Defending champion Marc Marquez won the Aragon MotoGP yesterday to take a 16-point lead in the world championship standings.
It was an all Spanish podium, as Honda team mate Dani Pedrosa was second and Jorge Lorenzo third for Ducati. Italian Valentino Rossi, making a remarkable comeback barely three weeks after suffering a broken leg, finished fifth on his Yamaha after lying second earlier on.
Team mate Maverick Vinales of Spain, who started on pole, was fourth and compatriot Aleix Espargaro of Aprilia sixth. Briton Cal Crutchlow was in contention for a top-six place but crashed and had to retire on lap 17.
Marquez started the race in fifth position after crashing in qualifying and had a slow start but quickly gained on his rivals, taking the lead from Lorenzo in the 16th lap and charging to his fifth title of the season. “It was a difficult race. At the beginning I didn’t have the feeling. I tried to come back with the feeling but even in the last part of the race I didn’t feel great. I struggled more than other years here. But it’s great,” Marquez said.
Lorenzo came close to claiming his first win of the season but faded as the race entered the final stages. “It’s a pity to lose the victory by not so much. In the last 10 laps we needed more grip in the rear. With the medium of Dani and the hard of Marc I couldn’t follow them. Anyway, I’m happy with this 3rd position,” Lorenzo told reporters.
By winning with four rounds remaining Marquez was able to take a clear lead in the standings as Andrea Dovizioso, previously the joint leader, managed only seventh place. Marquez, who also won in San Marino two weeks ago, now has 224 points, Dovizioso 208 and Vinales 196. The next race is the Japan Grand Prix in Motegi on October 15.
1.Marc Marquez (ESP/Honda) 42min 06.816sec, 2. Dani Pedrosa (ESP/Honda) at 0.879, 3. Jorge Lorenzo (ESP/Ducati) 2.028, 4. Maverick Vinales (ESP/Yamaha) 5.256, 5. Valentino Rossi (ITA/Yamaha) 5.882, 6. Aleix Esparagaro (ESP/Aprilia) 6.962, 7. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA/Ducati) 7.455, 8. Alvaro Bautista (ESP/Ducati Aspar) 7.910, 9. Johann Zarco (FRA/Yamaha Tech3) 13.002, 10. Pol Espargaro (ESP/KTM) 14.075
1. Marc Marquez (ESP/Honda) 224 points, 2. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA/Ducati) 208, 3. Maverick Vinales (ESP/Yamaha) 196,
1. Franco Morbidelli (ITA/Kalex) 40min 09.904sec, 2. Mattia Pasini (ITA/Kalex) at 0.145, 3. Miguel Oliveira (POR/KTM) 0.577
1. Franco Morbidelli (ITA/Kalex) 248 points, 2. Thomas Luthi (SUI/Kalex) 227, 3. Miguel Oliveira (POR/KTM) 157,
1. Joan Mir (ESP/Honda) 25min 57.607sec, 2. Fabio Di Giannantonio (ITA/Honda) at 0.043, 3. Enea Bastianini (ITA/Honda) 0.051,
1. Joan Mir (ESP/Honda) 271 points, 2. Romano Fenati (ITA/Honda) 191, 3. Aron Canet (ESP/Honda) 173
Repsol Honda Team’s Spanish rider Marc Marquez celebrates on the podium winning the MotoGP race of the Moto Grand Prix of Aragon at the Motorland circuit in Alcaniz yesterday. (AFP)