Marc Marquez remains unbeatable at COTA

Daniel Herrero

Monday 23rd April, 2018 - 6:31am

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Marc Marquez pic: MotoGP.com

Marc Marquez is still the only man to have ever won in six MotoGP races at the Circuit of the Americas.

While he was denied a pole start due to a grid penalty, Marquez made light work of things from fourth on the grid to lead midway through the first lap and disappear into the distance.

Maverick Viñales was the best of the rest and initial leader Andrea Iannone finished on the bottom step of the podium.

Iannone got the holeshot from the middle of the front row and was first out of Turn 1 on the #29 Suzuki Ecstar entry.

Marquez also started strongly and took up second position before making his move on Iannone down at Turn 12.

The top two set about gapping the field and Iannone actually got down the inside of Marquez’s Repsol Honda at Turn 11 on Lap 3 but couldn’t make the move stick.

That was the last time anyone got close to the world champion, who was four seconds up the road by the end of Lap 7 and cruised home to the chequered flag after 20 laps.

“Today I didn’t have confidence to battle so I was pushing from the beginning and just go away, open the gap, and I did a great race,” said Marquez.

Viñales caught Iannone and used his Movistar Yamaha to execute a textbook block pass at Turn 1 on Lap 7.

Valentino Rossi was also close for a period of time but the battle for the minor placings petered out, leaving Iannone to take his first podium for Suzuki and ‘The Doctor’ in fourth.

Andrea Dovizioso eventually used the power of his factory Ducati to pass Johann Zarco for fifth on Lap 17, a move which gives the Italian the championship lead by a single point over Marquez.

Zarco (Tech3 Yamaha) finished a position further back in sixth, while Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) rode through pain after a highside last time out in Argentina to claim seventh.

Tito Rabat (Avintia Ducati) re-passed Jack Miller on the final lap to finish eighth, his second straight top 10 finish.

Miller ended up ninth having come from all the way from 18th on the grid on his Pramac Ducati.

Aleix Espargaro (Gresini Aprilia) rounded out the top 10 and Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) was an uncompetitive 11th.

Cal Crutchlow was fourth on Lap 1 before spending several laps battling with Zarco and Dovizioso for fifth.

He was running sixth when he dropped his LCR Honda at the final corner of the circuit on Lap 8 and while the pre-race championship leader remounted he finished outside the points in 19th.

Alex Rins had been catching seventh-placed Pedrosa when he lost the front of his factory Suzuki at Turn 12 on Lap 11 and did not take any further part in the race.

Round 4 is the Spanish MotoGP at Jerez on May 4-6.

Race results: Grand Prix of The Americas

Pos Num Rider Nat Team Bike Time/Gap
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda 41:52.002
2 25 Maverick VIÑALES ESP Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +3.560
3 29 Andrea IANNONE ITA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +6.704
4 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +9.587
5 04 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team Ducati +13.570
6 5 Johann ZARCO FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +14.231
7 26 Dani PEDROSA ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda +18.201
8 53 Tito RABAT ESP Reale Avintia Racing Ducati +28.537
9 43 Jack MILLER AUS Alma Pramac Racing Ducati +28.671
10 41 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +28.875
11 99 Jorge LORENZO ESP Ducati Team Ducati +31.355
12 9 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA Alma Pramac Racing Ducati +34.993
13 44 Pol ESPARGARO ESP Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +37.264
14 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN LCR Honda IDEMITSU Honda +39.335
15 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA ESP Angel Nieto Team Ducati +40.887
16 38 Bradley SMITH GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +48.475
17 45 Scott REDDING GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +49.995
18 12 Thomas LUTHI SUI EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +51.115
19 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda CASTROL Honda +59.055
20 10 Xavier SIMEON BEL Reale Avintia Racing Ducati +59.747
21 21 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +1:00.513
DNF 42 Alex RINS ESP Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki 10 Laps
DNF 55 Hafizh SYAHRIN MAL Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 12 Laps
DNF 17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Angel Nieto Team Ducati 12 Laps

Championship points

Pos Rider Nat Pts
1 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA 46
2 Marc MARQUEZ ESP 45
3 Maverick VIÑALES ESP 41
4 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR 38
5 Johann ZARCO FRA 38
6 Andrea IANNONE ITA 31
7 Valentino ROSSI ITA 29
8 Jack MILLER AUS 26
9 Tito RABAT ESP 22
10 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA 21
11 Dani PEDROSA ESP 18
12 Alex RINS ESP 16
13 Hafizh SYAHRIN MAL 9
14 Pol ESPARGARO ESP 8
15 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP 6
16 Jorge LORENZO ESP 6
17 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA 6
18 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN 5
19 Scott REDDING GBR 4
20 Alvaro BAUTISTA ESP 4
21 Karel ABRAHAM CZE 1
22 Thomas LUTHI SUI 0
23 Bradley SMITH GBR 0
24 Xavier SIMEON BEL 0

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