Reigning Champion and pre-race favorite Marc Marquez has captured his first win of the year at the Termas de Rio Hondo, home of the MotoGP Round 2 race in Argentina. Though Marquez won the race, Valentino Rossi was the real highlight of the race as the Doctor pushed to the limits and finished in a remarkable runner-up spot. Third place went to the first round winner, Andrea Dovizioso.
Marquez had a lightning start from pole and was quickly up by a second ahead of everyone else after just a lap. From there, the defending champion never once looked back. Rossi, meanwhile, started strong from fourth on the grid and held his position in the first corner, and shortly after moved up to second place. He aimed to prevent any riders from checking out at the front but didn’t succeed, as he fell back to fifth in the busy group. Not for long, though: he steadily worked his way back up. Dovizioso, too, was among the leaders as he feld second for most of the race.
Up front, Marquez was able to pull away lap after lap and had a 12-second at the three-quarters mark. In an amazing last dash to the finish line, Rossi decided to make his move to tussle with Dovizioso for second place. The pair gradually broke away from the others. The Yamaha rider observed the riding style of his rival and perfectly picked the place and moment to pounce: on the last lap, in Turn 7, he put his YZR-M1 on the inside and made it stick. He crossed the line in second place 9.816s from first.
Marquez was the winner and his win was accompanied the biggest winning margin in a dry MotoGP race, The Champion’s previous best coming at the 2016 Argentina GP (a gap of 7.679s) and is his 45th win in the premier class. Marquez leaves Argentina with 45 points and the championship lead
Fourth was the Satellite Pramac Racing Jack Miller who topped factory riders Alex Rins (Suzuki) and Dnailo Petrucci (Ducati). Seventh through tenth were the Satellite teams.
MotoGP circus prepares to travel to Austin, Texas for round three at the Red Bull Gran Prix of The Americas, 12 – 14 April.
MotoGP Round 2 Termas de Rio Hondo results
1 MARQUEZ Marc Repsol Honda Team 41’43.688
2 ROSSI Valentino Yamaha MotoGP +9.816
3 DOVIZIOSO Andrea Ducati 10.530
4 MILLER Jack Pramac Racing 12.140
5 RINS Alex Suzuki Ecstar 12.563
6 PETRUCCI Danilo Ducati 13.750
7 NAKAGAMI Takaaki LCR Honda 18.160
8 QUARTARARO Fabio Yamaha SRT 20.403
9 ESPARGARO Aleix Aprilia Racing 25.292
10 ESPARGARO Pol 44 Red Bull KTM 25.679
1 MARQUEZ Marc SPA 45
2 DOVIZIOSO Andrea ITA 41
3 ROSSI Valentino ITA 31
4 RINS Alex SPA 24
5 PETRUCCI Danilo ITA 20
6 CRUTCHLOW Cal GBR 19
7 NAKAGAMI Takaaki JPN 16
8 MILLER Jack AUS 13
9 ESPARGARO Aleix SPA 13
10 ESPARGARO Pol SPA 10