Quartararo Cruises To Victory As Aprilia Claim First Podium
For the fifth time in 2021, Sunday belonged to Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) as the Frenchman claimed a comfortable victory at the Monster Energy British Grand Prix, a 25-point haul that sees his lead in the title race extend to 65 points. Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) produced a cracking ride to earn his first podium of the year with a second place, as Aleix Espargaro hands Aprilia Racing Team Gresini a dream first MotoGP™ rostrum in third.
Quartararo brilliant in a historic British GP
Polesitter Pol Espargaro got the launch he would have been looking for as the number 44 dived into Turn 1 as the race leader, with Quartararo grabbing P2 ahead of Franceso Bagnaia. Pol Espargaro nailed the first sector but plenty of movement and drama would unfold behind, as Bagnaia – who had slipped to P4 – got two for the price of one at Stowe corner. There was contact at the same corner between Marc Marquez and Jorge Martin, as Aleix Espargaro grabbed P2 off Pecco.
Then, drama. Marc Marquez and Martin crashed after more contact at Turn 9, and both riders were out of the race on Lap 1 – riders ok. Bagnaia and Aleix Espargaro were busy scrapping for second on the opening lap, before the Aprilia ride made it stick at Brooklands. On Lap 2, Quartararo picked off Pecco for P3 at Turn 13, and on the next lap, Quartararo was past Aleix Esapargaro at Turn 14. Now, Pol Espargaro – the race leader – was being hunted and at the ferociously quick Turn 12, on Lap 5, Quartararo carved his way into the lead.
Three to go then, and it was as you were: Quartararo charging towards the 25 points, with Rins leading Aleix Espargaro and Miller. Pol Espargaro was now 1.9s away from the podium fight, with older brother Aleix still holding onto that dream first podium with Aprilia.
Last lap time. Quartararo was 3.4s up the road with Rins, Aleix Espargaro and Miller split by less than a second. Through the opening two sectors, it was as you were. Miller then dived up the inside at Turn 13, but he was slightly wide. Miller had the inside line though for Turn 14 but the tight entry allowed Aleix Espargaro to get the cutback heading onto the Wellington Straight. Going defensive, Aleix Espargaro was able to fend off Miller’s late attack and after Quartararo and Rins had taken the chequered flag, Aleix Espargaro claimed P3 for Aprilia’s first podium.
1. FabioQuartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP)
2. Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) + 2.663
3. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) + 4.105
4. Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) + 4.254
5. Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team) + 8.462
6. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) + 12.189
7. Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM Factory Racing) + 13.560
8. Alex Marquez (LCR Honda Castrol) + 14.044
9. Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) + 16.226
10. Danilo Petrucci (Tech3 KTM Factory Racing) + 16.287
Gardner Fends Off Bezzecchi to Extend Title Lead
Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) fended off title challenger Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) to emerge victorious from a fantastic Moto2™ Monster Energy British Grand Prix, as second in the title race Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) crashed out unhurt. Gardner took the win by just 0.4s, as Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) claimed a first podium of the season in third.
A brilliant battle for the podium
Bezzecchi was able to get a solid launch from pole position and held the lead into Turn 1, but it was Lowes who was soon in the lead as the British rider made a rapid start on the outside of the front row. Jorge Navarro was sitting ahead of Gardner and Raul Fernandez on the opening lap as Gardner carved past teammate Fernandez at Turn 1 on Lap 2. Soon, Gardner was up to P3 past Navarro as Bezzecchi passed Lowes for P1 on Lap 3.
Gardner then found a way past Lowes for P2, with the top five – Bezzecchi, Gardner, Lowes, Navarro and Fabio Di Giannantonio – split by less than a second. Just after Gardner had set the fastest lap of the race, Bezzecchi scooped up some slipstream and made a pass for the lead stick at Stowe with 10 laps remaining. Bezzecchi, Gardner and Lowes had a 0.8s lead over fourth place Navarro with nine laps to go, the podium fight was pulsating at Silverstone.
With four laps to go, huge drama in the Championship chase unfolded. Raul Fernandez suffered a huge crash at Turn 12 and was out of the race, thankfully the Spaniard was back up on his feet. But with Gardner leading and Bezzecchi a close second, Raul Fernandez’ title hopes took a big dent.
At the front, Gardner and Bezzecchi were locked together with two laps to go, with Navarro getting the better of Lowes for P3. Navarro was 1.1s off second place Bezzecchi, Gardner’s lead was just 0.2s. Bezzecchi set his fastest lap of the race on the penultimate lap, with Navarro setting the fastest lap of the race. In the end, Gardner produced a fantastic last lap and a fantastic race in general to take a crucial 25 points, with Bezzecchi 0.4s away from the win after pushing Gardner all the way.
Navarro claimed a first podium since the 2019 Valencia GP, the Spaniard beat Lowes by 0.3s to deny the latter a home GP podium.
1. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
2. Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.481
3. Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) + 1.930
4. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) 2.284
5. Fabi Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) + 6.952
6. Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 7.059
7. Aron Canet (Kipin Energy Aspar Team) + 10.706
8. Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 12.842
9. Ai Ogura (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 12.877
10. Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team) + 14.344
Perfection: Fenati Completes Unbeaten Weekend With Win
If you looked up the word ‘perfection' in the dictionary, Romano Fenati’s (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) weekend at the Monster Energy British Grand Prix would be the definition. The Italian topped every session at Silverstone and made no mistake on Sunday to claim a classy 13th Grand Prix victory, his 29th podium in the World Championship. Niccolo Antonelli (Avintia VR46 Academy) secured a second rostrum of the season as Dennis Foggia’s (Leopard Racing) P3 handed Italy a podium lockout in the lightweight class.
Perfection from Fenati
Polesitter Fenati got away well and kept Gabriel Rodrigo at bay at Turn 1 to grab the lead. Antonelli got a great getaway from P5 on the grid and latched himself onto the back of compatriot Fenati. Rivacold Snipers Team’s Andrea Migno did the same as we saw an Italian 1-2-3-4 lead the way on the opening couple of laps, Riccardo Rossi occupying P4.
The top three – Fenati, Antonelli and Migno – were over two seconds clear of Foggia in P4, before Migno suffered an issue with his Honda bike at the beginning of Lap 6. This left Fenati and Antonelli three seconds clear of a seven-rider scrap for the final podium spot, with the third group – led by Acosta – a further 3.2s down the road.
Heading into the last handful of laps, no one was catching Fenati and Antonelli baring a disaster. The battle for P3 was raging between Foggia, Darryn Binder, Tatsuki Suzuki, Izan Guevara and Jaume Masia, with Acosta and Garcia embroiled in a huge battle for 10th.
With two laps to go, Fenati started to strut his stuff and pull the pin. The gap was up to a second and Antonelli was now slipping into the grasps of Foggia and Guevara – the latter duo had broken clear in the battle for the podium. Heading onto the last lap, Fenati was 1.1s clear of Antonelli, with Foggia and Guevara a second behind Antonelli. Guevera struck on Foggia at Stowe corner to grab P3, before Foggia returned the favour a couple of corners later.
Fenati crossed the line to emerge victorious for the first time in 2021, with Antonelli holding onto P2. Foggia pipped reigning Moto3™ Junior World Champion Guevara by 0.047s as the rookie picked up a very commendable P4, his best result of the season.
After being detached from Foggia and Guevara in the closing stages, Suzuki won the fight for P5 and beat Masia and Binder by less than a tenth, as Deniz Öncü and Rossi notched up a lonely P8 and P9 respectively.
In the big battle for 10th, Carlos Tatay came out on top. John McPhee dropped to last on the opening lap after something went wrong in the opening sector, but the British rider made a good recovery to cross the line in P11. However, after exceeding track limits on the last lap, McPhee was demoted one position, which meant Acosta was promoted to P11. It’s not the podium fight Acosta would have been looking for – it’s his first time finishing outside the top 10 this season – but it’s vital points gained in the title race.
1. Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team)
2. Niccolo Antonelli (Avintia VR46 Academy) + 1.679
3. Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) + 2.107
4. Izan Guevara (Valresa GASGAS Aspar) + 2.154
5. Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) + 7.475
6. Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 7.541
7. Darryn Binder (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 7.559
8. Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech3) + 14.523
9. Riccardo Rossi (BOE Owlride) + 14.541
10. Carlos Tatay (Avintia Esponsorama Moto3) + 20.503