It was an absorbing battle at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli between Fabio Quartararo and Marc Márquez, Quartararo leading for most of the race, Márquez stalking the young 20 year old from France until the final lap, taking the lead at Turn One, and managing to fight of the challenges from Quartararo to take a magnificent seventh race victory of the season at the 2019 San Marino Grand Prix, moving past Mike Hailwood in the record books for most wins across all classes, and move ever closer to a sixth MotoGP World Championship, and an eighth across all classes.
So, can anyone offer a consistent challenge to the great Spaniard? We will find out this weekend at Motorland Aragón at the 2019 Aragon Grand Prix, Round 14 of the 2019 MotoGP World Championship.
Márquez (275 points) leads by 93 points (the same as his bike number) for the Repsol Honda Team over Mission Winnow Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso (182 points) with six races remaining.
Although he cannot win the championship this weekend at home in Spain at Aragon, a place he has won at five time across all classes, including four times in the premier class, including in each of the last three years, Márquez can move towards an opportunity of securing the world championship at the next round in Thailand with a typically strong result this weekend.
Márquez has finished on the podium in 27 of his last 32 races, including inside the Top Two in 18 of his last 21 races. While for Dovizioso, the challenge for him will be to attempt to secure second in the championship for the third-straight season.
Dovizioso’s teammate Danilo Petrucci (151 points) re-took third position in the world championship, despite finishing a disappointing 10th in Misano, from Team SUZUKI ECSTAR rider Álex Rins (149 points), who crashed out of the San Marino Grand Prix after enduring a difficult race.
They will both be challenged for third-place in the championship by the two Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP riders in Maverick Viñales (134 points) and Valentino Rossi (129 points) who finished third and fourth in Misano, as well as by Quartararo (112 points) from Petronas Yamaha SRT, who looks to be the rider that can challenge Márquez for the world championship in the next two to three years, if not sooner.
Jack Miller (101 points) is eighth in the championship for Alma Pramac Racing after finishing ninth in Misano, while Cal Crutchlow (88 points) from LCR Honda and Quartararo’s teammate Franco Morbidelli (80 points) complete the Top 10 in the standings, with the latter finishing an impressive fifth in the San Marino Grand Prix, while Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider Pol Espargaró (77 points) is just behind them after finishing a remarkable seventh at Misano.
So, who is going to win the 2019 Aragon Grand Prix?
The obvious one to beat is Marc Márquez, and I think he will win at Motorland Aragón for the fourth-straight year, but who will join him on the podium is a difficult question to answer as I think Ducati, Yamaha, and Suzuki should be relatively strong, but I get the feeling it will be another duel between Márquez and Fabio Quartararo, with Andrea Dovizioso, Jack Miller, Maverick Viñales, Valentino Rossi, and Álex Rins thrown into the mix for the final spot on the podium.