Spain’s Marc Marquez wins MotoGP U.S. Grand Prix


At 20 years and 154 days old, Spain’s Marc Marquez became the youngest back-to-back winner ever in the MotoGP motorcycle series with his victory in today’s United States Grand Prix at California’s Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Marquez, who suffered a crash during qualifying on Saturday, made the race-winning pass on pole sitter Stefan Bradl of Germany at Lap 19 and went on to take his third win of the MotoGP season by 2.2 seconds.

“Before I came here, I was expecting to struggle more,” Marquez told the series’ official website. “From the TV, this circuit looked so tricky. Since FP1, I have felt so good. Next time I’ll be able to learn where all of the bumps are and everything – yesterday, I found a new bump, when I crashed at Turn 6! Anyway, today in the race, it was so good.

“At the beginning, with a full fuel tank, I was little bit scared because – with all of those bumps – it’s so easy to lose the front. I overtook Valentino [Rossi] then caught Bradl; I stayed behind him for about 12 laps, then tried to pass him to open up a gap. I’m very, very happy because it’s a new circuit and I’ve got 25 points. I’m very happy because it’s great to go into the summer break with this result.”

Bradl would maintain second place for his inaugural podium finish in MotoGP, while legend Valentino Rossi was able to hold off Alvaro Bautista for third by a mere .059 of a second. Marquez’s REPSOL Honda teammate, Dani Pedrosa, rounded out the Top 5 finishers.

NHRA Gatornationals: John Force has another spectacular motor explosion

Photo courtesy NHRA
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Legendary NHRA Funny Car driver John Force endured yet another spectacular motor explosion – his third in the NHRA’s first three national event races – during Friday’s qualifying at the Amalie Motor Oil Gatornationals in Gainesville, Florida.

It’s the kind of consistency the 16-time NHRA Funny Car champ could do without.

The 68-year-old Force came to Gainesville hoping to break the jinx that saw him endure explosions in both the season-opening Winternationals and the second race of the season in Phoenix.

Both motor explosions sent Force to the hospital for examination before he returned to the race track.

Friday, even though the motor in his Chevrolet Camaro blew up again (in the second round of qualifying), at least this time, Force didn’t wind up in the hospital.

He did have his right hand bandaged from a cut suffered in the explosion, but did not have to go to the hospital this time.

He even joked about not having to add yet another ambulance bill to the nearest Gainesville hospital.

But the explosion still proved costly.

“That was another body and that hurts the financial (bottomline),” Force said. “I was out $500,000 to $600,000, and now we are probably out $800,000, going on a million. In drag racing, you have to be tough.”

He ended the day qualifying 14th, not a very comfortable position with two more rounds of qualifying set for Saturday.

Force continues to be mystified why the motors keep exploding.

“I really thought we had it, I thought we were there,” Force said. “In the first round we drove it 500 feet and shut it off. It looked great. We ran it again that run and I was only going to drive it 800 feet even if we didn’t make The Show.”

Force will attempt to improve his qualifying spot during Saturday’s final two rounds to make Sunday’s eliminations.

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