The Hamamatsu factory top the Rider, Team and Constructor Championships with two races to go – can they do it?
After Joan Mir’s (Team Suzuki Ecstar) sensational maiden MotoGP™ victory on Sunday at the Gran Premio de Europa, the Spaniard now has his first match point heading into the second Valencia instalment. Things certainly look incredibly promising for the 2017 Moto3™ World Champion, and they also look bright for Suzuki as a whole.
The Hamamatsu factory have been unreal in a topsy-turvy 2020. With just the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana and Grande Premio MEO de Portugal left to attack, the blue and silver bullets now sit top of the Rider, Team and Constructor Championships. MotoGP™’s Triple Crown is well in sight for Suzuki, who haven’t won a premier class title since 2000. But fast forward 20 years and the popular Japanese manufacturer are favourites for all three crowns.
As we know, Mir sits 37 points ahead of Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) and teammate Alex Rins in the race to be 2020 World Champion. A podium, no matter where anyone else in the hunt finishes, will hand Mir his first premier class title. In the Team Championship, Team Suzuki Ecstar are 82 points ahead of Petronas Yamaha SRT and can wrap up that title before the season finale in Portimao too, if they are over 45 points ahead after Sunday’s chequered flag.
The Constructor Championship standings are somewhat closer. Seven points separate Suzuki and Ducati, with Yamaha 25 points adrift in third. A win for either Mir or Rins in Valencia may also see Suzuki able to claim that title with a race in hand, as it’s just the lead rider from the manufacturer who picks up the points.
There’s no doubt Suzuki have been MotoGP™’s shining light in 2020, and the Triple Crown will be richly deserved if it’s achieved. Barring a disaster, it looks like Mir, Rins and the entire GSX-RR factory will be heading into 2021 as the undisputed World Champions – but that, of course, isn’t a given yet. MotoGP™ is the most unpredictable sport on the planet and we know by now not to take anything for granted. Suzuki and Mir certainly won’t be as we look forward to two final jaw-dropping showdowns in Valencia and Portimao.