Marquez wins, Lorenzo crashes at first corner

Daniel Herrero

Monday 24th September, 2018 - 1:09am

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Marc Marquez battles with Andrea Dovizioso pic: MotoGP.com

Marc Marquez has extended his MotoGP championship lead with a well-earned victory over Andrea Dovizioso in Aragon while Jorge Lorenzo crashed at the very first corner.

The battle between Marquez and Dovizioso was at times a race in three when they took time off each other and allowed Andrea Iannone to catch up.

However, the Repsol Honda rider prevailed over the sole remaining Ducati Team entry as Iannone bagged Suzuki Ecstar’s first podium in five races.

Disaster struck pole-sitter Lorenzo at the start of the race when he got a poor launch then ran wide at Turn 1 and highsided his factory Ducati.

Marquez jumped into the lead from third on the grid but held that for only a handful of corners before Dovizioso took over.

Most of the early action concerned the factory Suzukis as Iannone moved from fifth on the grid to third and Alex Rins all the way from ninth to fourth on the standing lap.

They swapped positions multiple times and Dani Pedrosa briefly demoted Iannone to fifth on Lap 5, but the second Repsol Honda would lose touch with the top four.

Meanwhile, Marquez drifted as far as 0.754s back, at the end of Lap 12 of 23, as he bided his time in second position.

The Spaniard started his run at the leader and lunged past Dovizioso at Turn 12 on Lap 14, the same lap on which Iannone re-passed Rins.

On Lap 16, the lead switched three times before they got to the Reverse Corkscrew, allowing Iannone to come from nearly two seconds in arrears to practically nothing behind.

Marquez had another dive at Turn 12 on Lap 19 and when Dovizioso responded he forced #93 wide, allowing himself and Iannone to pull up either side of the Honda as they entered the back straight.

While Dovizioso took back top spot, Marquez at least staved off Iannone to allow himself an (unsuccessful) attempt to reclaim the lead on Lap 20.

The final lead change came on Lap 21, when Marquez got up the inside at Turn 1, lost the position at Turn 4, and snatched it back at Turn 5.

Dovizioso is now trails the Spaniard by the equivalent of almost three races (72 points) in the championship as a result of his second placing.

Iannone fell away again in the last couple of laps but still made the rostrum for the first time since Round 4, while Rins finished fourth for the second race in succession.

Pedrosa ended up a lonely fifth, his equal best result of the season, and Aleix Espargaro got an absolute best of 2018 for he and Gresini Aprilia in sixth.

Danilo Petrucci was seventh aboard his Pramac Ducati, two positions ahead of team-mate Jack Miller on a year-old version.

Miller spent most of the race in eighth position but was overtaken by Valentino Rossi at the start of Lap 22 as ‘The Doctor’ climbed from 17th on the grid to eighth, the bulk of those positions coming in the first two laps.

Rossi’s Movistar Yamaha team-mate Maverick Viñales, who started from 14th after a three-position grid penalty, dropped even further to 19th on the opening lap before riding back to 10th at the chequered flag.

In addition to Lorenzo, who sustained a dislocated first toe on his right foot, Alvaro Bautista (Nieto Ducati) and Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) were retirements.

Both went down early while running towards the back of the top 10.

The championship now moves to its Asia/Australia flyaway phase, starting with the first Thailand MotoGP at Buriram on October 5-7.

Race results: Aragon MotoGP

Pos Num Rider Nat Team Bike Time/Gap
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda 41:55.949
2 04 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team Ducati +0.648
3 29 Andrea IANNONE ITA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +1.259
4 42 Alex RINS ESP Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +2.638
5 26 Dani PEDROSA ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda +5.274
6 41 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +9.396
7 9 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA Alma Pramac Racing Ducati +14.285
8 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +15.199
9 43 Jack MILLER AUS Alma Pramac Racing Ducati +16.375
10 25 Maverick VIÑALES ESP Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +22.457
11 21 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +27.025
12 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN LCR Honda IDEMITSU Honda +27.957
13 38 Bradley SMITH GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +28.821
14 5 Johann ZARCO FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +32.345
15 17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Angel Nieto Team Ducati +37.639
16 45 Scott REDDING GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +39.585
17 12 Thomas LUTHI SUI EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +40.763
18 55 Hafizh SYAHRIN MAL Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +56.296
19 10 Xavier SIMEON BEL Reale Avintia Racing Ducati +58.981
20 81 Jordi TORRES ESP Reale Avintia Racing Ducati +59.513
DNF 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda CASTROL Honda 19 Laps
DNF 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA ESP Angel Nieto Team Ducati 22 Laps
DNF 99 Jorge LORENZO ESP Ducati Team Ducati

Championship points

Pos Rider Nat Pts
1 Marc MARQUEZ ESP 246
2 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA 174
3 Valentino ROSSI ITA 159
4 Jorge LORENZO ESP 130
5 Maverick VIÑALES ESP 130
6 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR 119
7 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA 119
8 Johann ZARCO FRA 112
9 Andrea IANNONE ITA 108
10 Alex RINS ESP 92
11 Dani PEDROSA ESP 87
12 Jack MILLER AUS 68
13 Alvaro BAUTISTA ESP 64
14 Tito RABAT ESP 35
15 Pol ESPARGARO ESP 32
16 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA 31
17 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP 29
18 Hafizh SYAHRIN MAL 24
19 Bradley SMITH GBR 18
20 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN 18
21 Scott REDDING GBR 12
22 Mika KALLIO FIN 6
23 Karel ABRAHAM CZE 5
24 Michele PIRRO ITA 1
25 Thomas LUTHI SUI
26 Stefan BRADL GER
27 Xavier SIMEON BEL
28 Sylvain GUINTOLI FRA
29 Jordi TORRES ESP
30 Christophe PONSSON FRA

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