FRENCHMAN Fabio Quartararo topped off a perfect fortnight in a thrilling Andalucian GP with his second win in Jerez.
The satellite Yamaha rider fended off a strong challenge from factory Monster Energy Yamaha riders Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales to claim his second victory in 7 days.
The southern Andalucian town of Jerez de la Frontera hosted a second bumper weekend of racing in a highly condensed 2020 championship.
The weekend was marred by high temperatures, with 41-year-old veteran Valentino Rossi calling it the “hottest race of his life”.
Air temperatures topped 40c with track temperatures brushing 60c, both of which caused races of high attrition with many riders suffering tyre issues and mechanical faults.
In an action packed Moto3 race, SIC58 Corse rider Tatsuki Suzuki took his second ever victory after watching championship leader Albert Arenas crash out.
In the Moto2 event, Enea Bastinani took a dominant victory ahead of Sky VR46 rider Luca Marini.
The all electric MotoE race saw controversy as championship leader Eric Granado was taken out in the early stages of the race by a mistake by Gresini rider Matteo Ferrari.
This left Swiss, IntactGP debutant Dominic Aegeter to cruise to victory in only his second race as a MotoE rider.
In the main event, the young Frenchman was dominant throughout free practice and started the race from pole position.
He made a blistering start and soon carved out a 2.1 second lead by lap five.
Behind him, the factory Yamaha pair swapped positions, battling with Pramac rider Pecco Bagnaia.
By lap 10, Quartararo’s lead had stretched to four seconds as the chasing group tangled within themselves.
Rossi’s tyre issues soon reared their ugly head as he ran wide on lap 12, letting Bagnaia through for second.
The young Ducati rider soon gapped the Yamaha’s before his GP20 began smoking on lap 20, forcing out of the race.
This left the door open for an all Yamaha podium, with Vinales taking Rossi in the latter stages of the race to claim second.
Japanese LCR rider Takaaki Nakagami took a career best fourth while Joan Mir brought his Ecstar Suzuki home in fifth.
The notable absence of Marc Marquez brought no doubt levelled the playing field, with some Italian media outlets suggesting the championship has lowered in value since the 27 year old broke his rm last weekend.
Ever the fighter, Marc Marquez travelled to Jerez directly after the surgery and even completed a few painful laps during free practice, a superhuman effort.
However although passing fit by the medical team, he opted to withdraw for the safety of himself and other riders and concentrate on the next round in Brno.
“I always try to listen to my body, follow my instinct and fight for my passion. My body asked me to try and asked me to stop. Today I will be able to sleep peacefully knowing that I have tried. Thanks for all the messages of support, we will be back!” said his Twitter page on Saturday.
Fabio Quartararo now leads the championship with 50 points, 10 points ahead of Maverick Vinales and Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso.
Riders now have a week to recover before moving across Europe for the Czech Republic Monster Energy Grand Prix on August 9.