Marc Marquez rode to a comfortable victory at the 2019 Valencia GP to seal a dominant season and hand Honda the teams championship.
Alex Rins launched his Suzuki from 8th on the grid to third off the line as Marc Marquez fell from pole to as low as sixth. Jack Miller had a great start and led for one corner before being elbowed aside at turn two by an eager Fabio Quartararo.
It took two laps for Marc Marquez to recover the ground lost on the start of the 2019 Valencia GP, and set off after Quartararo ahead. The Yamaha rider had eked out a 0.8s gap in the time it took Marquez to claw back to second but it wouldn’t be enough. Within a few laps the Champion was challenging and made an aggressive pass on lap 8 at turn 11 to take the lead.
Meanwhile, Miller was dragging Andrea Dovizioso and Alex Rins closer to the back of Quartararo setting up a spicy battle for the podium as Marquez took off at the front.
Once Marquez got to the front though, he stamped his authority on the race and with the win handed Honda the teams title almost single-handed. Quartararo ended his sensational rookie season with second place ahead of a delighted, and stoppie-happy Miller.
Johann Zarco was stretchered away from the track after Danilo Petrucci, Zarco and Iker Lecuona all crashed in turn six on the same lap. The riders were separated on the track at the time, and as Zarco walked through the gravel trap he was hit from behind by Lecuona’s KTM. Miraculously the LCR Honda rider was not seriously injured.
The lack of horsepower from the Yamaha was in clear display at Valencia. Once Maverick Viñales was swallowed up in pack he had nothing left to fight with. Of particular concern for Yamaha is that the factory squad has too often been slower than the satellite Yamaha team. Until Franco Morbidelli crashed out of Sunday’s race he was ahead of both Rossi and Viñales.
Cal Crashes Out
Cal Crutchlow ended his season 17 laps early after tucking the front and crashing out of ninth. It was a disappointing end to a year in which Crutchlow showed flashes of pace aboard the LCR Honda.
Exactly who will be alongside Crutchlow next year at LCR Honda remains to be seen. Jorge Lorenzo’s sudden departure from the paddock means there’s a seat at Repsol Honda. It seems more likely that either Takaaki Nakagami or Johann Zarco will take that seat than anyone else.
An emotional Jorge Lorenzo finished his career in 13h place. The five-time champion, three of which were in the premier class, had tears in his eyes as the 99,000-strong crowd watched him plant the LorenzoLand flag in the Spanish gravel for the final time.
Written by: Jacob Black
Jacob enjoys riding motorcycles, racing motorcycles, watching
motorcycles race, writing about motorcycles, and jokes. If you’re reading this, he is likely attempting to combine one or more of those passions.