Monster Energy Yamaha Teammates Ride Together for 2020 MotoGP Finale
Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi complete their 2020 MotoGP season at Autodromo Internacional do Algarve, the Grand Prix of Portugal on November 22, 2020. Following the busy opening stages, the ENEOS-sponsored duo rode together in their final race as Monster Energy Yamaha teammates, making up multiple positions to come in 11th and 12th place respectively.
Starting eighth on the grid, Viñales steadily regained positioning over the first couple laps. However, he dropped down the order after reaching eighth place. With 19 laps remaining, the Spaniard was 14th, holding position ahead of Rossi, then launched his second attack with 10 laps to go. He overtook Fabio Quartararo and Alex Rins with his eyes set on a top-10 finish, and managed to overtake Cal Crutchlow on the final lap to finish 11th, 18.685secs from first.
“Honestly, I had fun battling everyone,” said Viñales. “This track layout gives you many opportunities to overtake in the corners, so I enjoyed pushing and passing people. It’s important to end the season with positive feelings on track.”
Rossi started his final race with this Yamaha Factory Racing team from 17th on the grid, and the nine-time World Champion knew he needed to be cautious with the busy mid-pack, holding a steady pace. The first few laps saw him rotating from 14th and 17th place, and he eventually settled into 15th. Riding tandem with Viñales, the two moved up their rankings, putting up an equally impressive fight to the end (also against Quartararo, Rins and Crutchlow) to secure a 12th place finish, 18.946secs from the front.
“I’ve had a long history with this Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP team, sharing lots of unforgettable moments of my career and life,” Rossi explained. “This was an emotional GP after racing together for 15 years, and it’s a good ending to our story. Overall it was a complicated season for everyone, but I’ll train hard to be competitive next year.”
FINAL 2020 RESULTS
Viñales finished sixth overall in the championship standings, 39 points from first. Rossi concluded his season in 15th, 105 points from the top. Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP took sixth in the team standings, and Yamaha moved up to second in the manufacturer championship, thanks to Franco Morbidelli’s third place finish.