Can champion Marc Márquez cap a stunning campaign with a victory on home soil?
2019 MotoGP™ Valencia Grand Prix, Sunday 17 November, 12.30pm, BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527)
Dry your eyes, mate. The 2019 MotoGP season may almost be over, but there’s one more race to go before the dust settles on what’s been a staggeringly good year of action.
Although the title race has already been decided, this weekend’s Valencia Grand Prix – which is live on BT Sport – is sure to deliver big on thrills, spills and revved-up drama. Why? Because that’s just the sort of full-throttle campaign it’s been.
The incredible Marc Márquez has dominated so far, with the one-man victory machine clinching his sixth championship at the start of October. The Spaniard has won 11 of 18 races this term, cementing his place as one of the sport’s all-time greats in the process.
But Márquez’s breathtaking triumph isn’t the only thing that’s made the 2019 season so memorable. From nail-biting final laps and amazing near misses to another of the sport’s legends reaching a truly awesome milestone, here are the moments that defined it all…
Finish of the season
While other motorsports may struggle to provide heart-pounding finales to their races, MotoGP laughs in the face of such a problem. This season has had plenty of mad dashes for the line, including one in the very first race in Qatar. On the 22nd and final lap, and with the track running out, Andrea Dovizioso found a last-gasp burst of speed to pip Márquez to the flag by a mere 0.023 of a second. If that margin was any finer we’d ask it out to dinner.
Superhuman performance of the season
Knowing a win in Thailand would clinch him the title, Márquez suffered a bone-shaking crash in practice that put him in hospital, and his weekend looked to be over. He returned the following day, only to come off his bike again. Undeterred, Márquez started the Grand Prix and took the chequered flag after a thrilling final-lap duel with Fabio Quartararo. What a guy!
Newcomer of the season
Of all the youngsters looking to dethrone Márquez in the coming years, Quartararo appears to be in pole position. The Frenchman has been in scintillating form in his first MotoGP season, securing six podium finishes, and his assured ride to second place (behind Márquez, of course) in Japan was as impressive as it gets.
Save of the season
Marc isn’t the only super-talented rider in the Márquez family. Younger brother Álex proved he can also tame a mean machine when he somehow managed not to go spinning off the track at the Japanese Grand Prix Moto2 championship race. Take a bow, bro!
Fanboy of the season
They say you should never meet your heroes, but who says you shouldn’t beat them? Álex Rins edged Valentino Rossi into second place on the way to winning his first ever Grand Prix in the USA, leading the gobsmacked Spaniard to say: “I beat Valentino, this is unbelievable for me. He was my idol when I was very young.”
Landmark of the season
Valentino Rossi, we salute you. The seven-time MotoGP champion made it 400 race starts at the Australian Grand Prix – a testament to the staggering longevity of “The Doctor”. Rossi’s powers have waned in the face of a new generation of riders spearheaded by Marc Márquez, but the 40-year-old Italian, who first raced in the 125cc class in 1996, remains an undisputed icon.
When is the 2019 Valencia MotoGP on TV?
Live coverage of the GP of Valencia starts at 12.30pm on Sunday 17 November on BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527).
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