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2017 Valencia MotoGP - Pedrosa Wins The Race, Marquez The Crown


Despite a few last moment hiccups, Marc Marquez finished third to clinch the 2017 MotoGP championship title

 

 

2017 Valencia MotoGP

 

 

 

Valencia was the destination for the last race of the season and the Spanish town has been witness to many championships being decided at this iconic race track. The 2017 MotoGP championship was also to be decided in a sunny afternoon in Spain but the gap between the contenders Marc Marquez and Andrea Dovizioso was a massive 21 points. However, the MotoGP social media team worked overtime to create hype around the last race of the season with the hash tag “Final Showdown” which was trending. There was drama in qualifying when Marquez crashed out in the closing stages of the qualifying session while he was on polee. Despite the crash, his time was so good that it ensured that he will start from the front row. As for Dovizioso, it wasn’t an easy session as he qualified in 9th position.

 

 

 

2017 Valencia MotoGP

 

 

 

The above qualifying meant that the Spanish rider was in the best situation possible for the race and he made full use of the pole advantage. Marquez led the opening stages of the race rather comfortably while Dovizioso struggled his way to rise to 6th place. The fact that Dani Pedrosa was in second place would come as a sigh of relief for the reigning MotoGP champion. Andrea Iannone and Johann Zarco, who are probably the most ruthless riders on the grid, were engrossed in a battle for 3rd place, which allowed the Repsol Honda riders to create a sizeable lead on the trailing pack of riders. Zarco had managed to win the scuffle with Iannone and was clocking the fastest lap of the race and soon passed Pedrosa. Zarco was running the soft front tyre and one can see that he was visibly faster than other riders. As soon as he closed down on Marquez, the Spanish rider just went off the racing line and let him pass. This was very uncanny of Marc Marquez, who is fearsome when it comes to even a few inches on the race track but we guess the Repsol Honda rider was minimising his risks. 

 

 

2017 Valencia MotoGP

 

 

 

Further down the grid, both the Ducati riders were fighting it out for fifth place after they passed Iannone. Dovizioso was visibly faster than Lorenzo but the Spanish rider wasn’t making life any easy for his team-mate. Ducati mechanics were trying their best to make Lorenzo understand the fact that he need to let Dovi overtake him. Despite using numerous pit boards signs and sending the “map 8” setting, Lorenzo didn’t budge. Zarco was slowing struggling with his tyre with 7 laps remaining in the race, Marquez tried to overtake Zarco but the Frenchman was quick to retaliate. Marquez entered Turn 1 too hot and under hard braking, his front tyre almost folded. But, miraculously, he was able to “stand up” the Honda as he entered the gravel trap, where his off-road riding skills were tested, but he managed to rejoin the race in 5th place. 

 

 

2017 Valencia MotoGP

 

 

 

While all eyes were on Marquez, Lorenzo crashed out of the race and everyone started speculating what if he had let Dovi pass and not held him back. The dust from Lorenzo’s crash hadn’t settled properly when we saw Dovizioso run wide and fall in the gravel trap, thereby ending his championship dream. Marquez was lonely in third place and he knew that the crown was his even if he faced any mechanical issues or crashed out of the race. Up ahead, Johann Zarco was on course for his maiden MotoGP win but Pedrosa had some other plans as he passed him to take the race lead in the last lap of the race. 

 

 

2017 Valencia MotoGP

 

 

 

Despite the rookie rider's best effort, it was Pedrosa who took the chequered flag while Marquez finished third in front of his home crowd to clinch his fourth MotoGP championship title. It was Marquez’s 6th title overall and Honda grabbed the constructors' title ahead of Yamaha. The 2017 season has to be among the most exciting seasons in the history of MotoGP, and in the end Marquez deserved the title for his consistency, Dovizioso won many hearts with his brave performance and we will be hoping that he is able to clinch the elusive crown next year. And for us fans, it’s a four month sabbatical from MotoGP before it returns at Qatar next year on March 18. 

 

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