until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League


Crash and injury hit Marquez's German GP hopes

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
2 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Marc Marquez will be forced to fight through the opening segment of qualifying at the German Grand Prix, after a fast crash in second MotoGP practice required him to visit the medical centre.

Marquez, who had already gone down in opening practice but still set the pace at what's regarded as one of his specialist circuits, had a much nastier fall coming through the treacherous Wasserfall corner during the 60-minute afternoon run.

He tucked the front of his Gresini Ducati Desmosedici GP23, which then came around after his knee hit the ground, resulting in a painful high-speed highside.

Marquez returned to his pit garage and initially rejoined the session, even going quickest with a 1m20.384s.

But shortly after that he changed out of his race suit and into regular teamwear and headed to the medical centre.

He was declared fit to continue to ride there - with what was later reported as a rib contusion diagnosis by Spanish broadcaster DAZN - but didn't rejoin the session.

With Marquez on the sidelines, he slid down to 13th in the order.

The crashfest

But Marquez was also just one of many riders to crash at one of the Sachsenring circuit's three right-handers, with the right side of the front tyre presumably cooling off too much in the windy conditions while not in use over the rest of the track.

VR46 Ducati rider Marco Bezzecchi had gone down at Wasserfall before Marquez, albeit getting away with a lowside, while his team-mate Fabio Di Giannantonio then hit the ground hard at Turn 1, briefly looking as if he'd broken a collarbone before being cleared by the medical staff.

Di Giannantonio's crash burst the air fence, requiring a red-flag stoppage, which was then followed by Turn 1 crashes for Takaaki Nakagami, Joan Mir - raging at his Honda in the gravel trap - and Pedro Acosta.

The sole remaining right-hander without crashes to its name, Turn 3, was then scene of a fall for Acosta's Tech3 team-mate Augusto Fernandez. And another tumble followed eventually at Wasserfall, Ducati's Enea Bastianini falling off on an outlap.

It took until the 57-minute mark for the first left-hander crash, coming courtesy of Yamaha stand-in Remy Gardner - with Johann Zarco then also tumbling at that corner.

Aprilia leads the way

Amid all that, the 2024 Aprilia RS-GP starred in the hands of both Maverick Vinales and Miguel Oliveira (with Aleix Espargaro, the other RS-GP '24 rider, having withdrawn in the morning).

Vinales ended up firing in a 1m19.622s, the new lap record at the venue, while Oliveira was three and a half tenths of a second off in third.

Slotting in between them was Pramac Ducati's championship leader Jorge Martin, while Alex Marquez, Pecco Bagnaia, Bastianini and Franco Morbidelli made it five Ducatis in the top seven.

Acosta shrugged off his crash to claw back a top-10 spot in eighth, aided by a tow from KTM stablemate Jack Miller - who was only a tenth slower but ended up missing out.

The final top-10 spots and thus the final guaranteed Q2 places went to the recovering Di Giannantonio and Brad Binder.

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