Quartararo Finishes Second Overall for 2022 MotoGP Season
The ENEOS-sponsored Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team gave it their all for the final race of the 2022 MotoGP season: Fabio Quartararo fought bravely at the Gran Premio de la Comunitat Valenciana but finished fourth, placing him second in the championship standings; Franco Morbidelli charged hard in the final laps and climbed to a top-10 finish to end the season with solid points.
Starting from P4 but needing to have a chance of claiming his second championship, El Diablo dived into Turn 1 along with several other riders, and while he squeezed through in sixth, he began a hard battle with the Factory Ducati duo that kept fans on the edge of their seats. At one point, Quartararo and Francesco Bagnaia went head-to-head for fifth, swapping multiple positions in the opening laps. Quartararo’s Yamaha proved to have the stronger setup and he claimed fifth after three laps.
The Frenchman had a 1.6sec gap to the leading four riders, which became three when Marc Marquez crashed on lap 10. With Quartararo in fourth place, he saw an opportunity to charge towards a podium finish but as he was closing the gap, Brad Binder passed him. Even when Jack Miller crashed out with five laps remaining, Quartararo still had trouble closing the gap to the leaders, and although he pushed until the finish line, the defending champion ended his final race of the season just shy of the podium in fourth, 1.911sec from first.
Teammate Morbidelli started P16 and dealt with a chaotic mid-pack going into Turn 1, but handled his first lap well enough to reach 15th. As riders retired from the race, the Italian moved up to 13th, stalking Marco Bezzecchi for several laps before making a move on lap 13.
Two more riders crashed out, leaving a 1.5sec gap between him and a group ahead, which allowed Morbidelli to move to tenth in the final stages of the race as he caught them. Closing fast on Bagnaia, he was able to bring the gap down to 0.2sec with two laps left, maintaining pressure on Quartararo’s title rival. In the end, Morbidelli finished behind Bagnaia in tenth, 14.676sec from first.
Quartararo ended 2022 in second place in the Championship standings with 248 points and a 17-point deficit; Morbidelli finished 19th with 42 points. Yamaha concluded its season with 256 points in the manufacturer championship and Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP took fifth in the team championship with 290 points.