Francesco Bagnaia wins German MotoGP as Martin suffers late crash

Francesco Bagnaia wins German MotoGP as Martin suffers late crash

Francesco Bagnaia benefited from Jorge Martin’s dramatic late crash to win the German MotoGP on Sunday and take the world championship lead.

A penultimate lap crash from Pramac’s Jorge Martin saw Francesco Bagnaia secure his fourth consecutive race win at the German MotoGP, taking the championship lead as Marc Marquez battled from 13th to finish second ahead of Gresini teammate and brother Alex Marquez.

Bagnaia took the lead early on, passing Raul Fernandez for third at the start, Miguel Oliveira for second at turn 13 on the first lap, and then Martin for the lead again at turn 13 on lap two.

However, the reigning world champion lost the lead to Martin at the first turn on lap seven while Franco Morbidelli, who was in third place after the strongest start to a race of his season, passed for second at turn one on lap nine.

Bagnaia later found himself struggling to hold off Alex Marquez for a few laps, but around mid-race he began to recover his pace. On lap 15, he passed Morbidelli to reclaim second, and then he set his sights on Martin.

In second half of the race, Martin and Bagnaia were locked in a duel, as they matched each other’s lap times on each tour of the Sachsenring in the low-1:23s. Martin later delivered a 1:20.9 on lap 23 in hopes of establishing a gap, but Bagnaia kept up the pressure and cut his lead down to half-a-second by the penultimate lap.

It was not long before Martin suffered a brutal crash at the first turn, in similar but not identical circumstances to the way he crashed from the lead in the MotoGP Spanish Grand Prix back at the end of April.

Bagnaia inherited the lead with a gap of four seconds behind him, and when took the chequered flag at the end of lap 30 he took the championship lead with it.

Meanwhile, Marc Marquez maintained his composure to finish second after suffering a number of crashes over the weekend. While battling with Franco Morbidelli over what at the time was fourth place, the six-time world champion made a dive to the inside of the Italian when he ran wide at the first turn.

The Pramac rider returned to the line on the exit, but left a small amount of room on his inside. However, Marquez made contact with him as their lines converged, each rider unaware of the position of the other as Marquez’ front wheel was slightly behind Morbidelli, with the former hanging off the inside of his Ducati.

The contact set Marquez’ airbag off, and he then had to fend of Enea Bastianini. When he’d ssuccessfully repelled Bastianini’s attacks, and he regained his composure after the incident with Morbidelli and passed him. After Martin fell, Marquez was now in third, and by the end of lap 29 he was second, passing his teammate, Alex, at turn 12 on lap 29.

It was a strong recovery from Marquez having qualified only 13th, but he lost more points in the championship. Meanwhile, Alex Marquez completed yet another all-Ducati podium (the sixth in succession) and made it a Gresini 2-3 for his first rostrum of the season.

Morbidelli battled late on with Bastianini for fourth, but eventually lost out to the factory Ducati rider, Morbidelli himself taking fifth.

Miguel Oliveira was the best non-Ducati in sixth, 10 seconds off the win. Pedro Acosta took seventh, ahead of Marco Bezzecchi in eighth, while Brad Binder and Raul Fernandez completed the top 10.

Fabio Quartararo finished a second adrift of the Trackhouse in 11th, while Vinales recovered well following his mistake to give factory Aprilia a 12th-placed finish.

Jack Miller and Augusto Fernandez struggled at the back with the Honda riders, as both KTM riders with Taakaki Nakagami, Luca Marini and Johann Zarco were all separated by half a second.

Stefan Bradl finished in 18th a whole 18-seconds behind Zarco and fended off full-time rider Joan Mir in the closing stages, before Remy Gardner rounded off proceedings seven seconds adrift.

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