Marquez cruises to win in Japan, Honda clinch constructors' title
Motegi (Japan): Reigning world champion Marc Marquez of Repsol Honda on Sunday won his 10th title of the 2019 season in Motegi, Japan. This is his fourth victory on the trot this season and with this, he has ensured that Honda win the Constructors' title.
Marquez, who started in pole position at the Twin Ring Motegi for the first time in his premier class career, remained ahead of the pack for the entirety of the 24 laps. This is his third title in Japan in the premier class.
Fabio Quartararo of Petronas Yamaha finished second and was crowned Rookie of the Year. While the 20-year-old kept a check on Marquez in the early laps, the Spaniard managed to keep a safe distance for the rest of the race.
Quartararo was also given a stiff chase by Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso, who finished the race third. This is the Italian's 100th podium finish of his career.
Marquez got off to a scorching start and while Quartararo managed to keep pace with the Spaniard in the initial laps, the latter managed to maintain a lead of at least two seconds for much of the race. Quartararo however closed the gap towards in the final laps and was behind Marquez by 0.870 seconds in the end. He led Dovizioso by 1.325 seconds.
Marquez said after the race that the strategy was always to push from the beginning. "The strategy was clear. This time I tried to open the gap from the beginning. I was very strong but honestly speaking, I started to play along with the switch because I was on the edge with the fuel," he said after the race.
Dovizioso, who started the race on seventh, was in a tight battle for the podium with Monster Energy Yamaha's Maverick Vinales for much of the race. There was however clear daylight between the two towards the end with Vinales finishing fourth and a gap of 2.608 seconds separating him and Dovizioso.
Vinales' teammate and Moto GP great Valentino Rossi had another disappointing outing. Rossi crashed out of 10th place with four laps to go. This is the fourth time he has not been able to finish a race in a season in which he has managed to get on the podium only twice.