Moto GP

Marc Marquez Wins Chaotic Misano GP As Rossi Extends Points Lead


Marc Marquez has one of the most dramatic MotoGP races ever ahead of Bradley Smith and Scott Redding, with Rossi in fifth.

Repsol Honda‰Ûªs Marquez took his fourth win of the season at the Gran Premio TIM di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini in some of the most difficult conditions the MotoGP‰ã¢ World Championship has seen in recent years. The Spaniard took his 23rd MotoGP‰ã¢ victory after gambling in a flag-to-flag race that saw most riders pit twice due to the changing conditions.

A record 92,000 fans at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli bore witness to an incredible spectacle but were denied a Valentino Rossi victory as the Italian crossed the line in fifth. Rossi managed to extend his lead in the championship standings to 23 points over teammate Lorenzo after the Spaniard crashed out of the race in second.

There was drama on the grid as drops of rain started to fall, riders setting off on their Warm Up lap with baited breath. Meanwhile, Ducati Team‰Ûªs wildcard Michele Pirro had an issue with his GP15 and was forced to start from pit lane on his second bike, equipped with wet tyres.

The rest of the MotoGP䋢 field started on slicks with Jorge Lorenzo setting a scalding pace from the start with a trademark launch off the line. Small battles emerged throughout the opening lap, but drama came as the white flags were flown on lap two. This signaled that all riders were able to come in and swap to their second bikes if conditions deteriorated.

Lorenzo forged ahead undeterred with Marc Marquez close behind, the duo able to break away from Valentino Rossi who struggled in the opening laps. All the while rained continued to fall, some riders pushed even harder in the conditions while many tiptoed around, waiting to follow their rivals into the pits.

By lap six the pace had dropped by close to six seconds and Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) found himself battling the Ducati Team pair of Andrea Iannone and Andrea Dovizioso, but the riders were visibly timid in the tricky conditions.
Lorenzo lead the race early -
Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Racing‰Ûªs Scott Redding had been involved in this battle for fourth, but on the seventh lap disaster struck as the Brit ran on and dropped his Honda. Determined as ever, he sprinted to his bike and dove into the pits for wet tyres. By this stage the majority of MotoGP‰ã¢ riders had also opted for wet bike change, just the front three of Lorenzo, Rossi and Marquez staying out.

As is usual in racing, the top three all dove into the pits together, adopting the same strategy as your rival is often the safest option in unusual circumstances such as the San Marino GP. Even in pit lane there was drama as Marquez and Lorenzo almost collided, the Yamaha rider gesturing to Marquez to ‰Û÷stay calm‰Ûª as they returned to track.

With the three re-joining at the same time, it was clear Lorenzo and Marquez had a quicker pace than Rossi and the Italian soon found himself 2.5 seconds behind Lorenzo. Lorenzo himself was able to get through on Marquez at Turn 8 when the Honda rider ran wide on the tenth lap. All riders found it difficult to tell where was wet and where was dry as the new Misano surface is quite dark.

But as the track began to dry, Rossi began to fly. The Italian gaining over a second a lap on the two leaders with each circulation, despite his front wet tyre rapidly starting to deteriorate. Worried mechanics worked hurriedly in pit lane, preparing bikes for a second change of the race.

Loris Baz (Forward Racing) was one of the first to jump back onto slicks, the Open rider soon finding himself inside the top ten as the rest of the field also opted to change back. Meanwhile, Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) was struggling outside the points having remained on slicks throughout the entire race. The Brit followed his instincts to risk it after missing the opportunity to change with the rest of the pack.
Nothing could seperate the top three riders early in the race until mother nature stepped in.
Again, it was the top three who stuck together and stayed out long after the others. Rossi and Lorenzo battling tooth and claw for multiple laps as Marquez played it safe, waiting behind the Yamaha pair and assessing their tyres. On lap 18 Marquez decided it was time to swap back to slicks, a move that would prove to be a masterstroke. Lorenzo would join Marquez on slicks the following lap while Rossi continued to push ahead, 92,000 fans roaring in approval.

Disaster struck as ‰Û÷The Doctor‰Ûª pitted, with just seven laps to go Lorenzo fell at Turn 15. The Mallorcan suffered a small contusion to his right hand and his Yamaha M1 took a severe beating, but it was his championship hopes that came off worst of all. With eyes transfixed on the front-runners, Baz, Redding and Smith continued their silent charge through the order.

Marquez had chosen the perfect time to pit, he had built enough of an advantage to maintain a solid lead in the race even with his second pit stop and Smith‰Ûªs gamble to stay out on slicks was finally paying off after a multitude of laps spent tiptoeing around and dropping as low as 21st, the Brit in a solid second now. As Lorenzo fell, Baz was promoted into third.

Sadly for the Frenchmen this would not last as Redding, who had swapped to slicks earlier than many riders after being unable to find a good feeling on wets, rapidly gained on the Open rider, passing him with four laps to go.
Marc Marquez celebrates his win in front of Rossi fans
The positions settled in with just a handful of laps remaining and for the fourth time in 2015 Marquez secured victory, his first MotoGP䋢 victory at Misano.

‰ÛÏIt was a very strange race but I'm happy with the end result." Marquez admitted. "It is difficult to explain everything that happened during the race but I think the key was the second tyre change ‰ÛÒ from wets to slicks.

"That was where we made a difference and ‰ÛÒ believe it or not ‰ÛÒ it was not me who decided everything!

"The team informed me of the situation with the pit board and helped me decide when to come in to change bikes, and I have to thank them!

"Also Honda, because we keep working and doing our best, even though our title chances are slim, so our target to the end of the year remains; the more wins, the better!

I was close behind the Yamaha to try and see how the asphalt and tyres were. I saw Lorenzo and Rossi had a lot of degradation and then I saw my bike started to move and I was losing so much time so I thought 'OK, it‰Ûªs time to change'.

"When I changed I saw the track dry. The asphalt is new and dark so it‰Ûªs really hard to see where is wet. But it‰Ûªs really nice to be on the podium again. The target was victory so we‰Ûªre really happy!"
An elated, and somewhat surprised, Bradley Smith joined Marquez on the podium with a second place finish.
An elated, and somewhat surprised, Bradley Smith joined Marquez on the podium with a second place finish.

"I am thrilled with this finish as I feel that I earned it today even though it was a big gamble!" Redding enthused. "It was very difficult to make the right decisions in the race and I tried to make a few calculations in my head.

"I looked at the sky before it started and I said to myself that if it rains, it will only be for a short while and I hoped it would dry quickly. However, I still didn't know how the new surface would be in the wet. My decision to stay out was initially because I missed the lap when Jorge and Vale pitted so I carried on and I believed that the rain had slowed down slightly.

"At this point, I already had lost a lot of time, therefore I thought it would be best to wait a few laps and see what happens and when it stopped I knew the gamble could work as I realised that they might have to pit twice.

"Furthermore, I kept saying to myself that luck favours the brave which motivated me even further and here I am! My race position kept going up and to finally come home in 2nd is very special. This result is one of my greatest and it's a truly emotional moment.

"In Phillip Island I just finished the race and got the podium but here I had to ride really smoothly and with skill as well as talent in these conditions.

"We have to take opportunities like these because as a satellite team we work really hard for 5th or 6th every race, but the rostrum is just out of reach. So, I'm even more delighted to give this finish to the team and the sponsors and I can't wait to get back out on track at the next round."
Scott Redding rounded out the poduim
Scott Redding rounded out the podium with his first premier class podium finish. This was the first time since the 1979 Venezuelan GP (Barry Sheen & Tom Herron) that two British riders have finished on a podium in the premier class.

‰ÛÏWhere do you start after a race like that? When it started to rain I knew I had nothing to lose and pushed hard on the slicks." Redding commented. "But I pushed too much and couldn‰Ûªt stop the bike before I entered the gravel and crashed.

"I thought that was race over but got back on as quickly as I could and I could see that a couple of guys still hadn‰Ûªt passed me, so knew I was still in a good position. I changed to the rain tyres and had a really bad feeling. I couldn‰Ûªt get them to working temperature and when I did the track had already started to dry.

"I switched back to slicks thinking I‰Ûªd got no chance and then suddenly I saw P4. I thought it was a mistake but then saw seven seconds to Baz and got my head down to catch him in case it rained again.

"Then I‰Ûªm in third and I certainly didn‰Ûªt expect that when I woke up this morning. It‰Ûªs a great feeling for me and especially the team because they have deserved this for sticking by me all season.
Rossi extended his points lead over Lorenzo despite finishing in 5th
Loris Baz may have been forced off the podium, but a fourth place finish delivers an incredible result for his Open Championship campaign.

With the yellow smoke settled and customary post-race track invasion dispersed, Rossi's fifth place result was enough to maintain his lead of the MotoGP䋢 World Championship with 247 points, now 23 clear of Lorenzo due to his DNF.

"It's true that the championship is a lot more important that winning this race, it's the main target." Rossi commented. "Unfortunately Jorge crashed and I was able to gain another 11-points.

"This is good for the championship, but it's a shame to miss out on the podium, because I wanted to arrive in the top three in front of all the spectators.

"It was a crazy race and when you have to change the bike, in this case twice, you need luck and rapid thinking to understand the situation. Fifth is still a good result and we're looking forward to the next race in Aragon.

"There are still five races left and unfortunately Lorenzo has the ability to win at every single one and Marquez is also always strong, so there are still a lot of points left to fight for. Aragon is always a difficult track, but we did some tests there and my lap times weren't so bad, so we have to try to do a good race and arrive on the podium."
Aussie Jack Miller raced to 12th earning more world championship points in his maiden MotoGP season
Australia's Jack Miller once again showed great form in the tricky conditions to finish in 12th position.

With his race win, Marquez jumps to 184, a comfortable margin ahead of Andrea Iannone who has 159 points in fourth. A second MotoGP‰ã¢ podium gifted Britain‰Ûªs Bradley Smith 20 points and cements him in fifth overall.

Loris Baz jumps to 15th overall in the World Standings, with 28 points, now five points ahead of Hector Barbera (Avintia Racing) in the Open battle.

Alongside Lorenzo there was misfortune for Alex De Angelis (E-Motion IodaRacing Team) and Yonny Hernandez (Octo Pramac Racing) who came together at Turn 6. With just two laps to go Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) also fell, his fourth DNF of the year.
MotoGP Misano podium
MotoGP Misano Race Results:
1 Marc Marquez 48'23.819 ESP HONDA Repsol Honda Team
2 Bradley Smith 7.288 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
3 Scott Redding 18.793 GBR HONDA Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS
4 Loris Baz 26.427 FORWARD YAMAHA Forward Racing
5 Valentino Rossi 33.196 ITA YAMAHA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP
6 Danilo Petrucci 35.087 ITA DUCATI Pramac Racing
7 Andrea Iannone 36.527 ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
8 Andrea Dovizioso 37.434 ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
9 Dani Pedrosa 39.516 ESP HONDA Repsol Honda Team
10 Aleix Espargaro 39.692 ESP SUZUKI Team Suzuki MotoGP
11 Cal Crutchlow 41.995 GBR HONDA CWM LCR Honda
12 Jack Miller 46.075 AUS HONDA CWM LCR Honda
13 Mike De Meglio 48.381 FRA AVINTIA Avintia Racing
14 Maverick Vinales 52.325 ESP SUZUKI Team Suzuki MotoGP
15 Alvaro Bautista 53.348 ESP APRILIA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini
16 Stefan Bradl 58.828 GER FORWARD YAMAHA Forward Racing
17 Nicky Hayden 1'02.649 USA HONDA Drive M7 Aspar
18 Hector Barbera 1'04.768 ESP AVINTIA Avintia Racing
19 Eugene Laverty 1'05.677 HONDA Drive M7 Aspar
20 Claudio Corti 1 lap ITA FORWARD YAMAHA Forward Racing
21 Karel Abraham 1 lap CZE HONDA AB Motoracing
22 Pol Espargaro DNF ESP YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
23 Jorge Lorenzo DNF ESP YAMAHA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP
24 Yonny Hernandez DNF COL DUCATI Pramac Racing
25 Alex de Angelis DNF ART Octo IodaRacing Team
26 Michele Pirro DNF ITA DUCATI Ducati Team

MotoGP Championship Standings After Round 13:
1 Valentino Rossi 247 pts
2 Jorge Lorenzo 224 pts
3 Marc Marquez 184 pts
4 Andrea Iannone 159 pts
5 Bradley Smith 135 pts
6 Andrea Dovizioso 128 pts
7 Dani Pedrosa 109 pts
8 Danilo Petrucci 93 pts
9 Pol Espargaro 81 pts
10 Cal Crutchlow 79 pts
11 Maverick Vinales 69 pts
12 Aleix Espargaro 66 pts
13 Scott Redding 63 pts
14 Yonny Hernandez 41 pts
15 Loris Baz 28 pts
18 Jack Miller 16 pts

Top Image: Marc Marquez crosses the line to win the Misano GP

Credit: Honda

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