Bagnaia continues title revival as Zarco misses chance for first MotoGP win

Stats Perform
Francesco Bagnaia has won back-to-back races
Francesco Bagnaia has won back-to-back races

Francesco Bagnaia secured back-to-back MotoGP victories to hand a significant boost to his championship hopes.

The Ducati rider came off the five-week break 66 points behind the championship leader but capitalised on Fabio Quartararo's struggles, closing the gap to 49.

Johann Zarco, who started on pole and third in the championship standings, saw his hopes of a first MotoGP victory end after he crashed out in the lead, which will also have a significant impact on his title chances.

With Quartararo affected by a long-lap penalty and Aleix Espargaro – second in the standings – carrying an injury, Bagnaia's win saw Ducati secure another podium.

Quartararo had an excellent start and immediately propelled himself to second on the grid behind Zarco before serving his long-lap penalty on the fourth lap, subsequently returning to the field to take fifth as he crucially came out ahead of Maverick Vinales.

Zarco's hopes of securing a maiden MotoGP victory ended the following lap, crashing out in the lead, leaving Jack Miller and Alex Rins to challenge for first – the latter having surged from 11th at the start.

Espargaro, having been a doubt for the race after a high-side in practice on Saturday, was unable to compete and fell down the field, though the dent to his Championship hopes was not as severe with teammate Vinales overtaking Quartararo on lap nine.

Three laps later, Bagnaia made his move and became the fifth different leader of the race, while Miller rose to second soon after with Rins looking vulnerable heading into the closing stages.

Vinales jumped further up the standings in the final laps, taking Rins, Miller and then Bagnaia to cap off a stellar drive, but he could not retain the lead, with Bagnaia's title hopes boosted by two consecutive victories.

Quartararo finished eighth, narrowly ahead of championship rival Espargaro but both will now be worried about the title charge of Bagnaia.

TOP 10

1. Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati)
2. Maverick Vinales (Aprilia) +0.426
3. Jack Miller (Ducati) +0.614
4. Enea Bastianini (Gresini) +1.651
5. Jorge Martin (Pramac Racing) +1.750
6. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM) +2.727
7. Alex Rins (Suzuki Ecstar) +3.021
8. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha) +3.819
9. Alex Espargaro (Aprilia) +3.958
10. Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46) +6.646

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS

Riders

1. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha) - 180
2. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia) - 158
3. Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati) - 131
4. Enea Bastianini (Gresini) - 118
5. Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) - 114

Teams

1. Aprilia Racing - 240
2. Ducati - 238
3. Monster Energy Yamaha - 206
4. Pramac Racing - 195
5. Red Bull KTM - 179

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