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16 days ago
By motogp.com

MotoGP™ Fantasy: who are you backing in Doha?

Viñales stole the show in Qatar as we take a look at who you should potentially eye up for Round 2

MotoGP™ Fantasy returned last weekend as we witnessed Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) storm to his third career win in the desert. Next up for players is another Losail International Circuit helping, but who are you backing this weekend?

Of course, the early World Championship leader was the rider to seal the most Fantasy points during the first weekend of the year. Starting P3 and finishing P1, Viñales – just the third highest picked Yamaha rider for Round 1 – landed 42 points, nine more than next-best Johann Zaro (Pramac Racing). Both of these riders as Gold, plus Yamaha as a Constructor, and Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) and Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) as your Silver riders, would have given you the best possible team for Round 1. If you had that or something similar, then very well played.

It was a difficult weekend for two of the top three most owned riders. Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) was the most picked rider following his pre-season and Grand Prix form, but scored just 13 points. Third most owned Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) was also looking in fine shape, but an issue on the grid saw him score zero Grand Prix points – and just four Fantasy points.

In contrast, for eighth highest owned World Champion Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar), sixth highest owned Zarco and fourth highest owned Bagnaia, the points were good. Mir rise from P10 to P4 at the chequered flag earned him 30 points, as many overlooked Suzuki for a good weekend. If you don’t own Mir or teammate Alex Rins, then getting one of them in is probably a good move – not just for this week, but for the season in general.

With one transfer available for the upcoming Tissot Grand Prix of Doha, it’s important to get your selection right. It’s also important to try and wait for as long as possible – until the end of FP4 if you can – to choose your line-up, with riders showing their race pace in those final 30 minutes before qualifying.

 

Tips for the Doha GP? Make sure you cover the Ducati, Suzuki and Yamaha bases in your team somewhere. Ducati (12,797) and Yamaha (10,170) were by far the most owned constructors, with the Iwata factory just edging it in the points tally: 31 compared to the Bologna factory's 29.5. Viñales and teammate Fabio Quartararo look strong, with Zarco, Bagnaia and Miller – despite his disappointing Qatar GP – all good picks again.

Mir and Rins showed once again that Sunday is their day to shine, and remember, you pick up points for riders finishing ahead of their qualifying result – a big bonus for Suzuki. However, Mir (4.1m) and Rins (3.8m) are the two most expensive riders in the game, so it might be trickier to get them in if you haven’t already.

Some cheaper, potential Silver riders to look at begins with Aprilia Racing Team Gresini’s Aleix Espargaro. At just 1.5m, the Spaniard is a great pick for Doha after showing he has what it takes to mix it with in the fight for the top five. Aleix Espargaro’s price also allows you to spend bigger elsewhere. At 1.3m, Stefan Bradl (Repsol Honda Team) picked up 17 Fantasy points in the Qatar GP having finished P11 from P17 on the grid.

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The German is a great punt at Losail and, like Aleix Espargaro, allows you to spend bigger in other parts of your team – as does Enea Bastianini (Esponsorama Racing). The reigning Moto2™ World Champion, priced at just 1.5m, claimed a maiden top 10 in MotoGP™ and ended the race just a couple of seconds behind Miller. See how the riders get on during Free Practice first, but ‘The Beast’ could be a great shout as a differential option. 

Remember to get your selections in place before MotoGP™ Q1 begins at 20:00 local time (GMT+3) in Doha on Saturday, and good luck!

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