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MotoGP Portimao: Quartararo curses launch control issue, misses points

Fabio Quartararo is turning his attention to Sunday main Portuguese MotoGP after the combination of a launch control issue on his Yamaha and a lap one tangle with Joan Mir left him pointless from the Portimao sprint race.

The 2021 title-winning Frenchman heads into the 2023 MotoGP season looking to wrest his crown back from Pecco Bagnaia, but while his rival got his campaign off to a perfect start with victory, Quartararo was left out of contention.

Already with work to do having qualifyied down in 11th place, Quartararo slipped back off the line after his launch control failed to engage properly, then was punted off course by Joan Mir when the Repsol Honda rider fell while attempting to pass.


Launching a dogged fightback from 19th to 10th, though Quartararo would come away from the race empty-handed, he was otherwise pleased with his pace.

“I had an issue with the launch control in the beginning and then also a touch with Joan Mir,” Quartarao confirmed. “I tried to make a comeback as far as I could, but it was not an easy job, and I tried to manage to get the best place possible.

“I did see in today’s Sprint that my pace was good. Hopefully tomorrow we will have fixed the launch control, and over 25 laps I think we can be quite fast.”

Over on the other side of the garage, Franco Morbidelli’s hopes of turning around his fortunes on the factory Yamaha after a dismal 2022 MotoGP campaign flopped as he trailed home in 14th of the 16 riders

“This afternoon was very tough for me. This morning I had a decent feeling, I was pretty good. This afternoon, we were planning on improving, but instead we got worse. We are investigating why.”

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