The Portimao rollercoaster saw Fabio Quartararo take control of the title race while Alex Rins put in a sensational ride
After a somewhat shaky start to the 2022 season, Fabio Quartararo’s defence of his World Championship kicked off with a bang as MotoGP™ returned to Europe at the Portuguese GP. The factory Yamaha rider was in dominant form as the grid tackled the Algarve International Circuit which saw him seize control of the title race at the expense of Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing MotoGP™), who failed to see the chequered flag.
Grande Prémio Tissot de Portugal: MotoGP™ race highlights
Across the opening rounds in Asia and the Americas, the M1’s lack of top speed was the ire of the Frenchman, but those problems seemed to quickly move into the distant past as Quartararo stormed off into an unassailable lead in Portimao.
Prima Pramac Racing’s Johann Zarco made it a French one-two while Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) was back on the podium, profiting from a collision between Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) and Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) in the podium scrap, after his winning exploits in Argentina a few weeks beforehand. Despite missing out on the top three, Suzuki’s Alex Rins put in the ride of the day, and arguably the season so far, by coming from the back of the grid at lights out to claim P4.
As a result of the action in the south of Portugal, Quartararo moved into the Championship lead with Rins accompanying him at the top, level on points.