Andrea Dovizioso today won a spectacular Austrian Grand Prix with a last-corner pass on Marquez after a terrific sparring match with the Spanish champion that lasted from the first to the last lap. Dovizioso powered away well at the start from the front row, then overtook the provisional race leader Quartararo on lap 6. He was followed immediately by Marquez, with whom Andrea then had an amazing scrap that only finished at the chequered flag, with Andrea flashing across the line first by 0.213s.
It was a difficult race for team-mate Danilo Petrucci, who started from row 4. The Italian managed to get up to ninth place on lap 17, but was unable to improve any further and finished the race in that position.
With this victory, Ducati continued its unbeaten winning streak at the Red Bull Ring since the Austrian circuit returned to the MotoGP calendar. The red bikes from the Borgo Panigale factory won here in 2016 with Iannone, in 2017 with Dovizioso, last year with Lorenzo and again this year with Dovizioso.
In the overall Riders’ championship standings, Andrea Dovizioso is still in second place but he has reduced the gap to leader Marquez to 58 points. Ducati is getting closer to Honda in the Constructors’ standings, with 34 points separating the two, and the Ducati Team retains its first place in the special Teams’ classification with 308 points.
Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Ducati Team) – 1st
“Today I’m so happy, because this victory was really important for me. Towards the end of the race I had good right-side grip on the tyre and this allowed me to successfully attempt that incredible overtaking move at the final corner. My strategy for the race was to be aggressive right from the opening lap, but Marquez was more aggressive than me. He immediately tried to impose his rhythm but I was always able to respond and in the final stages I think he had more wear on his tyres than me so I could stay right on his tail until the end, and attempt that crazy passing move on him at the final corner. I want to thank Ducati and my team because today we did everything just perfectly.”
Danilo Petrucci (#9 Ducati Team) – 9th
“It was a complicated race: unfortunately, at the first turn I got bottled in and then after a couple of laps I was involved in Crutchlow’s crash. I lost a lot of positions and had to get back up the field, pushing hard on the tyres and after half the race I didn’t have anything left to offer. Pity because this weekend was a missed opportunity, especially yesterday when I made a mistake in qualifying and this conditioned everything. I’m sorry for the team, who worked as hard as they could: now we have to press the reset button after these two races and look ahead positively to Silverstone.”
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“I believe that today we saw one of the best and most exciting races of the last few years. It was a fantastic and fair duel that saw Dovi put together an amazing final lap and a masterstroke in the last two corners, so my sincerest congratulations go out to Andrea. A difficult qualifying session and a bad start on the other hand clearly affected Danilo’s race because it’s never easy to recover on this track.”
The MotoGP riders will next be out on track in the United Kingdom for the British GP, scheduled for the weekend of 23-25 August at the Silverstone circuit.