Tag: Sepang

Vinales wins Meaning-less Malaysian Grand Prix

The penultimate round this year’s MotoGP race fell to the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang.  This time around, at least someone other than newly crowned Champion Marc Marquez was able to win the race, although a rather meaning-less one. Factory Yamaha squad’s Maverick Vinales turned up the juice to beat Marquez and Andrea Dovizioso. Dovizioso’s podium finish did Shell some justice as they were the event and the team title sponsors. Fan favorite Valentino Rossi managed fourth, edging out Suzuki’s Alex Rins.

Shell held plenty of off-track activities to get people to go watch the race live and it apparently worked. Furthermore, tickets were relatively cheap by International Grand Prix standards to watch the world’s premier two-wheel race. The fans got their money’s worth as MotoGP is the most exciting race to watch and it doesn’t go on forever, with so many unnecessary interruptions.

The race started at high noon, as always Marquez was lightning quick off the line and grabbed six positions in the first two corners. Vinales led  Jack Miller in the first lap, with Marquez trailing close in third. With nine places gained, the reigning champion settled in behind Miller for a short while. After muscling past the Australian, Marquez began to work on closing the 1.6 second gap to Viñales.

The race quickly settled as Marquez eased up and allowed Vinales to maintain his lead. He rather finished in the points and prevented from ending up in the dirt. Dovizioso had dispatched Miller to get up to third place. Miller then had to confront Valentino Rossi who was blazing up behind him. The Doctor took his time and dispatched Miller in Turn 9 for fourth, with seven laps to go. Rossi next went after Dovizioso, but the Yamaha proved not as effective as the Ducati. He would settle in and defended his place from Rins. The order would finish with Vinales the winner, Marquez, Dovizioso, Rossi and Rins.


For Marquez, the result in Malaysia him the honor of being the first rider in history to score 17 MotoGP class podium finishes in a single season, extending his unbroken run of top-two finishes to 15. Marquez’s last finish outside of the top two came at the Czech GP in 2018 when he was third.

The teams now get a week’s rest after three consecutive GPs, before they return to action in Valencia for the finale, 14 – 17 November.

2019 MotoGP Malaysian GP Sepang results

1          Maverick Viñales        Yamaha           ESP            40’14.632

2          Marc Marquez Honda ESP     00’03.059

3          Andrea Dovizioso       Ducati ITA     00’05.611

4          Valentino Rossi          Yamaha           ITA            00’05.965

5          Alex Rins        Suzuki ESP     00’06.350

6          Franco Morbidelli       Yamaha           ITA            00’09.993

7          Fabio Quartararo         Yamaha           FRA            00’12.864

8          Jack Miller      Honda AUS    00’17.252

9          Danilo Petrucci           Ducati ITA     00’19.773

10        Joan Mir          Suzuki ESP     00’22.854

Riders standings

1          Marc Marquez Honda ESP     395

2          Andrea Dovizioso       Ducati ITA     256

3          Maverick Viñales        Yamaha           ESP     201

4          Alex Rins        Suzuki ESP     194

5          Danilo Petrucci           Ducati ITA     176

6          Fabio Quartararo         Yamaha           FRA    172

7          Valentino Rossi          Yamaha           ITA     166

8          Jack Miller      Honda AUS    149

9          Cal Crutchlow Honda GBR    133

10        Franco Morbidelli       Yamaha           ITA     115

MotoGP Malaysian Grand Prix preview

With the Riders’ crown already in Marc Marquez’s hands, the penultimate round of MotoGP, the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang Circuit, isn’t going to count for much except for Marquez’s team Repsol Honda trying to seal the Teams’ honors before the finale in Valencia, Spain. In the teams’ standings, Repsol Honda and Ducati are almost neck-to-neck with 408 and 409 points, respectively.

Marquez is looking for a personal best as he guns after a sixth straight Grand Prix victory this season and third at this very track. Meantime, Marquez hunts for more points to dethrone his team mate Jorge Lorenzo for most points scored in a single season. Lorenzo holds the record with 383 points and Marquez so far has 375 points.

Lorenzo  has been on the podium seven times at Sepang, but this time around it’s going to be difficult for him to beat the likes of the factory and Satellite Yamahas and Ducatis. He’ll try, nonetheless.

Ducati riders Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci were in town to meet and greet the media at Shell KLIA station, a precursor event by Shell Malaysia. Dovizioso even presented awards to bike mechanics, who are representing their teams at the 2019 Shell Advance Global Masterclass Competition.

Ducati squad have five wins at Sepang in the past: Capirossi in 2005, Stoner in 2007 and 2009 and Dovizioso in 2016 and 2017. Sepang is also the track where Dovizioso obtained his first win with Ducati in the premier class in 2016.  Petrucci instead scored his best result in Malaysia on the Pramac Racing Team Desmosedici GP, when he finished in sixth place in 2015 and 2017. However, he might not be a 100 percent due to  a crash at Phillip Island which sprained his ankle. Regardless, Dovizioso holds second in the riders standings and Petrucci is fifth, just  7 points adrift of Maveritck Viñales and 14 from Suzuki’s Álex Rins in third.

Fan favorite Valentino Rossi isn’t doing too well this season, but fans here couldn’t care less. He practically has a legion of fans at Sepang. a circuit where he shone many times before. He was looking strong in the fight for the win last year when a crash cut his challenge short. Despite the 2018 mishap, the Doctor’s list of premier class successes in Sepang is impressive. He delighted the fans by snatching victories there in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010, he secured second places 2002, 2005, 2014, and 2016, and took third places in 2009 and 2015. This weekend he hopes to add another positive result to the list in order to move up from seventh place in the championship standings.

 Vinales is determined to fight at the front again this weekend. The Spaniard climbed onto the Malaysian podium on two occasions in previous years, securing a 125cc win in 2011 and first place in the Moto2 race in 2014. He is yet to claim a premier class MotoGP prize there. Last year he took fourth, his best premier class placement at this track thus far. Viñales currently holds fourth position in the overall rankings, seven points behind the rider in third position.

As usual. practice runs today, then the final practice and qualifying on Saturday. The 20-lap Malaysian GP is scheduled for 3p Local Time on Sunday.

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