Having hardly had time to catch a breath from another brilliant race in Mugello at the Italian GP, Round 7 of the 2021 MotoGP™ World Championship is already upon us. This time, the grid are heading for the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona for the Monster Energy Grand Prix of Catalunya.
As the on-track action returns, so does MotoGP™ Fantasy, and as ever, we’re here to help guide you through it all.
Who stood out in Italy?
Reflecting on last weekend’s action, the top four from Sunday make up Round 6’s Dream Team. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) leads the way, with the Frenchman picking up 35 points thanks to his fourth pole position in a row and victory.
Joining him at the top is Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) who took his first podium finish of the season at Mugello. The KTM man started P7 and picked up 10 advanced grid position points to help him collect a tally of 34 points for the weekend.
Another rider who specializes in advancing his grid position is Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Joan Mir. The Mallorcan went from P9 to P3 for his second podium of the year, helping him earn 30 points overall. Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) may not have got onto the rostrum on Sunday, but P4 and five points for setting the race’s fastest lap sees him make it four different constructors in the Round’s Dream Team with 26 points.
What does the formbook say ahead of the Catalan GP?
Championship leader Quartararo is simply a must-have right now, particularly as we return to a track where he has always stood on the podium in the premier class. Indeed, it would be hard to bet against him securing a fifth pole in a row this weekend, the first time such a feat has been achieved since Marc Marquez in 2014.
Compatriot Zarco is also in a rich vein of form at the moment, helping form a French one-two in the Championship and looks another obvious choice for MotoGP™ Fantasy managers.
Elsewhere, Joan Mir bounced back from a miserable run at the French GP in emphatic fashion at Mugello and is hard to look past as a potential gold rider. The World Champion even has form in Barcelona, with a top 6 finish in his rookie year and a P2 finish in 2020. In fact, both GSX-RR’s stood on the podium in Barcelona last season, so it would be a good idea to have them covered in your team somewhere.
It was a tough turn of events for the Ducati Lenovo Team at their home Grand Prix last weekend. Francesco Bagnaia sat second in the Championship standings and was aiming for a maiden MotoGP™ victory, but the Italian crashed out of the race early as he tried to keep pace with Quartararo. Despite that disappointment, he is definitely one to keep an eye on here. On the grid’s last visit to Montmelo, Pecco managed to crack the top 6 despite a P14 start. Given his form prior to the Italian GP also, he looks another strong contender for your team.
We can’t forget about Bagnaia’s teammate Jack Miller either! The Aussie rider didn’t manage to complete a hat-trick of wins in Italy but still recorded a P6 finish. It’s been a great season to date for the Thriller Miller and returning to a track he earned a P5 finish at last season, he is another strong podium contender in Catalonia.
Who offers up the best value as a differential?
With a new chassis paying immediate dividends at Mugello, either of the factory KTMs look great value for money. Oliveira is priced at just $2m despite a large return just a few days ago, and while the Portuguese rider took many of the plaudits on Sunday, his teammate Brad Binder also performed impressively, recording his second top 5 finish of the season. Valued at just $2.7m and having already featured in MotoGP™ Fantasy's Dream Team on a number of occasions this season, he may just be what's needed to gain the edge over the competition.
Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) could also prove a smart addition to any team as he continues to work wonders with his 2019 YZR-M1. After showing some good form when the Championship returned to Europe, earning a podium and top 4 finish, the last couple outings have seen the Italian end up in the gravel through no real fault of his own. However, we’re backing him to bounce back at a track he was poleman at last season.
Yamaha – Given Quartararo’s exceptional form and their consistent threat across the board, they are this week’s constructors' choice for MotoGP™ Fantasy.
Remember to follow all the Free Practice sessions throughout the weekend to see where you can get the advantage over your rivals, with the Monster Energy Grand Prix of Catalunya underway on Friday.