2016 Brno MotoGP Results
Tire choice is everything in Grand Prix motorcycle racing – especially when rain is forecasted. This was the case for a few MotoGP events this season, especially the German Grand Prix when Marc Marquez and the Repsol Honda Team claimed the win after making a gamble and switching to slicks as the track began to dry out.
Tire choice based on wet conditions once again proved significant during Sunday’s Czech Republic Grand Prix at Brno, round 11 of 18 in the 2016 MotoGP Championship. Some smart thinking by the LCR Honda crew helped propel Cal Crutchlow into the MotoGP history books.
The win was three-fold for Crutchlow, who just celebrated three weeks ago the birth of his son Willow. The 30-year-old Brit claimed his maiden MotoGP victory, and became the second Independent team to win in 2016 – the other being Marc VDS Honda’s Jack Miller during a wet Assen MotoGP.
But Crutchlow’s largest feat? He Britain back on the map for MotoGP wins. Crutchlow became the first Brit to win a MotoGP in 35 years; the last UK rider to complete this task was Barry Sheene, who won the 1981 Swedish Grand Prix.
Joining Crutchlow on the front row were Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi, who claimed his first-ever GP win at Brno (1996, 125cc, Aprilia) and Marquez, respectively.
“The biggest emotion I ever had was three weeks ago when Willow was born – having said that it’s the best day of my racing career. But I’m really really pleased for my team. We worked hard for this and I took the gamble. Not many other people did and as far as I’m concerned they’re all wimps! I don’t know why if you choose one harder option you don’t choose the other,” Crutchlow says.
“But anyway, we did the best job today and I’m so pleased for the team. I smashed a bike yesterday and they didn’t leave the circuit last night until midnight – so this was a good way to repay them today. I almost crashed at Turn 10 when I changed into sixth instead of fifth, but once I knew Valentino wasn’t coming – no one was coming for me – I just rode around and didn’t take risks. Don’t get me wrong – winning the race is incredible but I had the best present a couple of weeks ago.”
2016 Brno MotoGP Recap
After putting in a record-breaking pole, two-time MotoGP Champion Marquez dropped back to fifth when the 22-lap race began. Getting out front before 81,000 fans were Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo and Ducati Team’s Andrea Iannone. But Marquez quickly got back to the lead. As for Crutchlow, he began in position 10 but was pushed back to 15th.
With 21 to go, Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizios took the lead at turn 13, and Marquez lost two more places to Iannone and Octo Pramac Racing Ducati’s Scott Redding. With 18 to go, Redding was into second place, but then Iannone jumped up front as Dovi began to lose time.
Just before mid-race, a dry line began forming, and the ones on softer tires started losing some time. But this was not the issue for Crutchlow and Rossi who both had hard race fronts on (Crutchlow also had a hard rear tire; Rossi, a soft).
The Brit Crutchlow was into fourth with 10 laps to go, as Rossi battled with future teammate Maverick Vinales, a current Team Ecstar Suzuki pilot, just inside the top 10.
Crutchlow then passed Avintia Ducati’s Hector Barbera for third, and a few turns later he took Redding for second. He began chasing down Iannone, and made the pass with seven laps remaining. Rossi kept moving through the field, and took Iannone with five laps to go. Marquez then chased down Barber and Iannone, and moved up to third.
When the race was complete, Crutchlow earned the historic win 7.289 seconds ahead of Rossi, and 9.587 ahead of Marquez.
The next five finishers were all aboard Ducati machinery; Avintia Racing Ducati’s Loris Baz earned fourth, ahead of teammate Barbera, Pull & Bear Aspar Team Ducati’s Eugene Laverty, Petrucci and Iannone. Rounding out the top 10 were Vinales and Marc VDS Racing’s Tito Rabat. As for the reigning MotoGP Champion, Lorenzo finished an unusual 17th.
With his third-place finish, Marquez continues to lead the series with 197 points, 53 ahead of the man who moved into second, Rossi, and 59 ahead of Lorenzo.
The series now breaks for two weeks ahead of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone – a home race for Crutchlow as he’ll look to earn another win for Britain.
Photos by Luciano Bianchetto
2016 Brno MotoGP Results
1. C. CRUTCHLOW LCR HONDA 47’44.290
2. V. ROSSI MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP + 7.298
3. M. MARQUEZ REPSOL HONDA TEAM + 9.587
4. L. BAZ AVINTIA RACING + 12.558
5. H. BARBERA AVINTIA RACING + 13.093
6. E. LAVERTY PULL & BEAR ASPAR TEAM + 13.812
7. D. PETRUCCI OCTO PRAMAC YAKHNICH + 23.414
8. A. IANNONE DUCATI TEAM + 24.562
9. M. VIÑALES TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR + 24.581
10. T. RABAT ESTRELLA GALICIA 0,0 MARC VDS + 37.131
11. Y. HERNANDEZ PULL & BEAR ASPAR TEAM + 39.911
12. D. PEDROSA REPSOL HONDA TEAM + 41.097
13. P. ESPARGARÒ MONSTER YAMAHA TECH3 + 43.202
14. S. BRADL APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI + 45.687
15. S. REDDING OCTO PRAMAC YAKHNICH + 1’02.201
16. A. BAUTISTA APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI + 1’18.841
17. J. LORENZO MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP After 1 laps
18. A. DOVIZIOSO DUCATI TEAM N.C. (7 laps)
19. B. SMITH MONSTER YAMAHA TECH3 N.C. (8 laps)
20. A. ESPARGARÒ TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR N.C. (9 laps)
2016 Brno MotoGP Results – Photo Gallery