MotoGP: Viñales outpaces Marquez to rule Sepang while Dovizioso fights off Rossi for the podium

MotoGP: Viñales outpaces Marquez to rule Sepang while Dovizioso fights off Rossi for the podium

Sunday, 03 November 2019-Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) put in a formidable performance at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix to destroy the opposition, picking up his second win of the 2019 season in emphatic style. The Spaniard raced clear of a recovering second-place Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), with Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) fending off Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) for P3.

It was Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) who somehow shot up for the holeshot from the second row, the Aussie bravely heading round the outside to take the lead from front row starter Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) as his teammate – and polesitter – Fabio Quartararo lost out. Marquez and Dovizioso, meanwhile, had made lightning starts to move through from P11 and P10 respectively, already well up in the fight at the front. At the very front though, Viñales was already stalking his prey.

It didn’t take long for the number 12 to strike, snatching the lead from Miller at Turn 11 as Marquez passed Morbidelli for P4. A frantic first lap wasn’t over yet though, as Dovizioso then battled Miller for P2 at Turn 14 and Turn 15 and both headed wide – allowing Marquez to pounce. He sat Miller up, but the Australian shot back past heading into Turn 1. That was only good news for Viñales, with the Spaniard already six tenths clear at the front.

Like Australia, Marquez said, he knew he had to try and get in behind the Yamaha to stay with him and it didn’t take too long for him to finally dispatch Miller. Reeling Viñales in, however, looked like a serious mountain to climb this time around, with the gap well over a second. A tenth here and a tenth there got chipped away, but the number 12 machine in the lead had a healthy gap – and wasn’t for slowing down.

It seemed, then, that the fight behind Marquez was going to remain the fight for third. Dovizioso grabbed it from Miller on Lap 4 and Rossi was threatening too, with ‘The Doctor’ finally dispatching Miller not too long after – and the Australian suffering an almighty moment as he hung on to his Ducati.

Shortly after that, things got even more heated between Miller and Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) at the final corner as Rins went for the inside and the two made contact. A front bit of fairing flew off the Suzuki and both stayed up, but they were forced to watch the fight for third between Dovizioso and Rossi start to peel off into the distance.

Even further into that distance, the timing screens signalled Viñales had broken his rivals. A second and a half became nearly three as a mistake became the only hurdle between him and the win, with Marquez equally safe in second. And a mistake never came from either, with Viñales pitch perfect to take his – and Yamaha’s – second win of the season and bounce back from Australia in incredible style. Marquez took second and gained an impressive nine places on the way after his Q2 crash.

The fight for third, try as he might, would not go the way of Rossi. Rins had closed in to make matters even closer, and every advance ‘The Doctor’ made on the Ducati was repelled as the Suzuki also started to threaten. Dovizioso, as ever, was a demon on the brakes and the nine-time World Champion just couldn’t make a move stick, although a few lunges at it made for a great battle between the two Italians. ‘DesmoDovi’ took it by a few tenths over the line, with Rossi forced to settle for fourth and Rins completing the top five.

Miller, meanwhile, slipped back into the clutches of the Petronas Yamaha SRT duo and Johann Zarco (LCR Honda Idemitsu). Morbidelli came out on top in that fight for sixth and he was top Independent Team rider in the race on the team’s home turf, and that combined with Quartararo’s tougher day at the office in seventh nevertheless means Petronas Yamaha SRT are Independent Team Champions too. Miller took P8, and Zarco, sadly, didn’t finish.

The Frenchman showed a big step forward in his second race weekend on a Honda, but it ended early after a pass from Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) went awry, crashing Zarco out of the top ten. Mir would get a Long Lap Penalty for the incident, and that dropped him back below Danilo Petrucci (Ducati Team), who took ninth.

Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) battled through to take P11, ahead of a close duel between Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) that went in favour of the Italian. Jorge Lorenzo (Repsol Honda Team) beat Mika Kallio (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) to 14th as the two completed the points.

And so we leave Sepang and the flyaways with a new man on top after a run of dominant performances from Marquez. Viñales couldn’t be stopped in Malaysia, will the same be said at Valencia? Find out in two weeks as the paddock flies back to Europe for the season finale and we decide the team Champions and the top Independent Team rider of the year…

Maverick Viñales: “Honestly I have to say this is one of the times in life I’ve been the happiest. After the Australia crash I felt I won the race, because I attacked in my head…but then actually crashed. It was a bit of a disaster but we arrived here with everything clear, the bike was on a great level all weekend from FP1 since the first laps so we pushed, pushed and pushed and made a gap, which was important. I then tried to control the race which wasn’t easy; especially mentally it was very tough, but I have to congratulate the team because all weekend they did an awesome job.”

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1 hr ago

MotoGP

If Valentino Rossi goes to PETRONAS it's not for a farewell tour...

"I will go to them if I think I can be competitive, I can try to win races and fight for the podium" 💬

Don't miss Valentino Rossi VR46 Official's words on BT Sport MotoGP!
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can you see the irony. if he cant even win in factory yamaha, could he even win on satelite team? he only win 10 times in 10 years, 3 years without one. only 1 or 2 podium a year.

Go home speedy... 💩🤡👎

Welcoming VR46 to PETRONAS Yamaha, we wish you luck as team test rider.

Thats all i want to hear from him.. still continue and i also still want to watch motogp for sure!

É sensato. A Yamaha oficial nao pode manter um piloto com posições abaixo do 4°lugar. Porém a PETRONAS vai evoluir com a experiência dele para uma moto mais competitiva.

Awwww I hope he doesn’t retire soon 😢

He should stop wasting time and get SKY46 into MotoGP.

Vale will be always the number 1...... Go Vale goooooo!!!

His move to Petronas will be 2 secure his future , when he switches to car racing

"If still can competitive for race and podium, why not"

He can do whatever he needs to. Retire or ride those who criticize him will never truly appreciate what hes done career wise. haters gonna hate

Stay to the Yamaha rossi

That's crazy shit coming from him. 😂

Yes! You can🙌🏆💥

MOTO GP KING VR/46

On t aime t ai le meilleur et pour tjs. Marquez et compagnie t arrive pas a la cheville

I love this man. #nohomo #forzavale

VR46👎👎👎 STOP !!.....YAMAHA/LORENZO MIX PERFETTO !!!💪💪

I Love VR46. Selalu.

Keep going

Anthony Whittle

Luis Lopez

Forza vale!

Blinkinth Vale

😍😍Vale

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2 hrs ago

F1

Sergio Perez has been on 50% of the podiums in Azerbaijan - here's why he and BWT Racing Point F1 Team are so strong there 🇦🇿💪 ... See Less

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You can listen to the full podcast episode here ⬇️ f1.com/BTGAndrewGreen

50% of the podiums, because it’s only been on the calendar since 2016. Hard to believe that he’s had an F1 career since 2011, that’s gone quick. Only blip was that season with McLaren in 2013, didn’t exactly work out for him

because all other drivers crashed ...

"when can I have the drink", Kimi's thought at this moment.

Because Sergio Perez is a great driver and his results warrant him being on a top notch team.

Good to see Perez get a perfect car this season.

All the cars should be similar. Put Lewis in Force India's car, Sergio in Lewis's Mercedes and see what happens.

The most underrated driver on the grill. He could win a tittle with a little better car.

The most underrated driver, of the grill

Any hint of a podium, he can sniff it out.

Talentoso na condução 👏🏻

Cuz he puts his teammate into the wall?

You guys are desperate for content, you just post unnecessary.

come on Sergio !!!

Também merece...🇧🇷🇵🇹🇦🇴

Alonso p7 💗

❤️🇲🇽

🏎🇲🇽

Crystal Atlaschi 🇲🇽

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4 hrs ago

F1

That first F1 win feeling for Jordan 🎉🥳🍾 ... See Less

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Hill was a very good driver. He was the Champion of 1996. Has nearly won the Hungarian GP of 1997 with an Arrows (!!!) and took the first win for Jordan. Not much drivers came so close to win with three different Teams.

What a race that was. 13 cars crashed, Schumacher's World championship ruined by David Coulthard and finally a well fought win by a great driver with underdog team.

That was my favourite Damon Hill win although it would've been better if Ralf was allowed to race him.

Daman was in another class to Ralf , by clearly showing that with the Win 👌

More team orders for hill to win

Damon drove like a demon that day. Commanded the race and his message to Eddie was the right call.

Such a great race. Love it when the rain kicks in and changes the field of drivers. And who didnt love the look of the Jordan cars

EJ couldn’t have R Schumacher ploughing into Hill, like he did with Fisichella at Argentina 1997. That was probably the very first thing he thought of, when making the decision

"1994 World Champion Damon Hill"- Murray Walker

Team Jordan was the GP team for the people. The team that let us fans see the real F1 behind the scenes. Thanks Eddie!

I can remember the emotions that day, was always a Jordan fan and finally we got that win.

If no team orders ralf won that race

The GP that DC trashed 10+ cars. In 2 accidents. Yes, double kill

A great moment for Hill and Jordan. I was happy for both.

Even this race proved that there wasnt much racing in those days too. For me this was very dull race with alot of accidents and accidents dont make a race exciting

Jordan were the only team to have both races and the spare car intact after this race, every other team had at least one or two wrecked cars 🏁

Well, team orders were clear but clearly Ralf wasn't happy about this.

The assumption's always been that EJ gave Damon preferential treatment, fact is interviews with both have shown that if anything, their professional relationship was always strained for various reasons.

Frankly it’s hilarious that any Schumacher can feel hard done by when it comes to team orders.

It’s you that needs to grow up and only you that’s the clown, everyone has an opinion but I notice your jumping on anyone that’s saying that the win was gifted, why not just agree to disagree instead of being rude to people.

Back when everyone had a chance, imagine these days, you have a budget of 100M$ and your best aim is 5th

First win with team orders, what a shame 👎🏼

One of the best underdog moments in F1

Sadly underdog moments like this wont happen again in f1...

That Jordan was one hell of a good looking motor! 🏎️

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