bwin Grand Prix České republiky, Brno: Raceday review – MotoGP, Moto2, Moto3
In the Brno MotoGP™ race Dani Pedrosa won for the first time since Malaysia last year as he ended the winning streak of Marc Marquez, with Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi second and third, whilst Marquez came home just off the podium.
From fifth on the grid Pedrosa returned to his best form to blast through the pack and eventually take victory by 0.410s from Lorenzo in front of more than 138,000 fans. For Lorenzo it was his third successive podium result and he also produced a great ride, having started in sixth on the grid.
Rossi got his seventh rostrum result of 2014 in his 245th premier class race as he equaled the all time appearance record in the top class, pulling level with Alex Barros on that front.
With Marquez finishing fourth it is the first time this year that he did not win the race and this is the first time he has finished a MotoGP™ race off the podium. Marquez is of course still in a commanding position in the standings with a 77 point lead.
Marquez lost out in a midrace battle for third with Rossi, having earlier had a close fight with Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) in the opening laps – with the two former Moto2™ rivals clashing on two occasions.
Iannone would later get the better of Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) for fifth in the final stages.
The top ten was completed by Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP), Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing), Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini).
Home rider Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing) scored points in 14th, with substitute rider Leon Camier (Drive M7 Aspar) scoring his first ever MotoGP point in 15th.
A crash and subsequent retirement saw Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team) end his race early. Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Michael Laverty (Paul Bird Motorsport) both crashed out, whilst Danilo Petrucci (Octo IodaRacing Project) and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing) both retired with technical issues.
Moto2™ World Championship leader Tito Rabat scored a dominant win at the bwin Grand Prix České republiky, with Mika Kallio and Sandro Cortese joining him on the podium.
Starting on pole for the seventh time in 2014 Rabat stormed away from the line, leading from start to finish and opening up a clear gap at the front. The Spaniard crossed the line three seconds ahead of Marc VDS Racing Team colleague Kallio to increase his championship lead to 12 points.
A first Moto2 podium for Cortese (Dynavolt Intact GP) was secured by a two second gap from Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Paddock Moto2). Dominique Aegerter (Technomag carXpert) crossed the line just behind Luthi in fifth, with Maverick Viñales (Paginas Amarillas HP 40) nearby in sixth.
The top ten was completed by Julian Simon (Italtrans Racing Team), Franco Morbidelli (Italtrans Racing Team), Johann Zarco (AirAsia Caterham Moto Racing) and Marcel Schrotter (Tech 3).
Wild card Miroslav Popov (Montaze Broz Racing Team) crashed out midrace, taking Robin Mulhauser (Technomag carXpert) with him. Sam Lowes (Speed Up) crashed and was forced to retire, with Luis Salom (Paginas Amarillas HP 40) also suffering a spill, which led to a DNF for him too.
Another superb Moto3™ race at the bwin Grand Prix České republiky saw Alexis Masbou secure victory after a long battle featuring a huge leading group, with Enea Bastianini and Danny Kent joining him on the podium.
A deserved win for Masbou (Ongetta-Rivacold) in his 133rd Grand Prix race came by just a 0.157s margin from Bastianini (Junior Team Go&FUN Moto3), who rode bravely with a broken heel. The win for experienced Frenchman Masbou makes him the rider to have competed in most Grands Prix before tasting victory.
Kent (Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo) returned to the podium in third, with 15 riders crossing the line tightly packed in a front running group.
Alex Marquez (Estrella Galicia 0,0) just missed the podium in fourth having led on several laps, whilst his teammate Alex Rins finished ninth, having remarkably celebrated a lap early, thinking he had won the race.
A fifth placed finish for Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was enough to increase his championship advantage to 23 points.
The top ten was completed by Brad Binder (Ambrogio Racing), Miguel Oliveira (Mahindra Racing), Efren Vazquez (SAXOPRINT RTG), Rins and Isaac Viñales (Calvo Team).
With local rider Karel Hanika (Red Bull KTM Ajo) finishing just 1.838s behind winner Masbou but back in 15th place, the race produced the closest ever top 15 in the history of the World Championship.
Jorge Navarro (Marc VDS Racing Team) and John Mcphee (SAXOPRINT RTG) crashed out on the first lap, with wild card Gabriel Rodrigo (RBA Racing Team) and Luca Grünwald (Kiefer Racing) also suffering crashes. None were seriously injured. Ana Carrasco (RW Racing GP) retired with a technical problem.