Motorcycle Racing

Bagnaia wins sprint over Marquez, Martin crashes out

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing Team

At the start of the race, the factory Ducatis shot to the front ahead of polesitter Martin’s Pramac bike, with reigning champion Bagnaia taking the lead from team-mate Enea Bastianini.

KTM’s Brad Binder jumped from 14th on the grid to take fourth behind Martin, with Marc Marquez dropping a place to fifth.

Heading into lap three, Bastianini was trying to reclaim the second position he had lost to Martin when he went too deep at the exit of Turn 1. As he tried to return to the racing line, the Italian was hit by Martin with the contact sending his factory-run GP24 sliding into the gravel.

The incident between the two Ducati riders was investigated, but both were cleared of any wrongdoing.

Bastianini’s exit gave Martin some breathing space for a few laps, but it didn’t take long for Marquez to close in on the points leader on his year-old GP23.

After a fruitless attempt on lap five, Marquez was finally able to complete a move going into the opening right-hander on the following tour to claim second.

By this stage of the race, Bagnaia was already sitting 1.3s clear in the lead, a seemingly healthy advantage with half the sprint already over.

But Marquez was able to bring the gap down by half a second with four laps to go, giving him a faint hope of victory in the race’s closing stages.

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Ultimately, Bagnaia was able to break away from Gresini rival to claim his first sprint win since last year’s Austrian GP, ending his streak of poor Saturday results in 2024.

The final place on the podium went to GasGas Tech3 rookie Pedro Acosta, who was announced as a factory KTM rider for 2025 earlier on Saturday.

Acosta moved up to third place when Martin fell off his Pramac bike at the start of lap eight, his second major mistake of 2024 after his crash out of the lead of the Spanish GP in April.

After his crash out of the sprint, Martin’s lead is now down to just 27 points over Bagnaia heading into Sunday’s grand prix.

Fourth place was Franco Morbidelli’s best result of 2024 on the sole-remaining Pramac team bike, while Maverick Vinales was fifth in the top Aprilia after a sedate start from the front row.

Binder could only take sixth after his impressive start, some four seconds off KTM stablemate Acosta, as Fabio di Giannantonio guided his VR46 Aprilia to seventh place.

Alex Marquez (Gresini) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia) were classified eighth…

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