MotoGP Catalunya 24/05- 26/05/2024

RACE REPORT | MotoGP Malaysia 2023

Enea Bastianini scored his first MotoGP victory at the Malaysian Grand Prix and put in a great performance at Sepang. The Ducati Lenovo rider edged out Alex Marquez, who settled for second place. In the ongoing battle for the championship, Francesco Bagnaia further strengthened his position with third place.

For Bastianini, it was his first win since last year in Aragon, marking a return to form after an injury the previous season that had put his future with the Ducati Lenovo team in doubt, especially given Pramac Racing's Martin's success in the overall standings. Despite the initial uncertainty, Bastianini took an early lead at the first corner and maintained control, with Marquez close behind and struggling minimally. While many riders struggled with tyre control issues in the heat, Bastianini showed no set-up problems and gradually increased the gap between himself and Marquez.

Marquez, who impressed at the weekend with victory in Saturday's sprint, achieved his second podium finish of the season after a third place in Argentina earlier in the campaign. Like Bastianini, Marquez faced little pressure from current world champion Bagnai or his rival Martin.

Bagnaia, representing Ducati Lenovo, has reduced his championship lead in the last two months. However, this race was a key moment for him as he secured his first pole position since Catalunya. At the start of the race, Bagnaia battled with Martin for a long time for third place and showed courage and tenacity to hold his position before getting into a rhythm and riding away.

Despite Bagnaia's lead, the World Championship remains undecided, with Qatar historically favouring Martin. After Qatar, the Tour returns to Spain for the season finale in Valencia, offering Martin another opportunity to make a decisive impact on the race. Bagnaia currently holds a 14-point lead over Martin in the championship standings.

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