Rins wins Aragon MotoGP, Mir takes championship lead

The 21-year-old Quartararo who started from pole, struggled and retired after falling out of the points

ALCAÑIZ • Alex Rins held off compatriot Alex Marquez to win the Aragon Grand Prix (GP) race at the Aragon Circuit in Spain yesterday with another Spaniard Joan Mir finishing third to take the championship lead from Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team rider Fabio Quartararo.

Rins gained his first victory at MotoGP and is the eighth winner in this season’s 10 races. The 21-year-old Frenchman Quartararo, who started from pole, struggled and retired after falling out of the points.

During Saturday’s qualifying session, MotoGP championship leader Quartararo displayed a sensational ride after posting the fast- est lap of 1 minute 47.076 seconds, thus claim- ing his fourth pole position this season.

The 21-year-old Frenchman had secured back-to-back pole positions at the Spanish GP and Andalucia GP at the Jerez Circuit, besides the recent French GP at the Le Mans Circuit.

“Honestly after the crash (in the morning), I thought that I could not ride in the afternoon (for the qualifying session). When I fell from the crash, I felt quite bad.

“It was very tough for me as I was involved in a crash, yesterday morning before another crash today. Normally I will always take some time to be back, and the FP4 is not bad at all, but I could do better (lap timing),” he said.

Meanwhile, seven-time MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi did not be took part in the Aragon GP and next weekend’s GP of Terual after he was tested positive for Covid-19.

“Due to Italian law, Rossi will be unable to attend the Gran Premio de Teruel event,” Ros- si’s Yamaha team said in a statement.

The 41-year-old Italian has to compete a 10-day quarantine and test negative before he can return to the circuits.

Yamaha said that it would again not replace Valentino in Teruel, leaving Vinales to ride alone at the two races at MotorLand Aragon.

Michelin, which supplies MotoGP, also announced yesterday that one of its technicians was tested positive and placed in isolation along with one of his colleagues.

Rossi was not the only rider forced to miss this weekend due to Covid-19.

In Moto3, young Italian Tony Arbolino must quarantine after coming into contact with a fellow passenger to Spain who tested positive for the virus.

Spaniard Jorge Martin, who rides in Moto2, missed two races n September after a positive test. — AFP/Bernama