Dramatic, exhilarating, breathtaking, unpredictable. Four words that capitulate the 2018 MotoGP™ World Championship perfectly. Why? After a pivotal Gran Premio Red Bull de España, Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) becomes the Championship leader after his masterful display – the fourth time that first in the overall standings has changed in as many races.
Qatar race winner Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) led the Championship as the paddock travelled to Argentina. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol), after his stunning victory, then became the first British rider since Barry Sheene to lead the premier class World Championship, before heading to America. The Circuit of the Americas is known for being Marquez territory, and sure enough, the Spaniard dominated – but it was Dovizioso who would head to Europe as the Championship leader.
And so, to the Spanish GP at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto, a race which will be remembered for more reasons than one. A three-way collision between Dovizioso, teammate Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) on the exit of Turn 6 took all three down, ending ‘DesmoDovi’s’ reign at the top of the Championship. Marquez, taking his second consecutive win, leaves the Spanish GP in charge.
The gap at the top has stretched, with Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) in second, after his P2 finish in Andalusia. The reigning Champion takes command; however, we head to a circuit he’s failed to finish higher than 13th at since 2014 – a chance then for the chasing pack to close the gap, and Zarco to strike on home turf.
With four different pole sitters and three different winners in the opening four rounds of the 2018 season, will we see another change in the World Championship standings after Le Mans?