Marc Marquez (l) claimed his sixth MotoGP win of the year while Valentino Rossi (r) was back on the podium in third. Marc Marquez (l) claimed his sixth MotoGP win of the year while Valentino Rossi (r) was back on the podium in third. Photo courtesy motogp.com

Marquez survives clash with Pedrosa for win

Written by  on Monday, 30 September 2013 18:21

Marc Marquez increased his possibilities of becoming a rookie MotoGP™ World Champion by claiming his sixth victory of 2013 in the Gran Premio Iveco de Aragón on Sunday. Current title holder Jorge Lorenzo was overtaken by the newcomer en route to second place, as Dani Pedrosa crashed out of the race on the sixth lap.

“Today was a very gruelling race,” Marquez admitted, “because I had to make two comebacks; the first was to catch Jorge after he broke free at the start, then I needed to make another after Dani passed me and I wanted to overtake him after two laps. I was eventually able to overtake Jorge and take the victory, which is important in terms of both the 25 points and for my morale."

Starting from his seventh pole position of the season, Marquez had beaten Lorenzo by one hundredth of a second on Saturday whereas last year’s Aragón winner Pedrosa was starting on the front row for the first time since Indianapolis.

Yamaha Factory Racing’s Lorenzo grabbed the lead at the start, as the Repsol Honda Team riders immediately went to battle at the second corner.

The critical moment of the afternoon, and perhaps of the 2013 World Championship, would come on lap six. As both Hondas closed in on Lorenzo for the lead, Marquez ran third but appeared to out-brake himself at turn 12. Moments later, Pedrosa dramatically highsided out of the race and it was later confirmed that the two teammates had made contact.

“Unfortunately, it looks like they slightly touched each other and the sensor for rear wheel speed was broken,” team principal Livio Suppo confirmed. “After that, there was no more traction control and that is why Dani crashed. He is back in the garage and he is OK.”

“I felt comfortable but I went a little wide under braking, lifted the bike up and made light contact with him,” Marquez explained. “I'm not sure he even noticed it, but it was a bit of bad luck because the team told me I caused his traction control cable to snap and I'm sorry for that - it's something very unusual to see. The important thing is that Dani is OK.”

As Pedrosa - on his 28th birthday - retired from a race for the first time this season, Marquez went on to pass Lorenzo and celebrate his sixth victory of 2013.

When sharing his opinion over the clash, Pedrosa was not mixing words:

“I was going into the corner. He was over the limit, completely missed the braking, tried to avoid me and at that moment touched me a little bit and went off. When I opened the gas, the cable of the traction control was broken so I had a big highside and couldn’t really avoid the crash, unfortunately.

“The positive part is that I am physically OK. I had a big impact on my hip and my lower back, but it is nothing really to worry about at the moment. I am just hoping to get physically well for the next race. I have zero points (as a result of the incident) but it wasn’t my mistake today - that is what I take from it.”

The moment allowed Lorenzo to extend his lead to 1.7 seconds, although he was caught by Marquez and overhauled at the same corner eight laps later.

The championship lead now increases to 39 points with 100 left on offer.

“Like always, I tried to open up a gap at the beginning, but when Marc recovered all of that gap I just relaxed to try and save a bit of energy to try and be with him at the end of the race,” Lorenzo said. “Really, he was stronger all weekend. I pushed to the limits to follow him, but it was impossible. No excuses. He was faster today and we have to think about the next race.”

Lorenzo also explained the set-up changes made on Sunday and how he had hoped they would improve his performance, ultimately to no avail, stating, “The tactic was to try and improve the bike in the warm-up. Finally, we gained a little bit with turn-in. The turn-in was better but on braking it was worse – I was losing so much compared with Marc.”

Lorenzo’s teammate Valentino Rossi finished on the podium for the first time since Laguna Seca, fending off GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista, LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl and Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Cal Crutchlow in a highly entertaining four-rider contest.

“At the end, the battle was very hard,” Rossi admitted. “I always had Bradl very close and in the end I had Bautista, who was also very fast; he overtook me and was able to make up a bit of a gap. Afterwards, I was able to come back and overtake and did the last lap very much on the limit because I wanted to try and arrive on the podium. Also, I had to pay attention because Crutchlow was not so far behind.”

Although satisfied to be up on the rostrum again, the Yamaha Factory Racing rider acknowledged he wanted to be closer to the front, having finished 13 seconds adrift of Marquez.

“It is always positive and a great result to be on the podium, but I expected a little bit more from the race,” he continued. “I want to go faster and be closer to the top guys because all weekend, especially yesterday, it was not so bad. I decided for the harder tire on the front – Jorge and Marc had the softer – and after some laps I was in a lot of trouble with understeer and under braking. I tried the maximum and wasn’t strong enough, but this result is good for the team and I and we will try again next time in Malaysia.”

Tech3’s Bradley Smith, Ducati Team duo Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden and Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone completed the top 10, while Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was once again the leading CRT runner in 11th spot.

Nico Terol completed a dominant performance of the Moto2™ Gran Premio Iveco de Aragón, celebrating a lights-to-flag victory on Sunday afternoon. Tito Rabat finished second while Pol Espargaro came out on top after a superb battle with title rival Scott Redding, who finished fourth from 13th on the grid.

Having turned 25 on Friday, Terol (Aspar Team Moto2) would sail to his first ever intermediate class pole position and was joined on the front row by Tuenti HP 40 pairing Rabat and Espargaro. Delayed by traffic throughout qualifying, Marc VDS Racing Team’s Redding was left 13th – his joint worst grid position of 2013.

As Terol enjoyed a clean start, arguably the best getaway came from Redding who just minutes into the race was already inside the top five.

Terol was untouchable and would enjoy career victory number 15 after taking the chequered flag 1.7 seconds in front of Rabat. Espargaro finally came out on top in the duel for the final podium slot, but only after a mesmerizing, fairing-to-fairing contest with Redding as the Spaniard and Englishman continued to swap positions over the second half of the race - at one point making contact as the championship leader overtook in a daring maneuver at the final corner. The final exchanging of places came on the penultimate tour, with Espargaro defending the line into Turn 16 while Redding’s teammate Mika Kallio kept a watching brief from fifth place, having performed a climb of 10 places since the start of the race.

Redding’s championship lead over Espargaro reduces to 20 points with four rounds remaining.

Alex Rins won the Moto3™ Gran Premio Iveco de Aragón, beating Maverick Viñales after a race-long battle. Alex Marquez made the podium, while championship leader Luis Salom fought up to fourth place but saw his points advantage decrease.

Having grown up just minutes from the MotorLand Aragón circuit, Rins claimed his sixth pole position of the season on Saturday afternoon. He would never drop out of the fight for the lead on Sunday, which was first between himself, Team Calvo’s Viñales and Estrella Galicia 0,0 teammate Marquez before becoming a two-horse race. The leaders – who in the points table both close in on championship leader Salom – would take the battle down to the wire, but a well-judged piece of riding from Rins saw him head onto the kilometre-long back straight in front on the final lap, then extending the gap.

Marquez experienced a somewhat quiet race en route to the final podium slot, while Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Salom made the most of his damage limitation exercise to rise from eighth on the grid to fourth. This leaves Salom with a nine-point advantage over Rins, who now jumps three points ahead of Viñales with four races remaining in the season.

The drama will continue at the Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix in two weekends’ time.

MotoGP Race Results

1

25

93

Marc MARQUEZ

SPA

Repsol Honda Team

Honda

166.6

42'03.459

2

20

99

Jorge LORENZO

SPA

Yamaha Factory Racing

Yamaha

166.5

+1.356

3

16

46

Valentino ROSSI

ITA

Yamaha Factory Racing

Yamaha

165.7

+12.927

4

13

19

Alvaro BAUTISTA

SPA

GO&FUN Honda Gresini

Honda

165.7

+13.787

5

11

6

Stefan BRADL

GER

LCR Honda MotoGP

Honda

165.7

+13.973

6

10

35

Cal CRUTCHLOW

GBR

Monster Yamaha Tech 3

Yamaha

165.6

+14.662

7

9

38

Bradley SMITH

GBR

Monster Yamaha Tech 3

Yamaha

164.5

+31.220

8

8

4

Andrea DOVIZIOSO

ITA

Ducati Team

Ducati

163.9

+40.671

9

7

69

Nicky HAYDEN

USA

Ducati Team

Ducati

163.1

+53.413

10

6

29

Andrea IANNONE

ITA

Energy T.I. Pramac Racing

Ducati

163.0

+55.067

11

5

41

Aleix ESPARGARO

SPA

Power Electronics Aspar

ART

162.8

+58.001

12

4

68

Yonny HERNANDEZ

COL

Ignite Pramac Racing

Ducati

162.4

+1'05.513

13

3

14

Randy DE PUNIET

FRA

Power Electronics Aspar

ART

162.3

+1'06.589

14

2

7

Hiroshi AOYAMA

JPN

Avintia Blusens

FTR

162.2

+1'08.674

15

1

71

Claudio CORTI

ITA

NGM Mobile Forward Racing

FTR Kawasaki

162.1

+1'09.130

16

5

Colin EDWARDS

USA

NGM Mobile Forward Racing

FTR Kawasaki

161.9

+1'12.041

17

23

Luca SCASSA

ITA

Cardion AB Motoracing

ART

159.9

+1'45.152

18

67

Bryan STARING

AUS

GO&FUN Honda Gresini

FTR Honda

159.9

+1'45.228

19

52

Lukas PESEK

CZE

Came IodaRacing Project

Ioda-Suter

159.9

+1'45.583

Not Classified

8

Hector BARBERA

SPA

Avintia Blusens

FTR

157.8

15 Laps

26

Dani PEDROSA

SPA

Repsol Honda Team

Honda

166.7

18 Laps

50

Damian CUDLIN

AUS

Paul Bird Motorsport

PBM

152.2

20 Laps

9

Danilo PETRUCCI

ITA

Came IodaRacing Project

Ioda-Suter

0 Lap

70

Michael LAVERTY

GBR

Paul Bird Motorsport

ART

0 Lap

MotoGP Point Standings

1

Marc MARQUEZ

Honda

SPA

278

2

Jorge LORENZO

Yamaha

SPA

239

3

Dani PEDROSA

Honda

SPA

219

4

Valentino ROSSI

Yamaha

ITA

185

5

Cal CRUTCHLOW

Yamaha

GBR

156

6

Stefan BRADL

Honda

GER

135

7

Alvaro BAUTISTA

Honda

SPA

125

8

Andrea DOVIZIOSO

Ducati

ITA

112

9

Nicky HAYDEN

Ducati

USA

102

10

Bradley SMITH

Yamaha

GBR

80

11

Aleix ESPARGARO

ART

SPA

76

12

Michele PIRRO

Ducati

ITA

50

13

Andrea IANNONE

Ducati

ITA

47

14

Colin EDWARDS

FTR Kawasaki

USA

31

15

Hector BARBERA

FTR

SPA

27

16

Randy DE PUNIET

ART

FRA

23

17

Danilo PETRUCCI

Ioda-Suter

ITA

23

18

Yonny HERNANDEZ

Ducati

COL

11

19

Ben SPIES

Ducati

USA

9

20

Claudio CORTI

FTR Kawasaki

ITA

8

21

Hiroshi AOYAMA

FTR

JPN

8

22

Alex DE ANGELIS

Ducati

RSM

5

23

Karel ABRAHAM

ART

CZE

5

24

Michael LAVERTY

PBM

GBR

3

25

Bryan STARING

FTR Honda

AUS

2

26

Javier DEL AMOR

FTR

SPA

1

--From motogp.com

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