until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League


Bagnaia wins crash-strewn Dutch TT, Binder loses podium again

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
5 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

MotoGP championship leader Pecco Bagnaia won an attritional Dutch TT at Assen to bolster his championship lead.

Bagnaia’s fourth Sunday win of the season – his second straight in the Dutch TT – came at the end of a weekend largely dominated by Ducati stablemate and fellow Valentino Rossi protege Marco Bezzecchi.

But Bezzecchi acknowledged after his sprint triumph that Bagnaia may have more in hand on the medium rear rather than the soft rear they’d used in the sprint, and so it proved on Sunday.

Like in the sprint race, Bezzecchi again lost out from pole position to both Bagnaia and Brad Binder – albeit it was much quicker this time, both having cleared him almost immediately off the line, with Binder taking the inside line and the lead.

But the soft rear tyre-equipped KTM did not make an early break, Bagnaia instead overtaking Binder on the third tour down the inside of Stekkenwal to establish himself at the lead of a three-bike front group.

He seemed to settle in to manage the advantage over Binder at that point, but as the 26-lap race crossed over its halfway point Bagnaia suddenly pulled several tenths of a second clear.

On lap 17, Bezzecchi got past Binder on the back straight, Bagnaia’s lead hovering around a second at that point. Making significant inroads into that lead proved impossible for the VR46 rider, with Bagnaia ultimately winning by 1.223s.

Binder had his hands full of fighting off Aleix Espargaro in the closing laps but managed his rear tyre well enough to finish third on the road.

Yet, remarkably, he was given a track limits penalty – once again for narrowly clipping the green paint coming out of Stekkenwal – applied post-race, with the podium once more turning into fourth place just as it had in the sprint.

Espargaro, riding an Aprilia with a damaged brake lever protector after opening-lap contact with VR46 Ducati’s Luca Marini, thus clinched the first Aprilia podium since Portimao in March.

This was also made possible by him hanging on against his good friend Jorge Martin.

The Pramac Ducati man was coming through, having been 13th on the opening lap, and was just 0.009s off picking off Espargaro on the outside on the run to the line, that gap proving the difference between third and fifth place given Binder’s penalty was a drop of one position.

Fifth place was still enough for Martin to retain second in the championship, by one point over Bezzecchi, albeit with Bagnaia now 35 points clear.

Gresini Ducati’s Alex Marquez rode a very lonely race to sixth, his position not impacted even by a long-lap penalty for a track limits infringement.

The same penalty befell LCR Honda’s Takaaki Nakagami, who finished four tenths behind seventh-placed Marini.

Franco Morbidelli was ninth for Yamaha, albeit nearly 15 seconds behind Nakagami, while Tech3 Gas Gas rider Augusto Fernandez defeated Aprilia wildcard Lorenzo Savadori in a late duel for 10th place.

The series’ 2021 champion Fabio Quartararo followed up his first sprint podium with a visit to the medical centre after a crash that also caught up his compatriot Johann Zarco.

After a dreadful start from fourth on the grid, Quartararo tucked the front coming through Ruskenhoek while trying to recover – a crash that resulted in contact with Zarco and his Pramac-run Ducati, and left the Yamaha man, already in pain from a fractured toe this weekend, limping away from the site of the crash. His fracture was subsequently diagnosed as being “further displaced”.


KTM’s Jack Miller had crashed the lap prior, falling off as he tried to fight back against a Maverick Vinales overtake at Haarbocht. Vinales then also overtook Marini at the same corner, then crashed out of fifth place while trying to chase down team-mate Espargaro and the leading trio ahead.

Enea Bastianini (Ducati) ran eighth when he went down at Strubben on the seventh lap.


Two pitlane retirements then came in the next few laps, as Miguel Oliveira (RNF Aprilia) parked up, having run in the top 10 before beginning to struggle (perhaps due to his lingering shoulder injury), and Honda stand-in Iker Lecuona ending his race with what may have been a mechanical issue – after he had run as high as 11th.

Finally, Fabio Di Giannantonio (Gresini Ducati) crashed out – at Strubben, like Bastianini – while challenging for the top 10.

Race Results

Pos Name Team Bike Laps Laps Led Total Time Fastest Lap Pitstops Pts
1 Francesco Bagnaia Ducati Lenovo Team Ducati 26 24 40m37.64s 1m33.106s 0 25
2 Marco Bezzecchi Mooney VR46 Racing Team Ducati 26 0 +1.223s 1m33.138s 0 20
3 Aleix Espargaró Aprilia Racing Aprilia 26 0 +1.925s 1m33.187s 0 16
4 Brad Binder Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 26 2 +1.528s 1m33.097s 0 13
5 Jorge Martin Prima Pramac Racing Ducati 26 0 +1.934s 1m33.065s 0 11
6 Alex Marquez Gresini Racing MotoGP Ducati 26 0 +12.437s 1m33.215s 0 10
7 Luca Marini Mooney VR46 Racing Team Ducati 26 0 +14.174s 1m33.633s 0 9
8 Takaaki Nakagami LCR Honda IDEMITSU Honda 26 0 +14.616s 1m33.534s 0 8
9 Franco Morbidelli Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 26 0 +29.335s 1m33.967s 0 7
10 Augusto Fernandez GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3 KTM 26 0 +33.736s 1m34.193s 0 6
11 Lorenzo Savadori Aprilia Racing Aprilia 26 0 +35.084s 1m34.101s 0 5
12 Raul Fernandez CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP Team Aprilia 26 0 +39.622s 1m33.861s 0 4
13 Stefan Bradl Repsol Honda Team Honda 26 0 +42.504s 1m34.597s 0 3
14 Jonas Folger GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3 KTM 26 0 +45.609s 1m34.589s 0 2
Fabio Di Giannantonio Gresini Racing MotoGP Ducati 18 0 DNF 1m33.675s 0 0
Iker Lecuona Repsol Honda Team Honda 14 0 DNF 1m34.15s 0 0
Miguel Oliveira CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP Team Aprilia 12 0 DNF 1m33.68s 0 0
Enea Bastianini Ducati Lenovo Team Ducati 6 0 DNF 1m33.847s 0 0
Maverick Viñales Aprilia Racing Aprilia 3 0 DNF 1m33.638s 0 0
Fabio Quartararo Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 2 0 DNF 1m34.649s 0 0
Johann Zarco Prima Pramac Racing Ducati 2 0 DNF 1m34.522s 0 0
Jack Miller Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 1 0 DNF 0s 0 0
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