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By Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS

Alex Marquez: First Moto2™ podium

2014 Moto3™ World Champion back on the rostrum for his first podium finish in the intermediate class

It has been a long time by world champion standards since Alex Marquez (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS) last stood on the podium, with his last top three finish coming in the sensational end of season showdown at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia in 2014. That day, the rider from Cervera had a world championship to win, and with key title rival Jack Miller having bolted at the front, it was a necessity if the crown were to remain in Spain. Marquez, in one of the most incredible Moto3™ season finales in recent seasons, kept calm and fought back through the pack to bring it home on the podium - and declare himself 2014 Moto3™ World Champion.

The move up to Moto2™ for the younger Marquez proved a tough one initially. Scoring good points and taking some solid finishes in his rookie year, the Spaniard first fought for the podium at Brno in 2015, eventually coming home in P4. His second year in the intermediate category has been a difficult one interrupted by crashes - largely from front-running positions - but a first front row in Brno and a good run of top five finishes set up the EG0,0 Marc VDS rider well for his home round at MotorLand Aragon, and Marquez topped FP3, remained on provisional pole until the last minute - and then took the lead of the race on Lap 1. Then passed by polesitter Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2), Marquez followed in the wake of the Brit and kept his own pace, several seconds clear of those chasing - until the final laps.

In those final laps, it was teammate Franco Morbidelli who was the man on a mission, turning his Warm Up speed into sensational race pace to chase down the man on the other side of the garage and catch him. Morbidelli just passed Marquez into the final turn, before the Spaniard hit back and crossed the line only thousandths ahead - ready for the attack and taking his first podium finish to give the team their first double podium since 2014.

Back on track to test on Monday, Marquez' focus now shifts to the Twin Ring Motegi - where he took his first ever win in the world championship when he won the Moto3™ race as a rookie in 2013.

Alex Marquez (P2): "I am really happy to finally be on the podium now in my second season in Moto2, last year was not easy for me. I know that a result like this can really build my confidence so this is an important moment for me.  At the beginning of the race I felt really good and was able to follow the pace of Sam Lowes. At the end I was struggling a little with rear grip and it was difficult but I was prepared for Franco when I saw him inside on the final corner. I want to thank the team for believing in me; I know it is not easy when a rider has had a lot of crashes. Now I want to keep this level for the next race in Japan."