RIDER RATINGS: Two 10/10 but which riders suffered their worst grades of 2022?

Crash.net journalist Robert Jones runs through the field’s rider ratings following a chaotic Australian MotoGP at Phillip Island.
Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia MotoGP Phillip Island, Australia 2022
Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia MotoGP Phillip Island, Australia 2022

Alex Rins - 10

(Qualified 10th, finished 1st)

A contender for performance of the year, Rins was sensational throughout as he made quick work of the likes of Luca Marini, Aleix Espargaro and Jack Miller during the early stages. The Suzuki rider, who was without a win since Aragon 2020, took the lead on two occasions before losing it immediately after. However, it was certainly third time lucky for the Spaniard as he made a brilliant move on Francesco Bagnaia at the start of the final lap before holding off Marc Marquez until the checkered flag. 

Marc Marquez - 10

(Qualified 2nd, finished 2nd)

Managing to make the soft rear tyre work until the end of the race, Marquez produced his best race of the year and his best since making his return at Aragon. A contender for the win throughout, Marquez never dropped below fifth place in a race that was chaotic and easy to do so. Although he failed to get through on Rins, it wasn’t for a lack of trying as Marquez looked close to his best once again. Another big result for Honda and the eight-time world champion ahead of a crucial off-season. 

Francesco Bagnaia - 9 

(Qualified 3rd, finished 3rd)

Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP race, Australian MotoGP, 16 October
Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP race, Australian MotoGP, 16 October

After failing to get his holeshot device activated for the start, Bagnaia was aggressive in the opening corners as he recovered from losing three places in what will potentially be remembered as the race which steered him in the direction of a first MotoGP title. The Ducati rider was brilliant throughout, and although he failed to keep hold of a lead which lasted for several laps during the most critical part of the Grand Prix, Bagnaia once again showed that he can handle the pressure of challenging for the world title, while his main title contenders struggled. 

Marco Bezzecchi - 9

(Qualified 9th, finished 4th)

By far the best rookie of 2022, Bezzecchi’s stunning ride to fourth place has officially secured him rookie of the year honours. Bold and without hesitation in his overtakes, Bezzecchi looked set to take the lead after quick moves on Rins and Marquez with under ten laps to go. However, the Italian struggled to keep pace with the top three as the final few laps arrived. 

Enea Bastianini - 9

(Qualified 15th, finished 5th)

After a disastrous qualifying and start to the race which saw him lose several positions, Bastianini kept his slim championship hopes alive with another late charge. Arguably the best rider in 2022 when tyre drop begins to set in, Bastianini picked off those around him to eventually squeeze into the top five. 

Luca Marini - 8

(Qualified 7th, finished 6th)

A very promising start to the Grand Prix for Marini saw the Italian challenging within the leading group. And although he never lost sight of the front runners, Marini found it difficult to make an impression on the podium places as he never went higher than fifth spot. 

Jorge Martin - 6

(Qualified 1st, finished 7th)

Jorge Martin, MotoGP race, Australian MotoGP, 16 October
Jorge Martin, MotoGP race, Australian MotoGP, 16 October

Leader of the race for a substantial amount of time, Martin was never able to recover after losing places to Bagnaia, Rins and Marquez. The Pramac rider did show potential and fight as he remained a threat, however, Martin’s pace wasn’t enough to challenge for the podium in the end. 

Johann Zarco - 5

(Qualified 6th, finished 8th)

After a poor start Zarco managed to show good late race pace in order to climb back through the pack. But after dominating Friday practice and again being at the front of the field during FP4, finishing eighth was not the expectation for the Pramac rider. 

Aleix Espargaro - 3

(Qualified 4th, finished 9th) 

After title rival Fabio Quartararo crashed out, Espargaro was left with a glaring opportunity to recover big points and assert himself once again as a major title contender. But after spending more than half the race in the lead group, Espargaro ran out of grip in what was another hugely disappointing performance from the Aprilia rider. Unable to rediscover his early season form, Espargaro has simply not been good enough to take the fight to Bagnaia in recent races. 

Brad Binder - 7

(Qualified 16th, finished 10th)

Lacking pace for much of the weekend, Binder was once again much better in race conditions as he gained a total of six places. The South African was as high as seventh at one stage before being pushed slightly wide by Bastianini. 

Pol Espargaro - 5

(Qualified 13th, finished 11th)


Opting for the hard rear tyre as opposed to the soft that Marquez chose, Espargaro was unable to build on his good start to the weekend as he finished over ten seconds down on the win. 

Miguel Oliveira - 4

(Qualified 21st - was given a three-place grid penalty, finished 12th)

After doing a practice start in the wrong part of the track and holding up Bastianini during qualifying, Oliveira was handed two penalties for the race - one being a Long Lap and the other a three-place grid penalty. Still, the Thailand MotoGP race winner showed decent pace in order to salvage a points finish. 

Cal Crutchlow - 6

(Qualified 17th, finished 13th)

A quiet race for Crutchlow but a good one nonetheless as he finished as the highest Yamaha rider for the second time since returning at Aragon. 

Darryn Binder - 7

(Qualified 18th, finished 14th)

In the points for the first time since Catalunya, the soon-to-be Moto2 rider put together a very strong performance as he finished less than a second behind Crutchlow. 

Remy Gardner - 6

(Qualified 19th, finished 15th)

The final points scorer, Gardner was able to claim a single point on what will be his lone home race in MotoGP. 

Fabio Quartararo - 1

(Qualified 5th, DNF) 

Fabio Quartararo, MotoGP, Australian MotoGP, 16 October
Fabio Quartararo, MotoGP, Australian MotoGP, 16 October

After one of his worst races of the season last time out in Buriram, Quartararo had another race to forget after making back-to-back errors. Quartararo’s first mistake came at turn four when he got his braking wrong, before suddenly crashing out at turn two. As the pressure has been building in recent races, Quartararo’s form has completely tailed off which has been shocking to say the least. 14 points now separate Bagnaia and Quartararo, making the next two rounds vitally important.  

Read More