Mugello explodes as Bagnaia takes home victory with Ducati

The Italian fans were up on their feet at the Italian GP as their home hero led the way to a Ducati podium lock-out

Sunday at the Gran Premio d'Italia Oakley is a day that Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) will keep fondly in his memory, as the Italian did the double in Mugello – from pole – and extended his Championship advantage from one single point to a very healthy 21. Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing) kept the Italian honest from start to finish but didn't quite have enough to topple the number 1 as he was forced to settle for second, although only a second back. The battle for third raged on all race long, finally seeing Johann Zarco (Prima Pramac Racing) fly through the field to take P3 and deny Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) a home podium.

Untouchable. Impeccable.

Tensions were high on the grid as the sun shone over Mugello for one of the most iconic Grands Prix on the calendar, and it was Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) who took the holeshot into Turn 1 but Bagnaia came out of the gates determined to deliver on home soil, the Italian pushing his way back to the front at the next apex. He then began to stretch a lead as the chasing pack was swapping paintwork on the opening lap.Bagnaia crossed the line for the first line 0.4s ahead of the special liveried Prima Pramac machine of Martin, who had made his way past Miller, and the Australian was under attack from a queue of riders led by Marini and Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team).

The front two began to break away as Bagnaia attempted to stretch out the field, with Martin clinging onto the coattails of Pecco as chaos started to unfold behind in the battle for third.

With 21 laps to go, Alex Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP™) had a wild rush into Turn 1, seemingly unable to drop anchor and threading through the group. Both he and Miller were sent wide, allowing Marini and Marquez to bully their way through into third and fourth, and Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) was right in the mix too.

The race settled down as the laps began to tick away and it was Bagnaia leading with a consistent 0.4s gap over Martin who keeping himself in victory contention. 1.5s back a battle for the podium was brewing nicely with Marini sat in P3 with the Marquez brothers glued to his rear wheel.

As ever, Marc Marquez was on the absolute limit of his Honda machine until the Spaniard ran wide at the final turn and crashed out on the dirty part of the tarmac with 17 laps remaining.

This spread the field out a little bit as Marini had a bit of breathing space over Alex Marquez in 4th with Johann Zarco threatening the podium fight in 5th.

Bagnaia continued to tick the laps away as he put down a solid pace unmatched by the rest of the field. The Italian controlled the race beautifully from the front keeping Martin at arm's length until the chequered flag.

The Spaniard kept Bagnaia on his toes until the chequered flag, pushing him every step of the way. Martin didn't quite have enough for victory but brought home an important P2.

Fortune favours the brave in the fight for an Italian GP podium

The podium fight was well and truly on with 11 laps to go as Alex Marquez rode up alongside Marini into Turn 1, pulling off the perfect block pass to demote the Italian down to P4 with Zarco also waiting to pounce.

Marini continued to pile the pressure on Alex Marquez in front, and with no room for error in MotoGP™, the slightest of mistakes saw the Spaniard crash out of the Italian Grand Prix as he joined his brother in the Mugello gravel trap.

Six laps to go and Zarco made Marini well aware of his presence as he made a beautiful move at the final corner to lead Marini onto the front straight. The Italian got straight back into the Frenchman's slipstream and retook 3rd place as they barrelled into Turn 1.

Zarco wasn't having any of it however as the Prima Pramac man snapped straight back at the VR46 rider, putting the hammer down in an attempt to break away from his fellow satellite Ducati.

The Frenchman went on to do exactly what he does best, and with some incredible late-race pace sailed away from Marini to consolidate a double Pramac podium at the team's home circuit.

Action throughout the field

Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) set the new all-time MotoGP™ top speed record on Saturday and was the first non-Ducati in P5. He led Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) across the line with his teammate Jack Miller taking P7.

A dreadful start to the race for Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) saw him stuck down in P8 with 15 laps to go. The Italian then used his Ducati power to draft past Aleix Espargaro on the start-finish. It wasn't meant to be on the Sunday of his home Grand Prix for "Bez" however as Espargaro found his way back past the Italian, leaving the VR46 man to bring home a lonely P8.

Enea Bastianini (Ducati Lenovo Team) finished his first race back after injury in P9 with Franco Morbidelli (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™) rounding out the top 10 ahead of his teammate Fabio Quartararo.

It was a big weekend for Francesco Bagnaia's 2023 title hopes as the Italian support fuelled his Championship defence. With a 21-point lead over Bezzecchi, the number 1 has gotten the European triple header off to a perfect start as the paddock heads to the very venue where it all well wrong for Bagnaia in 2021. The Liqui Moly Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland awaits the grid next weekend with action in Assen just one week later. Make sure to keep up to date with all of the action as it unfolds on!

Top 10:

1. Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team)
2. Jorge Martín (Prima Pramac Racing) - +1.067
3. Johann Zarco (Prima Pramac Racing) - +1.977
4. Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) - +4.625
5. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) - +8.925
6. Aleix Espargaró (Aprilia Racing)- +10.908
7. Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) - +10.999
8. Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) - +12.654
9. Enea Bastianini (Ducati Lenovo Team) - +17.102
10. Franco Morbidelli (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™) - +17.610


VideoPass allows you to watch every single second of every single sector LIVE and OnDemand