Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia

MotoGP News: Bagnaia holds off Marquez to win at Jerez

With his Spanish fans cheering him on, Marc Marquez on a year-old Ducati chased Italian factory Ducati rider Francesco Bagnaia across the finish line in the Gran Premio Estrella Galicia 0,0 de Espana MotoGP race at Jerez.

With five laps to go, polesitter Marquez passed Bagnaia for the lead, after initially dropping back to 4th at the start, but Bagnaia responded and took it back.

But from there Bagnaia put in a scorching 1m37.449s lap and stretched his lead over the Spaniard who just did not have enough juice in his year-old bike against the superior factory Ducati.

Bagnaia’s margin at the line was 0.372 seconds. Marquez got his first Sunday podium since Motegi last year.

The Italian showed why he is #1, defending from #93 all the way to the line – after a Grand Prix where they pushed each other to the limits with tactics, contact, and too many overtakes to count, all in 25 laps of yet another Jerez classic.

It was a record-breaking Spanish GP, with almost 300,000 fans flooding the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto – some arriving before 7 am. Those fans were treated to an absolute blockbuster after a dramatic Grand Prix, which will be spoken about for a long time.

Marco Bezzecchi (Pertamina Enduro VR46 Racing Team) was third and was only able to watch the battle for the lead – a further 3.531s behind as the duel at the head of the race pulled clear. So where was Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing)? The Championship leader crashed out of the lead of the race, only able to watch from the sidelines.

25 riders roared to the first corner, with pole-sitter Marc Marquez leading the field, to the delight of the Spanish fans. However, it was Martin who pounced to second before Bagnaia pulled off an unbelievable move around the outside to snatch second from the Spaniard. The battle was officially on.

Bagnaia’s aggressive start allowed the #1 to steal first place at the end of the first lap, dropping Marquez to third. The Italian soon made a mistake at the end of lap two, undoing all his hard work and allowing Martin to have a clear track ahead. It was the battle of Martin and Bagnaia for a handful of laps, with Bezzecchi soon getting the better of Marc Marquez.

Further down the order, it was a bad start for Pedro Acosta (Red Bull GASGAS Tech3), who had crashed in Warm Up and had now dropped to 17th in the race. Meanwhile Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull GASGAS Tech3) had a start that was too good to be true – receiving a double LLP and then a ride-through penalty for not serving the original penalty.

However, with 15 laps remaining, everything unfolded for Martin, who lost the front in the race lead – destroying hopes of a victory. This left Bagnaia at the front, who led from Marquez after the #93 was able to charge through at the turn six to overtake Bezzecchi – sending the Spanish fans to their feet.

Marc Marquez battles Francesco Bagnaia
Marc Marquez battles Francesco Bagnaia

The last five laps were incredible, as two Champions were locked together on track – fighting for the same piece of tarmac. Everything was on the line, shown by Marc Marquez, who tried to make a heroic pass at turn nine, with Bagnaia able to fight back instantly. Marc Marquez was on a mission and tried again one lap later before Bagnaia responded to smash the race lap record. Bagnaia continued to respond, however, riding the lap of his life, and fending off Marc Marquez to win by 0.372s after pinpoint precision on the last lap.

MotoGP Race Results

Pos No. Rider Nat Team Time / Gap
1 1 Francesco Bagnaia ITA Ducati Lenovo (GP24) 40:58.053
2 93 Marc Marquez SPA Gresini Ducati (GP23) +0.372
3 72 Marco Bezzecchi ITA VR46 Ducati (GP23) +3.903
4 73 Alex Marquez SPA Gresini Ducati (GP23) +7.205
5 23 Enea Bastianini ITA Ducati Lenovo (GP24) +7.253
6 33 Brad Binder RSA Red Bull KTM (RC16) +7.801
7 49 Fabio Di Giannantonio ITA VR46 Ducati (GP23) +10.063
8 88 Miguel Oliveira POR Trackhouse Aprilia (RS-GP24) +10.979
9 12 Maverick Viñales SPA Aprilia Factory (RS-GP24) +11.217
10 31 Pedro Acosta SPA Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 (RC16) +20.762
11 25 Raul Fernandez SPA Trackhouse Aprilia (RS-GP23) +23.508
12 36 Joan Mir SPA Repsol Honda (RC213V) +23.584
13 42 Alex Rins SPA Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1) +28.452
14 30 Takaaki Nakagami JPN LCR Honda (RC213V) +29.049
15 20 Fabio Quartararo FRA Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1) +32.015
16 6 Stefan Bradl GER HRC Test Team (RC213V) +41.433
17 10 Luca Marini ITA Repsol Honda (RC213V) +43.323
DNF 37 Augusto Fernandez SPA Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 (RC16) 19 laps
DNF 21 Jack Miller AUS Red Bull KTM (RC16) 17 laps
DNF 43 Franco Morbidelli ITA Pramac Ducati (GP24) 17 laps
DNF 32 Lorenzo Savadori ITA Aprilia Factory (RS-GP24) 11 laps
DNF 89 Jorge Martin SPA Pramac Ducati (GP24) 10 laps
DNF 41 Johann Zarco FRA LCR Honda (RC213V) 9 laps
DNF 5 Aleix Espargaro SPA Aprilia Factory (RS-GP24) 9 laps
DNF 26 Daniel Pedrosa SPA Red Bull KTM (RC16) 3 laps




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