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Stewards chose "easy option" for Austria MotoGP sprint crash penalty – Martin

Jorge Martin believes giving him a penalty for his involvement in the Turn 1 pile-up in the MotoGP Austrian Grand Prix sprint was the “easy option” for the FIM stewards.

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

The Pramac Ducati rider was handed a long lap penalty for last Sunday's Austrian GP after he was deemed to have been at fault for triggering a multi-rider pile-up on the opening lap of the sprint contest.

The incident was investigated for several hours after the sprint race on Saturday, with Martin insisting he was not to blame.

The stewards took a dim view of his actions, however, and he was awarded a long lap penalty for Sunday's full-distance race – which he served on the fourth lap, before going on to finish seventh.

Martin continued to disagree with the penalty following the grand prix and was unhappy that the stewards couldn't issue him anything in the sprint.

"No, I still watched the race a lot of times," he said when asked if he agreed with his penalty.

"I spoke with a lot of riders, Randy Mamola, a lot of journalists. If you watch it again and again, you understand that it wasn't my fault. Just, it was a combined situation that happened like this.

"Today [in Sunday's grand prix] we had more aggressive moves from another rider and nothing happened.

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

"But yesterday was like this, I had bad luck and it's a pity that the stewards are not able to give a penalty in a race, that you have to get it in the main race, which is more important.

"Battling for a championship, it destroys your possibilities.

"The only thing is they had to give somebody a penalty, to punish them for the action, and they chose the easy option."

Martin was able to keep his podium in the sprint race and escaped a second punishment after making contact with VR46's Luca Marini while overtaking for third.

Marini – who was fourth in the grand prix – was unhappy afterwards with what he felt was inconsistency from the stewards, citing Fabio Quartararo being handed a long lap for a similar incident with Lorenzo Savadori.

Martin remains second in the standings after the Austrian GP but is now 62 points adrift of Francesco Bagnaia following his third sprint/grand prix double of 2023.

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