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Jorge Lorenzo at the 2017 Grand Prix of Austria

Lorenzo close to second MotoGP podium ‘in red’

Aug 132017

Speed, speed, speed. For the second year in a row Spielberg was the fastest platform for MotoGP on the calendar and through this window of screaming machines, rock-solid nerves and no shortage of balls, Andrea Dovizioso burst through to win the eleventh round of the FIM World Championship by less than a second from Marc Marquez. Ducati teammate Jorge Lorenzo slid to fourth place with the Spaniard competitive and hunting podium glory once more.

Lorenzo came to Austria armed with a radical new airing (shown for the first time the previous week at Brno) and with the knowledge that not only had he deduced a key step in the setup of the fierce Desmosedici but the Ducati’s advantage through the radar traps would be a useful tool in the push for his first win.

Setting off from the first row of the grid he also faced opposition from the Yamahas of Valentino Rossi, Maverick Viñales and Johann Zarco; the Frenchman again proving to be one of the outstanding runners on the grid and his eventual fifth position meaning top satellite racer. The MotoGP sprint was initially under a cloud with the threat of rain and some fear that the relentlessness of Spielberg would leave very little margin for error but the 28 lap dash remained dry and the crowded hillsides were treated to a close and classic pursuit to the flag with Marquez trying a typically radical and physics-defying attempt to dislodge ‘Dovi’. Lorenzo wasn't able to pip Dani Pedrosa for the last podium bottle.


“I lead more laps than ever, ten, and again I was on the first row. So in general, for the performance, this has been the best weekend [so far],” Lorenzo said. “We must be satisfied, but not happy, because obviously we want more. My team wants more for me. But obviously we are making huge steps lately, and I hope also to make the last one that I need.”

Moto3 and Moto2 warmed the masses jammed into the majestic valley setting at Spielberg. The support classes were largely about EG 0,0 Marc VDS duo Franco Morbidelli and Alex Marquez with the teammates going 1-2 after a close Moto2 scrap with Thomas Luthi and appearing on the box together for the first time this season. For ‘Morbido’ Austria was a seventh victory of 2017 and allowed him to guard a 26 point cushion in the Moto2 standings. Marquez hovers in third place.


“This is a crucial victory for me in the championship and comes at the perfect moment,” the Italian said. “I came here focussed to do a good job and although we started slowly on Friday my team worked very well and gave me a great package to go for the victory.”


Joan Mir continued to aloof in Moto3. Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Aron Canet was fifth by the flag. From Czech Republic to Austria and now across the water to the UK. Silverstone could present another shaky climate but will still keep the speed traps busy if the historic tarmac in England’s midlands remains dry. Just two weeks to wait until the twelfth chase of 2017 MotoGP.