Marquez wins after main rivals are taken out of Catalan Grand Prix

by Joshua Close
Marc Marquez wins Catalan Grand Prix

Marc Marquez dominated the Catalan Grand Prix after his main rivals were taken out by Jorge Lorenzo.

Marquez had nobody to challenge him during the race, as a result of Andrea Dovizioso, Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi hitting the deck. The trio were taken out by Lorenzo at turn 10 on the second lap.

Behind him, a fantastic battle took place for second. Fabio Quartararo, who started from pole, eventually came out on top to claim his first-ever MotoGP podium. The Frenchman fought back from a poor start, with a collision with Marquez sending him down the order.

Danilo Petrucci completed the podium after a resilient display on the Ducati. The Mugello winner struggled for grip towards the end of the race but rode very smartly. This is his third podium on the bounce.

Alex Rins took fourth spot to stay within touching distance of Dovizioso in the championship. Jack Miller had late race pace to secure fifth, with Joan Mir taking sixth.

Pol Espargaro produced another strong performance on the KTM in seventh. Takaaki Nakagami was eighth, with Tito Rabat and Johann Zarco completing the top 10.

The race was a chaotic one, with only 13 riders finishing. As a result, Andrea Iannone, Miguel Oliveira and Sylvain Guintoli also secured points.

Cal Crutchlow crashed out whilst challenging Miller with six laps remaining. Others who crashed out include Franco Mordidelli and Franceso Bagnaia, whilst Aleix Espargaro and Bradley Smith clashed on lap one. The Aprilia duo’s incident is under investigation. Espargaro needed assistance to get off his bike.

At the race start Dovizioso launched from fifth to take the lead into turn one. Vinales moved up to second, whilst Lorenzo slotted into fourth. Quartararo fell to eighth after contact from Marquez at turn four.

On the opening lap Karel Abraham crashed out, whilst Smith and Aleix Espargaro hit each other. Espargaro made it back to the pits and retired.

Marquez took second coming down the home straight to begin lap two. He then went down the inside of Dovizioso at turn 10, where a race-changing incident was about to take place.

Lorenzo was heading down the inside of Viñales, however he came in too hot and lost the front. As a result, he hit the back of Dovizioso’s bike. Viñales was knocked down by the Ducati, whilst Rossi had nowhere to go and clipped Lorenzo’s Honda.

Arguably, the three main race contenders were taken out of contention. As a result, Marquez was able to pull away from the field instantly.

Petrucci was now up to second, with Rins and Quartararo battling for third. Moments later, Bagnaia crashed out of the race at turn five.

After getting by Quartararo, Rins set his sights on Petrucci. Rins was much stronger in the corners, however he would lose out down the straights. Rins was becoming more and more frustrated. With 11 laps to go he pushed his way down the inside at turn four. The pair hit each other, however Rins was able to make to move stick.

Behind them, a similar battle was taking place between Miller and Quartararo. Miller had the advantage down the straight, whilst Quartararo had the corner speed advantage.

Petrucci used Ducati power to get back by Rins heading into turn one. Rins tried to fight back the following lap, however he came in too hot and went off the circuit. He rejoined in sixth, before losing out to Mir. Ahead of him, Quartararo had taken advantage of the near miss and moved into second.

Miller and Crutchlow were ahead of the Suzuki pair. Crutchlow went for the overtake into turn four, however he carried too much speed, went wide and fell.

Meanwhile, Rins got the better of his team-mate and also had the tyre life to overtake Miller before the end of the race.

An the front, Quartararo was beginning to catch Marquez. However, having to fight through the field gave him too much to do. As a result, Marquez crossed the line to take his fourth win of 2019.

Marquez now has a 37-point lead over Dovizioso in the standings. Rins is a further two points back in third, with Petrucci fourth overall.

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