News 25 Sep 2022

Commanding Miller claims Japanese MotoGP victory

Moto2 tightens with Ogura win as Guevara extends further in Moto3.

Image: Supplied.

Queensland’s Jack Miller has claimed his finest MotoGP victory yet following a commanding performance in the 2022 Grand Prix of Japan, as Ai Ogura won Moto2 and Izan Guevara extended in Moto3.

Miller swiftly made his way to the front by lap three of 24, the Ducati Lenovo Team rider going on to win by a final margin of 3.409s ahead of Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM) and Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing Ducati).

While Miller was untouched and Binder put in one of his strongest efforts of the year as well, Martin completed the podium ahead of pole-setter Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) in his second race back from injury and a vastly improved Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM).

The drama started before the lights even went out when Aleix Espargaro encountered a technical fault with his factory Aprilia RS-GP, forced to his back-up bike and the rear of the pack on his way to an eventual 16th-place result.

More ensued on the final lap when fellow title threat Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenevo Team) crashed out while attempting a move on defending world champion and current points-leader Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha), who crossed the line in P8 to extend his advantage to 18 points.

Team Suzuki Ecstar’s final home grand prix was a disaster after Takuya Tsuda – filling in for former champion Joan Mir – and Alex Rins both exited with bike problems. Tsuda’s was the more extreme of the pair, his GSX-RR going up in flames at mid-race distance.

The world championship now sees Quartararo lead by 18 points over Bagnaia, with Espargaro dropping to 25 behind entering Buriram, Thailand, next weekend.

Image: Supplied.

In Moto2 it was Japanese sensation Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) who won at home in front of title-leader Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Alonso Lopez (Beta Tools Speed Up).

With this result, however, Ogura has closed the gap to two points at the top of the championship standings after becoming the first Japanese rider to win a GP on home soil since Hiroshi Aoyama in 2006.

Ogura was still 1.5 seconds to the good as they started the final lap, then cruised home for one of the most significant wins of his career so far. Fernandez finished second by an official margin of 1.192 seconds

Image: Supplied.

Moto3 saw Izan Guevara further tighten his grip on the world championship after prevailing in a four-way battle for victory in Japan, the race which saw Australian Joel Kelso (CIP Green Power) go out on the opening lap.

The Autosolar GASGAS Aspar Team rider qualified only ninth, but he still came out on top of a podium completed by Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) in second and Japanese rider Ayumu Sasaki (Sterilgarda Husqvarna Max) in third.

With teammate Sergio Garcia finishing fourth, Garcia’s championship lead is now 45 points with four races remaining in the 2022 season.

In the Idemitsu Asia Talent Cup it was local Shinya Ezawa who won, while Marianos Nikolas was top of the Australian finishers in eighth position, with Cameron Swain crossing the line in P14. Carter Thompson crashed while challenging for the lead on lap one.

Detailed results