Despite battling hard for the final podium position at the Emilia Romagna GP, PETRONAS Yamaha SRT’s Fabio Quartararo was handed a penalty for exceeding track limits, which dropped him to fourth. Team-mate Franco Morbidelli heroically battled illness to finish ninth.
Quartararo made a good start to the MotoGP race, maintaining his third position off the line. With those around on the soft tyre, the Frenchman dropped to fourth and bided his time until the hard tyre was at its optimum before mounting his attack. With two laps to go, Fabio moved into third, but was handed a long lap penalty for exceeding track limits too many times. With no time to take to the long lap loop he was given a three second penalty, which demoted him to fourth. Quartararo does close the gap to the lead in the championship standings to only one point.
Team-mate Morbidelli, who continued to feel the effects of his stomach bug, put in an heroic effort across the 27 laps. The Italian was caught up in another rider’s Turn 8 crash on the first lap, which dropped him down to 19th. Refusing to give up, Franco powered through to bring his Yamaha YZR-M1 home in ninth; scoring seven points, moving to fifth in the championship and helping PETRONAS Yamaha SRT to stay top of the teams’ standings.
Quartararo and Morbidelli will now turn their attention to the Gran Premi de Catalunya, which takes place at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya next weekend (25-27 September).