Moto3: Martin extends title lead with German win

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Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) took a perfectly-timed win in the Pramac Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland, fighting at the front throughout before pulling the pin to perfection in the latter stages to escape the chasing pack. It was Championship rival Marco Bezzecchi (Redox PruestelGP) who crossed the line second in some solid damage limitation to keep close in the standings, with John McPhee (CIP – Green Power) putting some recent disappointments to bed as he got back on the podium with an impressive third.

Martin took the holeshot from pole, getting a perfect start as Marcos Ramirez (Bester Capital Dubai) moved up into second and Enea Bastianini (Leopard Racing) suffered off the line to fall back. Ramirez’ teammate Jaume Masia shot past the Italian to take third, with Bezzecchi pouncing early to move up and begin his attack.

From seventh on the grid the Italian was soon on the tail of Martin and the Spaniard was unable to escape in the early stages. But it was a huge train of riders fighting it out at the front, with the group stretching back outside the points and even the top twenty.

With 16 laps to go, Martin’s first little lightning bolt of drama hit as he headed wide into Turn 1 and dropped back to fourth, before another few laps later there was more drama in the same place as teammate Fabio DiGiannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) crashed and was incredibly close to collecting Martin out the lead – but the Spaniard held on and just headed a little wide.

With seven to go Martin made a break for it, pulling the pin and timing it to perfection as Bezzecchi struggled to hold on to the Honda man ahead of him. Half a second then six tenths then over a second, the gap kept growing – and McPhee hunted down Bezzecchi. Martin crossed the line for the win as Bezzecchi and McPhee dragged it out – and the Italian took it by just half a tenth.

Marcos Ramirez took fourth as he beat Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) by less than a tenth, with Masia completing his impressive weekend – despite a huge highside on Saturday – to complete the top six. Jakub Kornfeil (Redox PruestelGP) took seventh ahead of an improved weekend for Philipp Oettl (Südmetall Schedl GP Racing) in P8, with Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Ayumu Sasaki (Petronas Sprinta Racing) completing the top ten.

Fernandez was a victim of another key moment of drama in the race, with the Spaniard suffering contact with Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) and forced wide across the gravel. Getting back on track well outside the top twenty, the Spaniard’s ride back to the top ten was an incredible achievement as he stands in for the injured Darryn Binder.

Dalla Porta’s teammate Enea Bastianini was also protagonist of some drama as the Italian crashed in the latter laps and was collected by Alonso Lopez (Estrella Galicia 0,0), making it a 0 in the title fight for the Italian just ahead of the summer break.

Adam Norrodin (Petronas Sprinta Racing), Andrea Migno (Angel Nieto Team), Dalla Porta after a penalty, Nicolo Bulega (Sky Racing Team VR46) and rookie Kazuki Masaki (RBA BOE Skull Rider) completed the points.

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer