Fabio Quartararo completed a Yamaha clean sweep of MotoGP’s Qatar double-header by winning the Doha Grand Prix after charging through the pack.
Both Quartararo and works team-mate Maverick Vinales predictably slipped towards the back of the top 10 at the start, but again methodically made their way through the pack, with Quartararo proving more successful on this occasion.
Having gone from 15th to fourth at the start in last weekend’s race, rookie poleman Jorge Martin had little trouble keeping the lead off pole as the Pramac Ducati riders maintained a 1-2.
Their works Ducati counterparts, however, did not hold up their end of the bargain and it was instead KTM’s Miguel Oliveira spectacularly moving up to third into Turn 1, only to be swiftly passed by Aprilia rider Aleix Espargaro.
Espargaro eyed a divebomb for second place a couple of laps later, but his move on Johann Zarco backfired and opened the door for the charging Suzuki rider Alex Rins to take the spot instead, before the Suzuki rider then picked off Zarco at Turn 15 a lap later.
Zarco hit back on the main straight immediately, and though Rins then overtook him through the hairpin-like Turn 6 and latched onto the back of Martin, he was again powerless to resist Zarco’s straightline speed as the Pramac supremacy was restored.
The sequence was virtually repeated a couple of laps later, with Rins getting through on Zarco but his attacks being rebuffed by Martin, whose dogged defence put Rins back into the clutches of the other Pramac rider.
As the scuffles continued up front, the factory Ducatis and then the factory Yamahas started to move their way up the order.
And when Rins briefly folded his front tyre through Turn 9 and lost momentum, Francesco Bagnaia closed in and made it a Ducati 1-2-3 with a main0straight overtake, only to fall prey to a Fabio Quartararo block-pass a few laps later and then run badly wide at Turn 1 after he’d slipstreamed back past the Yamaha.
Team-mate Jack Miller then lunged at Quartararo at Turn 1 but washed out wide and allowed the Frenchman to retake position, with Quartararo picking off compatriot Zarco at Turn 10 later that lap and then fianlly taking the lead from Martin at Turn 15.
Unsurprisingly, Martin breezed past Quartararo on the main straight as the race entered its final four laps, but Quartararo struck back just a few corners later and broke the tow over the rest of the lap, effectively securing his fourth MotoGP win.
His team-mate Vinales began to hassle the two Pramac riders instead, but they rebuffed his attacks to complete the podium – with Zarco passing his rookie team-mate Martin with two corners to go and beating him to second place by 0.043s.
Behind Martin, who bagged a maiden podium in his second-ever MotoGP start, Vinales and Rins fought it out for fourth, with Vinales surrendering the position by running wide at Turn 1 on the final lap and coming up 0.022s short of retaking it at the line.
Bagnaia came home in sixth, and team-mate Miller looked set to follow him home in seventh, only to drop back to ninth on the final lap.
Miller had two notable run-ins with Suzuki’s reigning champion Joan Mir earlier in the race, first being victim to an overly-aggressive Mir pass at Turn 10 and then responding by running Mir out of room at the exit of the final corner – in an incident that was investigated by the stewards but yielded no action.
It was Mir who took seventh place in the end, just a tenth ahead of a sublime Brad Binder, who salvaged an eighth-place finish from KTM’s Qatar nightmare.
Espargaro completed the top 10 for Aprilia, 0.017s down on Miller. His Honda-riding brother Pol spent much of the race in the top 10, but was left to rue a missed braking spot at Turn 1 and came home only 13th.
Oliveira faded to a lowly 15th after his heroic start, but still finished five seconds ahead of a struggling Valentino Rossi in 16th place.
There were two crashes in the race, for Spaniards Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM) and Alex Marquez (LCR Honda).
|Pos||Name||Team||Bike||Laps||Laps Led||Total Time||Fastest Lap||Pitstops||Pts|
|1||Fabio Quartararo||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||22||4||42m23.997s||1m54.973s||0||25|
|2||Johann Zarco||Pramac Racing||Ducati||22||0||+1.457s||1m54.919s||0||20|
|3||Jorge Martin||Pramac Racing||Ducati||22||18||+1.5s||1m55.026s||0||16|
|4||Alex Rins||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||22||0||+2.088s||1m54.923s||0||13|
|5||Maverick Viñales||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||22||0||+2.11s||1m54.832s||0||11|
|6||Francesco Bagnaia||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||22||0||+2.642s||1m54.491s||0||10|
|7||Joan Mir||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||22||0||+4.868s||1m54.985s||0||9|
|8||Brad Binder||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||22||0||+4.979s||1m55.074s||0||8|
|9||Jack Miller||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||22||0||+5.365s||1m54.807s||0||7|
|10||Aleix Espargaró||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||22||0||+5.382s||1m54.798s||0||6|
|11||Enea Bastianini||Avintia Esponsorama Racing||Ducati||22||0||+5.55s||1m55.057s||0||5|
|12||Franco Morbidelli||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||22||0||+5.787s||1m54.992s||0||4|
|13||Pol Espargaró||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||22||0||+6.063s||1m55.134s||0||3|
|14||Stefan Bradl||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||22||0||+6.453s||1m55.106s||0||2|
|15||Miguel Oliveira||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||22||0||+8.928s||1m55.227s||0||1|
|16||Valentino Rossi||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||22||0||+14.246s||1m55.383s||0||0|
|17||Takaaki Nakagami||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||Honda||22||0||+16.241s||1m55.374s||0||0|
|18||Luca Marini||SKY VR46 Avintia Team||Ducati||22||0||+16.472s||1m55.016s||0||0|
|19||Danilo Petrucci||Tech3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||22||0||+16.779s||1m55.341s||0||0|
|20||Lorenzo Savadori||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||22||0||+38.775s||1m56.468s||0||0|
|Alex Marquez||LCR Honda Castrol||Honda||12||0||DNF||1m55.132s||0||0|
|Iker Lecuona||Tech3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||12||0||DNF||1m55.266s||0||0|