Valencia MotoGP: Marquez tops warm-up for title decider

  • Valencia MotoGP: Marquez tops warm-up for title decider

Valencia MotoGP: Marquez tops warm-up for title decider

Spanish rider Marc Marquez on Saturday set the pace in the third free practice session for the MotoGP Valencia Grand Prix.

And the subsequent action saw Italy's Dovizioso crash out before Marquez, who had survived a scare at one point when he went off the track, finished third behind compatriot and team-mate Dani Pedrosa and runner-up Johann Zarco (Yamaha) of France.

Pole position rider Zarco was then pushed down to third, while Dovizioso - who had a mathematical chance of winning the MotoGP title - was in sixth position coming off the grid. Pedrosa remained in third, with the two Ducati machines glued together around a second behind and the tense tick of the clock counting down.

With the Ducatis closing in, Marquez took the lead from Zarco into the final turn, but knowing the Frenchman would fight back into turn one he went in hard. Sliding on his knee for a stunning save into Turn 1, the reigning Champion headed for the gravel - but managed to rejoin, yet behind Dovizioso.

Marquez took the lead at the tight Circuit Ricardo Tormo Circuit, with Pedrosa coming through the second row to take second place.

Up front Pedrosa and Zarco were left to battle it out for the race win in a pulsating final few laps.

Jack Miller crossed the line seventh ahead of close friend and fellow Honda rider Cal Crutchlow while Michele Pirro and Tito Rabat rounded out the top ten. The young gun from Spain has now won four premium class world titles in just five seasons of his MotoGP debut.

That's a wrap on a stunning season to savour, with 2017 having provided some of the most incredible racing ever seen.

"I'm happy because we tried until the end and it was open until 10 laps from the end", Dovizioso said.