Fifth on the grid for Dovizioso
The Italian had qualified to start the season finale from the middle of the second row having set the fifth quickest time. He got a good start and was able to push immediately. As race winner, Movistar Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo who is soon to be joining Dovizioso at the Italian team very soon, pushed ahead with his current teammate Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team), he was able to tag onto the back of a group of three riders sitting in sixth.
He was unable to maintain the pace set by the likes of Maverick Vinales (Team Suzuki Ecstar), Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha), and Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) who battled ahead of him and did what he could to ensure there was a gap between him and those that followed.
The Italian under pressure from the Espargaro brothers
The Espargaro brothers weren’t having that though, Pol (Monster Tech 3 Yamaha) and Aleix (Team Suzuki Ecstar), were pushing each other on and soon they were able to catch the Italian by the time they got to the penultimate lap. Pol was able to pass Dovizioso to take sixth from him, and the the Spaniard used the Ducati as a barrier between him and his brother.
Seventh in the race and fifth in the championship for Dovi
Dovizioso crossed the line in seventh claiming nine championship points. This meant that, after claiming his second MotoGP win of his career, and his first of 2016 in Sepang, which meant he made it nine different MotoGP winners this year, he finished the 2016 championship on 171 points which left him fifth in the standings as the top Ducati.
Dovizioso said he had “hoped to finish the season fighting for a podium”, and wanting to repeat his success from the previous round most likely, however he revealed he “had a problem with the front from the first lap”. He noticed that the “feeling with [his] bike was different to what it was in practice” and that as a result he “wasn’t able to brake the way [he] wanted”.
He wanted a podium at a tough track for him
He felt it was “a pity” because he “really wanted to fight for the podium at Valencia”, a track he admitted has “always been tough” for him; but going into the race he was optimistic that “it could have been within reach”. Still, “in any case” he revealed that “finishing in fifth overall” in the championship was his “aim”, and he said, “If you think I was 11th at the fourth round, I have to be satisfied with our final place”.
Looking to the future he spoke of how he is “also happy to form part of the Ducati project for the next two years”, as he said that now they “want to try and fight for something even more important”.