Jorge Lorenzo handed Ducati their third consecutive Austrian Grand Prix victory as Marc Marquez was denied in another final lap showdown in Spielberg. Lorenzo came out on top in a thrilling late duel with the reigning champion who has extended his championship lead to 59 points over Valentino Rossi who battled his way to sixth.
Given their pace through practice and qualifying, the three front row starters were expected to have the front of the race all to themselves and so it proved, with Marquez opening up an early advantage of just under a second. The Ducati riders rode in formation with Andrea Dovizioso choosing not to attack his team-mate and that proved a sensible strategy as Lorenzo towed the pair up to the no.93 Honda.
With ten laps to go, the fortunes of the two Ducati riders began to take opposite turns with Lorenzo outbraking Marquez into turn one while the battling up ahead caused Dovizioso to outbrake himself, dropping him out of slipstreaming range and leaving the two Spaniards to dispute the victory. Marquez made his intentions clear with a forceful move into turn three on the penultimate lap, but the final 4.3km would ultimately decide things.
Lorenzo attacked immediately into turn one, sweeping past Marquez, but the world champion looked set to repeat his move from a lap earlier at turn three. Curiously though, Marc offered his compatriot more room on this occasion, leaving the path clear for Jorge to accelerate ahead on the outside, and that was all the Ducati rider needed to secure his third win of the season.
Dovizioso trailed home in third ahead of a lonely Cal Crutchlow who took a fine fourth for LCR. Danilo Petrucci was fifth while Valentino Rossi rode superbly to salvage sixth ahead of Dani Pedrosa on a dreadful weekend for Yamaha. Alex Rins lost ground in the latter stages to wind up eighth ahead of Johann Zarco while Alvaro Bautista pipped Tito Rabat on the run to the line to grab tenth.
2018 eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Osterreich: (Result)
|1||99. Jorge Lorenzo||Ducati||Ducati Team||39:40.688||25|
|2||93. Marc Marquez||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+0.130||20|
|3||4. Andrea Dovizioso||Ducati||Ducati Team||+1.656||16|
|4||35. Cal Crutchlow||Honda||LCR Honda Castrol||+9.434||13|
|5||9. Danilo Petrucci||Ducati||Alma Pramac Racing||+13.169||11|
|6||46. Valentino Rossi||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||+14.026||10|
|7||26. Dani Pedrosa||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+14.156||9|
|8||42. Alex Rins||Suzuki||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||+16.644||8|
|9||5. Johann Zarco||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+20.760||7|
|10||19. Alvaro Bautista||Ducati||Angel Nieto Team||+20.844||6|
|11||53. Tito Rabat||Ducati||Reale Avintia Racing||+21.114||5|
|12||25. Maverick Vinales||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||+22.939||4|
|13||29. Andrea Iannone||Suzuki||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||+26.523||3|
|14||38. Bradley Smith||KTM||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||+29.168||2|
|15||30. Takaaki Nakagami||Honda||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||+30.072||1|
|16||55. Hafizh Syahrin||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+30.343|
|17||41. Aleix Espargaro||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||+31.775|
|18||43. Jack Miller||Ducati||Alma Pramac Racing||+34.375|
|19||21. Franco Morbidelli||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||+40.171|
|20||45. Scott Redding||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||+53.020|
|21||17. Karel Abraham||Ducati||Angel Nieto Team||+53.261|
|22||12. Thomas Luthi||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||+54.355|
|NC||10. Xavier Simeon||Ducati||Reale Avintia Racing||+18 Laps|