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125: Marquez crash to first for dramatic Estoril win
31 October 2010
Marc Marquez took his tenth victory of the 125cc season, and put one hand on the 2010 title, under the most dramatic circumstances in the penultimate round at Estoril on Sunday.
The 17-year-old was just behind title rival Nico Terol when the initial race was red flagged due to light rain, but then crashed "like a junior" (his words) on his way to the grid for the nine-lap restart.
Pulling into the pits with a broken fairing the Ajo Red Bull Derbi team performed some frantic repairs, but couldn't get Marquez back out in time to take his second place on the grid.
Instead, Marquez had to start from the back of the grid, but with so many riders had crashed that last place was actually 16th.
A lightening start - under sunny skies once again - then saw Marquez up to fifth after turn one, and third behind Terol and Aspar Aprilia team-mate Bradley Smith by the end of the back straight!
Smith was riding for the team today and did his best to protect Terol, but Marquez was into second behind his fellow Spaniard by lap 3 of 9.
The Ajo Derbi team had been showing "P2 OK" signals since the original start, and Marquez was backing off on the straight to stay behind Terol - a tactic that looked in danger of back-firing when Smith retook third on lap 6.
Marquez made several attempts to get back past the Englishman on the brakes into turn one, but each time Smith kept the inside and blocked him off, before a penultimate lap pass at the end of the back straight sent Marquez back into second.
That left a one-lap showdown between Terol and Marquez for the race victory and perhaps the world title.
Marquez snatched the lead from Terol at turn one, triggering a series of passes that saw Terol twice lunge inside Marquez - and twice ran wide, allowing the Derbi rider to regain the lead and win by just 0.150sec.
Marquez began the race with a 12-point lead over Terol and will now take a 17 point lead into the Valencia finale.
Pol Espargaro, who began the race 17-points from Marquez, saw his title chances end on Sunday after an all-or-nothing gamble on wet tyres for the restart. The Tuenti Derbi rider finished tenth when the rain spots failed to increase.Race results - Estoril:
1. Marquez (Derbi) 9 laps
2. Terol (Aprilia) +0.150s
3. Smith (Aprilia) +0.212s
4. Folger (Aprilia) +18.378s
5. Salom (Aprilia) +19.387s
6. Moncayo (Aprilia) +22.505s
7. Krummenacher (Aprilia) +26.699s
8. Vazquez (Derbi) +26.703s
9. Webb (Aprilia) +31.503s
10. Espargaro (Derbi) +40.823s
Kent (Lambretta) DNF