Spotlight shone on how Ducati will manage Marc Marquez-Francesco Bagnaia drama

Ducati will "want to put a stop to that... It will be hard to keep a lid on it"
Marc Marquez, MotoGP race, Portuguese MotoGP, 24 March
Marc Marquez, MotoGP race, Portuguese MotoGP, 24 March

How will Ducati manage the fall-out from Marc Marquez and Francesco Bagnaia’s Portimao clash?

That subject was debated on the latest episode of the Crash MotoGP podcast.

We were in the Portimao paddock to watch the dramatic crash and question both riders about what happened.

Race Direction deemed it a racing incident but Marquez and Bagnaia’s collision in the Portuguese MotoGP meant they both scored no points, and allowed Jorge Martin to build a lead in the championship.

Ducati boss Gigi Dall'Igna was then extremely careful not to blame either rider for the collision but he will surely have to manage what comes next.

Robert Jones said: “We expected those two to be racing hard this year, and potentially for something like to happen, given what’s at stake.

“Knowing Marquez, he wants to prove a point, and to race the likes of Bagnaia and Martin as hard as he can.

“For Bagnaia, knowing he’s got Marquez on a similar bike, it’s a chance for him, as well, to really prove himself against someone of Marquez’s talent and reputation.

“It was a good move from Marquez. He did run slightly wide but not wide enough to give up the corner.

“He was still, just, on the line and could expect to take the line that he did.

Bagnaia was very aggressive. Fair but aggressive.

“It’s just one of those where two riders wanted the position, to be ahead of the other, and there was inevitably contact. A racing incident was fair.

“Whether you think Marquez is at fault or not, he’s always in the limelight.

“For Ducati, it’s something they’ll want to get on top of. And not have this happen again.

“Especially for the factory team, with “Bagnaia going for the title again, it’s not something they want.

“To have Ducati riders colliding is never a good thing.

“It was very dramatic. Going forward, they’ll want to put a stop to that. It will be hard to keep a lid on it, for sure…”

Marc Marquez and Francesco Bagnaia crash, MotoGP race, Poruguese MotoGP, 24 March
Marc Marquez and Francesco Bagnaia crash, MotoGP race, Poruguese MotoGP,…

Peter McLaren reported: “Nightmare scenario for both of them to come away with zero points.

“Pecco was angry about that, not about the move itself.

“The move itself was a racing incident.

“But the context of it? Pecco the reigning champion, the title favourite, on the back foot after a mistake in the sprint, then off pace in the grand prix, his main rival Martin in front…

“The last thing you then need is to throw away what would have been fourth-place, with Maverick then dropping out.

“I asked Pecco if it was risky. He insisted it wasn’t.

“Marc said ‘it was a racing incident’. But he also said that Ducati can see all the data. He didn’t say what the data showed. But he implied that the data would be on his side.

“They were both probably off line. In that scenario, the guy behind has got to be aware that the guy in front can’t see him.

“But you’re not talking about normal riders, here. You’re talking about two multi-champions.

“The end result was a disaster for both, and it gave Martin a decent points lead.”

Jordan Moreland said: “There are so many different TV angles from it. The broadcast showed that maybe they just collided.

“When you see the alternate angle…

“One angle looks like Bagnaia clearly understeers into Marquez.

“Another angle shows Marquez closing the door…

“Fantastic drama. It makes two weeks’ time in COTA even more special.”

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