MotoGP™ 2018 - Austria - MICHELIN and Lorenzo produce a record-breaking Spielberg blockbuster
Michelin saw lap and race duration records broken during today’s eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich from the Red Bull Ring at Spielberg in Austria as Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) took victory in yet another exciting MotoGP™ race.
Michelin’s range of tyres were put to impressive use today as all six versions of the MICHELIN Power Slicks lined-up in different configurations on the 23 bikes that started the race. Pole-setter Marc Marquez
(Repsol Honda) chose a medium front and hard rear compound pairing, but as the lights changed to signal the start of the 28-lap race, Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) got the holeshot on his machine fitted with
medium front and rear slicks and led into the first corner. This pair were joined in close contention by Lorenzo, who had chosen to go with the soft front and rear selection and he led the field home at the end of
lap-one. Marquez soon took over at the front and set about trying to build a lead, as the Ducati pair battled for positions behind him. The reigning champion was soon drawn into combat with his two closest
competitors and as the race wore on it became a two-rider contest between himself and Lorenzo. The pair swapped places as the race drew to a close with some exciting and outrageous overtaking manoeuvres, as they used their respective Michelin tyres to the peak of their performance and the rubber gave them all they needed to produce a spectacular race. The pair were neck-and-neck on the last lap, but Lorenzo found the extra drive and took victory, setting a new race-duration record in the process, taking over two-and-a-half seconds off the previous best. Dovizioso took third and the consolation of setting a new lap-record, as he produced the best time on the eighth circulation.
Today’s race was held in bright sunshine and track temperatures reached the highest point of the event, as the 45°C that was recorded was 10 degrees higher than any other time this weekend., Michelin and the
whole field also had to cope with torrential downpours on Friday afternoon, meaning the MICHELIN Power Rain tyres were required and these produced impressive grip in the difficult conditions, giving the riders
total confidence which was shown by quick lap-times and no crashes on the very wet track.
A large Austrian crowd of 92,955 also witnessed battles throughout the field, with the exception of Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) who rode quite a lonely race to take fourth and the honour of First Independent
Rider. His paring of a hard front and medium rear meant that all six compounds were fitted in various ways to the first four bikes to cross the line, again endorsing Michelin’s ethos to supply tyres for all riders and
manufacturers. Behind him was Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac Ducati), with a hard-charging - he came from 14th on the grid - Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) in sixth. Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda)
took seventh, just ahead of Alex Rins (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR) in eighth. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) was ninth, narrowly edging out Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team) by less than one-tenth-of-asecond as the Spaniard closed out the top-ten. Today’s result sees Marquez strengthen his championship lead, with Rossi in second and Lorenzo now moving up to third.
Michelin will now move on to Silverstone in England for the British Grand Prix which is scheduled for Sunday 26th August, where the newly surfaced track will present another challenge that Michelin is more
than prepared to face.