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.

Aragon Moto2: Lowes dominates, Marquez claims maiden podium
Polesitter Sam Lowes, Federal Oil Gresini Moto2
Alex Marquez, Marc VDS
Sam Lowes, Federal Oil Gresini Moto2
Sam Lowes, Federal Oil Gresini Moto2
Alex Marquez, Marc VDS
Alex Marquez, Marc VDS
Franco Morbidelli, Marc VDS
Alex Rins, Paginas Amarillas HP 40
Alex Rins, Paginas Amarillas HP 40
Johann Zarco, Ajo Motorsport

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:

Cla#DriverBikeTime
1 22  Sam Lowes  Kalex 40'00.885
2 73  Alex Marquez  Kalex 40'04.174
3 21  Franco Morbidelli  Kalex 40'04.206
4 12  Thomas Luthi  Kalex 40'06.066
5 30  Takaaki Nakagami  Kalex 40'11.607
6 40  Alex Rins  Kalex 40'13.049
7 7  Lorenzo Baldassarri  Kalex 40'13.270
8 5  Johann Zarco  Kalex 40'13.497
9 24  Simone Corsi  Speed Up 40'14.889
10 94  Jonas Folger  Kalex 40'19.049
11 19  Xavier Simeon  Speed Up 40'23.298
12 54  Mattia Pasini  Kalex 40'23.556
13 11  Sandro Cortese  Kalex 40'23.794
14 55  Hafizh Syahrin  Kalex 40'24.322
15 23  Marcel Schrötter  Kalex 40'26.178
16 49  Axel Pons  Kalex 40'26.713
17 97  Xavi Vierge  Tech 3 40'27.289
18 4   Steven Odendaal  Kalex 40'27.410
19 87  Remy Gardner  Kalex 40'31.226
20 2  Jesko Raffin  Kalex 40'31.323
21 60  Julian Simon  Speed Up 40'31.390
22 77  Dominique Aegerter  Kalex 40'42.652
23 45   Tetsuta Nagashima  Kalex 40'42.904
24 57  Edgar Pons  Kalex 40'42.943
25 10  Luca Marini  Kalex 40'46.329
26 14  Ratthapark Wilairot  Kalex 40'46.514
27 70  Robin Mulhauser  Kalex 40'56.771
28 32  Isaac Viñales  Tech 3 40'56.774
29 52  Danny Kent  Kalex 1 Lap
Ret 89   Alan Techer  NTS  
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