VALENCIA, SPAIN (AFP) – World champion Marc Marquez clinched his 12th MotoGP victory of the season in Sunday’s (Nov 17) final race in Valencia ahead of French rookie Fabio Quartararo.
The Spaniard, who secured his sixth premier category title last month, finished over a second clear of pole-sitter Quartararo, who came second for the fifth time in his debut campaign.
The 26-year-old made a poor start from second place on the grid but steadily picked off his rivals one by one to win at Valencia for just the second time in his career.
“It’s been a difficult weekend because we’ve tried new things,” he said.
“It’s a perfect season which will be difficult to repeat.”
Three-time MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo bid farewell to the sport with a 13th-place finish in his final race.
The 32-year-old Spaniard announced his decision to retire on Thursday. He could be replaced by Marquez’s younger brother and Moto 2 champion Alex at Honda next season.
Quartararo again fell just short in his bid to become the first Frenchman to win a MotoGP race since 1999, but the 20-year-old was delighted with his first season among the elite.
“Nobody could have imagined at the start of the season that I would have six pole positions and seven podiums. It’s incredible to finish the season in this way,” said Yamaha rider Quartararo, who ended fifth in the overall standings.
Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso was second, Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales third and Suzuki’s Alex Rins fourth.
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