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MotoGP World Championship, Austrian Grand Prix16.08.2017


Morbidelli increases his lead

After a disappointing race in the Czech Republic, Franco Morbidelli returned to Austria to win over his team-mate. The Italian took the opportunity to retake the lead in the Moto2 championship standings.


The Races

After both of them qualified for the first row of the starting grid, Morbidelli and Marquez dominated the eleventh race of the Moto2 season from start to finish. Leader from the first lap onwards, the Italian crossed the finish line with little more than a second’s lead over his teammate, who had to fight it out with Swiss rider Lüthi. In so doing, Morbidelli won his seventh victory in eleven races, the two Marc VDS riders making it to the podium together for the first time of the season. Michael Bartholemy’s riders were less successful in the MotoGP category, however. Neither Miller nor Rabat managed to score a single point on the Spielberg circuit. The Australian fell during the twentieth lap when he was eleventh. The Spaniard finished nineteenth after not succeeding in finding the right settings for his Honda RC213V during the practice test sessions. In Moto3, Kornfeil and Pulkkinen finished twentieth and twenty-fourth respectively.

The Championship

In winning on the Spielberg circuit, Morbidelli increased his lead over Lüthi at the top of the Moto2 standings to twenty-six points. Marquez consolidated his third place with a capital of one hundred and fifty-three points. In MotoGP, Miller lost a place and has dropped back to thirteenth, while Rabat stays eighteenth. In Moto3 Kornfeil is now twenty-seventh, while Pulkkinen is still racing to chalk up his first point.

The Background

It has been almost three years since the Marc VDS team had two riders on the first two steps of the podium.

It was in 2014 in Misano, during the San Marino and Rimini Coast’s motorcycle Grand Prix

Michael Bartholemy

That day, Tito Rabat won in front of Mika Kallio. The Spaniard was well on his way to the Moto2 world championship title. Last year, Franco Morbidelli and Alex Marquez already made it together to the podium. But although the Italian won the race, the Spaniard was only third. For their first joint podium of the season, this time the two men managed to beat Thomas Lüthi, the only rider who still has a hope of standing in Franco Morbidelli’s way to the title.

 This year’s Austrian motorcycle Grand Prix was fantastic because you can’t do better than finish first and second. Both Franco and Alex rode wonderfully well, and it was a great result for the team on our way to the world championship title.

Michael Bartholemy