Indianapolis MotoGP: Marc Marquez takes 10th consecutive win
|Sunday, August 10th 2014, 18:57 GMT|
Marc Marquez extended his 2014 MotoGP record to 10 wins from 10 races but his Indianapolis victory was another hard-earned affair.
The polesitting Honda got away slowly and was down in fifth initially as Andrea Dovizioso thrust his Ducati into the lead ahead of Valentino Rossi.
The Yamaha then got past the Ducati a few corners into the race, beginning a tense early stint in which Dovizioso continually probed at Rossi, who was always able to brake late enough to stay ahead.
While the two Italians battled at the front, Marquez picked his way back through to third, bringing Jorge Lorenzo with him.
When Dovizioso finally did make a move stick on Rossi into Turn 1, Rossi's retaliation attempt sent both wide at the next corner and allowed Marquez to slip from third to first.
He didn't stay there long though, as a slight error by the championship error let Rossi back through.
At this point a Marquez win did not seem a certainty, with Rossi appearing comfortable in the lead and Lorenzo giving the Honda plenty of pressure for second.
But when Lorenzo got alongside Marquez at last, he actually triggered the start of a shuffle that would allow the championship leader to escape.
As Marquez braked extraordinarily late into Turn 2 to try to retake second from Lorenzo, both men sailed past Rossi, with Marquez going from third to first for the second time in the race.
Rossi had a shot back at Marquez but could not make the move stick, and as he then got embroiled in a Yamaha intra-team battle with Lorenzo, Marquez scampered away.
By the time Lorenzo finally overtook Rossi for good in the closing stages, Marquez was nearly three seconds clear and would not be caught.
Rossi fell away from Lorenzo but retained third, comfortably clear of Dani Pedrosa. Despite a fast start, the second factory Honda couldn't keep pace with the leaders.
Dovizioso lost ground as his softer tyres faded and he ultimately dropped to seventh behind the Tech 3 Yamahas of Pol Espargaro and Bradley Smith.
Scott Redding built on his excellent qualifying form and spent the race in a huge battle with fellow Briton Cal Crutchlow. The works Ducati eventually beat the production Gresini Honda to eighth by seven tenths of a second.
Hiroshi Aoyama completed the top 10 in a race of high attrition.
Yonny Hernandez and Alvaro Bautista collided on lap one, Andrea Iannone retired with mechanical problems from seventh place after initially running as high as third, and Stefan Bradl had a massive crash following contact with Aleix Espargaro.
MotoGP debutant Leon Camier was another retirement, halted by electronic issues.
Results - 27 laps Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap 1. Marc Marquez Honda 42m07.041s 2. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha +1.803s 3. Valentino Rossi Yamaha +6.558s 4. Dani Pedrosa Honda +10.016s 5. Pol Espargaro Tech 3 Yamaha +17.807s 6. Bradley Smith Tech 3 Yamaha +19.604s 7. Andrea Dovizioso Ducati +20.759s 8. Cal Crutchlow Ducati +39.796s 9. Scott Redding Gresini Honda +40.507s 10. Hiroshi Aoyama Aspar Honda +55.760s 11. Karel Abraham Cardion Honda +1m05.130s 12. Mike di Meglio Avintia FTR-Kawasaki +1m05.346s 13. Colin Edwards Forward Yamaha +1m08.919s 14. Michael Laverty PBM-Aprilia +1m09.203s 15. Broc Parkes PBM-Aprilia +1m30.613s Retirements: Leon Camier Aspar Honda 19 laps Andrea Iannone Pramac Ducati 14 laps Aleix Espargaro Forward Yamaha 12 laps Stefan Bradl LCR Honda 12 laps Danilo Petrucci Ioda Aprilia 6 laps Hector Barbera Avintia FTR-Kawasaki 5 laps Alvaro Bautista Gresini Honda 0 laps Yonny Hernandez Pramac Ducati 0 laps