Jorge Lorenzo has moved into second place in the MotoGP world championship after a dominant victory at Misano. After his record breaking pole position, Marc Marquez was never on terms with the Yamaha and was forced into a fierce battle with his teammate Dani Pedrosa before securing second, extending his championship lead overall to 34 points.
For the second race weekend running, Marquez started his Sunday with a crash in warm-up although this one was nowhere near as damaging as his Silverstone slip-up. Within a split second of the red lights going out though, his victory hopes were quashed as Lorenzo and Pedrosa powered past him. Aleix Espargaro’s race was ruined even earlier with the Aspar rider jumping the start, putting his incredible qualifying performance to waste and landing himself a ride through penalty.
Within three laps, Lorenzo was 2.2 seconds up the road from the leading Repsol Honda and Marquez made his life even more difficult by sliding wide at Quercia on lap five, relinquishing third to Valentino Rossi. The championship leader seemed a little subdued after his error before finally coming to life on lap thirteen with a sublime pass on Rossi at Tramanto and the fight was now on between the two Repsol Hondas.
With twelve laps to go, Marc caught Dani napping by ducking underneath him at turn two but Pedrosa wasn’t taking that lying down, acutely aware of the significance of their battle for the title race. On lap 22, the elder Spaniard regained second at Tramanto, handing Marquez a taste of his own medicine, but the fight would eventually be settled in Marc’s favour after a forceful move at turn fourteen.
Lorenzo had long since escaped and has now matched Marquez with five wins for the season. Behind the Repsol Hondas, Rossi faded to fourth, fifteen seconds off the lead, while Stefan Bradl snatched fifth from Cal Crutchlow after outdragging him into turn eleven on the very last lap. Alvaro Bautista took seventh ahead of a trio of Ducatis with Andrea Dovizioso, Nicky Hayden and Michele Pirro rounding out the top ten while Bradley Smith salvaged five points out of a tough weekend by bringing his Tech 3 Yamaha home in eleventh. Espargaro’s earlier indiscretion cost him the honour of top CRT rider as he lost twelfth to Colin Edwards.