On Saturday, Francesco Bagnaia from Ducati won the first-ever MotoGP sprint race that happened at Algarve International Circuit after completing 12 laps. Mir crashed out after a collision with Yamaha’s Quartararo that caused him to miss out on 13 corners. Quartararo ended up at the back of the pack and was unable to score points since top nine racers are only eligible for points in sprints.
The incident was checked by race directors and it was found that Joan Mir, who had been too eager to win the race, caused an accident with Rider #20 which had a huge effect on their race. This kind of riding behaviour was labeled as not responsible and thus Joan Mir received a long lap penalty for Sunday’s 24-lap grand prix. Honda then requested that the punishment be waived, but this was declined by the MotoGP Stewards Panel so the initial sentence stayed.
Mir said on Saturday that he didn’t think either him or Quartararo were at fault when they had the incident. Mir told people that he can see in pictures that Quartararo was trying to pass someone. He stayed there but not passing, and Mir slipped past him by going inside, then crashed when Quartararo came back.
Mir is the first rider to get a penalty in the 2023 season. He had an accident during his first lap and couldn’t finish the race, while his colleague from Honda Team Marc Marquez made it to the top three with a surprising pole position. Mir thinks that neither him nor Fabio was at fault for this because Mir was only riding on the line without crossing or going against him – he does not expect to be punished for it.
Marquez will be the first one to race in Sunday’s Portuguese GP, while Mir didn’t do so well in the qualifying session on Saturday morning and he has to start from 14th position.