Marc Marquez Wins 2019 MotoGP Catalunya Grand Prix After Jorge Lorenzo Crash

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJune 16, 2019

Repsol Honda Team's Spanish rider Marc Marquez rides during the Catalunya MotoGP Grand Prix race at the Catalunya racetrack in Montmelo, near Barcelona, on June 16, 2019. (Photo by PAU BARRENA / AFP)        (Photo credit should read PAU BARRENA/AFP/Getty Images)
PAU BARRENA/Getty Images

Honda's Marc Marquez coasted to victory at the MotoGP Catalunya Grand Prix on Sunday, taking advantage of an early crash that hindered a number of his rivals.

After a frantic start to the race, a mistake from Honda's Jorge Lorenzo left himself and three other front-runners unable to continue. The Spaniard lost balance under braking, wiping out Andrea Dovizioso, Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales in the process.

Marquez somehow emerged unscathed from the chaos and had a comfortable lead at the front as a result, which he was able to extend. Eventually, pole-sitter Fabio Quartararo was able to take second for Yamaha, with Ducati's Danilo Petrucci in third.

It's the fourth win of the season for the defending champion, who is now 36 points clear at the summit after just seven races in 2019.

MotoGP™ 🏁 @MotoGP

🏆 @marcmarquez93 clinches a huge victory in Barcelona! The result doesn't come close to telling the full story!!! 👀 #CatalanGP 🏁 https://t.co/GCooibIIfE

All eyes were on Quartararo at the start of the race, as the 20-year-old produced a brilliant qualifying performance to take pole position. However, the youngster was gobbled up at the start and was down in eighth at the end of the first lap.

Meanwhile, some of the biggest names up front in the field were especially racy, with Lorenzo making rapid progress from 10th up into a battle for first.

Perhaps a little overconfident on the Honda, Lorenzo sought to make a big move up the inside of a number of riders, only to take out Dovizioso. Rossi and Vinales were caught up in the ensuing melee, and a number of the favourites had their races ruined as a result.

BT Sport shared footage of the tangle at Turn 10: 

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OH MY!!!!! ROSSI! DOVI! VIÑALES! What have you done, Jorge Lorenzo?! 😳😱 #CatalanGP https://t.co/hlB6mA8QCs

MotoGP journalist Simon Patterson said he didn't think there was much individual blame to attribute: 

Simon Patterson @denkmit

That was a racing incident. Dovi had a wobble, it unsighted Lorenzo behind him, and he lost the front with nowhere to go.

What was arguably even more surprising was that Marquez was able to navigate his way through the corner and into a clear lead.

Petrucci capitalised on the misfortune of others in the field, as he jumped up to second spot, with Alex Rins tucked in behind him.

With the world champion easing clear at the front, the focus turned to the battle for the minor places, with Petrucci and Rins seeking to capitalise on the DNFs of a number of competitors in the upper reaches of the standings.

Rins' hopes of finishing second came to an end with six laps to go, though, as he was clipped by Petrucci and dropped back to sixth.

Quartararo came through as those two squabbled, moving into second and getting his foot down at the right time to preserve the position.

While the young Frenchman set his quickest lap with clear road in front of him, Marquez had established too much of a lead to be concerned. It meant he had time to savour the final stages, seizing only his second win at the Catalunya Grand Prix.

With a 36-point lead intact so early on, Marquez looks as though he's going to be tough to beat again this season. When the 2019 term is reflected on, you sense this race and Lorenzo's wobble will be noted as critical points.