Superior Ducati HP too much for Marquez to overcome

Jorge Lorenzo nips Marquez at the line
Jorge Lorenzo nips Marquez at the line

Pure HP and not rider skill has determined the outcome of recent MotoGP races and Sunday's race at the Red Bull Ring was no different.

On the next to last lap Marc Marquez passed leader Jorge Lorenzo in Turn 3 for the lead only to have the Ducati rider breeze past on the straight and the Honda rider just did not have the power to respond, eventually crossing the line 0.130s behind.

Andrea Dovizioso finished 3rd 1.6s behind in another Ducati.

Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) and Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) put on a show to remember at the Red Bull Ring in the eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Ã-sterreich, with the two dueling down to the wire in an instant classic and Lorenzo coming out on top for his third win of the season. Teammates in 2019, the five years in which Lorenzo and Marquez have shared the track have produced some legendary different battles at different circuits, but the number 93’s search for a win at Spielberg will have to continue. The man who beat him to the honour last season, Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team), completed the podium in third this time around.

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"]It was Marquez who had the initial advantage as he bolted away into the distance over the first laps, putting the hammer down early and leaving the Ducati duo of Lorenzo and Dovizioso trailing him by half a second, a second, then seven tenths as the gap was a constant concertina but a sizeable one nonetheless. In clear air the number 93’s tactics seemed immediately clear, and the bigger focus over the first laps was on the two Ducati men locked together behind him – almost close enough to look like one bike at a passing glance.

Dovizioso looked threatening and feinted a number of times but the Italian didn’t make a move. With the gap at the front staying constant and Marquez no longer gaining ground, the tide then began to turn as Lorenzo slowly reeled him in. By 11 laps to go the Ducatis were right back on the tail of the Honda but Lorenzo just ran it wide at Turn 3. Using the grunt of the Borgo Panigale machine, however, the number 99 recovered quickly to fire himself back into second and the lead trio remained in line, nothing between them… before Lorenzo decided to make his move.

Right on Marquez’ tail over the line and passing the reigning Champion into Turn 1, Lorenzo pulled the pin and took over at the front as teammate Dovizioso ran wide and dropped off the lead duo. But that lead duo didn’t stay the same way around for long as they dueled it out, heading a bit wide at one point before Lorenzo was back ahead and the two regrouped.

Marquez dives past Lorenzo
Marquez dives past Lorenzo

With 3 laps to go Lorenzo went wide at Turn 3 and Marquez went through, but of course the Ducati struck back – with a brutal move at Turn 9. On the penultimate lap Marquez again attacked at Turn 3, but Lorenzo led the two over the line to begin the final lap – and the gloves were most definitely off.

Locked together, the big attack came again at Turn 3 as Marquez dived straight for the inside – but Lorenzo held his line and was able to regain the ground immediately on the exit. Pushing hard and the Repsol Honda in second squiggling around in the braking zones, Marquez looked threatening around the remainder of the final lap but the 'Spartan' was not for being caught – taking the victory in style and denying Marquez the chance at a final lunge.

Behind 'DesmoDovi' in third, Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) put in an impressive performance to take fourth as top Independent Team rider to put his Spielberg demons to bed after two fifteenths over the past two years, with Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac Racing) also able to bounce back after a tough race at the venue last season to complete the top five. Petrucci now leads the Independent Team standings by a single point from Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3), with Crutchlow only another point back.

Marquez leads Ducatis
Marquez leads Ducatis

Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) put in a stunning ride through the field, with the rider from Tavullia moving through from fourteenth on the grid to fight off Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) in a high-calibre battle for sixth. Behind the two, Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) took eighth after mixing it at the front nearer the start, making for a solid result at a more difficult track for the Hamamatsu factory.

Johann Zarco took ninth as he beat with Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team) to the line – with Tito Rabat (Reale Avintia Racing) for close company. The three took P9, P10 and P11 respectively.

Maverick Vi̱ales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP), meanwhile, took P12 in a more difficult race after a difficult weekend, with Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) in thirteenth following an early run off for the 2016 winner. Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) took points for home factory KTM and put in a good race for fourteenth, with Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu) completing the points as top rookie Рjust ahead of Hafizh Syahrin (Monster Yamaha Tech 3).

Results 28 Laps

1 Jorge Lorenzo Ducati 0.000s
2 Marc Marquez Honda 0.130s
3 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1.656s
4 Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda 9.434s
5 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Ducati 13.169s
6 Valentino Rossi Yamaha 14.026s
7 Dani Pedrosa Honda 14.156s
8 Alex Rins Suzuki 16.644s
9 Johann Zarco Tech3 Yamaha 20.760s
10 Alvaro Bautista Aspar Ducati 20.844s
11 Tito Rabat Avintia Ducati 21.114s
12 Maverick Vinales Yamaha 22.939s
13 Andrea Iannone Suzuki 26.523s
14 Bradley Smith KTM 29.168s
15 Takaaki Nakagami LCR Honda 30.072s
16 Hafizh Syahrin Tech3 Yamaha 30.343s
17 Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 31.775s
18 Jack Miller Pramac Ducati 34.375s
19 Franco Morbidelli MVDS Honda 40.171s
20 Scott Redding Aprilia 53.020s
21 Karel Abraham Aspar Ducati 53.261s
22 Thomas Luthi MVDS Honda 54.355s
Xavier Simeon Avintia Ducati Crash

Point Standings

Pos. Rider Bike Nation Points
1 Marc MARQUEZ Honda SPA 201
2 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha ITA 142
3 Jorge LORENZO Ducati SPA 130
4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati ITA 129
5 Maverick VIÃ'ALES Yamaha SPA 113
6 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati ITA 105
7 Johann ZARCO Yamaha FRA 104
8 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda GBR 103
9 Andrea IANNONE Suzuki ITA 84
10 Alex RINS Suzuki SPA 66
11 Dani PEDROSA Honda SPA 66
12 Jack MILLER Ducati AUS 61
13 Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati SPA 57
14 Tito RABAT Ducati SPA 35
16 Hafizh SYAHRIN Yamaha MAL 24
17 Franco MORBIDELLI Honda ITA 22
18 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia SPA 17
19 Bradley SMITH KTM GBR 15
20 Scott REDDING Aprilia GBR 12
21 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda JPN 11
23 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati CZE 4
24 Thomas LUTHI Honda SWI
25 Stefan BRADL Honda GER
26 Xavier SIMEON Ducati BEL
27 Sylvain GUINTOLI Suzuki FRA

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