Rating the performances of six riders from the 2017 Australian grand prix.
Sunday’s 16th round of the 2017 MotoGP World Championship at Phillip Island proved to be one of the most thrilling and exciting yet this season, with a stunning multi-rider battle erupting throughout the first half of the field as just over five seconds separated the first seven finishers. CycleOnline.com.au has selected varying riders and scored their performances in this latest edition of Rated.
Rider: Marc Marquez
Rundown: After shifting into the lead in the opening half, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez proved to be unstoppable as the chaos unfolded behind him. He led a commanding charge out front to take home a convincing and pivotal 1.8 second victory, which has now put him in an exceptional position to potentially wrap up the title this weekend at the penultimate round in Malaysia.
Rider: Valentino Rossi
Rundown: The fight for second was as intense as it gets, with a number of riders vying for the runner-up spot right down to the very last corner. Movistar Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi pushed through the fight, gaining the advantage down the long straight to seal up second with a number of battle scares to show for it. Rossi’s composure was evident throughout the hard-fought race despite still recovering from a broken leg.
Rider: Jack Miller
Rundown: Home favourite Jack Miller had the country on their feet as he stormed his way into the lead on lap one, going on to control the field for the first six laps. He later slipped further down the order after losing rear grip and being forced to switch engine maps to finish up in seventh, which a was a mighty and courageous effort considering his right tibia was held together by plates and screws from a trials crash that fractured the bone just over two weeks prior.
Rider: Johann Zarco
Rundown: Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Johann Zarco came agonisingly close to landing on the podium, switching out positions with Rossi and third place holder Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha) on multiple occasions in the dying stages. As they hit the final stretch, the former Moto2 world champion just wouldn’t have the run, narrowly missing a top three finish. It was an incredible display from the hard-charging Frenchman, crossing the line as the first independent team rider in fourth.
Rider: Andrea Dovizioso
Rundown: If there’s one thing Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso couldn’t afford to do at Phillip Island, it was to significantly lose ground on Marquez in the title chase. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what he did in what was a weekend that evidently challenged all Ducati riders. The Italian was pipped at the line, forcing him to accept 13th position, putting him 33 points behind Marquez as just two rounds remain in the world championship.
Rider: Broc Parkes
Rundown: Receiving the last minute call up to replace the ill Jonas Folger at Monster Yamaha Tech3, Australia’s Endurance World Championship regular Broc Parkes was thrown in the deep end at the Island. With limited time aboard the MotoGP machine, Parkes had to quickly acquaint himself, although a lack of rear grip from the get-go in the 27-lap race saw him salvage a distant 22nd place finish.