MotoGP French Grand Prix: Jorge Martin Wins His First Sprint Race As Bagnaia And Marquez Scrap Behind

The Pramac Ducati man outclassed the field after a bold start while other battles ensued behind him.

By Yashraj Singh


2 mins read


14-May-23 11:30 AM IST



  • The Pramac Ducati of Jorge Martin started from fifth position and went on to dominate the field by two seconds.
  • KTM’s Brad Binder finished second after starting down in tenth place.
  • The factory Ducati of Francesco Bagnaia was embroiled in a race long duel with the returning Honda of Marc Marquez.

The sprint round of the French Grand Prix saw championship leader Pecco Bagnaia snatch pole position at the last minute from the returning Repsol Honda star Marc Marquez by less than six-hundredths of a second, closely followed by VR46 Mooney Ducati’s Luca Marini. The following sprint race also saw Pramac Ducati’s Jorge Martin rocket away at the start to claim a dominant victory at the legendary LeMans circuit.



Ducati’s reigning world champion, Francesco Bagnaia, has a good start to the 13-lap sprint race as the lights went out. However, his lead didn’t last too long as the satellite Ducati of Jorge Martin made up four places to take the lead from the Italian on lap four.

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Martin quickly built a comfortable lead, crossing the finish line 1.8 seconds ahead of KTM's Brad Binder, who secured second place after starting in 10th. Bagnaia managed to hold off VR46's Luca Marini and claimed the final podium spot, while Marc Marquez finished fifth in his racing comeback.


At the start, Bagnaia took the lead into the Dunlop chicane, followed closely by Martin, Jack Miller, Marini, and Marquez, who had slipped from second on the grid. Marquez swiftly passed Marini at Turn 7, advancing to fourth place as the leading pack created a gap from the pursuing riders.


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Unfortunately, Miller crashed out of the race on the second lap, promoting Marquez to third. Simultaneously, Binder executed a forceful move on Marini at Turn 8, securing fourth place. Meanwhile, Martin maintained a steady lead over Bagnaia and made a decisive move on the fourth lap at the Dunlop chicane, preventing any chance of retaliation from Bagnaia.



Binder continued his strong performance by overtaking Marquez and Bagnaia on the following lap, in one fell swoop. By this point, Martin had established a significant lead of 1.4 seconds. Marquez capitalised on Bagnaia's slowing pace and reclaimed third place at the Dunlop chicane, demonstrating his aggressive riding style.


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Frustrated by Marquez's move, Bagnaia retaliated on the tenth lap, reclaiming third place. Several riders faced difficulties during the race, with Miller, Tech3's Augusto Fernandez, and Alex Marquez encountering crashes, while home hero Fabio Quartararo crashed out on lap 10. Martin remained unchallenged until the chequered flag, securing a commanding victory. Binder secured another podium for KTM in second place, with Bagnaia securing a crucial podium finish in third.


Late in the race, Marini managed to overtake Marquez, securing fourth place, while Johann Zarco finished sixth on his Pramac Ducati. Marco Bezzecchi, Aleix Espargaro, and Maverick Vinales took the remaining points, with Takaaki Nakagami completing the top 10.


Bagnaia's championship lead was reduced to 23 points ahead of the upcoming grand prix, with Binder emerging as his closest challenger, surpassing Bezzecchi in the standings.


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