RACE REPORT | MotoGP Germany 2023

Jorge Martin triumphed in an exhilarating battle against reigning champion Francesco Bagnaia, securing a victory in the German MotoGP at Sachsenring and narrowing the Italian's lead in the championship.

Bagnaia pursued Martin after breaking away from the pack and managed to overtake him with ten laps remaining. However, Martin swiftly responded, resulting in a neck-and-neck battle that intensified on the penultimate lap when Bagnaia made contact with Martin's rear wheel. Despite the incident, the Spaniard maintained his position and won by a mere 0.064s, completing a double triumph at Sachsenring following his Saturday Sprint victory. This marked Martin's first official MotoGP win since his debut season in 2021.

Johann Zarco secured a podium finish, despite a scare on the final lap at Turn 1. The race showcased the dominance of Ducati riders, who occupied all but one of the top nine spots, with KTM's Jack Miller securing sixth place. Miller made a strong start and successfully fended off Bagnaia at Turn 1. However, a terrifying moment on entry to Turn 11 caused him to lose ground, and he finished in fourth place.

Martin swiftly surpassed Bagnaia to claim the lead on the third lap, but the Pramac Ducati rider closely pursued him throughout the race. Meanwhile, Luca Marini led a sizable group chasing behind in third place. Brad Binder, Miller's teammate and Saturday's rival, mounted a potential podium challenge but crashed out at high speed on lap 10, allowing Zarco to secure third place ahead of Marco Bezzecchi.

Bagnaia stayed within half a second of Martin, engaging in a battle for victory. Although Bagnaia briefly closed the gap around the halfway mark, he had to maintain a safe distance due to the risk of overheating his front tire in the turbulent air. With no successful overtaking opportunities, Bagnaia settled for a half-second gap until he closed in on Martin's rear wheel with ten laps remaining. Bagnaia executed a similar pass to Martin's earlier maneuver, retaking the lead at the Waterfall corner and the penultimate corner.

However, Martin refused to surrender and made a decisive counterattack, reclaiming the lead at Turn 12 with six laps left. Both riders used the same tire combination, with Martin's fairing design being the primary technical difference between them. Martin successfully defended his position, thwarting Bagnaia's attempts, including a pass at Turn 12 with three laps to go. As the penultimate lap began, Martin strategically positioned his bike on the inside of Turn 1, and Bagnaia inadvertently clipped his rear wheel at the final corner.

This incident gave Martin a 0.3s advantage at the start of the final lap, and he maintained a defensive line to secure victory by a mere 0.064s.

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