Ducati Team rider Francesco Bagnaia made history as the first Ducati rider to win four MotoGP races in a row thanks to his dominant performance in the 2022 MotoGP series, the San Marino MotoGP at the Misano Circuit.
In the last laps, Bagnaia fought fiercely with Gresini Racing’s Enea Bastianini who had to settle for finishing runner-up with a very tight margin of 0.034 seconds when the two almost simultaneously crossed the finish line.
Maverick Vinales took his third podium from the last four races of the season after finishing P3 for Aprilia.
Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo could not do much at Misano but maintained his position at the top of the standings with a collection of 211 points after finishing P5 behind Luca Marini of the VR46 team.
Meanwhile, Bagnaia cut the gap to 30 points by moving up to second place, shifting Aleix Espargaro from the Aprilia team who slipped by three points.
Bagnaia made new history with the win after in Austria two weeks ago he equaled Casey Stoner’s record as a Ducati rider who won three races in a row.
Bagnaia, who started the race from P5 with a penalty after being caught blocking another rider’s pace during FP1, needed just four laps after the start to take the lead when his team-mate, Jack Miller, as polesitter made a mistake and crashed at Turn 4 on the second lap.
Bagnaia was overshadowed by Maverick VInales, Enea Bastianini and Luca Marini in the leading group separated by half a second, competing tightly into the second half of the 27-round race.
In the last eight laps, Bastianini began to carry out late attacks, starting with an overtaking maneuver against Vinales to catch Bagnaia, his potential team-mate for next season.
Bagnaia appeared calm to defend as hard as he could to withstand the onslaught of the Gresini racer who was 0.1 seconds behind him. Bastianini made a mistake heading into the final corner and missed the split second that hurt his bid for a fourth win of the season.
Without getting a track warning, Bagnaia was clinical, becoming the first to cross the finish line to make his name in the history books with his fourth straight win as a Ducati rider.
Meanwhile, Suzuki assigned Japan’s Kazuki Watanabe at Misano to replace the injured Joan Mir.
Johann Zarco, Michelle Pirro and Pol Espargaro were involved in a head-on collision at Turn 1 on the opening lap.
Gresini racers Fabio di Giannantonio and Franco Morbidelli also kissed the asphalt on the third lap.
The San Marino GP also witnessed the last appearance of Andrea Dovizioso who decided to retire from MotoGP after the race in his hometown.
The 2022 MotoGP circus will continue to Aragon, Spain in two weeks on 18 September.
2022 San Marino MotoGP Results:
1. Francesco Bagnaia – 41 minutes 43.199 seconds
2. Enea Bastianini
3. Maverick Vinales
4. Luca Marini
5. Fabio Quartararo
6. Aleix Espargaro
7. Alex Rins
8. Brad Binder
9. Jorge Martin
10. Alex MArquez
11. Miguel Oliveira
12. Andrea Dovizioso
13. Raul Fernandez
14. Stefan Bradl
15. Takaaki Nakagami
16. Darryn Binder
17. Marco Bezzecchi
18. Jack Miller
19. Remy Gardner
20. Fabio Di Giannantonio
21. Kazuki Watanabe