MotoGP – Grand Prix of Argentina, 3 April, 2016

First Top Ten for Rabat

Tito Rabat took advantage of a Grand Prix held under difficult conditions to gain experience and reach the top ten for the first time in MotoGP. In Moto2, Franco Morbidelli once again nearly made it to the podium.

Moto Gp Argentine
PSP/ Lukasz Swiderek

 

The Races

For his second Grand Prix in the premier class, Tito Rabat got more than he asked for, with difficult conditions during the practice test sessions as well in the race, a Grand Prix held in two phases with the riders being forced to change bikes mid-way … “It allowed me to learn and garner a lot of experience,” noted with satisfaction the former Moto2 champion world, who managed to stay on his wheels to finish ninth. “I fought it out with Crutchlow and Smith and I experienced my first Grand Prix “flag to flag”. The result makes me feel more confident about the next race in Texas.” Hunger for a place on the podium getting the best of him, Jack Miller made a mistake in the third lap when he tried to escape the clutches of Jorge Lorenzo, the reigning world champion. In Moto2, Franco Morbidelli once again fought for the podium from start to finish, but just after taking second place, the Italian fell on the last lap. Alex Márquez also took a tumble in the first lap.

The Championship

Scoring seven points in Argentina, Tito Rabat remains at the fourteenth place in the MotoGP standings. Jack Miller has moved down to seventeenth position. In Moto2, Morbidelli has slipped back to eleventh place, and Alex Marquez has yet to add a point to his counter.

The Background

As was the case on the Phillip Island circuit in Australia in 2013, the Argentine Grand Prix was raced this year in two phases. Instead of twenty-three laps, the race was reduced to two times ten laps, the riders being forced to stop between the ninth and eleventh lap to change bikes. The decision was taken for safety reasons after the rear tyre problem encountered by Scott Redding during the practice test sessions. Normally, the riders should have run the entire race using the spare tyre that the manufacturer is obliged to provide under such circumstances, but the rain on Sunday morning preventing them from testing it and a makeshift solution had to be found.

“It helped save the Grand Prix in acceptable conditions, for both the teams and the public,”

noted Nicolas Goubert, Technical Director of Michelin Racing.

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