Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli showed competitive form in today‘s Grand Prix of Malaysia Race. The duo put in some brave overtakes and completed the 20-lap contest in the sweltering heat in fifth and seventh place respectively.
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP fans thoroughly enjoyed the show Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli put on during today‘s Grand Prix of Malaysia Race. The Sepang International Circuit is not easy to negotiate in 33°C, but the pace of the Yamaha men made it look like a breeze. They crossed the finish line in fifth and seventh place respectively.
Quartararo started from P8, and after a good launch he gained a position on the opening lap. As the rider field pulled apart over the first five laps, the Frenchman found himself in the middle of a group of five riders fighting for fifth place. El Diablo was chasing Jack Miller and Marco Bezzecchi directly ahead of him. The group was getting bigger though, as Luca Marini and Morbidelli caught up by lap 10. El Diablo was under pressure from a chasing Fabio Di Giannantonio, but he stood firm and managed to slip past Jack Miller on Turn 11. With eight laps to go, he had a gap of a little under 1s to Bezzecchi, but bridging it was no issue for the number-20 rider. Within a few laps the Yamaha man swooped past the Ducati and streaked away. As the top 4 were 6.633s ahead of him, Quartararo knew that from that point onward he could focus solely on maintaining his pace and preserving tyre life. He finished in fifth position, 15.000s from the race leader.
Morbidelli began the 20-lap race from P15 and was in 13th place by the end of lap 2. He continued to make steady progress and picked up two more places over the next two laps. He was on the back of Luca Marini as he tried to breach into the top 10. The two rivals managed to latch onto the group of riders fighting for fifth place by lap 10. It was the right moment for the Italian to launch an attack on Marini. As Brad Binder crashed out with nine laps to go, Morbido moved up to ninth. The gap to eighth place was 1.435s, but Morbidelli didn‘t give up. He kept his concentration and picked off Di Giannantonio with two laps left. He then also overtook Jack Miller on the last lap to take the chequered flag in seventh place, 18.553s from first.
Today‘s results see Quartararo moved up a place to 9th in the overall standings with 156 points. Morbidelli is in 13th with 93 points. The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team is joint 6th in the team championship with 249 points, and Yamaha climbs up to 4th position in the constructor‘s championship with 176 points.
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP congratulate Pedro Acosta on securing the 2023 Moto2 World Championship title today.
Quartararo and Morbidelli will be back in action next week for the penultimate round of the 2023 MotoGP season. The Grand Prix of Qatar will be held at the Lusail International Circuit from 17th – 19th November.
Fabio Quartararo: “I‘m happy. I had a great start and great first lap. It took us so long to overtake Jack, so we lost a lot of tyre performance because of tyre consumption. But I‘m feeling happy. I think the top 5 was the best result we could get today. Being able to fight today was a good mentality boost.”
Franco Morbidelli: “It was a positive weekend and Race. We were able to be consistent in the Race and recover many positions. I‘m happy with the job we‘ve done this weekend, and after a strong Race I‘m even happier. Today the bike was working very well, and we were able to be fast on the straight and overtake.”