Grand Prix is the premier class of motorcycle road racing. FIM, also known as Federation Internationale de Motocyclisme, is the regulating body of these motorcycle racing events. It also sanctions the roads circuit where the events can be held.
The inaugural season of Grand Prix was 1949. The championship is currently divided into four classes: Moto Grand Prix, Moto 2 and Moto 3 that are the racing events for bikes with four stroke engines. The newly introduced Moto E, which was introduced in 2019 itself, has the participating teams use fully electric motorcycles.
The 2019 Moto Grand Prix season comprises of nineteen grand prix races, with twelve of them being held in Europe, three in Asia, two in America, one in Australia and one in the Middle East. So far, twelve of the nineteen grand prix’s have taken place, the latest one being the British Grand Prix which was hosted at the Silverstone circuit in Silverstone on August 25, 2019.
Dovizioso emerges as winner of Austrian GP
The Austrian Grand Prix was held on August 11, and was hosted in the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria. Andrea Dovizioso eventually won the race, defeating his long time rival Marc Marquez who secured the second position yet again – just like the past three occasions which had also ended in defeat for him. Though the race was neck to neck, Andrea Dovizioso was able to seal his win by pulling a surprising move on the very last turn to cross the finish line first. Andrea’s win in Austria gave Ducati their 4th premier class win at the Red Bull Ring. It has been called one of the closest race battles of the season, especially between the two fierce rivals – Dovizioso and Marquez.
Dovizioso was at the top of his game as was evident in the race. Both Dovizioso and Marquez were scraping to take the lead from the very beginning of the race. Rookie Quartararo took the early lead after starting at the third position. When the race settled, Dovizioso again took the lead and Marquez fell to the fourth position, but quickly made his way back up to the second position by the end of the fifth lap. The two then got a massive lead over the rest of the participants.
Dovizioso maintained his lead till the 9th lap, after which Marquez took the lead with Dovizioso only milliseconds behind him. In the last lap, with only a few corners remaining, the two engaged in a neck to neck battle on the track for the first position, with Dovizioso taking the lead eventually by making a surprise move that sealed his victory.
Yamaha snags third to sixth position
Companywise, Yamaha had a great race, as all the positions from third to sixth were taken up by its team. Quartararo came in third, Valentino fourth, Maverick Vinales bagged the fifth position and Alex Rims came in sixth just behind Vinales with a miniscule difference of 0.021 seconds between them. Francesco Bagnaia of Pramac Ducati came seventh, Miguel Oliveira for Tech3 KTM came eighth, Danilo Petrucci of Ducati was ninth and Franco Morbidelli of Petronas Yamaha bagged the tenth position.
There were a total of twenty one participants but not everyone was able to complete the race. As any other Grand Prix, this one also saw its fair share of DNFs (did not finish), with Pol Espargaro’s bike losing its power mid corner just a lap into the race, leaving Cal Crutchlow who was behind Pol no place to go. Jack Miller crashed and was out of the race in its early stages. Tito Rabact and Hofizh Syahrin were the remaining non-finishers.
A word on Red Bull Ring
The Red Bull Ring circuit was inaugurated in 1970 and from thereon it went on to host 18 consecutive seasons of the Austrian Grand Prix, from 1970 to 1987. It was called the Osterreichring before it was rebuilt and renamed as A1 ring. After the rechristening of the track, the Grand Prix was again hosted there from 1997 till 2003.
When Formula One outgrew the circuit, it underwent construction in order to extend the layout but the work was never completed and the circuit remained unusable for many years. It was then purchased by Red Bull’s Dictrich Mateschitz who rebuilt the circuit and renamed it the Red Bull Ring. The track was finally opened on May 15, 2011 and Formula One was hosted in the circuit once again from the 2014 season.
Honda leads, with Ducati a close second
At the end of eleven rounds of the championship, Marc Marquez for Honda is at the top of the leaderboard with six race wins, behind him in second position is Andrea Dovizioso for Ducati with two wins, and in the third place, also on a Ducati, is Danilo Petrucci who has won one race. Alex Rins and Maverick Vinales have won one round each.