LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow Wins Explosive 2018 MotoGP Grand Prix of Argentina
Marc Marquez and Valentino Rossi’s rivalry hits all-time high after a collision in the final laps.
The drama surrounding the 2018 MotoGP racing season was turned up several notches after the events that unfolded at the 2018 Grand Prix of Argentina, which saw LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow lead over the Yamaha Tech 3 of Johann Zarco and Alex Rins of Team Suzuki Ecstar who came in second and third place.
It all started before the race got underway as a light shower soaked the 2.9-mile circuit and triggered pandemonium that saw most MotoGP riders, except pole-sitter Jack Miller, switch to wet tires for the start of the race. The rules state that riders with last-minute changes applied to their motorcycles must start from the pit lane, but due to the majority of the field having to comply, the race director allowed the field to line up on the starting grid several rows behind Miller, therefore still respecting the headstart the Australian deserved for not pitting.
It was at that very moment that Honda Repsol's Marc Marquez began his troublesome race, as the Spaniard stalled his bike on the grid and remained in position after getting it started, instead of moving to the back of the grid as the rulebook mandates. After utter confusion and a lengthy delay, the Grand Prix of Argentina got underway and quickly evolved into a complete thriller of a race.
Honda Repsol's Dani Pedrosa was the first major casualty of the race, with the Spaniard being ejected from his racing bike in a nasty high-side before the first lap was even completed. Shortly thereafter, Marquez was awarded a drive-through penalty for his shenanigans on the starting grid, which delegated the reigning MotoGP world champion to the back of the field.
At the front of the race things remained stagnant while the action unfolded at the back, especially as Marquez was as hungry as ever to charge forward and make up precious positions. Unfortunately, his ambition outweighed his judgment, and the Spaniard quite literally tackled his way through Aleix Espargaro's Aprilia before catching up to the factory Yamaha teammates of Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales.
The Grand Prix of Argentina climaxed when Marquez found himself side-by-side with Rossi, only to repeat the questionable move he had just performed on Espargaro. Unfortunately, this time, it pushed Rossi so far off the track that the Italian lost control and crashed after his tires touched the wet grass.
At the front, a brief error by Miller saw Crutchlow, Zarco, and Rins overtake the Australian and demote him to fourth, where he finished after leading the majority of the Grand Prix. Marquez was eventually handed a 30-second penalty, which saw him finish in 18th place and way out of the championship points.
The MotoGP circus heads to the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas in two weeks, for what promises to be another scorching round of the world championship.
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