Everyone expected a Marc Marquez win, and that’s what they got. What no-one expected was for him to be pushed all the way by Tech 3’s other rookie, Jonas Folger. It was a superb display by the German who was also the fastest Yamaha qualifier. Up until two laps from the flag he was never more than a few tenths behind Marquez and even blew past once at the bottom of the fast downhill straight. Marquez kept a fearsome rhythm, every lap in the 1min 21sec bracket, but Folger stayed with him, looking typically smooth. He did out-brake himself at Turn 1 a couple of times, once seriously enough to allow Marquez to extend the gap to over half a second. To the delight of the German crowd, Jonas was able to rush straight back up to the Honda but the effort was enough to finish his tyres. When Marquez applied pressure with a couple of laps to go Folger had nothing left.
Behind the top two, Dani Pedrosa had a lonely race to third in front of an ever-changing brawl for fourth, eventually won by Maverick Vinales from eleventh on the grid beating his team mate Valentino Rossi who had go fend off a late charge from Alvaro Bautista who ended up top Ducati as the factory and satellite Dukes suffered tyre drop off.
Amazingly, and i had to check this twice, this was only Marquez’s second win of the season but he goes into the Summer break as championship leader. His reaction today didn’t lie – there is no way he expected to be in this position.
There’s no way that Valentino Rossi can be happy tonight–he was soundly beaten by his teammate and was the third Yamaha to cross the finish line.