MotoGP 2020: Starting grid and preview for the Emilia Romagna and Rimini's Coast Grand Prix

By Sports Desk September 19, 2020

Maverick Vinales has another golden opportunity to put himself firmly in the MotoGP title picture when he starts on pole at Misano on Sunday. 

Vinales was on pole for the San Marino Grand Prix last time out but was unable to convert that position into a victory, finishing down in sixth. 

The Spaniard is 18 points adrift of Andrea Dovizioso in a wide-open fight to replace the injured Marc Marquez as world champion. 

However, he is in the prime spot to vault up the standings after an error by Francesco Bagnaia gave him pole for the Emilia Romagna and Rimini's Coast Grand Prix. 

Yet the owner of the lap record at Misano cannot afford to take anything for granted ahead of what looks set to be a fascinating fight for the chequered flag.


Bagnaia should have been celebrating a maiden MotoGP pole - and another Misano lap record - having smashed the previous mark in FP3. 

He crossed the line on his final flying lap in one minute and 30.973 seconds, a time that would have seen him top the timesheets. 

However, he crucially exceeded the track limits on the final turn, an infraction that saw his lap struck off and both pole position and the record handed to Vinales.

Vinales will have Jack Miller and Fabio Quartararo for company on the front row, with Bagnaia dropping to fifth as a result of his error. 

Championship leader Dovizioso heads the fourth row, with Franco Morbidelli - winner of the San Marino Grand Prix - sandwiched between Valentino Rossi and Danilo Petrucci on the third row. 


1. Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha), 2. Jack Miller (Pramac Racing), 3. Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha)
4. Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), 5. Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing), 6. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing)
7. Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha), 8. Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha), 9. Danilo Petrucci (Ducati)
10. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati), 11. Joan Mir (Suzuki Ecstar), 12. Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda)
13. Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3), 14. Johann Zarco (Avintia), 15. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3)
16. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia), 17. Alex Marquez (Repsol Honda), 18. Alex Rins (Suzuki Ecstar)
19. Bradley Smith (Aprilia), 20. Tito Rabat (Avintia)


The searing pace displayed by Bagnaia will be a topic of discussion despite his phenomenal last flying lap counting for nothing. 

He and team-mate Miller will surely pose a significant threat to Vinales, though Quartararo is concerned about some of his title rivals positioned further back on the starting grid. 

Joan Mir of Suzuki trails Dovizioso by 16 points, but he produced a disappointing display in Q2 and starts 11th. However, with Quartararo branding the Suzuki "a perfect bike", a charge through the field from Mir is not out of the question.

"Yes, I'm worried because they are fast in the straight, they are fast in acceleration to overtake people, they are so fast," Quartararo said on Thursday.


Maverick Vinales (pole): "This weekend I tried to work always with a race setting. We make an improvement. Last weekend the bike always feels good without fuel but with fuel on the race I struggle a lot. This weekend we work a lot and it seems that we make an improvement. We wish it will work for the race."

Jack Miller (2nd): "When we got to Q2 I only had one tyre, so it was kind of a one-shot wonder. Anyway, we made it, not a bad qualifying, I was lucky to get the two off Pecco [Bagnaia]."

Fabio Quartararo (3rd): "Feeling great to be on the front row, that is really important. Our race pace is looking good. I'm happy because we have a good base for tomorrow."



1. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) 76
2. Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha) 70
3. Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) 64
4. Joan Mir (Suzuki Ecstar) 60
5. Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha) 58


1. Petronas Yamaha 127
2. Monster Energy Yamaha 116
3. Ducati 101
4. Suzuki Ecstar 100
5. Pramac Racing 97

Related items

  • Hamilton: F1 driver salary cap 'has nothing to do' with contract delay Hamilton: F1 driver salary cap 'has nothing to do' with contract delay

    Lewis Hamilton is "surprised" by Formula One's plans to introduce a driver salary cap but says it has no bearing on whether he will sign a new contract with Mercedes.

    The plan, which will reportedly see a $30million (£23.2m) cap introduced from 2023, was backed by all 10 team bosses at a video conference on Monday.

    That figure is expected to be split across a team's two drivers, potentially posing a problem for Hamilton, who is thought to earn signficantly more than €30m per year.

    He is out of contract at the end of the 2020 season and reiterated this week that talks over fresh terms can wait until he completes the formalities of wrapping up a seventh world title.

    However, asked if that delay is down to the proposed new regulations, Hamilton responded: "It has nothing to do with that.

    "I didn't even know that was being discussed. I think from a driver's point of view it's a surprise to us.

    "We've obviously heard of the idea a while ago - I think it was last year in France maybe, but it was the first we have heard of it this week.

    "I think it's important that the GPDA [Grand Prix Drivers' Association] work closely with F1 when we get into discussions moving forwards."

    Hamilton made history last weekend with his commanding win at the Portuguese Grand Prix, as he broke Michael Schumacher's record of 91 Grand Prix victories.

    While many were quick to congratulate the Briton on surpassing a record plenty expected to stand the test of time, McLaren's Lando Norris seemed to downplay the achievement.

    Norris, who is seventh in the drivers' standings, said: "It doesn't mean anything to me, really. He's in a car which should win every race, basically."

    However, speaking at the drivers' news conference ahead of this weekend's Emilia Romagna GP, Norris revealed he has since apologised to Hamilton for his comments.

    "I apologised [on Twitter] but I also apologised to Lewis himself. I messaged him," he said.

    "I don't know if he knew about it at the time, but I never meant to say something like that in a bad way or put any bad light on him at all.

    "I respect everything he's done to achieve what he's done."

    Norris added: "It was all done off my own back. No one pressured me.

    "I woke up in the morning, I looked on social media, and there was a lot more bad comments than good about the things I said."

  • Williams apologise for 'confusion' as Russell keeps seat over Perez Williams apologise for 'confusion' as Russell keeps seat over Perez

    George Russell and Nicholas Latifi will drive for Williams again next season despite links to Sergio Perez, the team announced on Friday.

    Russell and Latifi were each confirmed for their 2021 seats in July and are under contract, but the team's subsequent takeover by Dorilton Capital prompted speculation they could move for Perez, who has been replaced at Racing Point - soon to be Aston Martin - by Sebastian Vettel.

    Mercedes junior driver Russell has spent the past two years with Williams in Formula One and insisted last week he was not concerned due to his existing deal.

    But Mercedes chief Toto Wolff said his team "wouldn't be happy" if one of their top prospects was jettisoned.

    Russell added "I know Mercedes and Toto have my back" as he suggested "all this speculation has probably been fed by the Perez camp".

    There was no need for any Silver Arrows intervention, however, after Williams apologised and reconfirmed their line-up.

    Interim Williams boss Simon Roberts, who had previously refused to be drawn on Russell's future, said: "I probably caused a bit of confusion last week; I'm sorry about that.

    "We didn't really want to comment on the driver position but, as George said, Claire [Williams] made the announcement earlier this year.

    "Nothing's changed and this is our driver line-up for this year and next year. We're very happy with them and we're looking forward to working with them in a continued way."

    Russell, who was considered more vulnerable than Latifi, posted on Twitter: "Glad that's all cleared up! Now let's get cracking...

    "Thanks for the support guys. The show goes on!"

    He heads to this weekend's two-day Emilia Romagna Grand Prix having finished 14th in Portugal last time out.

    "I really enjoyed it," Russell said after that race. "It's probably the best race I've had in F1 to date."

  • Raikkonen and Giovinazzi retained by Alfa Romeo for 2021 Raikkonen and Giovinazzi retained by Alfa Romeo for 2021

    Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi will remain with Alfa Romeo for the 2021 Formula One season, the team announced on Friday.

    The pair will now be team-mates for a third season, during which 2007 champion Raikkonen will celebrate his 42nd birthday, in a move which Alfa Romeo believe "highlights the team's commitment to continuity".

    "Alfa Romeo is more than a team to me, it is like a second family," said Raikkonen, who this season surpassed Ruben Barrichello's record of 322 F1 starts.

    "So many of the faces that were around me when I made my Formula One debut in 2001 are still here and the unique atmosphere of this team is what gives me that extra motivation to keep going in what will be my 19th season in the sport.

    "I wouldn't be here if I didn't believe in the team's project and in what we feel we can achieve together. This is a team that values hard work over words and this fits well with my style: I am looking forward to next year and hopefully making some steps forward towards the front of the midfield with the team."

    Team principal Frederic Vasseur said of Raikkonen: "I still see the passion and motivation in him every time I see him at work. He can be trusted to deliver 100 per cent of what the car can produce and he is a true leader for the people working around him."

    Alfa Romeo go into this weekend's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix eighth in the constructors' standings with five points – 72 fewer than AlphaTauri in seventh.

    Giovinazzi said: "The team has put a lot of faith in me and I have done my best to repay this confidence with hard work and commitment: we have achieved some good results and I feel I have done my part to make the team progress, but the road ahead is still long and there is much more we want to achieve together.

    "There will be a lot of continuity between this season and the next one, so everything we work on between now and the end of the year will already count for next, and we are ready to give it all we have."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.