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Dramatic tenth victory of season for Márquez in Portugal

Dramatic tenth victory of season for Márquez in Portugal

A phenomenal 125cc contest at Estoril saw the original race red flagged, Championship leader Márquez re-start from the back of the grid after crashing on the sighting lap and then ride to victory ahead of title rival Nico Terol.

Marc Márquez opened up a 17-point lead at the top of the 125cc World Championship over Nico Terol with just a single round remaining thanks to his tenth win of the season at Estoril on Sunday, which came in amazing circumstances at the bwin Grande Premio de Portugal.

Finishing ahead of title rivals Terol (who placed second) and Pol Espargaró (tenth), the Red Bull Ajo Motorsport rider came from the back of the grid to record what will be looked back upon as one the definitive performances of his fledgling career.

The original race was red flagged with 16 laps remaining as rain began to fall, and with the leading four being Terol, Márquez, Smith and Espargaró at the time that was determined as the starting grid for the rescheduled nine-lap race, which was declared wet.

Just when it appeared the drama and pressure could not intensify a crash for Márquez on the sighting lap added to the already tense atmosphere, and unable to retake his place on the starting grid in time the 17 year-old was relegated to the back of the 16 other riders who re-started the second part of the race.

That did little to hinder him as he rose to fourth position immediately and before long he was hunting down Terol. The Bancaja Aspar rider’s team-mate Bradley Smith did his best to aid his colleague, but after what he had been through Márquez was in no mood to be held back and overtook the Brit to set up a showdown with Terol.

On the final lap the pair swapped the lead a number of times, Márquez eventually getting his nose in front and crossing the line 0.150s ahead of Terol, with Smith taking third place. Jonas Folger (Team Ongetta), Luis Salom (Stipa-Molenaar Racing) and Alberto Moncayo (Andalucia Cajasol) completed the top six with Espargaró’s title hopes ended after he finished tenth, a gamble from his Tuenti Racing team on putting wet tyres on his Derbi machine failing to pay off. Brit Danny Webb (Andalucia Cajasol) placed ninth.

In the original race crashes on the opening lap resulted in a fractured left collarbone for Luca Marconi (Team Ongetta) and an injury to the right shoulder for Jasper Iwema (CBC Corse). Sandro Cortese (Avant Mitsubishi Ajo), Adrián Martín (Team Aeroport de Castelló), Danny Kent (Lambretta Reparto Corse), Louis Rossi (CBC Corse), Simone Grotzkyj (Fontana Racing) and Esteve Rabat (Blusens-STX) all experienced crashes that meant they were unable to re-start the second part of the race.

Márquez is still on course to equal Valentino Rossi’s 125cc record of the most victories in a single season (11 in 1997).


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