Crutchlow takes win down under

Cal Crutchlow took his second victory of the season with a dominant victory at Phillip Island. Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales completed the podium, whilst recently crowned champion Marc Marquez crashed out of first place on lap 10.

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Cal Crutchlow’s victory was his second of the season, and his first win in the dry. Image: Crash.net

The Brit had started second on the grid, but found himself being swallowed up off the line. He worked his way forward through the pack to trail Marquez before the Spaniard slid out at Honda corner. Crutchlow extended his lead over Valentino Rossi to over four seconds to take his first premier class victory in the dry.

Rossi coasted to a second place having started down in 15th, keeping well clear of the scrap behind him. Maverick Vinales tussled with his team mate and Andrea Dovizioso for third, a scrap that saw Aleix Espargaro crash out. Pol Espargaro faded after a strong start, and Jorge Lorenzo rounded off the top six.

It was a good day all round for the British riders, as Scott Redding and Bradley Smith, on his second race back from injury, finished seventh and eighth. Home rider Jack Miller finished tenth, having tussled with Nicky Hayden, who was standing in for the injured Dani Pedrosa.

Thomas Luthi took the victory in Moto2, taking him to second place in the championship, 22 points behind Johann Zarco with two rounds to go. Sam Lowes crashed out early on and Danny Kent also failed to finish. Brad Binder continued his domination of the Moto3 class with his sixth win of the season. The race had been red-flagged due to a huge multi-rider accident involving John McPhee.


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Crutchlow Second as Maverick Storms to Victory

Cal Crutchlow followed up his maiden MotoGP victory with a hard-fought second at Silverstone. The Brit held off late challenges from Marc Marquez and Valentino Rossi to secure his spot on the podium for his home Grand Prix.

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Maverick Vinales led from the start to claim his first victory in MotoGP. Image: BT Sport MotoGP

But Crutchlow was unable to stop a rampant Maverick Vinales, who secured Suzuki’s first win since Chris Vermeulen won in the wet at Le Mans in 2007. The Spaniard, who has already secured a move to Yamaha next year, eventually finished 3.5 seconds clear of his nearest challenger, but had managed to lead by just under five seconds during the race.

But the real battle was that for second place, with Crutchlow, Marquez and Rossi initially dicing it out. Andrea Iannone and Dani Pedrosa were hanging on to the back of this group, but it was the Ducati rider who managed to catch the leading trio, fighting his way through to second place. But the Italian crashed out, gifting second place back to Britain’s Crutchlow. Marc Marquez almost took out his fellow Honda rider, making contact with Crutchlow’s knee as at the end of the Hangar Straight.

Marquez managed to recover from that mistake to beat his teammate Dani Pedrosa to fourth, meaning his championship lead was only reduced by three points, down to 50.

The race had to be restarted after an incident on the first lap between Pol Espargaro and Loris Baz caused the race to be red flagged on the first lap.

Crutchlow was the only British rider to finish on the podium across the three classes. In the Premier Class, Eugene Laverty finished 12th, just ahead of Alex Lowes, who was standing in for the injured Bradley Smith. Scott Redding crashed twice, but completed the race in 17th. Sam Lowes was amongst the leading group in the Moto2, leading from Pole for most of the race, but he was taken out by Johann Zarco, gifting the victory to Thomas Luthi. The Moto3 saw John McPhee finish 18th, whilst Brad Binder extended his championship lead.


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Marquez in thrilling finish down under

Marc Marquez finished the Australian Grand Prix for the first time in some style, producing a masterful final lap to take the victory. The Spaniard went in to the last lap in fourth, but produced a lap record to pip title hopeful Jorge Lorenzo to the win. Andrea Iannone completed the podium after winning out over title leader Valentino Rossi.

Source: crash.net

Source: crash.net

Although Marquez started on pole, it was Lorenzo that set the early pace.It soon began to develop in to a four way race, with the leaders interchanging throughout. Marquez passed Lorenzo through Honda corner, and the number 99 almost slipped another place, but Iannone ran wide after blasting past on the home straight. The reigning champion was unable to escape his fellow leaders though, with Lorenzo passing him, then Rossi and Iannone both lunging down his inside on the same corner. On the final lap, Marquez passed Rossi at the beginning of the lap, before passing Iannone at Doohan. The Italian fought straight back but in doing so left the door open for Marquez to slip straight past him. As Marquez chased down Lorenzo, Rossi slipped up the inside of Iannone, just doing enough to prevent the Ducati man from biting straight back. Marquez made his move with just two corners left, holding a tight line through the hairpin. Luckily for Lorenzo, Iannone also passed Rossi at the same corner, meaning that the Spaniard’s championship hopes are still alive.

Dani Pedrosa finished fifth, with Maverick Vinales sixth and Cal Crutchlow finishing as the top Brit in seventh. Bradley Smith continued his run of scoring points in every race this season with a tenth, just ahead of Scott Redding. Jack Miller was the top Open class rider in fifteenth.

Marquez's win was his 50th Grand Prix victory. Source: twitter (marcmarquez93)

Marquez’s win was his 50th Grand Prix victory. Source: twitter (marcmarquez93)

With those 20 points, Jorge Lorenzo has now cut Valentino Rossi’s championship lead to just 11 points with two races remaining. The win for Marquez all but secures his third place, whilst Bradley Smith is still within touching distance of fifth placed Dani Pedrosa despite his tenth place at Phillip Island.

In Moto3, Danny Kent will have to wait to seal his title after he was taken out in spectacular fashion by his main title rival Enea Bastianini. Miguel Oliveira won the race to leapfrog Bastianini in the championship, 40 points behind Kent. It seemed almost inevitable that things would not go for the Brit this weekend, having been relegated to seventh from pole for slow riding in the warm-up, and being clipped already by Francesco Bagnaia before Bastianini ended his race. Alex Rins was the clear winner in Moto2, with Brit Sam Lowes keeping his hopes of reaching third in the championship alive with a second place.

Rossi wins in the wet at Silverstone

Rossi SilverstoneValentino Rossi took the victory in troubling conditions at Silverstone as his championship rivals floundered. Danilo Petrucci achieved his first ever podium and Andrea Dovizioso completed the podium. The race was initially declared dry, but after all the riders elected to change to wet tyres, a wet race was declared.

Rossi led the race from early on, with Marc Marquez challenging him. But the Spaniard crashed out leaving Rossi to cruise home for maximum points. Petrucci and Dovizioso fought their way first past Dani Pedrosa and then past Jorge Lorenzo to finish on the podium. Lorenzo’s fourth place sees him now 12 points behind his team-mate in the championship. Scott Redding, who announced he would be joining Pramac Ducati next season, finished as the top Brit in sixth with Bradley Smith behind him. Nicky Hayden finished as the top open class rider in twelfth.

It was a story of what could have been for Cal Crutchlow after he was bowled out of third position by team-mate Jack Miller. Both Honda riders had started well, but the Aussie took down Crutchlow aiming for a pass that was realistically never on.

In the other classes, the Championship leaders extended their leads. Johann Zarco took his fifth Moto2 victory of the season, whilst Danny Kent took advantage of Isaac Vinales’ fall to become the first British rider to win at home in the class.

Lorenzo dominates in Brno

Lorenzo brnoJorge Lorenzo has drawn level with Valentino Rossi at the top of the championship standings after he led from start to finish at the Czech Grand Prix. The Yamaha riders are now equal on 211 points, 52 points ahead of Marc Marquez.

After qualifying on pole, Lorenzo started well to keep the lead in to the first corner, after which he never looked back. Marc Marquez looked to be trying to replicate his Indianapolis tactics, but he was unable to keep pace with the front man, eventually ending up five seconds behind. It became clear fairly early that Marquez didn’t have the pace, looking fairly ragged trying to keep up with the metronomically smooth Lorenzo.

Valentino Rossi rode a lonely race in third, and Andrea Iannone overcame his team-mate for fourth. Dani Pedrosa battled through the pain from his crash earlier in the weekend to also come out on top of an intense late battle with Dovizioso. Bradley Smith finished above his team-mate in seventh, and fellow Brit Scott Redding came 12th. Loris Baz finished top of the Open class bikes, finishing fifteenth. Cal Crutchlow crashed out with seven laps remaining, whilst Irishman Eugene Laverty crashed earlier in the race.

Niccolo Antonelli won the Moto3 race, but Britain’s Danny Kent still holds a commanding championship lead despite a seventh place finish. Johann Zarco won the Moto2 race, with Brit Sam Lowes finishing fifth.

Consecutive wins for Marquez after Indy victory

marquez indyMarc Marquez backed up his win in Germany with another at Indianapolis. The Spaniard has now won all seven races at American circuits since his ascention to the premier class. Yamaha pair Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi rounded of the podium .

Jorge Lorenzo led for the majority of the race, but it seemed that Marquez was choosing not to pass him. With three laps to go Marquez dived up the inside on turn one, taking the lead which he would hold to the flag. Championship leader Rossi managed to overcome Dani Pedrosa in the second Yamaha-Honda duel. The Spaniard led the way for the majority of the race, but Rossi moved to third with ten laps to go. Pedrosa fought back and the two continued to switch position for the remainder of the race, with Rossi making the final pass at turn two on the last lap.

Andrea Iannone held off a late charge from Bradley Smith for fifth, who in turn finished a place above his team mate Pol Espargaro. Cal Crutchlow came eighth whilst Andrea Dovizioso recovered from running off on the opening corner to finish ninth. Danilo Petrucci rounded off the top ten. Britain’s Scott Redding finished thirteenth and Ireland’s Eugene Laverty came nineteenth. Jack Miller was the only non-finisher.

Rossi’s lead has now been cut to 9 points from Jorge Lorenzo, whilst Marquez has risen to third, 56 points behind Rossi. Alex Rins won the Moto2 race, with Sam Lowes crashing out, and Livio Loi won a rain affected Moto3 race, with John McPhee second and championship leader Danny Kent slumping to 21st.

Rossi extends lead after thrilling last lap

Valentino Rossi extended his lead in the championship to ten points after holding off Marc Marquez in Assen. The Italian had qualified on pole, and led for the majority of the race, recording his first victory from pole for six years.

Marquez makes contact with Rossi on the last corner.

Marquez makes contact with Rossi on the last corner.

Marquez, who was running his 2014 chassis, appeared to be content following Rossi and using the advantage of a harder front tyre late on. This looked to be the case when with seven laps remaining, the reigning world champion slipped under Rossi at turn one. But the Spaniard couldn’t pull away, and after a rehearsal the lap before, Rossi took the lead back with three laps to go. Rossi appeared comfortable, but on the last corner Marquez made a move on the inside and made contact with Rossi. The Yamaha man skipped across the gravel trap as he was forced in to cutting the chicane, whilst Marquez managed to stay on the track, albeit losing time on the Italian. Honda may have some complaints about the way that Rossi seemed to gain time by cutting across the gravel, but race direction have described the incident as a “racing incident”, and that “no advantage was gained [by Rossi]”.

Jorge Lorenzo recovered from a poor qualifying, starting eighth, by moving to third by the end of lap one. Although that meant the end of his 103 consecutive laps led, he didn’t seem to have the pace of the top two, meaning that his third place was really the best he could have hoped for in respect for his title bid. Fourth-placed Andrea Iannone also had a lonely race, finishing five seconds behind Lorenzo, and five clear of fifth place.

The battle for fifth place

The six way battle for fifth place, led by Pol Espargaro.

Pol Espargaro came out on top in an intriging six way battle for fifth place, with Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith pipping Dani Pedrosa late on, and Aleix Espargaro finishing ninth. The other member of the group, Andrea Dovizioso, continued his poor weekend by dropping behind Maverick Vinales and Danilo Petrucci. Scott Redding finished 13th whilst Eugene Laverty crashed out.

Danny Kent extended his Moto3 championship lead with a third place, with Miguel Oliveira taking the vicotry, whilst in Moto2, Johann Zarco made it back-to-back victories, with Britain’s Sam Lowes also finishing third.