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Oliveira claims fairytale home victory in MotoGP finale

AFP/Portimao (Portugal)
Filed on November 22, 2020
MotoGP rider Miguel Oliveira of Portugal celebrates on the podium after winning the MotoGP race of the Portuguese Motorcycle Grand Prix. — AP

Italian Morbidelli finishes in the overall standings 13 points behind Mir

Miguel Oliveira made the most of home advantage to win the last MotoGP race of the season in Portugal on Sunday.

Jack Miller’s second place ensured that Ducati sealed the constructors’ title.

Oliveira followed up his maiden victory in Styria in August by taking the title at Portimao in what was his first race in the premier class in his home country.

The KTM Tech 3 rider’s triumph means there was no record-breaking 10th race winner, with Fabio Quartararo, Brad Binder, Andrea Dovizioso, Franco Morbidelli, Maverick Vinales, Danilo Petrucci, Alex Rins and Mir making it nine victors at the end of a highly unpredictable World Championship.

Morbidelli came out on top of a six-way battle for the runners-up spot, despite being pipped to second place on the last lap by Australian Miller.

Italian Morbidelli finishes in the overall standings 13 points behind Mir, who had confirmed his first world title in Valencia last weekend.

Miller’s strong finish meanwhile ensured Ducati claimed the constructors’ title for the first time since 2007 at the expense of Suzuki, whose hopes were dashed after a disappointing weekend for Mir.

Mir started the race in 20th and had to retire due to electronic problems but the Spaniard will not worry too much, having already become the first Suzuki rider to be crowned champion since 2000.

Alex Rins took third place overall and Maverick Vinales fourth, meaning Spain boasted three of the championship’s top four. Frenchman Fabio Quartararo, who won the first two races of the season, ended up fifth.

Portimao was hosting the country’s first race in the championship since 2012, with Oliveira already posting a record time in qualifying on Saturday.

He started in pole position and led all the way through to complete a fairytale victory, the only shame being that there were no fans in the Algarve to see it.

Oliveira still celebrated by carrying a Portuguese flag around his lap of honour.

Nine-time champion Valentino Rossi, meanwhile, continued a disappointing end to the season for Yamaha by finishing 12th, in what was Rossi’s final appearance before he switches to the satellite team in 2021.

Britain’s Cal Crutchlow was also bidding farewell to his full-time MotoGP career. He enjoyed a bright start but faded, dropping back to 13th.

Australian Remy Gardner secured his first Moto2 victory in Portimao with Italian Eenea Bastianini crowned 2020 world champion.

Spaniard Raul Fernandez won the Moto3 race with compatriot Albert Arenas taking the title after finished 12th after a thrilling finale to the season





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