In a rain-delayed event, Michelin tires and the MotoGP riders delivered exciting competition for viewers around the world.
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MICHELIN AND VIÑALES OVERCOME THE VAGARIES OF THE WEATHER AT THE OPENING ROUND
Michelin witnessed Maverick Viñales secure victory at today’s opening round of the 2017 MotoGP™ World Championship season as he rode a perfectly timed race during the Grand Prix of Qatar from Losail this evening.
Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) was making his debut with his new team and despite the weather trying its best to spoil the event, the young Spaniard raced to victory after an enthralling and delayed race. Today’s grid lined up using the combined practice times from the first three sessions, after all of Saturday’s proceedings – including the qualifying – was cancelled following heavy rain on Friday night leaving the track in an unsafe condition.
The unusual climate that forced Saturday’s cancellation, almost ruined this evening’s race as rain began to fall just as the bikes lined up for the start, this caused a delay and the race length to be reduced to 20-laps. Once the lights changed, Andrea Iannone (Team SUZUKI ECSTAR) got the holeshot from second on the grid, as he passed pole-setter Viñales going into turn one. As the first circulation drew to close last season’s Moto2™ Champion Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) had moved into the lead, a position he held until lap-seven when the rookie strayed slightly off the racing line and crashed as he lost traction on the dusty and dirty part of the track. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) then inherited the top-spot and pushed hard at the front to try to open a gap, he was chased down by Viñales, with Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) in contention close behind. There then ensued an exciting battle for the victory …read more