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Next Event Starts in:
3hrs 24min - MotoGP Qualifying
Mar 13, 2024
Stewart Lyons

After all the hype and excitement with the build up to the new season, Race Weekend one is over and it’s time to take a look back at an action packed weekend of racing.


As with every qualifying session in MotoGP, a number of riders came into the weekend with the hope of picking up the first pole position of the season. After all was said and done, Jorge Martin took pole, being a tenth of a second quicker to Alex Espargaro. Championship favourite Bagnaia was in fifth, leaving him nicely placed for both races.

Marc Marquez got the fans excited by topping the timing screens, only to drop down to a very respectable second row, sixth place start. Pedro Acosta managed to get his Gas Gas KTM on the third row ahead of the factory KTM of Jack Miller. Marco Bezzecchi, who challenged for the championship last season was all at sea on the 2023 Ducati and didn’t make Q2, lining up fifteenth on the grid. Honda and Yamaha were, as expected, fighting over the lower grid spots.


Jorge Martin followed up his impressive qualifying with a solid sprint race. Challenged throughout by Brad Binder, Martin finished half a second ahead of Binder and a late charging Aleix Espargaro. Bagnaia and Marc Marquez were fourth and fifth respectively. Pedro Acosta managed to pick up his first MotoGP points with an 8th placed finish.


Raceday, on a track notorious for high tyre wear, was set up to be a classic. Aleix Espargaro’s late sprint pace had meant many pundits were tipping him for an outside chance of a win. In reality, it never materialised in a race dominated from start to finish by Championship favourite Bagnaia.

Leading into turn one after a rocket of a start, Bagnaia did not look back. Carefully managing his tyres in the first few laps before pulling a comfortable one second gap to Brad Binder that he maintained for the majority of the race.

Jorge Martin completed the podium places with Marc Marquez behind in an eventually lonely fourth. Marc Marquez rode a steady race, looking in control throughout, a position that is only likely to improve as the season progresses.

Behind the front three, the star of the show was Pedro Acosta. The MotoGP rookie fought his way through the field into, at one point, fourth place. He was within touching distance of a first podium in his first race. However, as the race went on Acosta tyres started to fade along with his podium hopes. The more experienced riders around him had nursed their tyres while Acosta had pulled daring move after daring move. Acosta eventually dropped back to ninth, in a very solid debut weekend.

With Binder also having a very solid start to 2024 with two second place finishes even more pressure will be heaped on Jack Miller. A first lap crash saw Miller drop to the back of the field, a position he could not recover from. With so many seats up for grabs next year, the factory KTM of Jack Miller must currently be the most precarious seat, especially with Acosta’s start in MotoGP.

Aside from Miller the biggest underachiever of the weekend was Marco Bezzecchi. Bezzecchi struggled in the sprint and ended the race in only fourteenth place, ten seconds behind his teammate Di Giannantonio who was in seventh. Jorge Martin’s Pramac Ducati team mate Franco Morbidelli missed most of the pre-season testing due to a heavy crash and he struggled to get the grips with the Ducati following his switch from Yamaha in the off-season. The spotlight will be on Morbidelli next time out.

Next up the riders travel to the Algarve for the Portuguese GP at Portimao on 22nd - 24th March.

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