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Will start after first race
Marquez passes Dovizioso on final lap to win in Thailand

Race long thriller
Sunday, October 7, 2018

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Marc Marquez wins in spectacular style
Marc Marquez wins in spectacular style

After a race long battle between the Honda and Ducati aces, Marc Marquez passed Andrea Dovizioso in turn 5 on the last lap to win the inaugural MotoGP race in Thailand by just 0.115s in a real thriller.

Dovizioso tried to beat Marquez off the final corner and win the drag to the line but it was not to be as Marquez took his 7th win of the year and extended his point lead is now up to 77.

It was a hat-track weekend for the Spaniard, who earned pole position, set the lap record and earned the victory.

Yamaha riders Vinales and Rossi were a close 3rd and 4th with just 1.5sec separating all four at the line.

It was Marquez who got the holeshot from pole as the lights went out, with Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) tucked in behind his rival from P2 on the grid. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) launched well from P5 to slot into third, before Dovizioso re-took P3 into Turn 3 as the front three in qualifying held station, spearheading the field into a high-speed game of chess at the Chang International Circuit.

Everyone held position before Rossi got past Marquez on lap 4 on the run down to Turn 3, ‘The Doctor’ back up the sharp end and looking strong to control the pace. With tire life a major factor in the soaring Thailand temperatures, no one wanted to force their hand. That was until lap 11 when Rossi couldn’t get his M1 firing off the first corner, with the Ducati of Dovi and Honda of Marquez getting past the nine-time World Champion – the number 04 now the man in charge of controlling the 200mph freight train.

With lap times fluctuating and a front group of eight now packed together, Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) the man to lead Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) and Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) up to the tailpipes of Vinales in fifth, it was only a matter of time before someone decided to pull the pin and with 11 laps to go, Dovizioso upped the pace. Marquez and Rossi tagged along, with fourth place Crutchlow slipping back down the order from P4 to P7.

Marquez and Dovi congratulate each other
Marquez and Dovi congratulate each other

However, the lap times then slowed again as Vinales bridged the gap to the leading trio, with Pedrosa then crashing at Turn 5 with eight laps remaining as he and Zarco got a whiff of a potential podium, the duo closing down the leaders by half a second on the previous lap. The race then entered a critical stage and it was Dovizioso and Marquez who started to fight it out for the lead, with Rossi starting to lose touch as teammate Vinales moved through to get a front-row seat of another Ducati vs Honda battle. With four to go, Marquez played his first hand, braking deep into Turn 3 in an attempted pass. But he ran wide to allow Dovi to slice back through.

This painted the picture for a barnstorming final three laps in Buriram. On the same lap, Marquez sliced his way through at Turn 8, but Dovi snapped straight back at Turn 9. It was déjà vu a lap later as the Repsol Honda grabbed the lead into Turn 8, no way through for the Ducati this time at Turn 9, but a pass into Turn 12 was made to stick heading onto the last lap. The chosen corner for a Marquez assault was Turn 5 – a great move from the six-time World Champion with Dovizioso unable to squeeze back under at Turn 6. This set us up for another final corner epic between the two. Dovi got the run off Turn 11 to brake late into the final corner to get alongside Marquez, but the Desmosedici couldn’t quite drop its anchors quick enough – Marquez cutting back underneath Dovi to win the race to the line, with Vinales just 0.270 away from the win in third.

Rossi crossed the line fourth in what was a hugely promising weekend for Yamaha, with fellow M1 and leading Independent Team rider Zarco getting the better of Rins – P5 and P6 respectively for the duo. Crutchlow ended the race seventh, finishing 0.171 ahead of Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team) in eighth, with the two Alma Pramac Racing riders completing the top ten – P9 for Danilo Petrucci, P10 for Jack Miller.

Quotes

Marquez leads Vinales and Dovi
Marquez leads Vinales and Dovi

Marc Marquez
“Of course I’m very, very happy today because it’s the first time I’ve beaten Dovi in this way. We were very equal, and my strategy was to try and attack in order to open a gap and avoid having it come down to the last lap. But Dovi had a very good pace and I was struggling with the front tyre, so I wasn’t able. Instead, I just tried to manage the tyres and stick to him. Honestly, I wasn’t so confident going into the final lap because I’ve lost many head-to-head finishes with him in the past.

"But this time, we swapped roles--I used Dovi’s style and Dovi used Marquez’s style!--and that worked to overtake him on the corner exit. It was a great feeling to race in front of all the Thai fans, who cheered and supported all of us riders equally, really enjoying the sport and making me feel good over the whole weekend. I’m really thankful to them. Now the first match ball will be in Japan, which is the most important race for Honda as it’s their only home Grand Prix. Of course we’ll try our best there, but if it’s not possible, the main target is still to achieve the title at some point.”

Dovizioso: "It is never nice to lose at the last corner but I am really happy because this track, it wasn't ours. In February we struggle a little bit and we came here, we struggle a little bit at the beginning but we did some changes and I think we did a good step because the consumption was more than Aragon and at the end we battle for the victory. We did an incredible work and we are continuing to improve."

Results:

Pos.PointsNum.RiderNationTeamBikeTime/Gap
12593Marc MARQUEZSPARepsol Honda TeamHonda39'55.722
2204Andrea DOVIZIOSOITADucati TeamDucati+0.115
31625Maverick VINALESSPAMovistar Yamaha MotoGPYamaha+0.270
41346Valentino ROSSIITAMovistar Yamaha MotoGPYamaha+1.564
5115Johann ZARCOFRAMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha+2.747
61042Alex RINSSPATeam SUZUKI ECSTARSuzuki+3.023
7935Cal CRUTCHLOWGBRLCR Honda CASTROLHonda+6.520
8819Alvaro BAUTISTASPAAngel Nieto TeamDucati+6.691
979Danilo PETRUCCIITAAlma Pramac RacingDucati+9.944
10643Jack MILLERAUSAlma Pramac RacingDucati+11.077
11529Andrea IANNONEITATeam SUZUKI ECSTARSuzuki+15.488
12455Hafizh SYAHRINMALMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha+17.691
13341Aleix ESPARGAROSPAAprilia Racing Team GresiniAprilia+21.413
14221Franco MORBIDELLIITAEG 0,0 Marc VDSHonda+22.802
15138Bradley SMITHGBRRed Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM+23.628
16045Scott REDDINGGBRAprilia Racing Team GresiniAprilia+23.804
17017Karel ABRAHAMCZEAngel Nieto TeamDucati+32.507
18010Xavier SIMEONBELReale Avintia RacingDucati+37.216
19081Jordi TORRESSPAReale Avintia RacingDucati+39.204
20012Thomas LUTHISWIEG 0,0 Marc VDSHonda+39.421
21 44Pol ESPARGAROSPARed Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM+53.388
22 30Takaaki NAKAGAMIJPNLCR Honda IDEMITSUHonda2 Laps
DNF 26Dani PEDROSASPARepsol Honda TeamHonda8 Laps
 

Rider Standings

Pos.

Rider

Num

Nation

Points

Team

Constructor

1

Marquez Marc

93

SPA

271

Repsol Honda Team

Honda

2

Dovizioso Andrea

4

ITA

194

Ducati Team

Ducati

3

Rossi Valentino

46

ITA

172

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

Yamaha

4

Vinales Maverick

25

SPA

146

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

Yamaha

5

Lorenzo Jorge

99

SPA

130

Ducati Team

Ducati

6

Crutchlow Cal

35

GBR

128

LCR Honda

Honda

7

Petrucci Danilo

9

ITA

126

Alma Pramac Racing

Ducati

8

Zarco Johann

5

FRA

123

Monster Yamaha Tech 3

Yamaha

9

Iannone Andrea

29

ITA

113

Team Suzuki Ecstar

Suzuki

10

Rins Alex

42

SPA

102

Team Suzuki Ecstar

Suzuki

11

Pedrosa Dani

26

SPA

87

Repsol Honda Team

Honda

12

Miller Jack

43

AUS

74

Alma Pramac Racing

Ducati

13

Bautista Alvaro

19

SPA

72

Angel Nieto Team

Ducati

14

Rabat Tito

53

SPA

35

Reale Avintia Racing

Ducati

15

Morbidelli Franco

21

ITA

33

EG 0,0 Marc VDS

Honda

16

Espargaro Aleix

41

SPA

32

Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

Aprilia

17

Espargaro Pol

44

SPA

32

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

KTM

18

Syahrin Hafizh

55

MAL

28

Monster Yamaha Tech 3

Yamaha

19

Smith Bradley

38

GBR

19

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

KTM

20

Nakagami Takaaki

30

JPN

18

LCR Honda

Honda

21

Redding Scott

45

GBR

12

Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

Aprilia

22

Kallio Mika

36

FIN

6

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

KTM

23

Abraham Karel

17

CZE

5

Angel Nieto Team

Ducati

24

Pirro Michele

51

ITA

1

Ducati Team

Ducati

 

 

 

Team Standings

Pos.

Team

Points

1

Repsol Honda Team

358

2

Ducati Team

324

3

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

318

4

Team Suzuki Ecstar

215

5

Alma Pramac Racing

200

6

Monster Yamaha Tech 3

151

7

LCR Honda

146

8

Angel Nieto Team

77

9

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

51

10

Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

44

11

Reale Avintia Racing

35

12

EG 0,0 Marc VDS

33

 
 

Constructor Standings

Pos.

Team

Points

1

Honda

306

2

Ducati

273

3

Yamaha

218

4

Suzuki

157

5

KTM

45

6

Aprilia

42

 

 

  

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