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Qatar 2 MotoGP Race Results

Round 2 of the 2021 MotoGP championship series was held earlier today in Qatar at the Losail circuit. A factory Yamaha again took the win – this time piloted by Fabio Quartararo (last week’s winner was Maverick Viñales who finished 5th today). Finishing 2nd and 3rd today were Ducatis piloted by Johann Zarco and rookie Jorge Martín.

Martín started from pole position, took the holeshot, and led the entire race at a good pace until he was passed by Quartararo with just a few laps remaining. Once out front, Quartararo was able to build a cushion large enough to prevent the Ducatis from passing his Yamaha on the lengthy front straightaway.

Two collisions between Joan Mir (Suzuki) and Jack Miller (Ducati), including a particularly dangerous one exiting the final corner onto the front straight, were both deemed “race incidents” with no penalties incurred by the riders. Mir ultimately finished 7th and Miller 9th.

With two 2nd place finishes this year, Zarco is ahead in the championship points leading into the Portigal GP in two weeks. For full results of today’s race, take a look here. You can find additional details on the MotoGP site.

30 Comments

  1. Provologna says:

    I wonder if Vinales did worse in race 2 because he was not fully “healed” after the bruising battle 1 week prior.

    This may sound dumb, but if I was one of these top racers I would know every syllable QB Tom Brady ever spoke or wrote Re. his healing and prevention process before and after American football games. I become only more convinced over time Brady goes down in history as one of the all greatest athletes. The fact 43 year old Tom just kicked arse in February against men almost 20 years younger tells volumes about his health and well being knowledge in one of the more brutal sports.

  2. Jeremy says:

    Fun race. It is pretty impressive to see so many riders finish so closely. I hope this phenomenon isn’t unique to the Qatar venue.

    It will be interesting to see how things go when Marc gets back as Honda sure seems lost without him. Granted, Qatar isn’t a Honda track by a longshot, but it was a pretty dismal showing by Repsol and LCR these past two weeks. I have to wonder if the changes Honda made to the bike over the past season will be #93-approved, or will he be like, “You’ve ruined my bike!” It will also be interesting to see how competitive he is after being off of the bike for so long. I think he’ll be competitive, but I don’t see how he can come back this year and possibly be the dominant force he was before. If he does start dominating again anytime this year, well, then I guess he truly is the GOAT.

    • bmbktmracer says:

      MM had his hands full with Dovi and others before he left. Seems like the field has elevated quite a bit. If he can settle for 5th now and then, I have no doubt he’ll be champion again. If he thinks he has to win every weekend, then I feel he’ll take himself out of contention again.

      • Jeremy says:

        While I think MM always tries to win, I also think he is able to temper that drive (sometimes) and take the points of a lesser position if he feels that is all he can manage. I don’t agree that he had his “hands full” with Dovi or others. There was that year where the Ducati had the same power advantage over the Honda that it does over the Yamahas and Suzuki’s currently. MM did have his hands full that year but still won. Beyond that year, nobody finished close to him in the points despite some close races with Dovi.

        I do agree that there is some great talent coming online, and there is no better opportunity for those riders to take it to #93 than this season when he hasn’t ridden a MotoGP bike for a year.

    • Dave says:

      It’s unlikely we’ll see one that close again for a while, it was the tightest top-15 in premier class GP history. I think the announcer said that the 8 seconds Rossi was behind would normally have him in 5th place, not 21st.

      It’s been very close for a while now. I remember Lorenzo complaining about dealing with lapped riders as he lapped up to 6th or 5th place sometimes. It was even worse in the 500cc days.

    • fred says:

      Qatar is a bit of anomaly, and always has been. Not to take anything away from the riders who ran great races, but I only see performing well as a good indicator. Performing poorly at Qatar has much less meaning. Other than the points loss, of course.

      2019 was a bit of an anomaly, as well. As terrific of a racer as Marc is, it was an unusual year. My unpaid opinion is that Marc will be competitive almost immediately, and will still be the dominant rider in MotoGP. That doesn’t mean that I expect him to win every race, but that he will continue to be the favorite, or among the top 2-3 favorites, at pretty much every track.

      Once Marc is back racing, no excuses. If the other riders can out-race him, they deserve the credit, whether he is at “100%” or not. We’ll soon get a glimpse as to whether the rest of the grid has caught up during the Champ’s absence.

      We’ve seen some good rides in the first two races. Marc always brings his A game. Last year, all the riders ran hot & cold. Perhaps this year some of them will start bringing their A game to the track every week, or at least most weeks. If not, Marc may well get the title back this year.

      • Jeremy says:

        He’ll be competitive I think, always a threat for the podium or a win. I just don’t expect him to be as dominant this year as he has been in the past because it seems a tall order having not ridden a GP bike for so long, but I’ll also say I won’t be a bit surprised if MM proves me wrong on that account.

  3. bmbktmracer says:

    Not that long ago we’d watch processional races where someone like Lorenzo would slowly walk away from the field. Seems like those days are behind us. How about Pedro Acosta in Moto3? Pit lane start, second MotoGP race in the Moto3 class, and the dude wins? Then Sam Lowes and Remy Gardner setting fast times the last couple laps. Then MotoGP, with 15 guys neck and neck. A bit heartbreaking to watch Rins run everyone down in the twisties, only to get annihilated on the straights. Best $130 I ever spent!

  4. mickey says:

    It was truly a great race!

    The second collision between Miller and Mir was no racing incident imo

    • Motoman says:

      Racing was good for sure. Agree with you on the incident too. I only watched it on my phone and it looked like retribution to me. Sitting down to watch it properly now.

    • Goose Lavel says:

      Obvious payback.

    • Jeremy says:

      What are you talking about? That looked completely innocent! 😇

      • mickey says:

        Lol. Can you imagine the complaining if that had been Marquez instead of Miller?

        • Jeremy says:

          Good grief! Motorcycle Daily’s servers would collapse from the onslaught.

        • Jerry says:

          I think Miller’s move was just as egregious as some of the stunts MM has pulled. He should be punished to the same degree that they penalize Marquez. Oh, wait.

      • fred says:

        While I’m not a huge fan of either, I’m more of a Mir fan than a Miller fan. Having said that, I’ve watched in real time and slo-mo, from a number of angles, and my conclusion is that Mir ran into Miller (both times). Mir was off the track, and forced his way back on to the track, into Jack, who was holding his line. Jack was almost knocked off the bike from the contact. Arguably, Jack could have ceded the space to Joan, but he made no move to initiate contact.
        So, whether you are being sincere or sarcastic, I believe the second contact was Mir’s fault, just as the first one was.

        I don’t like Jack for his foul mouth, but he is not in the wrong here.

        • Jeremy says:

          On the first contact, Mir lunged for the pass and failed. It was aggressive and perhaps ill attempted, but I don’t think there was malicious intent. And it certainly wasn’t a rare mistake.

          I’m not sure I agree with you on the second contact. Yes, Mir initiated that contact, but it was either give the nudge or go off track on the main straight with every other bike behind you coming at full throttle. Maybe I need to go back a look again, but it certainly looked like Miller intentionally squeezed him out and stayed in the way.

          • Dave says:

            When Mir barge-passed I thought it was a fairly innocent mistake, considering he didn’t manage to knock Miller down, but I also thought it was harsh enough that a “fair” racer would’ve yielded the position back to Miller to show that he was in error, then attempt again but more safely. Had he done that, maybe Miller wouldn’t have gone after him on the front straight (which almost went worse for Miller..).

          • mickey says:

            At Qatar the only place for a non Ducati to pass was in the infield. Vinales said you had to ride like a crazy man to pass the Ducati riders. Even then there was no guarantee that an infield pass would stick because if they stayed close as soon as they got to the start finish straight, the Ducati’s would blow back past, then the Yamaha/Suzuki riders had to work their butts off to get back ahead of them on the next lap. Mirs hard pass was one of desperation, no doubt. Miller left a small gap underneath and Mir tried to go thru it, not very successfully, but what options did he have? It was either take chances or play follow the leader with the more powerful Ducati.

            Will certainly be interesting when we get back to Europe.

            BTW Miller’s surgeon for his arm pump surgery was named MIR. lol

    • TimC says:

      Yup, the first contact was “rubbing is racing’ and Miller got the short end. The second, Miller should get at least a talking to about – come on.

      EDIT – I like how Miller tries to downplay it, while they show the video of the slam. Mir was right to be upset.

      https://www.rideapart.com/news/499021/motogp-joan-mir-jack-miller-qatar/

      • mickey says:

        read a comment elsewhere that asked the question, if it had been another rider beside Mir in that race would Jack have made a beeline for that point to cause contact?

        if you look at the videos closely jack had options, Mir did not, and that lots of riders ran wide onto the kerbing at that turn. Considering the horsepower of the Ducati, is the turn before the long straightaway the place to mess with a slower bike?

        Miller may have technically had the right of way, but he intentionally took the line he knew Mir was going to need. The option was Millers whether there was contact or not.

        • TimC says:

          Yeah it’s interesting reading other takes. Sure looked to me like Miller went out of his way to slam into Mir. So maybe he did just take wide line and Mir came back into him but that’s not how it looked to me. I’m not interested enough to go back and check different angles and everything else so for now I’m content just to read the different takes….

          • Provologna says:

            I saw it exactly as you describe. I like Miller though I would discipline him for his actions. He clearly took retribution for Mir’s earlier pass. On the 2nd contact after Mir past Miller it was Mir’s line; Miller should have just waited then blown by Mir on the straight. When racer 1 passes racer 2 in a turn, racer 2 does not just get to hit racer 1 and say later, “Stay behind me or that’s what you get.”

            Props to Miller for his straight poker face, feigning ignorance during the post-race interview. I see what you did there Jack!

            That said, I like Jack. As someone with a beloved dog, Jack impressed me when he said how much he looked forward to seeing his dog during the mid-2020 break (his commute to Oz is multiples longer than any other racer.)

            Why the heck do the Ducks have so much more power? Damn! They fly by the field on the straights; no need for slipstream.

        • Jeremy says:

          I haven’t gone back and watched it again, but the consensus from Tankslappers and The Race (the two best MotoGP podcasts IMO) is surprise that Miller didn’t get a penalty. As much as Miller himself has downplayed this, I’m inclined to believe he is also surprised.

        • fred says:

          Actually, Mir had at least 3 options – a) Barge into Miller again, b) Slow down, or c) Exceed track limits.

          Exceeding track limits would not have put him in the gravel, but just in the dark green area. I could be wrong, but I think that is just a painted delineation, and not grass or any other adverse surface. It’s not like he was at any risk of crashing by simply choosing not to hit Miller.

          • mickey says:

            Im not sure what the green stuff is, looks like grass to me

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BKW1kc0d7g

            also note the riders behind Mir taking the same line as Mir

          • Jeremy says:

            The green is actually artificial turf. As far as slowing down, it’s pretty dangerous to roll off the throttle on the main straight unless you are certain no one is behind you. Also, if I’m not mistaken, Mir was technically leading – even if only by a little – at the time which means it was Miller’s duty to avoid contact.