Fabio Quartararo won the Andalucia Grand Prix and swept the second consecutive MotoGP weekend at Circuito de Jerez, scoring maximum points Sunday with the first two wins of his career to start the 2020 season.
It also was a sweep of the podium for Yamaha. Maverick Vinales finished second after a spirited battle in the closing laps with Yamaha MotoGP teammate Valentino Rossi, who took third for his first podium since April 14, 2019 (second at Circuit of The Americas).
Though he led every lap comfortably from the green flag, Quartararo said conditions on the track were treacherous. There was a first-lap crash and multiple mechanical failures as the heat seemed to take its toll.
“I had a few moments during the race,” the Team Petronas SRT rider said after the Andalucia victory gave him dual wins at Jerez. “I feel one of the hardest races of my life.”
Rossi, 41, scored the 199th podium of his storied career.
"I wanted to give a hug to the people at home!" – @ValeYellow46 🎙️
— MotoGP™🏁 (@MotoGP) July 26, 2020
Quartararo triumphed from the pole a week earlier in becoming the first winning Frenchman in MotoGP’s premier class in more than 20 years.
He has a 10-point lead on Vinales with his wins after Andalucia heading to the Aug. 9 grand prix at the Automotodrom Brno in the Czech Republic.
That race is expected to include the return of Marc Marquez, the injured defending series champion.
Marquez had been cleared to race Sunday but was decided to skip the race and avoid further injury risk after experiencing pain in practice and qualifying Saturday. The eight-time champion said he immediately would begin training to be ready for the next race.
Marquez’s younger brother and teammate, Alex, finished eighth Sunday for the Repsol Honda Team.