Malaysian GP 2022: Bagnaia wins and moves closer to title

Pecco Bagnaia (Ducati) has beat compatriot Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing) by two-tenths of a second to win the MotoGP´s Malaysian GP 2022 this Sunday at the Sepang CircuitA reborn Fabio Quartararo (Yamaha) took his first podium since Austria, with a third-place finish behind the Italian duet. The Frenchman managed to climb from tenth to third place despite competing with a broken finger. 

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His seventh win after Pecco Bagnaia won Spain , Italy, Holland, Great Britain, Austria & San Marino has placed Bagnaia just two points away from being crowned but he should be able to seal the deal in the final appointment in Valencia in two weeks’ time.

His French rival should also be satisfied to have kept the title battle alive until the Spanish round. The greatest disappointment this Sunday came from pole holder Jorge Martín (Pramac), who, after riding alone from pole during the first few laps, ended up crashing again. 

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Martín escapes at the start, before crashing   

Martín held on to his starting first place with ease at the beginning of the Malaysian MotoGP 2022. Behind the Spaniard, an incredible Bagnaia had climbed from ninth to second place. Similarly, Quartararo had jumped from twelfth to fifth place. Feeling the pressure, the two main contenders for the sceptre gave a breath-taking initial performance. Behind them, Bastianini, who had lost a position, was followed closely by Márquez. 

After a few laps, Martin was flying unopposed, setting a blistering pace at 1.2 seconds over Bagnaia and Bastianini, who could not get close to him. These, in turn, led Quartararo by 2.7 seconds. 

The race, however, would take a turn on the seventh lap when Martin crashed, on his own, leaving Bagnaia and Bastianini at the head of the MotoGP´s Malaysian GP 2022. Meanwhile, Quartararo continued in third at the same distance but was now followed closely by Marco Bezzechi (VR46), who had overtaken Marc. 

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 Exchange of blows between ‘The Beast’ and Bagnaia 

Bastianini passed Pecco at the halfway point of the Moto´s Malaysian GP 2022 after riding hot on the tail of the Turinese for several laps, demonstrating a faster pace. Three seconds behind was Quartararo followed by only half a second by Bezzechi. 

Four laps later, Pecco regained the lead at Sepang after a long break at the end of the straight. Behind him, Quartararo had cut his disadvantage by 1.7 seconds. With five laps to go, the battle between the two Italians had allowed Quartararo to cut back a further 0.8s  in just two laps. 

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At the lead and with just three laps remaining, Pecco was still trying to keep ‘The Beast’ at bay, only a few millimetres behind and then Joan Mir also crashed. Quartararo, 1.2 seconds back, reacted quickly.  

On the last lap, Bastianini got so close to Pecco that he had to open up to the side in order to avoid hitting him. After the scare came the seventh victory of the year for Bagnaia who leads Quartararo – third today in Sepang – by 23 points in the standings. The man from Turin would need to earn just two points more than ‘El Diablo’ to claim his first MotoGP title in Valencia on November 6th. 

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Imágenes de MotoGP´s Malaysian GP: Michelin.

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