Aragon Moto2: Lowes dominates, Marquez claims maiden podium
Aprilia MotoGP-bound Sam Lowes put in a dominant performance in the Moto2 race at Aragon, as Alex Marquez held off teammate Franco Morbidelli for a maiden class podium.
Lowes, who had banked just 16 points in the last five races, was untouchable at the Motorland circuit, dealing with an early charge from Marquez and then running the rest of the race well in the clear.
Off the line, Marquez stormed into the lead into the first corner - but he would only get to enjoy it for half a lap, with Lowes getting back ahead with a handsome move in the corkscrew Turn 9.
The Briton quickly picked up a lead of a few tenths, and while Marquez managed to hang at half a second behind over the opening laps, Lowes soon began checking out.
His lead over Marquez grew lap after lap and, as the race arrived at its final third, Lowes was three seconds ahead and cruising towards victory.
For Marquez, it would be much less straightforward, as teammate Franco Morbidelli was muscling his way through the pack, the Italian eventually passing Tom Luthi for third, with two seconds separating he and Marquez.
In a few laps, those two seconds turned into just a few tenths - and, on the final lap, Morbidelli tried to outbrake his teammate into the final corner, only for Marquez to outdrag him to the line by 0.032s.
Luthi took fourth, with Takaaki Nakagami making up the top five.
Rins and Zarco in the mid-pack
The category's main title contenders Johann Zarco and Alex Rins, who arrived to Aragon three points apart, spent the race close together, fighting other riders in the mid-pack.
Zarco had started well ahead of Rins - P5 to P13 - but the Frenchman visibly struggled for pace early on, himself and Rins going in opposite directions in the order.
The Suzuki-bound Spaniard was up to fifth two laps in, while Zarco had slumped to 10th.
However, the Frenchman soon settled into a rhythm, catching and passing Jonas Folger for ninth and then Simone Corsi for eighth, as Rins gave up fifth to a charging Morbidelli.
Seemingly off the pace and losing a lot of time to the top five, Rins dropped behind Baldassarri but managed to regroup and retake position.
With four laps to go - and Zarco now on their tail - Rins surrendered the spot to Baldassarri again, and responded yet again to put the Italian's bike between himself and his championship rival.
He then held off Baldassarri and Zarco to the chequered flag, cutting the gap between himself and the championship-leading Frenchman to just a solitary point.
Behind them, Corsi and Folger - Zarco's 2017 MotoGP teammate at Tech 3 Yamaha - made up the top 10.
Moto2 race results:
|9||24||Simone Corsi||Speed Up||40'14.889|
|11||19||Xavier Simeon||Speed Up||40'23.298|
|17||97||Xavi Vierge||Tech 3||40'27.289|
|21||60||Julian Simon||Speed Up||40'31.390|
|28||32||Isaac Viñales||Tech 3||40'56.774|
|29||52||Danny Kent||Kalex||1 Lap|
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