MARC MARQUEZ may have been setting records recently, but Ducati have sent a reminder that they too are proud of their past.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) took a thrilling last corner win in Austria to keep up their 100 per cent success rate at the Red Bull Ring.
He passed Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) to sweep to victory in a race that could not have been closer as the two MotoGP greats treated the crowds to a sensational race at the my World Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich.
New kid on the block Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) took third in a breathless race that saw Britain’s Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) crash out of contention early on. He hit the back of Tito Rabat’s Reale Avinita Racing Ducati on turn three of lap two after the Spaniard had to take avoiding action to avoid Pol Espargaro’s (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) bike.
Marquez on pole and Dovizioso made superb starts and reached turn one in first and second. There was nothing to choose between the two, neither willing to give an inch.
But they were perhaps too intent on their own race at this stage and mistakes into turn three allowed Quartararo to take the lead, with Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) and Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins getting by Marquez and Dovizioso on the exit.
Dovi then got by Marquez into turn four on the opening lap as the pole sitter was demoted to P5. Meanwhile, Quartararo was getting the hammer down as the rookie took a 0.5 lead into lap two.
However, Dovizioso and Marquez have too much talent to stay down the field, and they both started to recover from their opening lap.
Dovi was shortly back up to second, with Miller in third holding off Marquez. Just behind was the fast-starting Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP), having climbed to fifth from P10.
Marquez soon got past Miller, then Dovi and Marquez blasted past Quartararo on lap seven.
They gradually pulled out a lead, but there was nothing between the two. Marquez got past Dovi with three laps to go, but could not pull clear. It was nip and tuck until the final corner when Dovi reclaimed first place and took the chequered flag.
Dovi said: “This victory was really important for me. At the end of the race I had good grip on the tyre and this allowed me to attempt that incredible overtaking at the final corner.”