We received a further bulletin overnight from the FIM MotoGP Stewards titled ‘Notification of Sanction: Quartararo’.
Quartararo had been given a three-second penalty in the closing seconds of the MotoGP race for cutting the track at turn one, after running in too deep at the end of the straight.
What had really been surprising though is that Quartararo had not been black-flagged earlier. The #20 ran most of the latter half of the race with his leathers full unzipped. The Frenchman had discarded his mandatory chest protector also, as it was moving around and causing him problem when his leathers unzipped.
On the cool down lap, whilst not in the heat of battle, Quartararo managed to zip his leathers up, which suggests that the zip was somewhat still functional.
It was somewhat obvious that further discussions would happen post-race to cover this issue, which, in my experience of domestic racing, would have seen a rider black flagged, or alternatively ordered to pit and correct the issue.
Overnight the FIM MotoGP Stewards panel issued a further three-second penalty to be added to the previous three-second penalty.
Quartararo had originally crossed the line in third, but was demoted to fourth by that intitial penalty for cutting the track, which promoted Miller into that third position. The subsequent saction demotes Quartararo further to sixth place, and thus promotes Joan Mir into fourth, and Maverick Vinales into fifth.
Quartararo remains the championship leader but his advantage over second-placed Zarco has now been trimmed to 14-points.
These comments made by Monster Yamaha Team Director and Fabio Quartararo himself were after they knew of the initial three-second penalty, but were as yet unaware of the second saction that demoted Quartararo further to sixth.
Massimo Meregalli – Yamaha Team Director
“It’s a bit of a disappointing end to an otherwise good race weekend. We knew the final laps of the race would be decisive but, even though Fabio tried to manage the tyres as good as possible, we lost some performance on the left side. We don’t know what happened yet with Fabio, but regardless of what caused the situation, he showed what a fighter he is by hanging on to third place. The 3-second penalty moved him back to fourth, but that’s still a good result when an issue beyond our control happens (these comments made before another three-second penalty was added for the leathers issue).”
“Unfortunately I can‘t explain what happened yet, we are still looking into it. It‘s a bit disappointing but, anyway, we can still be satisfied with our race, because I feel like I gave it 100%. I‘m happy because our pace was fast all weekend. In the race I didn‘t feel that good. We had a moment in Turn 7. I went wide, then retook the lead, and then had an issue. But getting fourth on a bad day is actually quite good.” (subsequently demoted further to sixth for leathers infringement).
We will update this further with any later statements that reflect on the second penalty.
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