Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe
Race report
MotoGP Austrian GP

MotoGP Austrian GP: Bagnaia dominates from Binder to extend points lead

Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia has strengthened his MotoGP world championship lead after dominating the Austrian Grand Prix to complete his third sprint/GP double of 2023.

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Once again he nailed his start from pole position – just as he did in the sprint - in Sunday’s full-length race at the Red Bull Ring to keep the fast-launching KTMs behind him into Turn 1.

Despite an early threat from Brad Binder, Bagnaia was never headed in Austria and stormed to the chequered flag over five seconds clear of the KTM rider for his fifth grand prix victory of the season.

Bagnaia has now moved 62 points clear of Jorge Martin in the standings following his third sprint/grand prix double of the campaign.

Binder was second on KTM’s home turf as Marco Bezzecchi completed the podium for VR46 Ducati to banish the disappointment of his sprint DNF on Saturday.

At the start, Bagnaia slotted into the lead ahead of Binder, while the top two were broken up from the chasing pack as Luca Marini on the second VR46 bike suffered a big slide exiting Turn 1.

This compromised Jack Miller’s run, though the Australian was still able to take third into the Turn 2 chicane on his factory KTM.

But Bagnaia and Binder were already seven-tenths up the road come the end of the opening tour, with Miller continuing to cede time as he began getting shuffled down the order.

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Binder kept the heat on Bagnaia over the first few laps, coming very close to a move up the inside of the Ducati rider at the Turn 9 right-hander on the fourth tour.

But he couldn’t get close enough to pull off the move, and it would ultimately prove to be the best chance for Binder.

Come lap 11, Bagnaia had started to stretch his legs, opening the gap to half a second and climbing that to eight-tenths next time around.

The decisive phase of the race came from lap 17 to 22 when Bagnaia swelled his lead to over four seconds.

That gap only climbed as Bagnaia took the chequered flag 5.1s clear of Binder.

A late tussle with Gresini’s Alex Marquez eventually led Bezzecchi – who started seventh - to take third, having run wide at Turn 1 during overtake attempts on laps 16 and 20.

Bezzecchi finally made the move stick on lap 22 into Turn 9, with VR46 team-mate Marini snatching fourth from Marquez late on.

Alex Marquez, Gresini Racing

Alex Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Marquez held onto fifth despite a late surge from Aprilia’s Maverick Vinales, who once again suffered a poor launch at the start.

This forced Vinales to have to recover from 11th after the opening turns, with the Spaniard sixth in the end ahead of Pramac Ducati’s Jorge Martin – who secured seventh having served a long lap penalty for causing the multi-rider sprint collision in the sprint.

Fabio Quartararo made up one place from his starting spot to eighth on the factory Yamaha ahead of the sister factory Aprilia of Aleix Espargaro and Ducati’s Enea Bastianini.

Franco Morbidelli was 11th on the sister factory Yamaha ahead of Honda’s Marc Marquez, who was the only rider to run the soft rear tyre in Sunday’s grand prix.

This marked Marquez’s first finish in a Sunday grand prix all season.

Johann Zarco struggled to 13th on his Pramac Ducati ahead of Tech3 rookie Augusto Fernandez and Miller.

A late three-second time penalty for failing to serve a long lap penalty for exceeding track limits too many times dropped Pol Espargaro (Tech3) out of the points to 16th.

Gresini’s Fabio Di Giannantonio, LCR’s Takaaki Nakagami, Aprilia wildcard Lorenzo Savadori and LCR stand-in Iker Lecuona completed the field.

Joan Mir (Honda) crashed out midway through the race, while both RNF Aprilias – carrying a Barbie-inspired livery on Sunday – failed to see the chequered flag.

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Aleix Espargaro “angry" a lot of people in MotoGP forget Pol’s achievements
Next article Zarco to leave Pramac, confirms Honda MotoGP move with LCR for 2024

Top Comments

There are no comments at the moment. Would you like to write one?

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe