Franco Morbidelli comes home in ninth place but heart-break for Fabio Quartararo as he crashes out
Franco Morbidelli has taken a competitive top ten finish for PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team at the German Grand Prix, dicing for the podium in the early stages before coming home in ninth. However, it was heart-break for Fabio Quartararo, falling out of the fight for the podium in the opening stages of the race.
With different track conditions from qualifying after overnight rain, the Italian-Brazilian was forced to play it safe in the race, conserving his tyres to take home valuable championship points. Despite the change in grip, Morbidelli was able to manage his race well to ensure that he kept a gap to the group behind and score his fifth top ten of the season.
Quartararo looked set for another strong race after qualifying on the front row, but the Frenchman was unable to realise his potential after an unfortunate early fall. Hampered by other riders as he jockeyed for position, he became one of many riders to make a small mistake at turn three. Walking away uninjured, he will go into the summer break hoping to come back stronger.
The championship now heads into its summer break, returning to action at the Czech Grand Prix. Action at the Brno circuit gets underway from 2-4 August.
“I made a small mistake; I was trying to overtake another rider and I hesitated a little about whether or not to do it and ended up going into the corner with too much speed and lean angle. It’s the first mistake I’ve made in a race, and I’ll learn from it and come back stronger. The first half of the season has been really positive – we didn’t expect some poles and podiums. I’m happy with the balance of the year so far and really looking forward to the second half.”
“It was a strange race for me. I was in the big group stretching from fourth back, but I couldn’t attack and had to stay behind. I tried to manage the tyres, but even then they dropped off a little and I lost my position within the group. We came home in the top ten, but the feeling in the race was completely different from practice. Now we’ve got time to relax and study everything, and we can start where we left off in Brno with some new ideas.”
“We aren’t very happy with the race, with Fabio on the ground on lap two and Franco having a difficult time keeping his tyres alive. But in the end, he finished the race in the best way possible, scoring valuable points after a few DNFs earlier this season. It wasn’t our best performance of the year, but after eight races we can be proud with what we’ve achieved. I’m looking forward to a good break because I think we all need it and deserve it, and then we can come back in Brno and achieve a little bit better than today.”
“We look back on the first half of the season, reflecting on three poles, and two podiums in MotoGP as well as two poles and a win in Moto3. Germany was not our strongest overall race weekend, but nevertheless we achieved top ten finishes in Moto3 and MotoGP and saw a fantastic first Moto3 pole from Ayumu Sasaki. In the MotoGP race it was a solid run in the top ten from Franco and an unfortunate fall from Fabio. Both riders can look back on strong starts to their seasons ahead of the well-deserved break ahead. Ayumu and John rode well in Moto3 today. We thank Jonas Folger for his time riding for us in Moto2 and look forward to welcoming back Khairul Idham Pawi in Brno. We have learnt a lot from our first half season in MotoGP and it has been amazing to see the team gel and deliver such incredible results. It has been a fantastic journey so far and we’re looking forward to being refreshed and rejuvenated for the second half of the year. We’d like to thank PETRONAS and all our partners for their support, and look forward to rewarded them with more strong performance on track when we return in Brno.”