spaniard. Leopard Racing teammates Lorenzo Dalla Porta and Enea Bastianini completed the podium after another hard-fought contest in Malaysia.

It was Martin who got the best launch off the line from pole position but with a long run down into Turn 1, Bezzecchi was able to get in his slipstream and brake later to get the holeshot. A tentative lap followed for the Spaniard, who dropped down to P5 by the end of the first lap and at the end of Lap 2, the Championship leader was P8. Bezzecchi, meanwhile, was heading the pack…

The latter then lost the lead of the race at the start of Lap 4, with fellow KTM rider Darryn Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) getting aggressive heading into Turn 1, forcing Bezzecchi out wide and dropping him to sixth, just ahead of Martin. Meanwhile, Fabio Di Giannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) had got past his teammate as the duo battled for P8 – and Martin dropped to P10 at the end of Lap 5.

You could cut the tension with a knife and on Lap 6 there was a nerve-wracking moment between Bezzecchi and fellow Italian Tony Arbolino (Marinelli Snipers Team) as they came together on the exit of Turn 6, both – thankfully – staying upright. Then, with 10 laps to go, Martin started to make progress and at the final corner, a phenomenal late lunge underneath race leader Bezzecchi from P6 almost paid off. The slipstream down the straight, though, did pay off as Martin took the lead of the race. Was this his time to pull the pin?

The answer was yes, but he couldn’t break away. Bezzecchi was back through with nine to go at the final corner and then, with eight laps to go, contact between the two main title leaders at Turn 1. Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) then took the baton and started to create a gap but suddenly, at Turn 1, the Spaniard tucked the front and crashed out of contention – rider ok. The gloves were now off at the front with a huge seven laps remaining and a title on the line.

The hustle and bustle at the front kept on going in true Moto3™ style. But then in true Martin style, with three laps of the race to go and the Championship firmly in the balance, the pin was definitely pulled this time. The Spaniard hit the front and suddenly there was a 0.8 second lead appearing, with Bezzecchi unable to get past Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) and Arbolino. This gap continued to grow as it looked increasingly difficult for Bezzecchi to get the better of Martin, and the Italian’s attention firmly switched to keeping his title aspirations alive.

On the prowl behind Bezzecchi were a gaggle of hungry Moto3 riders. Di Giannantonio, Dalla Porta, Arbolino, Albert Arenas (Angel Nieto Team), Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse), Enea Bastianini (Leopard Racing) and Binder were all there in the hunt for P2. The last lap started and at Turn 4, Bezzecchi was out on the curb and down to P5 – a Championship losing position. Could the Italian recover? The answer was no, Bezzecchi pushed all he could but would cross the line P5. Despair for the Italian, and jubilation for Martin who took the victory by an impressive 3.5 seconds.

Dalla Porta crossed the line in P2 for his fifth podium of the season, with teammate Bastianini recovering in the latter stages to grab a podium that means he becomes the most successful Moto3 rider in history on rostrum count.

Moto Podium Jorge Martin Champion
Sepang Moto3 Race Results
1 – Jorge Martin (SPA) HONDA 38’34.799
2 – Lorenzo Dalla Porta (ITA) HONDA +3.556
3 – Enea Bastianini (ITA) HONDA +3.757

Australian GP winner Arenas missed out on a podium by 0.038, with Bezzecchi pipping ‘Diggia’ on the line – and the duo now have P2 in the Championship to fight for in Valencia. Binder ended the race in P7, Arbolino was eighth, Suzuki P9 and teammate Niccolo Antonelli securing a top ten on his return from injury.

Starting from the pitlane, home hero Adam Norrodin (Petronas Sprinta Racing) produced a stunning comeback rider to get himself into the lead group. But with little over two laps to go, the Malaysian rider crashed out at the final corner. John McPhee (CIP – Green Power), Dennis Foggia (SKY Racing Team VR46) and Alonso Lopez (Estrella Galicia 0,0) all crashed at Turn 9, with Celestino Vietti (SKY Racing Team VR46) also crashing in a separate incident at the same place.

Moto3 Sepang Results
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Martin J. Del Conca Gresini Racing 38:34.799
2. Dalla Porta L. Leopard Racing +3.556
3. Bastianini E. Leopard Racing +3.757
4. Arenas A. Angel Nieto Team Moto3 +3.795
5. Bezzecchi M. PruestlGP +4.095
6. Di Giannantonio F. Del Conca Gresini Racing +4.106
7. Binder D. Red Bull KTM Ajo +4.232
8. Arbolino T. Marinelli Snipers Team +4.704
9. Suzuki T. SIC58 Squadra Corse +4.707
10. Antonelli N. SIC58 Squadra Corse +4.715
11. Ramirez M. Bester Capital Dubai +4.727
12. Toba K. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +5.101
13. Perez V. Reale Avintia Academy +6.392
14. Atiratphuvapat N. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +7.063
15. Masaki K. RBA BOE Skull Rider +7.353
16. Migno A. Angel Nieto Team Moto3 +7.478
17. Yurchenko M. Marinelli Snipers Team +7.626
18. Sasaki A. Petronas Sprinta Racing +13.843
19. Oettl P. Sudmetall Schedl GP Racing +19.992
20. Kornfeil J. PruestlGP +26.678
21. Nepa S. CIP Green Power +34.184
22. Wongthananon A. VR46 Master Camp Team +34.468
23. Norrodin A. Petronas Sprinta Racing +1:37.387
DNF Canet A. Estrella Galicia 0,0 Accident
DNF Lopez A. Estrella Galicia 0,0 Accident
DNF Mcphee J. CIP Green Power Accident
DNF Foggia D. Sky Racing Team VR46 Accident
DNF Vietti C. Sky Racing Team VR46 Accident
Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin
Moto3 Championship Standings
Pos Rider Team Points
1. Martin Jorge Del Conca Gresini Racing Moto3 240
2. Bezzecchi Marco Pruestel GP 214
3. Di Giannantonio Fabio Del Conca Gresini Racing Moto3 205
4. Bastianini Enea Leopard Racing 166
5. Dalla Porta Lorenzo Leopard Racing 151
6. Canet Aron Estrella Galicia 0,0 128
7. Rodrigo Gabriel RBA BOE Skull Rider 116
8. Kornfeil Jakub Pruestel GP 115
9. Arenas Albert Angel Nieto Team Moto3 107
10. Ramirez Marcos Bester Capital Dubai 95
11. Migno Andrea Angel Nieto Team Moto3 82
12. Suzuki Tatsuki SIC58 Squadra Corse 71
13. Masia Jaume Bester Capital Dubai 66
14. Mcphee John CIP Green Power 62
15. Antonelli Niccolo SIC58 Squadra Corse 62
16. Oettl Philipp Sudmetall Schedl GP Racing 58
17. Binder Darryn Red Bull KTM Ajo 57
18. Arbolino Tony Marinelli Snipers Team 57
19. Foggia Dennis Sky Racing Team VR46 55
20. Norrodin Adam Petronas Sprinta Racing 46
21. Sasaki Ayumu Petronas Sprinta Racing 45
22. Toba Kaito Idemitsu Honda Team Asia 37
23. Lopez Alonso Estrella Galicia 0,0 36
24. Vietti Celestino Vietti C. 18
25. Bulega Nicolo Sky Racing Team VR46 18
26. Perez Vicente Reale Avintia Academy 16
27. Fernandez Raul MRW Mahindra Aspar Team 13
28. Yurchenko Makar CIP Green Power 9
29. Masaki Kazuki RBA BOE Skull Rider 9
30. Loi Livio Reale Avintia Racing 8
31. Chantra Somkiat Honda Racing Corporation 7
32. Pagliani Manuel SIC Racing Team 6
33. Atiratphuvapat Nakarin Idemitsu Honda Team Asia 4
34. Ogura Ai Asia Talent Team 1
35. Montella Yari Montella Y. 0
36. Wongthananon Apiwat Wongthananon A. 0
37. Nepa Stefano CIP Green Power 0
38. Alcoba Jeremy Junior Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 0
39. Zannoni Kevin Althea Racing 0
40. Grunwald Luca Kiefer Racing 0
41. Okazaki Shizuka Teluru & Kohara 0
42. Fukushima Yuto Fukushima Y. 0
43. Salac Filip Czech Talent Team Cuna de Campeones 0
44. Van de Lagemaat Ryan Van de Lagemaat R. 0
45. Kofler Maximilian Motorsport Kofler E.U. 0

Source: MCNews.com.au

CORAJE!! 💪🏼COURAGE!! 🙌🏽🏆VICTORY🏆#Level7

CORAJE!! 💪🏼
COURAGE!! 🙌🏽
🏆VICTORY🏆
#Level7


Source: Marc Márquez on Facebook

Dani Pedrosa – P5 Malaysia

P5. Hoy he podido recuperar alguna posición en la salida y hemos tenido una carrera mejor de lo habitual. Lástima ya que al final he tenido algún problema de agarre y no he podido luchar por el podio./ P5 Today I was able to win some positions at the start and we had a better race than usual. Pity because in the end I had some grip problems and I could not fight for the podium.
#DP26 #MalaysianGP #RepsolHondaTeam


Source: Dani Pedrosa on Facebook

Valentino Rossi rues Malaysian mistake | Lorenzo comments

Rossi was on fire before late mistake ends in ashes

Valentino Rossi had a heroic run at the Sepang International Circuit, but it ended in heartbreak on lap 17 when the Italian superstar crashed out of the lead. He was able to rejoin the race and took the chequered flag in 18th place.

Valentino Rossi

“It was a great shame because this was my best race of the season. I felt comfortable, I had a good pace, I pushed, and I had the chance to win, but unfortunately with four or five laps to go I fell – I don’t understand what happened. I made a mistake, because I crashed. It’s such a pity, but it still remains a good weekend, because we improved the setting of the bike. I think we have to do some more work, but it looks like we were able to use the bike in a better way in the last few races. This is good, but we have to see if we’re also strong in Valencia. It’s a difficult track for us in general, but we have to try.”


A champion in defeat

Despite the disappointment Rossi still acknowledged all of the fans on the slow down lap and put on a brave face for the cameras. This is not his first rodeo…  But still, impressive to see his demeanour after the heartache. 

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

In another great display of sportsmanship from an opposite side of the fence. The injured Jorge Lorenzo tweeted after the race the following. 


Jorge Lorenzo

“Apart from the crash, I’ve never seen @ValeYellow46 so consistent. More than ten laps in just one-tenth at the hottest and longest track impressed me today. And some said he started to feel his age after the last race….”


Rossi had a perfect start from second, taking the hole shot and holding the lead superbly. He had a stunning consistent pace that allowed him to make a clean getaway from his pursuers. 

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

Though his advantage went up and down over the first half of the race, there was no one who could really reach Rossi at the front, let alone make an attempt at passing the nine-time World Champion.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

However, in the final ten laps the heat and the tyre degradation meant Marc Márquez was closing in.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

The Doctor responded by picking up the pace and defended his first place brilliantly, but a small mishap in Turn 1 on lap 17 caused him to slide down the tarmac. He was able to rejoin the race in 18th place and finished in the same position, 58.288s from first.

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

Today’s results see Rossi hold on to third position in the championship standings with a 25-point gap to second.

Massimo Meregalli – Yamaha Team Director

“For sure this is not the ending we had hoped for this weekend. The final results don‘t do justice to the pace of our riders, because they both had really strong form this weekend. Maverick had to start from the fourth row and make up a lot of ground. If he had started a bit more towards the front, he would have been a top contender today, because his pace matched Vale‘s. Valentino did exactly what he needed to do at the start. He was leading the race perfectly, so it‘s a great shame it ended the way it did. Nevertheless, we can take some positives from these last three races, as we made a step with the bike and were consistent in our performance. Today we were competitive at a circuit that doesn‘t necessarily play to our bike‘s strengths. So, with that in mind, we head to Valencia eager to fight at the front again during the season finale.”

MotoGP Malaysia Race Rossi
Valentino Rossi

Source: MCNews.com.au

Billy Van Eerde | 2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion | Videos

Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Champ sign
Billy Van Eerde – 2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion

2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion

[embedded content]


16-year-old Billy Van Eerde today won the 2018 Asia Talent Cup Championship after an unbelievable weekend of racing at Sepang.

Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Jack Miller
Jack Miller has been instrumental in helping Billy this season both at the track, and in a massive way away from the track

It came down to the line and Billy was actually beaten to the flag by championship rival Haruki Noguchi. However, the Japanese rider had a coming together on the straight with Malaysian rider Danial Sharil.

[embedded content]

An investigation immediately after the race then judged Noguchi to have been guilty of irresponsible riding and docked him 27-seconds, which promoted Billy to the race win, and with that enough points to be crowned Asia Talent Cup Champion.

Asia Talent Cup Crash Line
A coming together at the flag decided the championship

Billy only joined the Asia Talent Cup for the first time this year, while many of his competitors, including Noguchi have had multiple years in the tightly contested category on controlled Honda NSF250R motorcycles.

Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Sue
Billy Van Eerde with mum Sue

I don’t think it is out of place for me to say that all of us that are regularly involved in Australian Road Racing are immensely proud of Billy’s achievement today, and feel lucky to have seen his progression from the start as he made his transtion from dirt track in the ranks of ASBK Supersport 300 on a KTM.

Billy Van Eerde heads to Thailand holding down second place in the Asia Talent Cup standings
Billy Van Eerde

I reckon it is also fair to say that quite a few of shed a tear this evening as we watched the realisation dawn on Billy that he had won the championship. 

Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Relief
Billy Van Eerde – 2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion

Alberto Puig (Talent Promotion Director)

“As always this Cup is about evolution during the year and some guys make more of an evolution than others, van Eerde started step by step but has been progressing, as have many other riders, and finally he was the Champion and we have to congratulate him. I think this incident in the last race made it a little it strange, but in the points he’s the Champion and that’s what counts. Overall we’re happy with the year, we’re satisfied we had another season of the Cup because it’s always complicated.”

Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Champ
Billy Van Eerde – 2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion
Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Champ
2018 Asia Talent Cup Top Three
Asia Talent Cup Billy Van Eerde Group
Billy Van Eerde – 2018 Asia Talent Cup Champion – #19

2018 Asia Talent Cup Final Championship Points

  1. Billy Van Eerde AUS 199
  2. Haruki Noguchi JPN 174
  3. Sho Nishimura JPN 150
  4. Danial Sharil MAL 147
  5. Mario Aji INA 123
  6. Tachakorn Buarsi THA 108
  7. Takuma Matsuyama JPN 101
  8. Lucky Hendriansya INA 87
  9. Agung Fachrul INA 75
  10. Afridza Munandar INA 59

Source: MCNews.com.au

Francesco Bagnaia | 2018 Moto2 World Champion

2018 Moto2 World Champion

Francesco Bagnaia is the 2018 Moto2 World Champion, taking the title at Sepang after eight wins, 12 podiums and six pole positions over an incredible season. Arriving 36 points up in the Championship, his third place in the race – paired with a second for title rival Miguel Oliveira – was enough for the Italian to secure the crown.

Francesco Bagnaia Moto Champ
Francesco Bagnaia

Making his debut on the world stage in 2013 with team Italia FMI in Moto3, Bagnaia then switched to Sky Racing Team VR46 the year after – but it wasn’t until 2015 that he finally took his first podium. That was at Le Mans, but riding a Mahindra; a marque whose history ‘Pecco’ would become an even bigger part of the following season.

After podium finishes at Losail, Jerez and Mugello, Bagnaia finally took both his first Grand Prix win and the first win for Mahindra after a stunning ride at the TT Circuit Assen. His favourite track, the layout of which he even has as a tattoo. It wasn’t a one off in that impressive season either, with Bagnaia taking another win, this time at Sepang, to put him fourth overall in the standings.

At the end of the season Bagnaia got his first taste of a MotoGP machine at the Valencia test, owing to a bet made with his team. They’d said that, if ‘Pecco’ were to win a race that season, they’d let him try the then-Aspar liveried Ducati.

Francesco Bagnaia Moto Champ
Francesco Bagnaia

Before he made that a full-time switch, however, Bagnaia’s next challenge was Moto2 – in the same Sky Racing Team VR46. His first podiums didn’t wait long to arrive, as the Italian took to the rostrum in Jerez, Le Mans, Germany and at Misano; enough to put him fifth overall and see him take the title of Rookie of the Year.

His stellar first season in the intermediate class was more than just awards and success – it also penciled him in as a key favourite for the 2018 crown. Starting the year on the top step with a first Moto2 win in the season opener in Qatar, ‘Pecco’ then ceded the points lead next time out in Argentina, but he was back on it in Texas.

A key rival then began to appear: Oliveira. The Portuguese rider won in Mugello from outside the top ten on the grid, and that brought him to within a single point of Bagnaia at the top. But the Italian responded at Assen, winning at his talisman track once again. In Germany there was some drama, however, as Bagnaia was forced into avoiding action after a crash for compatriot Mattia Pasini (Italtrans Racing Team) and crossed the line in P12.

Oliveira then struck gold in Czechia to win another race, but Bagnaia was quick to hit back once again as he took the victory in Austria to begin a run of top results: a win at Misano, a P2 at MotorLand and then another victory in Thailand – the 800th for Italy – to really pull the pin. Second on the road at Motegi, he was later promoted to the win after the disqualification of Fabio Quartararo (MB Conveyors – Speed Up Racing) for a technical infringement – making the gap that much bigger as the paddock arrived at Phillip Island. There, he had his first match point but it wasn’t to be after a more difficult weekend, so the battle rolled on to Malaysia.

There, it was mission accomplished after a stunning season in the intermediate class and another podium to secure the crown. After one more race and now as reigning Moto2 World Champion, Bagnaia will then be getting on a MotoGP bike once again – this time for good as he moves up to partner Jack Miller at Alma Pramac Racing in 2019.

Francesco Bagnaia Moto Champ
Francesco Bagnaia

Statistics – Francesco Bagnaia

• Francesco Bagnaia is the second Italian rider to win the Moto2 title, following Franco Morbidelli last year. This is the first back-to-back world title with two different Italian riders in the intermediate category since Loris Capirossi (1998) and Valentino Rossi (1999).

• Bagnaia is the 15th different Italian rider to clinch to title in the intermediate category. Bagnaia’s title is also 24th in the class for Italian riders and the 77th in Grand Prix racing.

• At 21 years and 294 days old, Bagnaia is the ninth youngest rider to clinch the title in the intermediate category and the fourth youngest Italian rider to do so after Marco Melandri (20 years 74 days), Valentino Rossi (20 years 250 days) and Marco Simoncelli (21 years 273 days).

• Bagnaia has won eight races so far this year, equalling Johann Zarco in 2015 and Franco Morbidelli last year which is also the second-highest number of Moto2 wins in a season after Marc Márquez in 2012 (9).

• Bagnaia equals Andrea Iannone and Franco Morbidelli, who both stands in the first place on the list of Italian riders with most wins in the class.

• Bagnaia has stood on the podium 12 times this season so far and 16 in the Moto2 class, equalling Mika Kallio, who stands in 10th place on the list of riders with most podium finishes in the class.

• With 16 podium finishes, Bagnaia is now in third place on the list of Italian riders with most podium finishes in the Moto2 class.

• With his pole position at Motegi – his 6th of the season so far – he equalled Franco Morbidelli in 2nd place on the list of Italian riders with most pole positions in the Moto2 class, two less than Mattia Pasini.

• Bagnaia is only the second Italian rider who has won back-to-back races in the Moto2 class along with Franco Morbidelli.

• Bagnaia has scored points in the last 29 successive races. The last time he failed to score points was in Italy last year when he crashed on the final lap. Only Dominique Aegerter (33) and Mika Kallio (31) and have scored points in more than 29 successive races in Moto2.

• Since he stepped up to Moto2, Bagnaia has always reached the finish line and only failed to score any points twice, in the Americas and Italy last year.

• At 21 years and 63 days old on race day in Qatar, Bagnaia became the sixth youngest rider to lead the Moto2 World Championship since its introduction back in 2010, and the youngest Italian rider.

Source: MCNews.com.au

Jorge Martin crowned 2018 Moto3 World Champion

2018 Moto3 World Champion

Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) is the 2018 Moto3 World Champion, taking the title at Sepang after a stunning season. Seven wins, nine podiums and 11 poles saw Martin a frontrunner throughout the season, and the Spaniard weathered the ups and downs of a tense year of competition to come out on top against key rivals Marco Bezzecchi (Redox PruestelGP) and Fabio Di Giannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3).

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

Jorge Martin – 2018 Moto3 World Champion

“My whole life passed through my very own eyes. I come from a humble family and it wasn’t easy to get here where we are now. I would like to thank everyone who supported me and helped me grow: from the “Cuna de Campeones” to the rookies cup to obviously Gresini Racing. I saw this title almost slipping off my hands in Thailand when I thought I wouldn’t have raced, but we did and I wanna thank everyone, including my rivals. To be winning the title and taking the race win at the same time is probably the best thing in the world, so thank you once again!”

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

Martin made his debut on the world stage in 2015 with Mapfre Mahindra, moving up after taking the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup. He scored his first point in the season opener in Qatar and became a regular top 15 contender, ending his rookie year in 17th overall. The following season, the rider from Madrid took another step forward – including his first podium in the wet at Brno – but he also missed a couple of races through injury, therefore ending the season just one place further forward in 16th overall.

2017 saw Martin cement his place at the front as he moved to Del Conca Gresini Moto3, beginning the year on the podium in third at Qatar. He took nine pole positions and eight further podiums that season – but it was a long wait for one to be a maiden win. The Spaniard wrapped that up in the season finale at Valencia; his first trip to the top step setting him up perfectly for an assault on the crown the following year and seeing him take fourth overall in the standings.

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

2018 began perfectly as Martin won in Qatar, but Argentina was a tougher race in tougher conditions and he could only manage P11. That was when the man who would push him the most this season – Marco Bezzechhi – took his first win, and a classic rivalry was born. Austin saw Martin back on the top step before two more difficult races and DNFs in Jerez and Le Mans, both seeing the Spaniard victim to serious bad luck at the hands of Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) and Bezzecchi…

Mugello was a win before a zero in Catalunya, but Martin then took back-to-back wins in Assen and Germany to lead the standings once again. Then, however, disaster struck as the Spaniard broke his left wrist in FP1 at Brno. Operated on and forced to forfeit the round, it was an upset to the Spaniard’s charge.

Back on track in Austria, it was a weekend for Martin to clench his teeth and dig deep, which he did in stunning style to take an emotional podium. In Misano Bezzecchi then faltered and crashed, but Martin could only gain the 20 points for second. Aragon was Martin back on full power at the front for a home win, and the first of the flyaway races in Thailand gave him more of an advantage as Bezzecchi was crashed out and Martin took fourth despite some struggles with his recovery. Motegi then saw the pendulum swing again as Martin crashed in the leading group – and Bezzecchi closed back in with a win.

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

Phillip Island was yet more drama. This time Bezzecchi was back on the receiving end of the bad luck as he was hit by another rider, and Martin took some good points although he couldn’t take the win, coming home fourth. That was enough to give him his first match point next time out at Sepang, however, with Martin 12 points clear before the race in Malaysia – and 20 points clear of Di Giannantonio.

After another incredible race, Martin fought it out before pulling the pin to perfection and Bezzecchi was left to battle to try and keep his hopes alive. As Martin crossed the line first for another win, it all went down to the final corner but Bezzecchi couldn’t quite make it through into that crucial fourth place – making Martin the 2018 Moto3 World Champion.


Fausto Gresini – Team Manager

“I was not expecting to win the championship here. It has been a tough race, so it’s twice as rewarding to win it here. Seven years ago we lost Marco here, so I would like to dedicate this title to him. Everyone in the team has been incredible. We are World Champions by getting the most pole positions and race wins and by winning both team and riders’ classifications. It has been a perfect season, and we could still wrap it up with Diggia’s second place!”

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

Statistics: Jorge Martin

• Jorge Martín is the third Spanish rider to win a Moto3 title after Maverick Viñales (2013), Álex Márquez (2014) and Joan Mir (2017).

• Martín is the 13th different Spanish rider to clinch to title in the lightweight category. In addition, Martín’s title is the 19th in the lightweight category for Spanish riders and 50th in Grand Prix racing.

• At 20 years and 279 days old, Martín is the fourth-youngest rider to clinch the Moto3 world title after Álex Márquez (18 years 200 days old), Maverick Viñales (18 years 302 days old) and Joan Mir (20 years 51 days old).

• Martín has won seven races so far this season, equaling Luis Salom (2013) and Brad Binder in 2016 in the Moto3™ class.

• Martín has won eight races in his career so far, equalling Maverick Viñales, Alex Rins and Danny Kent in fourth place on the list of riders with most wins in the Moto3 class since 2012.

• Martín has stood on the podium nine times this season so far and 19 in the Moto3 class, one less than Luis Salom and Brad Binder, who both stand in fifth place on the list of riders with most podium finishes in the class.

• With 19 podium finishes, Martín is now in fourth place on the list of Spanish riders with most podium finishes in the Moto3 class after Álex Rins (23), Maverick Viñales (22) and Luis Salom (20).

• This is the fourth successive year that a rider who comes from the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup has won the world title, after Brad Binder, Danny Kent and Joan Mir.

• Martín became the second rider to clinch a Grand Prix world title after winning the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, along with Johann Zarco (2008).

• Jorge Martín has qualified on pole position 20 times in Moto3, a record in the class. His closest rival is Álex Rins with 13, followed by Enea Bastianini with 9. In addition, he took pole five times in a row from Jerez to Assen in 2017, a record streak in the Moto3 class.

• This is the fourth time that a Honda rider has won the Moto3 world title, adding to the championships won by Álex Marquez (2014), Danny Kent (2015) and Joan Mir (2017).

• Martín (186) belongs to the list of four riders who have led more than 150 laps since the introduction of the Moto3 class in 2012, along with Romano Fenati (265), Maverick Viñales (234) and Álex Rins (173).

Moto Jorge Martin Champion
Jorge Martin

Source: MCNews.com.au

Malaysian MotoGP starts at 1600 AEDT | Marquez penalised

Marquez takes pole then has it taken off him

Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) secured an 80th career pole position after he was the early master of the wet Q2 conditions at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix, but there was a small bump back to Earth not long after for the reigning World Champion as he later crashed – and then another hit when he was given a six-place grid penalty for irresponsible riding.

Marquez impeded Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) and will now start seventh. It did not look like a purposeful act but a momentary brain fade, while the Spaniard himself was baulked in the session by Valentino Rossi at one point, but both men were amicable about the mistake. The penalty for Marquez is quite a blow as the Spaniard was simply on another level during qualiying, dominating the session throughout and looking untouchable in the tricky conditions. 

Marquez’ heavy penalty means we have Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) now on top after going second quickest in the session. Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) starts second, and fittingly, it’s Iannone now completing that front row.

The MotoGP race starts at the earlier time of 13:00 local time – which makes it 1600 Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time. 


How QP progressed

Marquez had led the field over the line and set the first benchmark; a 2:13.641 to edge out Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing), who was just behind the Spaniard on track. Iannone was also within a tenth after the first lap, with a mere 0.051 splitting the top three, but with a banker lap under his belt, Marquez then slammed in a rapid second lap to considerably shift the goal posts. A 2:12.161 put him a full 1.264 quicker than the man who’d taken over at the top, Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac Racing), as the World Champion put some serious daylight between himself and his rivals. The Repsol Honda rider then lost the front at Turn 4, however, and there was no saving this one.

MotoGP Malaysia QP Marquez CrashMotoGP Malaysia QP Marquez CrashMotoGP Malaysia QP Marquez CrashThe field then set about trying to beat Marquez’ marker. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) shot up to P2 but was still over a second off and then on his final flying lap and then Italian crashed at Turn 9, before Iannone went up to P2 but the gap was remained 0.936. A flying Frenchman then propelled himself into second with Zarco cutting the gap to eight tenths and fellow YZR-M1 rider Rossi then leapfrogging him. Could either go one better on their final attempt?

Zarco put in a personal best lap to re-take P2 from ‘The Doctor’, but the gap between the number 93 and his rivals remained 0.548 after a masterclass from Marquez for his 80th career pole position across all classes. Then, though, news came through of the penalty and although it remains a Marquez pole in the statistics, he’ll be starting seventh.

Marc Marquez – P1 then demoted to P7

“I think that being able to quickly adapt to sudden changes in track conditions is one of my strong points. Today I took advantage of that, even if, honestly, it wasn’t easy. It was the first time this weekend we rode in the wet, and we even crashed. But the feeling was there and we achieved the pole position, which is a good feeling even if we’ll ultimately start from the third row. The most important thing is that we made a huge step forward with the setup in dry conditions, and now I think we’re competitive. I also adapted my riding style a bit, and now we’re closer to the faster guys, who here are Dovizioso and Viñales. Now we’ll see which conditions we’ll have tomorrow, then we’ll try and make a good start and if possible we’ll fight for the podium.”

MotoGP Malaysia QP Marquez Zarco RossiJohann Zarco – P2

“We started with soft-soft and could see that Aleix (Esparagaro) went well with these tyres. I tried to do it, but it didn’t work and I said to myself, it’s not normal that I’m that slow. So I stopped to change to the other bike and asked to put in the medium rear. We already planned to use the harder front tyre. From the first lap, I knew something is possible. On the last lap, my feeling was great, but I was sliding on the rear in turn three and in turn four. I got quite some signals and lost a few tenths, so I wasn’t sure if I could have done the lap time of Marc (Marquez). Anyway, it was great. I enjoy the second place and wish for a podium tomorrow.”

MotoGP Malaysia QP Zarco
Johann Zarco

Valentino Rossi – P3

“This kind of situation is always difficult, because you have to go into the qualifying with no data and no feeling. I’m very happy about the front row and I’m also happy because I have a good feeling with the bike, I could ride it in a good way. I tried qualifying with a soft rear, Márquez and Zarco used the medium. I ran into some traffic, I had to fight with Bautista a bit. But in the end this result is good, because at a certain point we thought we weren’t going to do the qualifying, so starting from the front row is very important. The race tomorrow will be held earlier, which I think is very clever, because at three o’clock the conditions are always bad here, every day. Maybe we can have a dry race, or at least race with a normal amount of water.”

Andrea Iannone – P4

“Today has not been easy, but it was much better than yesterday because we improved a lot with the bike and the feeling. I end today with a positive feeling and this is important for me. Unfortunately in my last flying lap I got held up at corner 9 and I lost 4-tenths of a second, without that my final time could have been even faster. That was a shame but finally I will start on the first row which is a good position. Tomorrow will be hard but we feel ready.”

That means Dovizioso starts fourth despite his crash, with fellow Desmosedici rider Miller ending the session P6 after setting his best lap on his final lap. Milerl now starts in the middle of a second row completed by teammate Danilo Petrucci.

Andrea Dovizioso – P5

“Today we had to adapt to the different situations that we encountered on the track, both in the morning and the afternoon, and as a result we were unable to try everything we had planned. Both Marquez and Viñales improved their pace and I think that tomorrow there will be a group of riders fighting for the leading positions. In Q2 I made a mistake and crashed on my best lap. We also had to use a front tyre that was too hard, like many other riders, and I entered Turn 9 too quickly and slid onto the grass. Pity because we could have started from the front row, but in any case it was important to be able to lap on the wet asphalt in case it rains tomorrow in the race. In any case I believe we can be competitive both in the dry and the wet.”

MotoGP Malaysia QP Dovizioso
Andrea Dovizioso

Jack Miller – P6

“If I have to be honest I was convinced that I could win the front row but in the second time attack the front tyre started to deteriorate a lot. Starting from the second row is still a good result also in light of the race pace that throughout the weekend was very positive”.

MotoGP Malaysia QP Miller
Jack Miller

Danilo Petrucci – P7

“After the first run I had a lot of confidence. We decided to try the soft rain tyre at the rear but only afterwards we realized that it was less performing than the medium one. I don’t know what the weather will be like tomorrow but I am confident I can stay in the Top 5”.

MotoGP Malaysia QP Petrucci
Danilo Petrucci

Marquez heads Row 3, ahead of Friday’s quickest rider Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) and Q1 graduate Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team).

Alex Rins – P8

“I think today was a really good and solid day, especially as we tested our rhythm with used tyres and it wasn’t bad. Qualifying was a bit of a shame because our strategy could have been different, if I had stopped to change the tyre I could have been closer to the front. But we’re happy with the grid position anyway and we’ll try and get a good start tomorrow and be fast.”

Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team), Australian GP winner Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) line up on a super-powered Row 4.

Maverick Viñales – P11

“We didn’t have a good attempt during today’s qualifying. The bike wasn’t working well, so it was difficult. What’s certain is that it wasn’t the tyre that caused the problem, it was the bike set-up for the wet, so that’s what the team needs to work on. In the dry we already set up the bike quite well. I don’t know what I should expect for tomorrow’s race, but it will be very interesting. In any case, we have a much better prospect now the schedule for tomorrow has changed, because the chance of rain is higher at three o’clock than it is at one. So, I hope the track will stay dry, because that’s when I feel the best. We have to see, but in FP4 I was really fast, and I felt so good on the bike. I think I can overtake quite fast at this track because the bike is good on acceleration. I need to concentrate on the start, and let’s see if I can make my best start of the year!”


MotoGP Qualifying Results

2018 Sepang MotoGP Q2 Qualification
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Marquez M. Repsol Honda 2:12.161
2. Zarco J. Monster Tech 3 +0.548
3. Rossi V. Movistar Yamaha +0.848
4. Iannone A. Team Suzuki Ecstar +0.936
5. Dovizioso A. Ducati Team +1.022
6. Miller J. Alma Pramac Racing +1.113
7. Petrucci D. Alma Pramac Racing +1.252
8. Rins A. Team Suzuki Ecstar +1.302
9. Bautista A. Angel Nieto Team +2.024
10. Pedrosa D. Repsol Honda +2.282
11. Vinales M. Movistar Yamaha +2.695
12. Espargaro A. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +3.179
2018 Sepang MotoGP Q1 Qualification
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Bautista A.  Angel Nieto Team 2:13.311
2. Espargaro A.     Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +0.024
3. Redding S. Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +0.475
4. Pirro M. Ducati Team +0.512
5. Simeon X. Reale Avintia Racing +0.660
6. Espargaro P. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +0.821
7. Smith B. Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +1.021
8. Luthi T. Marc VDS Racing Team +1.532
9. Morbidelli F. Marc VDS Racing Team +1.683
10. Bradl S. LCR Honda +2.053
11. Abraham K. Angel Nieto Team +2.368
12. Nakagami T. LCR Honda +3.247
13. Syahrin H. Monster Tech 3 +3.514

Moto2

Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) stormed to Moto2 pole position at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix, setting the only laptime in the 2:05s to better closest challenger Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46) by a stunning 0.488 seconds. Marquez Fabio Quartararo (MB Conveyors – Speed Up) completing the front row of the grid at the Sepang International Circuit – with ‘El Diablo’ 0.666 off the top…

MotoGP Malaysia QP Moto Alex Marquez
Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS)

From the outset, it was Marquez who looked menacing and sure enough on his third flying lap, the Spaniard set a sensational 2:05.629 to go 0.692 faster than anyone else. The gauntlet was well and truly thrown down, with Quartararo and Remy Gardner (Tech 3 Racing) sitting as his two closest challengers in P2 and P3 – 0.026 separating the duo, with Marini just 0.009 off a provisional front row with 15 minutes to go.

The timing screens then went stagnant in Sepang and that seemed to be that, with no one able to vastly improve on their early laps. However, this then changed when Marini went from P4 to P2 with under five minutes remaining, although the gap to Marquez was still 0.488. Quartararo, after being pushed down to P3 by Marini, then set a personal best but it wasn’t quite enough to improve his position as the standings were set.

So it was Marquez who took pole – despite a late crash at Turn 1 – to continue his dominant weekend, with Marini and Quartararo joining him on the front row. Fourth place went to Gardner, the Australian producing career-best qualifying in P4 to finish just 0.052 off the front row, with Mattia Pasini (Italtrans Racing Team) lining up alongside him in P5. Championship leader Francesco Bagnaia (Sky Racing Team VR46) completes the second row ahead of his second match point on Sunday.

Remy Gardner – P4

“Today has been a very positive day. I did a really first lap on the first exit of Qualifying, luckily, because then the track went hotter and it was a lot more greasy towards the end. Also the tyres only lasted for one lap. I managed to put a pretty decent lap together in the first lap and we were sitting in P3 for a while all the way until the last two minutes. We put in a new set of tyres again and I tried, but it was just really difficult out there. Quartararo did a good job to pass me in these conditions. We were close to parc fermé, but not in, anyway, I don’t think it’s going to change a lot for tomorrow. We still need to work on our race pace in the Warm up, but I’m happy.”

His title rival Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) remains close, however. The Portuguese rider was heads up Row 3 and was just 0.068 in arrears – with the duo also having played a little bit of cat and mouse in qualifying. Xavi Vierge (Dynavolt Intact GP) ended qualifying in P8, 0.070 away from Oliveira, with Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) completing the top ten.

Marquez looks like he’s going to take some beating in Malaysia. Will he take his first victory of the season? And can Bagnaia seal the World Championship? The two title rivals line up in tandem on the grid, with Oliveira out to put the celebrations on hold.

Moto2 Qualification
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Marquez A. Estrella Galicia Marc VDS 2:05.629
2. Marini L. Sky Racing Team VR46 +0.488
3. Quartararo F. Beta Tools-Speed Up Racing +0.666
4. Gardner R. Tech 3 Racing +0.718
5. Pasini M. Italtrans Racing Team +0.810
6. Bagnaia F. Sky Racing Team VR46 +0.920
7. Oliveira M. Red Bull KTM Ajo +0.988
8. Vierge X. Dynavolt Intact GP +1.058
9. Binder B. Red Bull KTM Ajo +1.112
10. Schrotter M. Dynavolt Intact GP +1.113
11. Fernandez A. Pons HP40 +1.249
12. Navarro J. Federal Oil Gresini +1.272
13. Baldassarri L. Pons HP40 +1.335
14. Lecuona I. SWI +1.412
15. Locatelli A. Italtrans Racing Team +1.457
16. Nagashima T. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +1.591
17. Aegerter D. Kiefer Racing +1.614
18. Mir J. Estrella Galicia Marc VDS +1.622
19. Pons E. Pons HP40 +1.622
20. Raffin J. Garage Plus Interwetten +1.736
21. Lowes S. SWI +1.750
22. Corsi S. Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 +1.865
23. Roberts J. NTS RW Racing GP +1.887
24. Odendaal S. NTS RW Racing GP +1.937
25. Pawi K. I. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +2.054
26. Tuuli N. SIC Racing Team +2.796
27. Danilo J. SAG Team +2.871
28. Pratama D. E. Federal Oil Gresini +3.140
29. Cardelus X. Team Stylobike +3.360
30. Vinales I. Forward Racing Team +3.895
31. Fuligni F. Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 +4.313
32. Sucipto R. T. QMMF Racing Team +4.924

Moto3

Moto3 Championship leader Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) took pole for the 11th time in 2018 at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix, setting a new lightweight class qualifying lap record at Sepang. But the Spaniard heads main title rival Marco Bezzecchi (Redox PruestelGP) by just 0.032 to set us up for a Sunday stunner, with Tony Arbolino (Marinelli Snipers Team) continuing his strong weekend to take P3 on the grid.

MotoGP Malaysia QP Moto Martin
Jorge Martin

It was John McPhee (CIP – Green Power) who led for the majority of the session and with 15 minutes remaining, despite Bezzecchi briefly taking over at the top, McPhee had moved the goal posts again – his advantage sitting at an impressive 0.584. That was immediately trimmed to 0.052 with Martin going second fastest, however, and Free Practice’s fastest man Arbolino then jumped up to second – with McPhee then clear at the top by only 0.020.

When it was time for the final lap dash, Martin and Bezzecchi both left it late to head out – the latter crossing the line with just four seconds of the session remaining to begin his final lap. Arbolino, Martin and Bezzecchi were then all up in the opening two sectors, but provisional pole man McPhee was also looking to increase his advantage – and that’s exactly what he did. It was only by 0.060 though, with the three riders behind all on fast laps…

Martin then came across the line to top McPhee’s new benchmark by 0.350, as Arbolino slotted into P2 after he also beat the Scotsman’s time. Bezzecchi then made his final lap count and although he missed out on pole to rival Martin, he was just 0.032 down. The two title rivals therefore start side by side, although the third man in the hunt – Fabio Di Giannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) – starts down in P13 with a little more work to do.

Joining McPhee on Row 2 are Australian GP winner Albert Arenas (Angel Nieto Team Moto3) and Enea Bastianini (Leopard Racing), who was lingering down in P20 with 15 minutes remaining before a final push, with Row 3 an all-Japanese affair. Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) sits P7 to lead Kazuki Masaki (RBA BOE Skull Rider) and Ayumu Sasaki (Petronas Sprinta Racing) in P8 and P9 respectively. Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) rounds out the top ten; an impressive session from the Italian as he continues to recover from his Japanese GP injuries.

It’s match point to Martin in Malaysia, but with Bezzecchi breathing down his neck on the starting line, another awesome Moto3 race looks set to take place.

Moto3 Qualification 
Pos Rider Team Time
1. Martin J. Del Conca Gresini Racing 2:11.731
2. Bezzecchi M. PruestlGP +0.032
3. Arbolino T. Marinelli Snipers Team +0.334
4. Mcphee J. CIP Green Power +0.350
5. Arenas A. Angel Nieto Team Moto3 +0.480
6. Bastianini E. Leopard Racing +0.491
7. Suzuki T. SIC58 Squadra Corse +0.812
8. Masaki K. RBA BOE Skull Rider +0.896
9. Sasaki A. Petronas Sprinta Racing +0.906
10. Antonelli N. SIC58 Squadra Corse +0.948
11. Binder D. Red Bull KTM Ajo +1.017
12. Vietti C. Sky Racing Team VR46 +1.032
13. Di Giannantonio F. Del Conca Gresini Racing +1.066
14. Dalla Porta L. Leopard Racing +1.081
15. Canet A. Estrella Galicia 0,0 +1.142
16. Foggia D. Sky Racing Team VR46 +1.209
17. Lopez A. Estrella Galicia 0,0 +1.244
18. Norrodin A. Petronas Sprinta Racing +1.358
19. Ramirez M. Bester Capital Dubai +1.382
20. Toba K. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +1.429
21. Perez V. Reale Avintia Academy +1.450
22. Kornfeil J. PruestlGP +1.913
23. Migno A. Angel Nieto Team Moto3 +1.948
24. Atiratphuvapat N. Idemitsu Honda Team Asia +1.987
25. Oettl P. Sudmetall Schedl GP Racing +2.224
26. Wongthananon A. VR46 Master Camp Team +2.771
27. Nepa S. CIP Green Power +2.961
28. Yurchenko M. Marinelli Snipers Team +3.137

Source: MCNews.com.au

Skip to toolbar