On How the Spanish Have Been Unsuccessful in Qatar

MotoGP analysts have summed up some of the most interesting statistic facts about the debut round of the 2015 season, and we are so thrilled to see that the sport is becoming richer. Of course, judging by how intense the Qatar race was and how the battle on track was, we'd rather say that 2015 has all it takes to be one of the most interesting, action-packed seasons we could enjoy lately.
Qatar MotoGP podium, 2015 1 photo
The total number of GP victories for the riders lined on the grid at Losail was over 390, surpassing by a hefty margin the previous record of 360 wins "on the grid" at Valencia last year.

At the same time, Qatar had the greatest number of riders who won a Grand Prix World Championship on the premier class grid. No less than 12 world champions share a whopping 28 titles across all classes. Of these 12, seven have also won MotoGP titles, and the number of premier class victories for these chaps is another all-time high, 169.

Of the 25 riders on the Losail grid, 19 have won at least once in one of the three classes of GP racing. With Colin Edwards retired in the early stages of 2014 after turning 40 (replaced by Alex de Angelis), Valentino Rossi remains the oldest premier class rider in action. He turned 36 on February 16th.

The youngest rider to start in Qatar was Jack Miller, who was 20 years and 70 days on the race Sunday, followed only 6 days by another rookie, Maverick Vinales.

No more Spanish domination at the top of the tables

The kick-off round of the 2015 season meant a disruption of the authoritative domination of the Spanish riders in Grad Prix racing.

None of the three podiums in Qatar had Spanish riders, and it is the first time when this happens from the Chinese Grand Prix in 2005. In the premier class, the last all-Italian podium could be seen in 2006 at Motegi, in Japan.

The last time when no Spaniard was heading the class tables was at Jerez in 2009, when the three categories had Rossi, Aoyama and Iannone as leaders. The Valencia round in 2011 was the last time when no Spanish rider was able to clinch a pole position, in any of the classes.

Likewise, it's since 2003 that no Spanish rider was on the podium at the season-opening round in MotoGP. Rossi's victory in Qatar puts him in the leading position of the championship, a position he last occupied in 2010 when he also won the Qatar round.

Valentino Rossi is the oldest rider to win the first premier-class race of the season since 1949, when Harold Daniell won the first 500cc race at the Isle of Man TT, counting towards the world title.

For Ducati, the 2-3 Dovizioso and Iannone brought is a historic milestone, especially as the last time when Borgo Panigale had two bikes on the podium was in 2010, thanks to Stoner and Hayden. As for Casey Stoner, he was the last non-Spanish rider to head the table since his victory in Portugal in 2012, until Rossi's recent win.

Finally, the Qatar 2015 race also saw the reigning MotoGP champion finishing outside the podium in the season debut race, a thing that has not happened since 2007, when Nicky Hayden, title holder for 2006, finished 8th at Losail.

MotoGP action resumes with the Austin, TX round at the Circuit of the Americas next weekend. Will Marc Marquez be able to return to winning, or will the strength of Yamaha's riders and the new Ducati might be enough to balance things to a completely crazy season?
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