2020 San Marino MotoGP Results and News

Rennie Scaysbrook | September 14, 2020

2020 San Marino MotoGP Sunday News

‘The Island of Peter Pan’

It provides training facilities, bikes to ride on, and dietary advice. Its professional arm extends to language lessons, track days at grand prix venues, and sit-downs with a nine-time world champion. ‘Pecco’ Bagnaia once described it as “the island of Peter Pan.”

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Morbidelli wins
Morbidelli and Bagnaia are proof Rossi’s system works.

The benefits of the VR46 Academy couldn’t be any clearer on Sunday with its riders filling the top two spots in MotoGP and Moto2. So what makes it work? “The key has been that the greatest rider ever decided to make an environment to make youngsters grow up. This is the reason why we are seeing so many young, strong riders, almost all of them come from the academy,” said Morbidelli.

“He has many facilities to live in, to work in, in order to be a good rider, in order to be a good professional and a good athlete. He just basically has put his know-how and his facilities at our service. So it’s a really noble act from him.”

Pecco Perfect

Bagnaia’s second place and first MotoGP podium exceeded all expectations with a healing right leg. While factory riders Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci continue to struggle, the 2018 Moto2 World Champion has finally understood how to extract the most from a MotoGP machine.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Bagnaia second
One happy Italian… Bagnaia was electric in Misano.

“In Thailand (2019) we had this reset,” he explained of when it all clicked. “I worked a lot with my head. I started to accept the riding style of Ducati. I tried at the first test this year to be very strong on the braking. In Jerez we have finished this transformation because in Jerez one I was very strong on the braking, but finished the front tire after 12 laps. Then the second Jerez I was very strong all weekend.

“I have changed a lot the braking. Now I’m very, very strong on the braking. I’m trying to be the best on the braking with respect to the other riders of Ducati. More technical. I change the front fork. I had the hardest front fork, the spring last year. The rest of the bike is very similar (to 2019).”

New track surface ‘similar to motocross’

While Misano’s new track surface offered up plenty of grip a number of riders spoke negatively of the resurfacing that was done in March. “There’s more grip than last year but the track is similar to motocross! A lot of bumps. Positive that there is more grip but we need to adapt because honestly, the first exit in FP1 was really difficult to manage the bumps,” said Fabio Quartararo.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results new surface
Riders were not happy with the new Misano track surface.

“It’s bumpy. It’s bad, especially in the fastest sector,” said Jack Miller. “But the biggest bonus is at least there’s some grip out there, which we didn’t have last year. But the fact that it’s this bumpy and it’s not even a year old this asphalt, I don’t know what the f**k they did, but they made it worse in terms of bumps. That back section, the bike just starts shaking and bouncing, and one lap you can get through there semi OK, and the next lap you’re just bouncing around.”

KTM’s reality check

This was comfortably KTM’s worst Sunday of the year. Pol Espargaro was the best placed Austrian machine in tenth. Not one of their four bikes ever threatened the top six, a reality check after the triumphs at Brno and the Red Bull Ring. “Stopping the bike was the main thing and I was always sliding. I was sideways like supermoto from the beginning until the end,” said the Catalan.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results KTM news
After the highs of the last three rounds, KTM went backward in Misano.

“The rear grip level here at the moment is insane with the new tarmac and our bike seems to be working well in low-grip situations,” explained Brad Binder. “it looks like it is a Yamaha and Suzuki track. It’s exactly what we are looking for: that ability to flow a bit more and keep the speed up. That’s what they are really good at and that’s what we need to get right going into the next weekend.”

2020 San Marino MotoGP Sunday

Franco Morbidelli took a maiden MotoGP race win in front of his home fans at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, as he topped the 2020 San Marino MotoGP from Pramac Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia and Joan Mir (Ecstar Suzuki).

Morbidelli’s ride was reminiscent of his Moto2 days, as the Italian got to the front at the first corner and never looked back. Valentino Rossi followed him into second off the line and held the position for the first half of the race, losing the spot as Bagnaia, still limping from his broken leg suffered in the Czech Republic, came charging through from sixth on the grid.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Morbidelli wins MotoGP
Morbidelli hit the front at turn one and was never headed for his first MotoGP victory.

Mir and teammate Alex Rins hounded Rossi for the second half of the race for the final podium spot, and as they started the last lap it looked like a dream 1-2-3 for the VR46 Academy was on the cards. That was, until Mir dived up the inside of Rossi leading onto the back straight, holding the veteran Italian to the flag to steal third place.

Fifth went to Rins. The Spaniard had great mid-race pace but couldn’t put the move past Rossi, which bought Mir back into contention for the podium.

While it was jubilation for two of the four Yamahas in first and fourth, pole man Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha) and erstwhile championship leader Fabio Quartararo both suffered. Vinales never got going on the hard compound rear tire, eventually salvaging sixth after breaking clear of Ducati riders Andrea Dovizioso and Jack Miller, seventh and eighth places, respectively.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Quartararo
Quartararo (20) had the worst race of his season so far, crashing out of the race and the title lead.

It was worse for Quartararo. The Frenchman had just made his way past Vinales for fourth with 20 laps remaining when he lost the front of the Petronas Sprinta Yamaha at turn four and crashed out. He remounted, returned to the pits and eventually rejoined, only to crash again, this time at turn six with eight laps remaining. This time the crash was terminal.

Rounding out the top 10 was the first Honda rider in Takaaki Nakagami in ninth on the LCR Idemitsu Honda, followed by the top KTM runner in Pol Espargaro.

In the championship, Andrea Dovizioso now leads on 76 points from Quartararo on 70, with Jack Miller third on 64. Morbidelli’s win moves him up to seventh in the standings. Incredibly, there’s only 19 points covering the top seven.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results

1 Franco Morbidelli (Yam)
2 Francesco Bagnaia (Duc) + 2.217
3 Joan Mir (Suz) + 2.290
4 Valentino Rossi (Yam) + 2.643
5 Alex Rins (Suz) + 4.044
6 Maverick Vinales (Yam) + 5.383
7 Andrea Dovizioso (Duc) + 10.358
8 Jack Miller (Duc) + 11.155
9 Takaaki Nakagami (Duc) + 10.839
10 Pol Espargaro (KTM) + 12.030

Moto2

SKY Racing Team VR46’s Luca Marini further helped his Moto2 World Championship aspirations after coming out on top of a fierce fight with teammate Marco Bezzecchi to take victory at the Lenovo San Marino and Rimini Riviera Grand Prix. The 23-year-old was comfortable out front until a false neutral allowed Bezzecchi into the game, with the latter forced to hold off Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) on the final lap to take second. Third went to Enea Bastianini.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Marini wins Moto2
Marini (10) rode a beautiful race to take the win at home.

Marini would start the race from pole position after Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) was forced out of the race after fracturing both his left hand and foot in a monster warm up highside.

American Joe Roberts came home 12th at Misano.

Marino leads the title chase on 112 from Bastianini on 95 with Bezzecchi third on 85. Roberts lies ninth on 45.

2020 San Marino Moto2 Results

1 Luca Marini (Kal)
2 Marco Bezzecchi (Kal) + 0.799
3 Enea Bastianini (Kal) + 0.897
4 Xavi Vierge (Kal) + 2.177
5 Augusto Fernandez (Kal) + 8.307
6 Tom Luthi (Kal) + 9.046
7 F. Di Giannantonio (Spe) + 9.971
8 Sam Lowes (Kal) + 16.485
9 Aron Canet (Spe) + 17.036
10 Joe Roberts (Kal) + 17.209

Moto3

In the 150th Moto3 Grand Prix, John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) produced the ride of his life to emerge victorious from another magnificent and dramatic Moto3 barnstormer. Polesitter Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) picked up another podium finish in P2 with 2019 race winner Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) crossing the line P3. On the penultimate lap, Championship leader Albert Arenas (Pull&Bear Aspar Team Moto3) crashed out of the leading group.

Areans still leads the title chase on 106 from Agura on 101 with McPhee third on 92.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results McPhee wins Moto3
McPhee pulled a stunning last lap to take his first Moto3 win since France last year.

2020 San Marino Moto3 Results

1 John McPhee (Hon)
2 Ai Ogura (Hon) + 0.037
3 Tatsuki Suzuki (Hon) + 0.232
4 Jeremy Alcoba (Hon) + 0.393
5 Gabriel Rodrigo (KTM) + 0.490
6 Tony Arbolino (Hon) + 0.543
7 Jaume Masia (Hon) + 0.833
8 Romano Fenati (Hus) + 0.928
9 Dennis Foggia (Hon) + 0.976
10 Andrea Migno (KTM) + 1.121

MotoE

Matteo Ferrari (Trentino Gresini MotoE) kept up his Misano MotoE World Cup win record with a flawless victory. That’s three wins in two years on home soil for the reigning World Cup winner, who earns his first win of 2020, a race which saw Xavier Simeon (LCR E-Team) and Dominque Aegerter (Dynavolt Intact GP) complete the podium.

Aegerter leads the series on 57 to Ferarri’s 45 and Jordi Torres on 43.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Ferarri wins MotoE
Ferarri took another home MotoE win.

2020 San Marino MotoE Results

1 Matteo Ferrari (Ene)
2 Xavier Simeon (Ene) + 0.213
3 Dominique Aegerter (Ene) + 0.372
4 Jordi Torres (Ene) + 0.474
5 Mattia Casadei (Ene) + 0.606
6 Mike Di Meglio (Ene) + 0.780
7 Alessandro Zaccone (Ene) + 4.393
8 Alex de Angelis (Ene) + 4.476
9 Tommasso Marcon (Ene) + 4.915
10 Eric Granado (Ene) + 5.056

2020 San Marino MotoGP Saturday News

Rossi ‘up’ for the ‘double’

Qualifying day was enlivened by the unveiling of two one-off helmet designs for the San Marino GP. First, Valentino Rossi sported a lid with the text ‘La Doppia’ (‘The Double’ in Italian) above a packet of Viagra with one pill missing.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Rossi hemet
Rossi and his little blue pill helmet. You can always count on Valentino for a laugh…

“There are two races in a row,” explained the 41-year old. “With Aldo (Drudi, the helmet designer), we thought: ‘What comes to mind when you say two in a row? When we were young, love was made twice in a row. We joke with my age because if you have to do it twice in a row you need a little help. Everyone has taken it well. I did not have the courage to tell my mother. Because of how she is, very religious, I do not think it is her favorite helmet!”

Then came Franco Morbidelli’s Spike Lee inspired design with the Italian portrayed as Samuel L. Jackson’s character from Do The Right Thing. The word ‘Equality’ was also printed in ten different languages. “I wanted to deal with a big matter and a big topic, which is racism,” he said. “But I also wanted to hug the whole 2020 year because this 2020 started in a real bad way. At one point in the movie (Jackson’s character) just says, stop all the BS and stop hating each other, and ‘time out!’ it’s important to remember that we are all the same.”

Crutchlow Cooked

Honda’s season goes from bad to worse. Cal Crutchlow withdrew from both races at Misano on Saturday morning after his right arm reacted badly to an operation to correct arm pump. The Englishman suffered severe swelling in the arm after surgeons removed the fascia lining in the muscle in his right arm soon after the Styrian Grand Prix.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Crutchlow arm
Crutchlow’s ‘popeye arm’ will be spectators for at least the next two races.

While the operation went well, Crutchlow has been struggling with subsequent swelling of the arm and fluid coming out of the wound. Doctors removed some stitches, leaving the 34-year old with a ghastly hole on the underside of the arm. “The arm isn’t great,” he said on Saturday. “I’ve got problems with fluid coming into the arm, and it’s really swollen, not just because of the fluid but because of the muscle too. It’s the size of most people’s legs right now. We need to get this hole closed. Sewing it isn’t an option. We have to leave it alone. We sewed it the other day and the arm blew up like a balloon.”

Crutchlow is aiming to be back riding in a fortnight when the series visits Barcelona. But even that is far from certain.

Race Direction clarifies track limits procedures

After the controversy in Styria, Race Director Mike Webb addressed the media on Saturday to clarify the criteria by which the FIM Stewards decide on penalties for riders exceeding track limits. Jorge Martin was demoted a place in the Moto2 race in Styria for touching the green paint at the end of the kerb on the outside of turn eight.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Mike Webb
Mike Webb has had to get on the front foot about the penalties dished out in Austria.

While the Spaniard didn’t gain any time, the Stewards were reacting to their own criteria, which was published in full on Saturday. “For riders closely contesting a position,” it read, “any track limit infraction that takes place during the last lap, and that the FIM MotoGP Stewards deem to have affected a race result, must be shown to have clearly disadvantaged the rider who makes the infraction. This is true whether there is a change of position or not.” The key words are clearly disadvantaged. Unless the rider in question loses time or position on the final lap, a penalty will be forthcoming.
Webb was also pressed on the final corner in the MotoGP race in Styria. Suzuki was incensed at KTM’s Pol Espargaro’s lack of penalty after he had run wide at the Red Bull Ring’s turn ten, lost first and second position, and accelerated on the outside of the track to cross the line in third just ahead of Joan Mir. “Pol lost a position. That’s a clear disadvantage. He’s not going to lose five positions (as a penalty) because of that,” Webb said.

Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha) smashed the lap record to take pole position for the 2020 San Marino MotoGP, taking top spot ahead of Petronas Yamaha duo Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Saturday

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results and News Vinales takes pole
Vinales flew around Misano to take pole for the 2020 San Marino MotoGP.

Vinales clocked a 1:31.411 in the Saturday afternoon Q2, blitzing the previous lap record set by Ducati’s Jorge Lorenzo at 1:31.629 in 2018. It turned into a perfect day for Yamaha, with Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha) pushing through for fourth, giving the Iwata factory a 1-2-3-4 in Q2, the first time this has happened since the Q1/Q2 qualifying format was introduced.

Pramac Ducati teamsters Jack Miller and the still injured Francesco Bagnaia went fifth and sixth fastest, ahead of Suzuki pairing Alex Rins and Joan Mir, with Andrea Dovizioso the first factory Ducati man in ninth after teammate Danilo Petrucci failed to make it through to Q2. Rounding out the top 10 was Esponsarama Racing Ducati rider Johann Zarco.

After three spectacular rounds that included their first two MotoGP class wins, the KTM factory endured a tough time in qualifying with Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM) crashing early in Q2 and failing to make an impression on the top 10 in 11th. He led Tech3 KTM rider Miguel Oliveira in 12th. Espargaro’s teammate Brad Binder will start from 16th, two places ahead of Friday’s surprise KTM man, Iker Lecuona.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results—Q2

1 Maverick Vinales (Yam) 1:31.411
2 Franco Morbidelli (Yam) + 0.312
3 Fabio Quartararo (Yam) + 0.380
4 Valentino Rossi (Yam) + 0.466
5 Jack Miller (Duc) + 0.641
6 Francesco Bagnaia (Duc) + 0.643
7 Alex Rins (Suz) + 0.679
8 Joan Mir (Suz) + 0.691
9 Andrea Dovizioso (Duc) + 0.773
10 Johann Zarco (Duc) + 0.807

Moto2

Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) broke the Misano Moto2 lap record in Q2, his 1:36.170 was enough to beat second-place Remy Gardner (Onexox TKKR SAG Team) by 0.254, with home hero Luca Marini (SKY Racing Team VR46) completing the top three. However, because of Lowes’ pitlane penalty start as punishment for his torpedoing of Jorge Navarro and Somkiat Chantra in the Styrian Moto2 race, Remy Gardner will launch from pole position, meaning Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) will start from the front row after qualifying fourth.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results and News Lowes takes pole
It was Lowes’ first pole position in four years, but he’ll still start from the back of the grid.

American Joe Roberts (Tennor American Racing Kalex) will start from 18th.

2020 San Marino Moto2 Results—Q2

1 Sam Lowes (Kal) 1:36.170*
2 Remy Gardner (Kal) + 0.254
3 Luca Marini (Kal) + 0.326
4 Marco Bezzecchi (Kal) + 0.371
5 Enea Bastianini (Kal) + 0.444
6 Xavi Vierge (Kal) + 0.493
7 Marcel Schrötter (Kal) + 0.525
8 Augusto Fernandez (Kal) + 0.658
9 Tetsuta Nagashima (KTM) + 0.848
10 F. Di Giannantonio (Spe) + 0.849

*pitlane start penalty for irresponsible riding at the Styrian GP

Moto3

Honda Team Asia’s Ai Ogura was forced to dig deep in the final sector of the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli to steal a last-gasp pole position, a career-first for the Japanese star in the lightweight class. He will front the grid for Sunday’s 150th Moto3 Grand Prix, with Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) and Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) joining him on the front row.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results and News Ogura takes pole
Ogura pulled a winner out of the bag right at the end of Q2 to take his first Moto3 pole position.

2020 San Marino Moto2 Results—Q2

1 Ai Ogura (Hon) 1:42.403
2 Gabriel Rodrigo (Hon) + 0.016
3 Tatsuki Suzuki (Hon) + 0.031
4 Andrea Migno (KTM) + 0.042
5 Romano Fenati (Hus) + 0.201
6 Raul Fernandez (KTM) + 0.253
7 Celestino Vietti (KTM) + 0.378
8 Jeremy Alcoba (Hon) + 0.405
9 Tony Arbolino (Hon) + 0.462
10 Filip Salac (Hon) + 0.505

MotoE

For the second year in succession, Matteo Ferrari (Trentino Gresini MotoE) claimed the MotoE pole at Misano. The Italian’s 1:43.580 was good enough to better Mattia Casadei (Ongetta SIC58 Squadracorse) by 0.272 seconds, with Xavier Simeon (LCR E-Team) completing the front row. However, Ferrari faces a three-place grid penalty for irresponsible riding in Jerez, meaning Casadei will start his home Grand Prix from pole position, promoting Lukas Tulovic (Tech3 E-Racing) to the front row, as Eric Granado (Avintia Esponsorama Racing) gets his lap canceled for exceeding track limits.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results Ferrari takes MotoE pole
Matteo Ferrari took pole for MotoE, but he won’t start there.

2020 San Marino MotoE Results—Qualifying

1 Matteo Ferrari (Ene) 1:43.580*
2 Mattia Casadei (Ene) + 0.272
3 Xavier Simeon (Ene) + 0.372
4 Lukas Tulovic (Ene) + 0.447
5 Dominique Aegerter (Ene) + 0.626
6 Niccolo Canepa (Ene) + 0.641
7 Jordi Torres (Ene) + 0.682
8 Tommaso Marcon (Ene) + 0.689
9 Mike Di Meglio (Ene) + 0.772
10 Alessandro Zaccone (Ene) + 1.107

*Three place grid penalty for irresponsible riding at the Andalucian GP

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News

Valentino Rossi Staying

A speculative article in the German-speaking media set the internet alight on the eve of the San Marino Grand Prix. The article supposed Valentino Rossi would imminently announce his retirement from MotoGP because Petronas SRT Yamaha has yet to announce his move. That and the surprise availability of Andrea Dovizioso on the rapidly dwindling riders’ market.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News Rossi
Valentino must be getting really sick of the retirement rumors.

Rossi used Thursday’s press conference to quash the rumors. “Not true,” he said. “The situation is the same as two or three weeks ago. I am taking time with Yamaha because we are not in a hurry. We are very close to the signing. I will race with Petronas at 99% because the signing is not yet there. Maybe in (the) Barcelona (GP at the end of September) it will be announced.

“That I retire is very important news. If on the Internet you write ‘Rossi has retired’ many people will click . That is why it has had so much echo. The situation has changed. I have explained that I am going to continue racing. But it is still more morbid to say that I’m retiring. I don’t know if it’s because they want me to retire!”

Jorge Martin struck down with COVID-19

Jorge Martin became the MotoGP paddock’s highest-profile Coronavirus case as it was confirmed on Thursday that he did not travel to Misano.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News Martin
Jorge Martin’s season has been thrown into chaos amid a positive test for COVID-19.

In Brno, a cameraman working with French TV was quarantined after showing a positive test. In Austria, Red Bull Rookie competitor Matteo Bertelle missed the two races at the Styrian Grand Prix due to a positive test. Now Martin, second in the Moto2 title fight to leader Luca Marini has been struck down.

Despite the positive test, a statement from his Red Bull Ajo KTM team stated he “feels well and is quarantined at home, respecting the safety protocols of the health authorities.” There was no date given for his return.

An unnamed mechanic also tested positive prior to the San Marino GP, making it four figures to have contracted the virus since the championship restarted in July.

Yamaha testing absence explained

It wasn’t just journalists that were puzzled. Fabio Quartararo and Valentino Rossi were also at a loss to explain why Yamaha had failed to utilize 2020 test rider Jorge Lorenzo since a small number of laps in February. Yamaha was the only factory not to test at Misano in June or July with its track surface, newly resurfaced for 2020.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News Lorenzo
Quartararo and Rossi were left baffled by Jorge Lorenzo’s (seen here at the Malaysian test) recent testing absence.

“I have the same question as you,” responded Quartararo when asked why Yamaha hadn’t tested at the track. “Honestly, I don’t know… it is true we don’t understand because in the past we know the capacity of Jorge on the Yamaha, so I don’t know why he is not riding. He did 20 laps in Sepang and that is it.”

Rossi sounded similarly perplexed. “I have exactly the same question for Yamaha because I was very happy when I understand Jorge is our test rider because he is one of the best riders in the history of the M1. Yamaha has to trust in the program and [but] sincerely I don’t know. Sometimes things happen at Yamaha that is difficult to explain, so you have to speak with them.

But Monster Energy Yamaha Team Director Massimo Meregalli explained the worldwide pandemic was to blame as the factory was unwilling to send its Japanese engineers overseas in a time of global crisis. “It’s due to COVID. Our test team is managed by Japan. They decide to cancel the tests we had in Europe, and they decide to implement more tests in Japan. They weren’t comfortable sending people out of Japan. With all the problems of the tests, quarantine, so that’s why we decided to cancel our European test plan.”

Meregalli did confirm Yamaha’s test team would be present at a test at Portimao in October ahead of the series’ first visit to the Portuguese track.

Bastianini to Esponsorama Ducati, Zarco promoted

Ducati has yet to decide on whether Francesco Bagnaia or Johann Zarco will partner Jack Miller in the factory team in 2021. But it confirmed Zarco will definitely be promoted from the Esponsorama Ducati squad to either the factory team or Pramac.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News Bastianini
Enea Bastianini is headed for the big time with Ducati in 2021.

“Ducati need still a little time because between Pecco and me they have to decide and Pecco was injured. It’s logical that they have to wait a little bit,” explained Zarco. “The Pramac and factory bikes are almost the same level so for this reason, both would be a super option.”

Replacing the Frenchman in the Esponsorama Ducati team is Moto2 title contender Enea Bastianini. “I’ve signed with Ducati,” he said on Friday. “I think in the next week it will be possible to confirm this. For me, it’s really important to be with Ducati next year. It’s a big family. It’s an Italian bike and it will be possible to be fast also in MotoGP.”

Esponsorama Racing’s Team Manager Ruben Xaus said, “It’s clear we were looking to upgrade the situation of the team. Things are happening very fast. I thought it’d be in 12 months or two years. But the situation has gone quicker. It’s very clear Johann won’t be with us. I’m happy for him because he deserves a factory Ducati. It’s a good spot for one of the younger generation to come up and prove things. I’m sure a young Italian will come in. I’m 99 percent sure that Bastianini will join us next year.”

Radio Communication tested

In both of Friday’s sessions, Repsol Honda’s Stefan Bradl tested a new form of radio communication aimed at immediately alerting riders of yellow, blue, or red flags or a penalty. The idea arose after Hafizh Syahrin’s terrifying crash in the Moto2 race in Austria when he rode into Enea Bastianini’s stricken bike on the exit of turn one.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday News Bradl
Bradl has been the guinea pig for more radio communication testing at Misano.

A device with an antenna was fitted in the camel hump in Bradl’s leathers which connected to a set of earphones inside the helmet. “I got some messages like ‘Warning’ or ‘Yellow flag’,” said the German. “I could hear it very well. It was not dangerous or distracting me.

But we have to find better solutions because we are moving a lot more with the head compared to F1 drivers. We need to find better connections going into the ear, covering the noise.”

Dorna’s Managing Director Carlos Ezpeleta explained this could eventually lead to system in which riders can speak freely with their teams during a session or race. “We had tested this in the past with various riders and they said it was disturbing. Now technology has improved a lot we decided to give it another try. The system itself is the first prototype. At the beginning this will only be used to communicate predetermined recorded messages about flags, penalties, things like this. Then maybe in the future we could open up to communication with the teams and if it’s possible from riders back to the teams. Hopefully we’ll be able to present something soon in the following seasons.”

Petronas Yamaha SRT’s Fabio Quartararo topped the opening day of action for the 2020 San Marino MotoGP, setting a 1:32.189 in the second Free Practice session to head future teammate Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha) by a scant 0.009 seconds con combined times.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday

2020 San Marino MotoGP Friday Quartararo leads
At a track the Yamahas fly at, Quartararo led a 1-2-3 for the factory with the fastest Friday time for the 2020 San Marino MotoGP.

Vinales, who set his time during the first Free Practice session, headed Quartararo’s teammate Franco Morbidelli, with Yamaha sealing Friday a 1-2-3.

It was an exceptional day for the KTM factory, with Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM) fourth ahead of the impressive rookie, Iker Lecuona on the second Tech3 KTM. Fellow KTM teamsters Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira finished the day eighth and ninth respectively, marking the first time all four KTM riders have finished Friday inside the top 10.

Valentino Rossi stuck in a 1:32.732 late in FP2 to seal sixth place and a spot in Saturday’s Q2 session, ahead of Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci. Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro completed the combined top 10.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Results—Friday Combined

1 Fabio Quartararo (Yam) 1:32.189
2 Maverick Vinales (Yam) + 0.009
3 Franco Morbidelli (Yam) + 0.178
4 Pol Espargaro (KTM) + 0.287
5 Iker Lecuona (KTM) + 0.486
6 Valentino Rossi (Yam) + 0.543
7 Danilo Petrucci (Duc) + 0.636
8 Brad Binder (KTM) + 0.731
9 Miguel Oliveira (KTM) + 0.746
10 Aleix Espargaro (Apr) + 0.747

Moto2

A 1:36.933 for Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) handed the Italian top spot in Moto2 at Misano on Friday. The championship contender managed to get the better of FP1 pacesetter Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) in the latter stages of the afternoon session, with Augusto Fernandez making it two EG 0,0 Marc VDS’ inside the top three on combined times.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Bastianini tops Moto2 Friday
Bastianini celebrated having signed for Ducati in place of Johann Zarco for 2021 by sliding to the top time of Friday in Moto2.

American Joe Roberts (Tennor American Racing Kalex) finished Friday in 14th, 0.786 seconds from Bastianini.

2020 San Marino Moto2 Results—Friday Combined

1 Enea Bastianini (Kal) 1:36.933
2 Sam Lowes (Kal) + 0.059
3 Augusto Fernandez (Kal) + 0.115
4 Nicolo Bulega (Kal) + 0.248
5 Luca Marini (Kal) + 0.278
6 F. Di Giannantonio (Spe) + 0.310
7 Marco Bezzecchi (Kal) + 0.412
8 Hafizh Syahrin (Spe) + 0.532
9 Jorge Navarro (Spe) + 0.541
10 Marcel Schrötter (Kal) + 0.577

Moto3

Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) topped the Moto3 class on combined times after a strong showing on the opening day at Misano, thanks to a 1:42.501 that he set in FP1 earlier on Friday. Fastest in FP2, meanwhile, was Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse), with the 2019 San Marino GP winner jumping up to third overall as a result.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Fernandez tops Moto3 Friday
Raul Fernandez topped another Friday session in Moto3, this time at Misano.

2020 San Marino Moto3 Results—Friday Combined

1 Raul Fernandez (KTM) 1:42.501
2 Gabriel Rodrigo (Hon) + 0.234
3 Tatsuki Suzuki (Hon) + 0.282
4 Albert Arenas (KTM) + 0.332
5 Andrea Migno (KTM) + 0.383
6. Celestino Vietti (KTM) + 0.489
7 John McPhee (Hon) + 0.549
8 Ayumu Sasaki (KTM) + 0.566
9 Sergio Garcia (Hon) + 0.644
10 Jaume Masia (Hon) + 0.654

MotoE

Avintia Esponsorama Racing’s Eric Granado was the fastest MotoE man on track on day on at Misano, setting a 1:43.990 – the only sub 1:44 of the day – to beat reigning MotoE World Cup winner Matteo Ferrari (Trentino Gresini MotoE) by 0.032 seconds. FP1 pacesetter Alex de Angelis (Octo Pramac MotoE) completed the opening day of running at his home race in P3, 0.188 from Granado.

2020 San Marino MotoGP Granado tops MotoE Friday
Granado was back on form in MotoE, taking the fastest time on Friday.

2020 San Marino MotoE Results—Friday Combined

1 Eric Granado (Ene) 1:43.990
2 Matteo Ferrari (Ene) + 0.032
3 Alex de Angelis (Ene) + 0.188
4 Dominique Aegerter (Ene) + 0.460
5 Mattia Casadei (Ene) + 0.552
6 Niki Tuuli (Ene) + 0.595
7 Mike Di Meglio (Ene) + 0.676
8 Xavier Simeon (Ene) + 0.739
9 Niccolo Canepa (Ene) + 0.762
10 Jordi Torres (Ene) + 0.786

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Rennie Scaysbrook | Road Test Editor Rennie Scaysbrook is our Road Test Editor. A lifetime rider, the Aussie made the trek across the Pacific to live the dream in the U.S. of A. Likes puppies and wheelies.