2021 MotoGP Valencian Grand Prix Preview

This weekend sees MotoGP, along with Moto2 and Moto3, conclude its 2021 season at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia.

In Moto3 Pedro Acosta claimed the 2021 title in Portimao last weekend, this is after the Spaniard claimed his sixth race victory of the season.

Despite being taken out by Darryn Binder, Dennis Foggia has also secured second in the championship, the Italian being 45 points from third placed Sergio Garcia. Foggia’s retirement from last weekend’s Grand Prix also means his run of finishing inside the top three has come to an end, having secured six consecutive top three finishes, of which three were race victories.

Garcia was also taken out by Binder in the same incident with Foggia on what was Garcia’s return to racing after missing the two races prior to last weekend. The Spaniard has a 12 point advantage over fourth placed Romano Fenati, the Italian finished seventh in Portimao. Although Fenati is only one point ahead of Jaume Masia who failed to score points last weekend.

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Remy Gardner leads the Moto2 rider standings by 23 points from title rival, and teammate, Raul Fernandez. It therefore means that Gardner will need to finish thirteenth or higher in order to secure the title as the Australian is behind on countback having scored five victories across the season compared to Fernandez’s seven race victories. The pair finished 1-2 for the seventh time in the 2021 Moto2 season last weekend.

Third in the standings is Marco Bezzecchi who is securely in the position as the Italian is 68 points behind Raul Fernandez in second and 33 points ahead of fourth placed Sam Lowes, the Briton joining Gardner and Raul Fernandez on the podium last weekend in Portimao.

Lowes has a 23 point gap to fifth placed, and teammate, Augusto Fernandez. The latter is five points ahead of sixth placed Aron Canet heading into the season finale. This is after Augusto Fernandez finished ninth in Portimao compared to Canet who finished fourth.

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Fabio Quartararo was confirmed as the 2021 MotoGP champion after the second Misano race. The Frenchman however retired from last weekend’s Grand Prix while second placed Francesco Bagnaia claimed his third race victory of the season, reducing the gap between the two to 40 points.

Bagnaia is safe in second in the championship as the Italian has a 32 point gap to third placed Joan Mir who finished second in the penultimate Grand Prix of the season. The 2020 MotoGP champion has secured third in the championship as the Spaniard has a 30 point gap to fourth placed Jack Miller who completed the podium in the second Grand Prix to be held at Portimao this season.

Miller however does only have a two point advantage over fifth placed Johann Zarco who finished fifth in Portimao, the Frenchman 21 points ahead of Marc Marquez and Brad Binder who are joint sixth in the rider standings.

Copy of RD17_Algarve_Espargaro_2021-03109” by Box Repsol is licensed under CC BY 2.0

A note on Alex Marquez who was challenging Jack Miller for the last place on the podium in Portimao. Marquez had to settle for fourth in the end, which was still the Spaniard’s best race result of the 2021 season, his previous best being sixth at the French Grand Prix.

It therefore means that Alex Marquez is sixteenth heading into the season finale, nine points behind teammate Takaaki Nakagami in fifteenth and 25 points ahead of Franco Morbideli who is seventeenth in the standings heading into the final Grand Prix of the season.

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