Valencia Moto2: Marquez fall hands Oliveira win after early chaos

KTM rider Miguel Oliveira won the final Moto2 race of the 2018 campaign in Valencia, picking up the pieces after Alex Marquez fell from the lead.

Valencia Moto2: Marquez fall hands Oliveira win after early chaos

Marquez had powered his way through to the lead from 16th on the grid, but fell while managing his gap to Oliveira, giving the Portuguese rider a clear run to victory.

On a wet but drying track, Sepang race winner Luca Marini had started from pole position but was behind Xavi Vierge and champion teammate Pecco Bagnaia heading out of Turn 1, before losing his bike at Turn 2 and clipping Bagnaia – who stayed up but dropped out of the top 20.

Behind that incident, MotoGP-bound rookie Joan Mir had an identical fall, separating from his bike before going feet-first into Luca Baldassarri's machine, which took the Italian out of the race as well.

As mayhem unfolded behind him, Vierge soon lost the lead to the out-of-contract Mattia Pasini, only to re-pass the Italian on the main straight.

Both were cleared by Tech 3 KTM signing Oliveira shortly after and the championship runner-up briefly broke away from his pursuers – only to be reeled in and passed by Marquez in a few laps.

By then the top four, made up of the leading duo as well as Vierge and Iker Lecuona, was already well clear of the chasing pack, although Vierge would crash under pressure from Lecuona as the race approached its halfway point.

While Lecuona, who had started 21st, soon ran well wide and dropped back, Marquez was maintaining a gap to Oliveira, but with 11 laps to go the MotoGP champion's brother slid off at the final corner, leaving Oliveira with a massive eight-second lead.

The KTM man controlled it from there for his third win of the season, while Lecuona bagged his maiden podium in second place.

Marquez managed to remount after the crash and dropped no lower than third, fending off Pasini to salvage a podium finish.

Fabio Quartararo, who will join Yamaha's Petronas-backed satellite team in MotoGP next year, had stalled on the warm-up lap and was forced to start from the pitlane.

He powered his way through to fifth, although surrendered the spot to Remy Gardner on the penultimate lap, the Aussie picking up a career-best finish.

Front row starter Marcel Schrotter was only seventh, ahead of Augusto Fernandez and the Italian duo of Andrea Locatelli and Simone Corsi.

Bagnaia recovered from the Marini incident to claim 14th place ahead of his switch to a Pramac-run Ducati MotoGP bike next year.

Oliveira's teammate Brad Binder and former Aprilia MotoGP racer Sam Lowes were two of the other riders to crash out in the season finale.

Race results

Cla # Rider Bike Time Gap
1 44 Portugal Miguel Oliveira KTM 45'07.639  
2 27 Spain Iker Lecuona KTM 45'20.840 13.201
3 73 Spain Alex Marquez Kalex 45'29.814 22.175
4 54 Italy Mattia Pasini Kalex 45'36.531 28.892
5 87 Australia Remy Gardner Tech 3 45'37.745 30.106
6 20 France Fabio Quartararo Speed Up 45'39.765 32.126
7 23 Germany Marcel Schrotter Kalex 45'40.725 33.086
8 40 Spain Augusto Fernandez Kalex 45'41.589 33.950
9 5 Italy Andrea Locatelli Kalex 45'43.346 35.707
10 24 Italy Simone Corsi Kalex 45'44.658 37.019
11 77 Switzerland Dominique Aegerter KTM 45'51.483 43.844
12 45 Japan Tetsuta Nagashima Kalex 45'53.510 45.871
13 4 South Africa Steven Odendaal NTS 45'56.752 49.113
14 42 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Kalex 46'00.927 53.288
15 2 Switzerland Jesko Raffin Kalex 46'16.351 1'08.712
16 32 Spain Isaac Viñales Suter 46'33.305 1'25.666
17 18 Andorra Xavi Cardelus Kalex 46'39.805 1'32.166
18 95 France Jules Danilo Kalex 46'55.141 1'47.502
19 21 Italy Federico Fuligni Kalex 45'26.874 1 Lap
20 3 Germany Lukas Tulovic Suter 47'03.737 1 Lap
  66 Finland Niki Tuuli Kalex 35'32.996 6 Laps
  97 Spain Xavi Vierge Kalex 24'41.916 12 Laps
  16 United States Joe Roberts NTS 14'47.085 17 Laps
  70 Italy Tommaso Marcon Speed Up 13'28.130 18 Laps
  9 Spain Jorge Navarro Kalex 9'25.238 20 Laps
  41 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 5'36.527 22 Laps
  22 United Kingdom Sam Lowes KTM 5'38.871 22 Laps
  89 Malaysia Khairul Idham Pawi Kalex 3'50.853 23 Laps
  10 Italy Luca Marini Kalex    
  7 Italy Lorenzo Baldassarri Kalex    
  36 Spain Joan Mir Kalex    
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