Morbidelli steals thunder from fancied teammate

PETALING JAYA: Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s Franco Morbidelli outshone his teammate Fabio Quartararo with a consistent performance in the Aragon Grand Prix in Spain.

The Italian managed to finish sixth despite running wide on the very first lap. His French teammate, on the other hand, started from pole but had front tyre problems and surprisingly ended out of the points.

After a brief battle on lap eight with Quartararo, Morbidelli held fifth for the majority of the race. Despite attempting to bridge the gap in the closing laps, he unfortunately lost one place in the final corner.

Morbidelli is now sixth in the championship standings on 87 points.

“I did struggle to fight with the others at the beginning of the race, we had the medium front tyre, and I lost too much ground in the early stages, battling with some riders.

“Towards the end, I was behind Maverick Vinales but I didn’t get close enough to attack him. I also lost out to Takaaki Nakagami in the final corner as well. Anyway, it was a good race as I was able to maintain a really consistent pace over the last 12 laps.

“We are missing something, so we will try to sort that out for next weekend,” said Morbidelli, who has been retained for the 2021 season.

Team principal Datuk Razlan Razali said it was not a good outing for the team.

“That was not among the better race days for the team, so we need to analyse what happened, so we can figure out the best way to approach this coming weekend.

“It is at the same circuit, so this is going to be really important to do.

“Franco still managed to finish the race in sixth, which was a good effort.

“It’s a shame that Fabio finished outside of the points but he did have a big crash yesterday and a tyre pressure issue today. These things happen in racing, we just need to learn from it and come back better next weekend,” said Razlan.

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