MotoGP™ 2017 - Saint Marin - MICHELIN powers Marquez to victory at a wet Misano
MICHELIN Power Rain tires were used to their full potential at today’s Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini from Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli as Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) splashed to MotoGP™ victory in challenging condition.
Heavy rain leading up to the start of the 28-lap race meant the 4,226m Italian circuit was very wet as the riders lined-up for the start with Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP™) sitting on pole. All racers chose the soft option front and rear MICHELIN Power Rain tires, which signalled the first time all riders had made the same choice for a race since Michelin returned to MotoGP™ last season. First off the line was Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati team) and he pushed hard to open a gap at the front as his tires gave him the confidence in the wet. Unfortunately, the atrocious conditions caught out Lorenzo on lap-seven and he crashed. The Spaniard’s demise handed the lead to Danilo Petrucci (OCTO Pramac Racing), with Marquez just behind him and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) also in close attendance. From lap-20 onwards Petrucciand Marquez continuously set the fastest laps as they pulled away at the front, demonstrating the consistency and durability of the wet tires as the race wore on. Marquez made the defining move of the race on the penultimate-lap as he passed Petrucci and immediately pulled a gap between the two -on his way to setting the fastest lap of the race-before taking the chequered flag for his fourth win of the season, a result which also moves him to the top of the championship standings. Petrucci crossed the line in second and took the prize of First Independent Rider, whilst previous championship leader Dovizioso was third.
Despite the awful weather a crowd of 96,324 was reported to have braved the downpour and gathered around the trackside. They were not disappointed as the 23-strong field pushed to the limits in the tricky and demanding conditions, each one of them putting total faith in their Michelin tires as the touched speeds of more than 280 Km/h on a very wet track. With battles between themselves and the weather, the action went all the way through the field, Viñales held off a charging Michele Pirro (Ducati Team) to take fourth, Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was sixth with Scott Redding (OCTO Pramac Ducati) in seventh. Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR), Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Team) rounded out the top-ten by coming eighth, ninth and tenth respectively.
Michelin’s next outing will be the final European race before the three fly-away races, as MotoGP™ heads to Aragon in Spain for round 14 of the championship on Sunday 24th September with the title race still very much in the balance.