MotoGp of Qatar: Viñales wins over Zarco and Bagnaia

The first race of the 2021 FIM MotoGP World Championship was thrilling.

MotoGp of Qatar - Maverick Viñales - Ph. Dorna Sports
MotoGp of Qatar - Maverick Viñales - Ph. Dorna Sports

Viñales on Yamaha wins the MotoGp Grand Prix of Qatar, second Zarco on Ducati Pramac and third Pecco Bagnaia on factory Ducati.

The first race of the 2021 FIM MotoGP World Championship was thrilling: Monster Energy Yamaha's Maverick Viñales, made his way through the group to leave second place to Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) and third to Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team).

The start of the race was monopolized by Ducati. Bagnaia, Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team), Zarco and Jorge Martin (Pramac Racing) - the latter from 14th on the grid - all pushed into the lead. Fabio Quartararo and teammate Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Viñales were forced to take refuge behind Borgo Panigale rockets.

Just behind, Valentino Rossi (Petronas Yamaha SRT) in battle with Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) and world champion Mir, the GSX-RR duo that overtakes The Doctor and starts chasing Martin.

MotoGp of Qatar - Francesco Bagnaia - Ph. Ducati
MotoGp of Qatar - Francesco Bagnaia in front of Zarco - Ph. Ducati

Meanwhile, Viñales begins to make his way, overtaking after overtaking. The leading group was over two seconds behind Mir, seventh, and with 12 laps to go, Viñales climbs to third. The overtaking arrives, inside the bend on the Pramac Racing driver taking the second position and starting to bite the wheel of Bagnaia. Immediately behind, Rins also got the better of Quartararo and while the race reached the halfway point, Mir and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) also joined the Yamaha number 20 in the rear.

The strength of Viñales and Yamaha in the corners were evident and 10 was once again the overtaking point of choice for Top Gun. While Pecco let Viñales slip into lap 15, the top eight riders were still all in just 2,3 seconds.

MotoGp of Qatar - The battle for the podium - Ph. Dorna Sports
MotoGp of Qatar - The battle for the podium - Ph. Dorna Sports

The advantage is only half a second with six laps to go, but behind Zarco slips Bagnaia into turn 1 and Mir passes Miller to grab fifth place. With five laps to go, however, Viñales and Zarco are starting to free themselves from the group, with Top Gun leading by 0,7 seconds and Zarco, in turn, with a second over Bagnaia. Behind the latter, Mir battles ahead of team mate Rins for fourth position.

The fight for the podium is in full swing. Mir, at turn 6, slips his Suzuki into Bagnaia's Ducati and suddenly it seems that second place Zarco is also in danger. At the dawn of the last lap, Mir was desperately trying to find a way to overcome number 5 but without success and finished wide at the last corner, passing Pecco's fastest Ducati.

MotoGp of Qatar - Viñales Zarco Bagnaia - Ph. Dorna Sports
MotoGp of Qatar - Viñales Zarco Bagnaia - Ph. Dorna Sports

Excellent debut of Aleix Espargaro with Aprilia for a fantastic seventh place. Aleix also beat his younger brother Pol by just 0,056 seconds, making his debut with the Repsol Honda Team.

Miller, meanwhile, was forced to settle for ninth place. Among the best rookies is Moto2 world champion Enea Bastianini (Esponsorama Racing) just nine seconds from the first. Stefan Bradl (Repsol Honda Team) did another great job in place of Marc Marquez, finishing 11th ahead of Valentino Rossi in 12th place. Badly Franco Morbidelli finished out of the points due to a problem.

An exciting start to the season. Viñales has been unstoppable in the desert and Zarco and Bagnaia ensure battle with Ducati, while Mir has shown why he and Suzuki are reigning champions. We will see some good ones.