Marquez extends MotoGP lead with San Marino win

Tuesday, 17 September 2019 01:04 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Reuters: Honda’s Marc Marquez took another significant stride towards his sixth MotoGP title by seizing victory in a last-lap duel at the San Marino Grand Prix on Sunday after missing out in his previous two races.

The Spaniard went 93 points clear at the top of the standings with six races remaining after denying French Petronas Yamaha rookie Fabio Quartararo a first top-flight victory at Misano’s Marco Simoncelli circuit. 

Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales finished third after starting on pole position.

Marquez’s closest rival Andrea Dovizioso, on a Ducati, was sixth on home territory.

The championship now looks as good as over with Marquez powering ahead on 275 points to the Italian’s 182, with Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci third on 151 and Suzuki’s Alex Rins on 149.

Quartararo had lined up third on the grid, with Marquez fifth, but the race became a battle between the two with the Frenchman leading from lap three of 27 and soaking up the pressure before the champion swept past.

Quartararo fought back but was outfoxed by Marquez, who passed him twice on the last lap. Marquez, a seven times champion in all classes, had clashed with Valentino Rossi in qualifying when the pair nearly collided.

The incident wrecked both of their laps, at a circuit where the overwhelming majority of the crowd were supporting the Italian great who grew up nearby. They were summoned to see stewards, who decided to take no further action.

The win was Marquez’s seventh of the season but first since the Czech Grand Prix on 4 August. The Spaniard had finished the last two races as runner-up and was determined not to make it three in a row.