2018 Argentina MotoGP Results

If we can sum up the second round of 2018 MotoGP with two words, they’d be confusion and chaos.

Due to a delayed start due to rain, teams were confused on what was actually happening. As for drama during the race, the reigning MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez caused most of it. He suffered multiple penalties and caused some drama with series hero Valentino Rossi.

One rider truly benefited from this confusion and chaos – LCR Honda Castrol’s Cal Crutchlow. The Brit claimed victory ahead of Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Johann Zarco and Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins, but it wasn’t an easy win.

Unique start to 2018 Argentina MotoGP
Unique start to 2018 Argentina MotoGP

Here are the fast facts from 2018 Argentina MotoGP.

1. The race was initially delayed due to rain, and the teams were scrambling to the pits, figuring out what to do with tire selections – slicks or rain? The track was drying, though, and pole sitter Jack Miller was the only one to remain on the grid, gambling on not changing his slicks. The other 23 riders pitted, meaning they’d have to start from the back of the grid in various positions. Race direction lined them up in their qualifying positions, three rows behind the Alma Pramac Ducati pilot. This gave Miller the ultimate holeshot advantage.

2. The second bout of confusion arrived when Marquez stalled his bike on the grid, and frantically worked to bump-start his RC213V. He was successful, and was able to start the race in his sixth-place qualifying position (but three rows behind poleman Miller due to rules of pitting during the delay). When the race, now shortened from 25 to 24 laps,  got underway, the four-time MotoGP Champion quickly got up front. He led laps two through six until he was penalized with a Ride Through Penalty for his blotched start. Marquez lost the lead, and after riding through the pits, he rejoined in 19th.

2018 Argentina MotoGP Results Rossi and Marquez Crash
Honda’s Marc Marquez after running Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi off the track

3. With Marquez out back, Miller took over the lead, keeping a charging Rins far enough behind. Rins did take over the lead on lap 16 of 24, but made a small error, falling back to fourth. Miller then did the same, leaving Zarco and the charging Crutchlow up front to battle for the win.

4. Crutchlow, who qualified fifth at Termas de Rio Hondo, rode with patience and smoothness as he charged to the front of the grid. By lap 7, Crutchlow he was in fourth. On lap 17 he began a duel with Zarco that lasted until the finish line. Crutchlow claimed the win by 0.251 of a second. Rins finished a further 2.501 seconds back in a lonely third.

5. Crutchlow’s win, the third of his premier-class career, put his name in the history books. Crutchlow became the 750th World Championship race winner aboard a Honda.

Race winner Cal Crutchlow

6. Miller was hoping for another win to match his 2016 Assen victory, but he had to settle for fourth. This was his second-best finish since joining MotoGP in 2015, the other being his Assen GP win in 2016.

7. Marquez came back from 19th to finish fifth, but was penalized once again, this time for running nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi off the track with an aggressive move on lap 19. Marquez was penalized 30 seconds, placing him in 18th. This meant zero points for the reigning MotoGP Champion.

8. As for Rossi, he bump-started his Movistar Yamaha MotoGP YZR-M1 and was able to rejoin the grid. Rossi, who finished third at the season opener in Qatar, finished 19th.

Pole sitter Jack Miller aboard the Alma Pramac Ducati

9. With Marquez’s fifth-place position revoked, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Maverick Vinales – last season’s winner in Argentina – was able to claim fifth. He finished ahead of Qatar winner Andrea Dovizioso on the Ducati Team GP17. As for Dovizioso’s teammate, Jorge Lorenzo continues to struggle; he finished 15th.

10. Rounding out the top 10 at 2018 Argentina MotoGP were Reale Avintia Racing Ducati’s Tito Rabat, Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Andrea Iannone, Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Hafizh Syahrin and Alma Pramac Racing Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci.

Honda’s Cal Crutchlow and Yamaha’s Johann Zarco

11. Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa crashed out on the opening lap of the race while battling for third with Zarco. Pedrosa was bumped by Zarco on corner 13 of 14, began sliding, and caught some drier pavement. This sent Pedrosa into a high side. He walked away unharmed.

12. For the first time of his MotoGP career, Crutchlow has the series points lead. He has 38 points, three ahead of Dovizioso and 10 ahead of Zarco. The series now heads to Circuit of the Americas in Texas in two weeks for round three of 19.

2018 Argentina MotoGP Results

Pos. Rider Time
1 Cal Crutchlow 40’36.342
2 Johann Zarco 00’00.251
3 Alex Rins 00’02.501
4 Jack Miller 00’04.390
5 Maverick Viñales 00’14.941
6 Andrea Dovizioso 00’22.533
7 Tito Rabat 00’23.026
8 Andrea Iannone 00’23.921
9 Hafizh Syahrin 00’24.311
10 Danilo Petrucci 00’26.003
11 Pol Espargaro 00’31.022
12 Scott Redding 00’31.891
13 Takaaki Nakagami 00’32.452
14 Franco Morbidelli 00’42.061
15 Jorge Lorenzo 00’42.274
16 Alvaro Bautista 00’42.625
17 Thomas Luthi 00’43.350
18 Marc Marquez 00’43.860
19 Valentino Rossi 00’52.082
20 Karel Abraham 01’03.944
21 Xavier Simeon 01’10.144
22 Bradley Smith 7 laps
23 Aleix Espargaro 11 laps
24 Daniel Pedrosa 00’00.000

 

2018 MotoGP Point Standings (after 2 of 19 rounds)

Pos. Rider Bike Nation Points
1 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda GBR 38
2 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati ITA 35
3 Johann ZARCO Yamaha FRA 28
4 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha SPA 21
5 Marc MARQUEZ Honda SPA 20
6 Jack MILLER Ducati AUS 19
7 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati ITA 17
8 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha ITA 16
9 Alex RINS Suzuki SPA 16
10 Andrea IANNONE Suzuki ITA 15
11 Tito RABAT Ducati SPA 14
12 Dani PEDROSA Honda SPA 9
13 Hafizh SYAHRIN Yamaha MAL 9
14 Franco MORBIDELLI Honda ITA 6
15 Pol ESPARGARO KTM SPA 5
16 Scott REDDING Aprilia GBR 4
17 Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati SPA 3
18 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda JPN 3
19 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati CZE 1
20 Jorge LORENZO Ducati SPA 1
21 Thomas LUTHI Honda SWI
22 Bradley SMITH KTM GBR
23 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia SPA
24 Xavier SIMEON Ducati BEL