Motorland Aragon is set to play host to Round 13 of the 2021 MotoGP™ World Championship, with the season now entering the tail end of the season. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) is the runaway leader title leader, but things are a little bit tighter in MotoGP™ Fantasy with plenty still to play for.
Who are the outstanding picks?
The aforementioned Quartararo remains a must-have in any team. A combination of five race wins, three further podiums and five pole positions mean he doesn’t just lead the title race, but is also the cream of the crop in MotoGP™ Fantasy with 353 points, 66 more than his closest competitor. At $4.5 million, he is a costly asset, but he simply can’t be ignored.
Another rider who may prove impossible to ignore this weekend is Marc Marquez. A five-time Motorland Aragon premier class race winner, the Repsol Honda rider has stood on the top step on his last four visits here. In the Austrian double, he began to show glimpses of the form that has helped make him an eight-time World Champion, and priced at just $2.8 million, it may be time to bring him into the fold.
At a track that is predominantly filled with left-hander turns, we expect to see Marquez challenging at the top throughout the weekend, and may even prove to be a strong candidate for one of your Motul 300V Boosts.
Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) is another to watch, having earned a first podium of the season last time out at Silverstone. He’ll be looking to follow up that strong performance with another at Motorland Aragon, a circuit he experienced double podium success at in 2020, including a victory. He comes in at a very affordable $2.4 million despite a price rise and looks a smart option ahead of the weekend.
What about the differential riders?
It would be no surprise to see all three of the above riders in the majority of teams, so which rider could make the difference between you and your rivals?
Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) was one of the stories of the weekend at the British GP, earning the Noale factory their first-ever MotoGP™ era podium. In truth, the RS-GP and Espargaro have looked sharp in 2021, and it was only a matter of time before they broke down the door and dined at the top table.
Now the number 41 returns to the scene of his other premier class podium and will expect to be among the main contenders. At just $1.9 million, he could prove a shrewd addition and free up some funds for the more expensive riders going forward.
It’s a circuit at which the Hondas traditionally go well, and if we cast our minds back to last season, both LCR riders will be looking to find joy here once again. Takaaki Nakagami returns to a track he earned a first-ever premier class pole position, but it is Alex Marquez who could be the one to watch. The Spanish rider stood on the podium at the Alcañiz circuit last season and has shown some good race form in recent outings, collecting 61 points from his last three GPs, including 26 points at Silverstone.
There are other differential options out there, with Iker Lecuona (Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing) experiencing a purple patch of form and collecting a tidy 70 points in his last three outings, while Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) is usually a safe bet to bring home the points, even if he is the second most expensive rider in the game.
However, our final suggestion for a rider who could prove the difference between you and your rivals is Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team). Arguably the best placed of the Bologna bullets to challenge for honours this weekend, the Aussie narrowly missed out on a podium at the British GP but finished a very respectable fourth place. Priced at just $2.6 million, and having previously tasted success in Aragon, can he be the difference in your team?
After having six different constructors finish in the top six places at Silverstone, it has never been tighter between the different manufacturers. Suzuki and Ducati are both reasonable options, but we suggest that Honda look best placed to score highly. It’s a track that Marc Marquez loves, while Repsol Honda teammate Pol Espargaro looks to have turned a corner after taking pole position and recording a top five finish two weeks ago.
What about Aprilia’s latest addition?
All eyes will be focused on one man once wheels hit the tarmac on Friday, with Maverick Viñales making his Aprilia Racing Team Gresini debut. It is a highly anticipated moment, as many tip the Spaniard to take the Noale factory to the next level.
With just a couple days of testing under his belt at Misano, Free Practice will prove crucial in helping the former Yamaha rider get to grips with the RS-GP. It is probably too soon to expect fireworks from Viñales, but if you wish to take a punt on him, he is currently priced at $2.5 million.