MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix 2013
Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team RC213V) again increased his lead in the 2013 MotoGP World Championship with a thrilling ride to second place in today's San Marino Grand Prix. Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team RC213V) finished third, just behind his team-mate, while the race was won by Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha). Pedrosa and Lorenzo are now tied on points, 34 behind Marquez, with five of 18 races remaining.
Although Marquez dominated qualifying yesterday, more than half a second ahead of Lorenzo, he went into the race after a fall in this morning's warm-up, his second tumble of the weekend. The remarkable MotoGP rookie didn't make the best of starts and had to work to pass Pedrosa – who had made a brilliant start from the second row – while struggling to find his best-possible rhythm with a full tank of fuel. That difficulty caused the 20-year-old to make a couple of mistakes at the Quercia left-hander, the second of which saw him run off the track while right behind his team-mate. That lost him a lot of time and put him behind Valentino Rossi (Yamaha).
By this stage of the race Lorenzo was already well gone – 2.9 seconds ahead of Pedrosa. Marquez spent the next 13 laps making up for his mistakes, setting the fastest lap of the race in the process. It took him eight laps to pass Rossi and a further five to get the better of Pedrosa.
For the next few laps the Spanish pair livened up the race as they attacked and counter-attacked each other. Pedrosa found a way past with six laps remaining, but Marquez came back at his compatriot later the same lap. He then started chipping away at Lorenzo's three-second advantage, but soon realized that trying to catch the reigning champion would demand too many risks, so he settled for second. It was his 12th podium from his first 13 MotoGP races.
Pedrosa stayed close to Marquez but the former 250 and 125 World Champion was struggling with grip issues, as he had during practice, so he couldn't find a way through and crossed the line half a second down on the reigning Moto2 World Champion.
Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP RC213V) spent the race shadowing Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha), then passed the Briton at Turn Seven on the final lap to take fifth place, seven seconds behind Rossi. It was a strong result from the young German who came back well from a big tumble on Friday.
Alvaro Bautista (GO & FUN Honda Gresini RC213V) had a mostly lonely ride to seventh at his team's home Grand Prix. Although he recorded the fifth fastest lap of the race he struggled throughout getting his bike to turn into corners, a problem he hadn't come across in practice.
Bryan Staring (GO & FUN Honda Gresini FTR Honda) had a luckless race, his machine struck by gremlins that causing him to pull out with only a few laps to go.
The duel for the Honda-powered Moto2 World Championship swung back in the favor of Pol Espargaro (Tuenti HP40 Kalex) today, the Spaniard scoring a brilliant, hard-charging win while main rival Scott Redding (Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex) struggled to sixth. Two weeks ago at Silverstone it was the other way around, with Redding taking the win and Espargaro coming home in eighth spot.
Although Espargaro started from pole position and led the first few laps it was Takaaki Nakagami (Italtrans Racing Team Kalex) who dominated most of the race. At the halfway stage the Japanese was two seconds ahead of Espargaro and looked set for his first Grand Prix win. But once again his pace faltered in the last laps while Espargaro got into the groove, thanks to his crew successfully adapting his bike to a new rear slick, recently introduced by Dunlop. Espargaro carved big chunks out of the leader's advantage to take the lead at the start of the penultimate lap. Nakagami had no reply, crossing the line 0.6 seconds down on the winner and 1.2 seconds ahead of Esteve Rabat (Tuenti HP 40 Kalex).
Redding started from the second row and was never in the hunt for the win. He spent most of the 26 laps in the second group and lost several positions as the race went on.
Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Paddock Moto2 Racing Suter) came on strong in the later stages to lead the group home in fourth, with Dominique Aegerter (Technomag carXpert Suter) fifth and Redding sixth after pouncing on Johann Zarco (Came Iodaracing Project Suter) at the last corner of the last lap. The Briton had gone into this race 38 points ahead of Espargaro. Now he goes to the next race at Aragon defending a 23 point advantage.
Xavier Simeon (Maptag SAG Zelos Team Kalex) was five seconds further back in eighth spot, just ahead of Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex). Nicolas Terol (Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2 Suter) completed the top ten.
Jack Miller (Caretta Technology – RTG FTR Honda) had a superb ride in the Moto3 race, running with the five-man second group throughout and launching a stunning attack on the last lap that promoted him to fifth place, his best result of the year. The Australian teenager bore the marks of the closely fought battle, with his leathers scuffed black from contact with his rivals' machines.
Niccolo Antonelli (GO & FUN Gresini Moto3 FTR Honda) was in the thick of the same group and passed Miller several times, but the Italian didn't fare so well in the crucial final laps and ended up at the back of the group in eighth position.
Romano Fenati (San Carlo Team Italia FTR Honda) fought his way into the top ten in the final stages, after having stormed through from 22nd at the end of the first lap. Isaac Vinales (Ongetta-Centro Seta FTR Honda) was the final Honda points scorer in 14th.
The race was won by Alex Rins, who narrowly beat fellow KTM rider Maverick Vinales after a race-long duel.
Most MotoGP teams will stay at Misano tomorrow for testing, before heading to Spain for the Aragon Grand Prix on September 29. That race is followed by three ‘flyaway' event on consecutive weekends in Malaysia, Australia and Japan. The season has its grand finale at Valencia in Spain, on November 10.
|1||Jorge LORENZO (Yamaha Factory Racing)|
|2||Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team)|
|3||Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)|
|4||Valentino ROSSI (Yamaha Factory Racing)|
|5||Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)|
|6||Cal CRUTCHLOW (Monster Yamaha Tech 3)|
|7||Alvaro BAUTISTA (GO&FUN Honda Gresini)|
|8||Andrea DOVIZIOSO (Ducati Team)|
|9||Nicky HAYDEN (Ducati Team)|
|10||Michele PIRRO (Ignite Pramac Racing)|
|11||Bradley SMITH (Monster Yamaha Tech 3)|
|12||Colin EDWARDS (NGM Mobile Forward Racing)|
|13||Aleix ESPARGARO (Power Electronics Aspar)|
|14||Hiroshi AOYAMA (Avintia Blusens)|
|15||Danilo PETRUCCI (Came IodaRacing Project)|
|1||Pol ESPARGARO (Tuenti HP 40)|
|2||Takaaki NAKAGAMI (Italtrans Racing Team)|
|3||Esteve RABAT (Tuenti HP 40)|
|4||Thomas LUTHI (Interwetten Paddock Moto2 Racing)|
|5||Dominique AEGERTER (Technomag carXpert)|
|6||Scott REDDING (Marc VDS Racing Team)|
|7||Johann ZARCO (Came Iodaracing Project)|
|8||Xavier SIMEON (Maptaq SAG Zelos Team)|
|9||Mika KALLIO (Marc VDS Racing Team)|
|10||Nicolas TEROL (Aspar Team Moto2)|
|11||Anthony WEST (QMMF Racing Team)|
|12||Mattia PASINI (NGM Mobile Racing)|
|13||Julian SIMON (Italtrans Racing Team)|
|14||Marcel SCHROTTER (Maptaq SAG Zelos Team)|
|15||Alex DE ANGELIS (NGM Mobile Forward Racing)|
|1||Alex RINS (Estrella Galicia 0,0)|
|2||Maverick VIÑALES (Team Calvo)|
|3||Alex MARQUEZ (Estrella Galicia 0,0)|
|4||Luis SALOM (Red Bull KTM Ajo)|
|5||Jack MILLER (Caretta Technology - RTG)|
|6||Zulfahmi KHAIRUDDIN (Red Bull KTM Ajo)|
|7||Miguel OLIVEIRA (Mahindra Racing)|
|8||Niccolò ANTONELLI (GO & FUN Gresini Moto3)|
|9||Philipp OETTL (Tec Interwetten Moto3)|
|10||Romano FENATI (San Carlo Team Italia)|
|11||Niklas AJO (Avant Tecno)|
|12||Efren VAZQUEZ (Mahindra Racing)|
|13||Jakub KORNFEIL (Redox RW Racing GP)|
|14||Isaac VIÑALES (Ongetta-Centro Seta)|
|15||Arthur SISSIS (Red Bull KTM Ajo)|