It was a KTM show in qualifying at Motegi, and on race day it was a group of the Austrian factory’s machines largely fighting it out – joined by the likes of eventual podium finisher Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) and Championship leader Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) fighting for Honda glory on their home turf. In the end, however, it was a push too far for Martin and the Spaniard crashed out – as closest challenger Marco Bezzechi (Redox PruestelGP) judged the drag to the line to perfection and won in style. That cuts the gap back to just one point.
Phillip Island is a very different track to Motegi and that will likely play a role in equaling the playing field again – and it would be no surprise to see Martin back to having a target on his back. But it’s also a track that provides some of the best racing on Earth and with Moto3™ already enjoying that rep, it will definitely be a showcase of what everyone’s got. Can Martin pull that gap back out? Will Bezzecchi be able to pounce?
There are a few seriously fast faces sure to make it more than a duel, however. Dalla Porta, teammate Enea Bastianini, Darryn Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) fresh from his first podium, Gabriel Rodrigo (RBA BOE Skull Rider), Dennis Foggia (Sky Racing Team VR46), John McPhee (CIP – Green Power)…and last but not least, Martin’s teammate Fabio Di Giannantonio. ‘Diggia’ suffered a huge highside in Japan but thankfully escaped largely unscathed. With Martin’s crash the Italian didn’t lose any ground to the top of the Championship, so his gap remains at 29 points – a longer shot but very much a possible one.
A cast of serious speed, one of the world’s greatest racetracks and one single point splitting the top two in the Championship. Phillip Island is coming – get ready! It’s lights out at 13:00 (GMT +11).
1 – Jorge Martin (SPA) HONDA 204 points
2 – Marco Bezzecchi (ITA) KTM 203
3 – Fabio Di Giannantonio (ITA) HONDA 175
4 – Enea Bastianini (ITA) HONDA 142
5 – Lorenzo Dalla Porta (ITA) HONDA 131
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