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Marquez out-duels Dovizioso at Aragon

As Lorenzo crashes
Sunday, September 23, 2018


Marquez powers to another victory
Marquez powers to another victory

Honda's Marc Marquez out-dueled Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso to win the MotoGP Aragon Grand Prix, while Jorge Lorenzo suffered a foot injury after a heavy lap one crash. 

Marquez and Dovizioso engaged in another of the famous victory duels they have fought in the last 18 months, with the Honda man finally coming out on top after a late move for his first win since the German Grand Prix in July.

There were dramatic scenes at the start, as poleman Lorenzo highsided out of the race after being forced slightly wide by Marquez at the first corner, while Dovizioso slipped through into the lead.

Marquez was able to slot back into second behind Dovizioso, while Andrea Iannone led Suzuki team-mate Alex Rins and the Aprilia of Aleix Espargaro.

Dovizioso and Marquez ran line astern for much of the race as the Suzuki's hovered close behind, while early podium contender Cal Crutchlow crashed out at Turn 1 on the fifth tour.

Race leader Dovizioso – the only one of the top four running the hard rear tire - was able to eke out his gap to seven tenths at just over mid distance as it appeared the soft-shod Marquez and the Suzukis were beginning to just lose grip.

However, Marquez was soon able to wipe out that gap, and launched a daring raid for the lead at Turn 12 on lap 14, which he successfully executed.

Dovizioso tried to fight back at Turn 5 moments later, but Marquez resisted the Ducati man, though the Italian managed to regain the lead  on the following tour at Turn 7.

The battling amongst the top allowed the Suzuki pair to close in, with Iannone leading that charge having reclaimed third back from Rins in the latter stages.

Marquez once again dived up the inside of Dovizioso for the lead at Turn 12 with five laps to go, Dovizioso trying to fight back two turns later but forcing both out slightly wide and allowing Iannone to briefly hold the lead as they rounded Turn 15.

Dovizioso used the power of the Ducati to get back in front, and repelled an advance from Marquez at Turn 5 to hold the lead.

The pair locked horns again with three laps to go, with Marquez taking the lead at Turn 1 and resisting a counter-attack at Turn 5.

Marquez battles Dovi
Marquez battles Dovi
This proved decisive, as Marquez was able to keep Dovizioso at bay to take his sixth win of the season by 0.684 seconds and move 72 points clear of second-placed Dovizioso in the championship.

Iannone hung onto third for his first podium since the Spanish Grand Prix, with teammate Rins and the sister Honda of Dani Pedrosa completing the top five.

Espargaro managed to get his Aprilia home in sixth ahead of Danilo Petrucci, while Yamaha's Valentino Rossi recovered from 17th on the grid to usurp Petrucci's Pramac teammate Jack Miller for eighth late on.

Rossi's teammate Maverick Vinales was 10th having slumped to 18th at the start, while Franco Morbidelli, Takaaki Nakagami, Bradley Smith, Johann Zarco and Karel Abraham.

Along with Lorenzo and Crutchlow, Nieto's Alvaro Bautista crashed out on the second lap, bringing his run of seven top nine finishes to an end. 

Marc Marquez 1ST
“I woke up this morning with the idea that today I could take a risk. I hadn’t felt totally at ease during the weekend with the hard rear spec tyre so, after the warm-up, I said to my team that I wanted to use the soft rear. That started many meetings and discussions but in the end I won the race because I could convince my box to take that gamble! In the end, it was the correct choice. I had a good start but soon after I almost lost the front in a dirty spot on the track, so I had to release the brakes and go a bit wide. I didn’t realize until the end that Lorenzo had crashed.

"Anyway, the fight was very tight with Dovi and Iannone as well; it was a hard fight but within the limit. This is MotoGP, and it’s what the fans enjoy to watch. Motorland is one of my favourite tracks, and I enjoyed so much riding here over the weekend even if the pressure was high, with events, people, and many things to do every day. I mean, it’s good but also demanding. Even with this, I managed to remain focused, work well with the team, and ultimately to stop Ducati’s momentum. This morning I listened to “In my feelings” from Drake and in the honour lap I thought back to that song and it was great. Anyway, now more than ever it’s the moment to keep calm and manage well the race weekends because I want to win the Championship and to do that you must remain fully concentrated.”

Aragon - Race Result 23 Laps

1Marc MarquezHondaHonda0.000s
2Andrea DoviziosoDucatiDucati0.648s
3Andrea IannoneSuzukiSuzuki1.259s
4Alex RinsSuzukiSuzuki2.638s
5Dani PedrosaHondaHonda5.274s
6Aleix EspargaroApriliaAprilia9.396s
7Danilo PetrucciPramac DucatiDucati14.285s
8Valentino RossiYamahaYamaha15.199s
9Jack MillerPramac DucatiDucati16.375s
10Maverick VinalesYamahaYamaha22.457s
11Franco MorbidelliMVDS HondaHonda27.025s
12Takaaki NakagamiLCR HondaHonda27.957s
13Bradley SmithKTMKTM28.821s
14Johann ZarcoTech3 YamahaYamaha32.345s
15Karel AbrahamAspar DucatiDucati37.639s
16Scott ReddingApriliaAprilia39.585s
17Thomas LuthiMVDS HondaHonda40.763s
18Hafizh SyahrinTech3 YamahaYamaha56.296s
19Xavier SimeonAvintia DucatiDucati58.981s
20Jordi TorresAvintia DucatiDucati59.513s
-Cal CrutchlowLCR HondaHondaCrash
-Alvaro BautistaAspar DucatiDucatiCrash
-Pol EspargaroKTMKTMWithdrawn
-Jorge LorenzoDucatiDucatiCrash

Riders' standings

1Marc Marquez246
2Andrea Dovizioso174
3Valentino Rossi159
4Jorge Lorenzo130
5Maverick Vinales130
6Cal Crutchlow119
7Danilo Petrucci119
8Johann Zarco112
9Andrea Iannone108
10Alex Rins92
11Dani Pedrosa87
12Jack Miller68
13Alvaro Bautista64
14Tito Rabat35
15Pol Espargaro32
16Franco Morbidelli31
17Aleix Espargaro29
18Hafizh Syahrin24
19Bradley Smith18
20Takaaki Nakagami18
21Scott Redding12
22Mika Kallio6
23Karel Abraham5
24Michele Pirro1
25Thomas Luthi0
26Stefan Bradl0
27Xavier Simeon0
28Sylvain Guintoli0
29Christophe Ponsson0
29Jordi Torres0

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