Marc Marquez reigns supreme in Austin
Registers his first victory in only his second MotoGP race at the Circuit of the Americas, becomes youngest-ever MotoGP winner
Three decades - that's exactly how long Freddie Spencer's record for the youngest motorcycle Grand Prix winner stood - until last night, when Repsol Honda's 20-year old Marc Marquez decided to set it straight - the showing at Qatar was no fluke, and that he was here to stay with a resounding maiden win at the Circuit of the Americas.
Located a stone's throw away from Austin, Texas, the COTA had witnessed Marquez scorch the track during practice on Friday as well as qualifying on Saturday, where he also became the youngest pole-sitter - another record snatched away from Spencer.
Not all was rosy for Marquez, however - the start of the race saw teammate Dani Pedrosa absolutely fly past him, and surprisingly, Stefan Bradl eased past him into 2nd place, though not for long as ultimately Marquez, Jorge Lorenzo and Cal Crutchlow all found their way past him.
With just about 9 laps to go, Marquez turned the wick on Pedrosa. Only patiently waiting for his chance trailing Pedrosa all this while, he beat Pedrosa on the inside of Turn 7, and even though Pedrosa tried his best to overtake the newbie, he crossed the finish line almost two seconds behind him, with Lorenzo taking up the final podium spot (which also happened to be his 100th career podium across all MotoGP classes) trailing Pedrosa by a similar margin.
Among others, Crutchlow would've been pleased in particular - he wouldn't have been very happy with his performance in Qatar - to finish the race fourth, with Bradl in fifth and Rossi (starting 8th) completing the top six. Among the three retirements was Colin Edwards, along with Danilo Petrucci who could only curse his luck after teammate Lucas Pesek lost control of his bike and crashed out of the race only minutes before Petrucci's bike gave up the ghost.
As it stands today, Marquez and Lorenzo are equal in terms of championship points, but Marquez is on top of the table because he's younger (hardly Lorenzo's fault, is it?). Come Jerez in two weeks' time, and Marquez will have a chance to prove that his first MotoGP victory wasn't a flash in the freshly laid-out pan.
Race standings -
1. Marc Marquez
2. Dani Pedrosa
3. Jorge Lorenzo
4. Cal Crutchlow
5. Stefan Bradl
6. Valentino Rossi
7. Andrea Dovizioso
8. Alvaro Bautista
9. Nicky Hayden
10. Andrea Iannone