MotoGP™ 2017 - MICHELIN and Dovizioso master Montmelo
MICHELIN saw its tires power Andrea Dovizioso to his second MotoGP™™ victory in a week as the Italian rode to success during today’s Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya from Montmelo in Spain.
Startingfrom seventh on the grid Dovizioso (Ducati Team) got away with the leaders as pole-setter Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) led into the first corner. Pedrosa was passed on the opening lap by Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team), a position the Spaniard held for five laps before succumbing to reigning World Champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), who in turn surrendered the lead to his team-mate Pedrosa on lap-eight. Pedrosa held the advantage for nine-laps before Dovizioso overtook him on the home-straight, leaving the Italian to take his second victory in consecutive weekends.
This weekend’s proceedings have been dominated by the conditionof the Montmelo track with grip a premium for all concerned. The MICHELIN Power Slick tires had to work hard all weekend to extract the optimum performance from the smooth surface and today’s race –which saw the circuit revert to last season’s 4,655m layout after the riders expressed safety concerns on Friday evening about the new chicane and these views were upheld by the organisers–was no exception. Despite the lack of adhesion, the tires still performed well and the lap-record was beaten in the race, as Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) set a new best-time of 1’45.969 on lap-three. Dovizioso also used his tires to produce a personal race-time that was over 38-seconds quicker than his 2016 time, as he also narrowly missed the race-duration record in the process. The medium and hard front and rear compound slick tires were the choice of all the riders-albeit in differing configurations -in the extremely demanding and hot conditions. As track temperature reached over 55°C during the race the durability of the tires responded well to this challenge as the robustness of the latest tires were put through an exhausting analysis throughout the 25 challenging laps.
Following Dovizioso home was Marquez in second with Pedrosa third to fill the podium places. Lorenzo took fourth, with Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) again performing well in his first season and continuing to challenge the Factory riders as he secured the First Independent Rider award by finishing fifth, just in-front of his team-mate Folger. Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) was seventh, with Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP™) coming home in eighth ahead of the Ducati of Hector Barbera (Reale Avintia Racing). The final top-10 place went to current World Championship leader Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP™), as he retained his lead in the title chase, but now with a reduced margin ahead of Dovizioso.
MICHELIN and the MotoGP™ field will now remainat Montmelo for a day of testing tomorrow, before heading to the north of Europe and the Dutch TT at Assen in The Netherlands, a race that will take place at the historic track on Sunday 25thJune.