Le Mans hots up to be a stormer of a race with Mir and Quartararo fighting for the title.
It’s the Frenchman vs the Spaniard on the Frenchman’s home soil. Le Mans is looking to be a memorable race as the two younguns of Fabio Quartararo and Joan Mir go head to head for those precious championship points, currently, only 8 points separate the pair going into the race, meaning either of them can leave the race weekend with the championship in their back pocket for another week before heading to Aragon where we expect to see Marc Marquez back on track.
Joan Mir has been a bit of a dark horse this season, unexpectedly rising up the championship after a flurry of outstanding results on the Suzuki, taking 4 podiums in 5 races, missing out on a race win in the Styrian GP after a race restart saw Mir finish in fourth place. Scoring 89 points out of a possible 125 in these 5 rounds, his problem is that he struggles in qualifying, Mir cannot seem to put a fast lap together and often finds himself at the lower end of the top 10, meaning he has to push hard at the start of the race to gain positions and get to the front when he could be in charge starting from pole and clearing off in the distance.
Fabio Quartararo, on the other hand, has struggled recently, he won the opening two races in Jerez scoring 50 points, however, scoring a measly 33 points in the 5 races which followed this including a DNF at Misano 1, allowing Andrea Dovizioso to take the title lead out of his hands. Coming into Catalunya 1 point behind Dovizioso, Quartararo knew he had to pull something out the bag, which he did, capitalising on Dovizioso being wiped out at turn 2 in a racing incident, scoring 0 points.
Quartararo used a race strategy which meant he could disappear off into the distance, 5 seconds ahead, ruining his tyres in the process, but he had the race lead which was all that mattered. Come the end of the race, Mir was to catch up to the Frenchman, taking 0.1 out of him every corner, but Fabio’s strategy paid off, he won the race on shot tyres, taking the full 25 points which were on offer and promoting himself to the championship lead.
One lap more and Mir would have almost definitely overtaken Quartararo, giving Mir the championship lead by 1 point, proving that every lap, every second and every point counts.
If there’s one thing we know, if Mir gets his hands on Quartararo at Le Mans, he isn’t letting go until Quartararo is well and truly out of his way, it should make for some great racing if the pair can bring the goods to the table.
Featured image – www.motogp.com