Ecstar Suzuki’s Alex Rins took his maiden MotoGP victory today at Austin after reigning MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez sensationally crashed out.
Marquez had opened a 3.6s lead over Valentino Rossi and looked set for a seventh successive win on American soil but asked too much of the front Michelin on lap eight and went down under braking at turn 12.
The Repsol Honda man tried to get his RC213V re-started again but topped off the side of it when it wouldn’t go, and then gave up.
And to add insult to injury for HRC, Jorge Lorenzo’s bike gave up with nine left to run and Britain’s Cal Crutchlow crashed out on lap six, leaving Taka Nakagami as the only Honda finisher.
Rins crossed the line with a four-tenth advantage over Rossi with Jack Miller in third, his first podium since Assen 2016.
Rossi had held off Rins even though he had run out of rear grip and tried to bite stright back but ran wide at turn 12. Another error from The Doctor left Rins with a half-second lead which he just couldn’t reel back in.
It was disaster on the other side of the Monster Yamaha garage though as Maverick Vinales, along with Joan Mir, was handed a ride-through penalty for jumping the start. Mir went directly into pitlane but Vinales went around the penalty loop twice before working out that wasn’t the correct thing to be doing.
Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso came from 13th on the grid to fourth place and the Italian takes charge of the championship lead.
He had to battle past the Petronas Yamaha of Franco Morbidelli but then opened an eight-second gap over Rossi’s protege.
Danilo Petrucci ended 21.5s behind Rins and 13s behind Miller on the equivalent GP19. Rookie Fabio Quartararo was seventh with Pol Espargaro in eighth on the KTM.
Pecco Bagnaia put his GP18 in ninth place with Nakagami in tenth place. Vinales came over the line in 11th place after getting stuck behind the Avintia Ducati pairing of Tito Rabat and Karel Abraham for longer than he would like.
Aprilia’s Andrea Iannone was 12th, with Johann Zarco, Miguel Oliviera and Rabat completing the top 15.
Dovizioso leads the title chase by three points from Rossi with Rins in third and Marquez slipping back to fourth with a nine-point deficit over the Ducati man.