MOTOGP

Márquez takes controversial sixth win

Pedrosa crashes out after “El Niño” tries to make unsuccessful pass

Honda's Dani Pedrosa suffers a highside behind Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo during Aragón Grand Prix on Sunday.
Honda's Dani Pedrosa suffers a highside behind Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo during Aragón Grand Prix on Sunday.JOSE JORDAN / AFP

The seemingly unstoppable rookie MotoGP rider Marc Márquez took yet another victory on Sunday, this time on home turf at the Aragón Grand Prix. But his sixth win of the season was not without controversy.

Jorge Lorenzo managed to get his Yamaha into the lead at the start of the race, with the Hondas of Dani Pedrosa and Márquez hot on his tail. As has so often been seen on the track so far this season, the trio of Spaniards began to pull away from the rest of the pack, and looked set to fight it out between them for the remainder of the race.

But on lap six, Márquez tried a move on Pedrosa, and the pair appeared to make slight contact as the 20-year-old attempted a dive around the outside of the more veteran rider. Márquez ran wide, and just seconds later Pedrosa suffered a violent highside, sending him bouncing along the track and his Honda into a flat spin.

That was it for Pedrosa’s race, and could well spell the end of his championship hopes. To add insult to injury, Sunday was the rider’s 28th birthday.

Meanwhile, with six laps to go, Márquez finally made a move on Lorenzo to take the lead, racking up another stunning win in his debut season. Italian Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi managed to make it to the third step on the podium, after coming out on top after an epic race-long battle involving Álvaro Bautista, Stefan Bradl and Cal Crutchlow.

Speaking after his crash, it was clear that Pedrosa was not at all happy with the antics of “El Niño,” as the precocious Márquez is widely known. “Not everything goes,” he told the press, after his team claimed that there had indeed been contact with Márquez’s bike, which had broken a sensor on Pedrosa’s machine, thus causing the accident. “And in this case,” Pedrosa continued, “as always, [the race directors] have turned a blind eye.”

Having scored 278 points, and with just four races left to run, Márquez is in with a very strong chance of winning the championship in his first year in the MotoGP category, unless Lorenzo can catch up from second place, where he sits with 239 points.

Meanwhile, Spaniard Nicolás Terol took the win in the Moto2 category, with fellow countrymen Esteve Rabat and Pol Espargó coming in second and third, respectively. Alex Rins completed the Spanish hat-trick with victory in Moto3, with Maverick Viñales and Álex Márquez — also from Spain — taking second and third.