By Lisa Lewis
Catalunya Caixa rider Marc Marquez took his eighth Moto2 grand prix win of the season at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit, recovering from leaving his bike in neutral on the grid and dropping to the back of the field. He now leads the championship by 53 points.
Marquez had it all to do after dropping to the very back of the pack when his bike was not in gear as the lights changed and was lucky not to be collected as the field flew past, with Dominique Aegerter coming very close to hitting the Spaniard on his Technomag machine.
The Repsol rider then carved through the field on his Suter, and despite claiming in the press conference that after his “very big mistake” he didn't think he could win the race he remained calm and didn't panic whilst attacking his way back to the front.
After many moments during the race when “not 100% confident” with the bike and trying to keep pace at the front Tuenti Movil HP 40 rider Pol Espargaro enjoyed a great battle with Marquez over the closing laps, eventually crossing the line just 0.415 behind, claiming his sixth podium from the last six races.
The Pons Kalex rider remains optimistic, saying the championship is now “difficult, but not impossible” but that today was not to be his day as “Marc was so good”.
Espargaro's team mate Tito Rabat made it an all Spanish top three, the one time race leader consolidating his first front row start since joining Moto2 into his first podium of the season. After a strong start he made the mistake of altering his riding style to compete with Marquez, breaking his racing rhythm in the process.
Next to finish was the Kalex of Marc VDS rider Scott Redding in fourth who found he “couldn't get the bike stopped” but still had great battles with Toni Elias, who eventually crashed out of fifth while trying to keep pace at the front and then Tom Luthi who finished in fifth on his Suter for the Interwetten-Paddock team.
Simone Corsi was next to take the flag for Ioda, placing his FTR in sixth while Takaaki Nakagami was the highest placed Japanese finisher in seventh for Italtrans. Winner of the final 125cc race at Motegi Johann Zarco managed to improve his weekend by finishing eighth for JIR.
Axel Pons ensured all the Pons team bikes finished inside the top ten with a ninth place finish, while Aegerter took tenth on his 100th grand prix start.