2020 Styria MotoGP: Miguel Oliveira takes maiden victory for Tech3 KTM

    Tech3 KTM’s Miguel Oliveira made a last corner dash past Jack Miller and Pol Espargaro for his maiden win.

    Published On Aug 24, 2020 07:20:00 PM

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    2020 Styria MotoGP: Miguel Oliveira takes maiden victory for Tech3 KTM

    The 2020 MotoGP Championship returned to the Red Bull Ring in Austria for the second time around, with a race that turned out to be just as exciting. This time too, the race was red-flagged and restarted, and Miguel Oliveira managed to clinch his maiden premier-class victory at the very last corner.

    Strong performance from Mir

    At the start of the initial race, Joan Mir had a perfect start from P3 and moved to the front of the pack, going into the first corner. However, Jack Miller, who had an equally impressive start off the line from P4, was soon on his tail and made his move into the lead. 

    The Australian held onto the lead for the opening few laps of the race, but Mir proved to be the better rider on the day and regained his position at the front. The 22-year old Suzuki factory rider was soon pulling away from the rest of the pack, with Jack Miller and Takaki Nakagami – in one of his best performances yet – swapping positions for P2. Pole-sitter Pol Espargaro had fallen to P4 and was battling it out with Alex Rins in P5. Andrea Dovizioso made his way up to P6 after starting in P8.

    By lap 5, Maverick Vinales was the lead Yamaha in P7, but he seemed to face a technical issue and by lap 13 had fallen to P13. Three laps later, as he was coming down the main straight, it appeared he lost the brakes on his Yamaha and had to bail from his motorcycle. The bike rocketed into the safety barrier and went up in flames, bringing out the red flags. Vinales walked away unscathed and a 12-lap restart was announced.

    Maiden victory for Miguel Oliveira and KTM Tech3

    The lights went out for a second time and Mir got away into the lead this time as well. Right behind him, Pol Espargaro and Jack Miller were at it for second place. Miller’s Pramac Ducati was sporting a fresh set of tyres and the additional bit of grip provided him the extra edge that was required to get past Mir and into the lead. 

    Unfortunately, for Mir, who was the strongest performer of the day, his bike was running the same front tyre and he could not match the race pace. 

    Pol Espargaro was in P3 with KTM’s Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder scrapping away in the fight for P4. With eight laps to go, Pol Espargaro set the fastest lap of the race and then made his move on Mir and was soon hot on the heels of the race leader, Jack Miller. Pol then attempted a move on the inside, going into Turn 1, but ran wide, allowing the Australian back into the lead and Mir into second. 

    With five laps to go, it was still anybody’s race for the taking. Pol took the lead from Miller at Turn 9 and Oliveira was up in P3. Mir had fallen back to P4 but was still in contention for a place on the podium. Andrea Dovizioso, meanwhile, wasn’t having a great race, but managed to hold onto P5.

    On the very last lap, Pol Espargaro was in the lead. Going into the first corner, he held a tight, defensive line but Miller managed to get a cleaner exit and was now in the lead. The duo was side-by-side heading down the back straight and Pol managed to brake later and get back in front. 

    At the very last corner, both Pol and Miller were extremely late on the brakes and Miller’s move on the inside sent both the riders running slightly wide. This gave Oliveira, who was in P3, a wide-open window and he took the lead with no hesitation. The result meant he was the first Portuguese rider to win a MotoGP race, handing Tech3 KTM its first win. Jack Miller crossed the line in P2 with Pol Espargaro taking the last step on the podium.

    Mir finished in P4 with Dovizioso in P5. Alex Rins took home P6 and Takaki Nakagami, who looked certain to be on the podium in the initial race, finished in P7. The last three spots in the top 10 went to Brad Binder, Valentino Rossi, and Iker Lecuona. Quartararo’s P13 finish keeps him top of the standings, but only three points ahead of Dovizioso.

    The MotoGP Championship heads to Misano for the San Marino and Rimini’s Coast GP on September 13.

    Result:

    POS

    RIDER

    TEAM

    LAPS

    GAP

    1

    Miguel Oliveira

    Tech3 KTM

    12

    16m56.025s

    2

    Jack Miller

    Pramac Ducati

    12

    0.316

    3

    Pol Espargaro

    KTM

    12

    0.540

    4

    Joan Mir

    Suzuki

    12

    0.641

    5

    Andrea Dovizioso

    Ducati

    12

    1.414

    6

    Alex Rins

    Suzuki

    12

    1.450

    7

    Takaki Nakagami

    LCR Honda

    12

    1.864

    8

    Brad Binder

    KTM

    12

    4.150

    9

    Valentino Rossi

    Yamaha

    12

    4.517

    10

    Iker Lecuona

    Tech3 KTM

    12

    5.068

    11

    Danilo Petrucci

    Ducati 

    12

    5.918

    12

    Aleix Espargaro

    Aprilia

    12

    6.411

    13

    Fabio Quartararo

    Petronas Yamaha

    12

    7.406

    14

    Johann Zarco

    Avintia Racing

    12

    7.454

    15

    Franco Morbidelli

    Petronas Yamaha

    12

    10.191

    16

    Alex Marquez

    Honda

    12

    10.524

    17

    Cal Crutchlow

    LCR Honda

    12

    11.447

    18

    Stefan Bradl

    Honda

    12

    11.943

    19

    Bradley Smith

    Aprilia

    12

    12.732

    20

    Michele Pirro

    Pramac Ducati

    12

    14.349

    21

    Tito Rabat

    Avintia Racing

    12

    14.548

     

    Also see:

    2020 Austrian MotoGP: Dovizioso prevails amidst huge drama

    Dovizioso to leave Ducati at the end of 2020 MotoGP season

     

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