After missing out on victory for the first time in 2014 at the Czech Republic Grand Prix, Spain’s Marc Marquez has responded in supreme fashion at Silverstone by taking his eleventh win of the year ahead of compatriot Jorge Lorenzo.
The Honda rider has broken almost every age-related record going in Moto GP since making his debut at the start of 2013. His rookie year yielded the world championship, making him the youngest ever winner of motorcycling’s premier class.
He was on course to enjoy a perfect season until the race at Brno, where he had to settle for fourth place, but he bounced back at Silverstone this weekend to win the British motorcycle Grand Prix from pole position.
Marquez dropped down to second place behind Lorenzo off the line, but kept the Yamaha rider within touching distance before passing with seven laps remaining. However, he made a mistake two laps later, handing the position back to Lorenzo.
Ultimately, Marquez did manage to find a way past once again, and at the flag, he enjoyed an advantage of just 0.7 seconds to claim win number 11 of the season, matching the record shared by Giacomo Agostini and Valentino Rossi.
Rossi broke the record for the most starts in motorcycling’s premier class today, lining up on the grid for the 246th time. He made it a day to remember by claiming his first podium finish at Silverstone.
Dani Pedrosa finished fourth for Honda, allowing Marquez to extend his lead at the top of the championship to 89 points; it’s just a matter of time before he clinches his second world title.
MotorSportsTalk continues its annual review of the Verizon IndyCar Series drivers that raced in 2017. The 2017 season behind the wheel was better for Ed Carpenter than either of the last two years, but still wasn’t ideal results-wise in his six oval starts.
Ed Carpenter, No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet
- 2016: 25th Place (5 Starts), Best Finish 18th, Best Start 5th, 0 Top-5, 0 Top-10, 1 Lap Led, 11.2 Avg. Start, 21.8 Avg. Finish
- 2017: 22nd Place (6 Starts), Best Finish 7th, Best Start 2nd, 0 Top-5, 1 Top-10, 5 Laps Led, 11.3 Avg. Start, 12.3 Avg. Finish
Ed Carpenter’s 2017 season was largely one of frustration, both behind the wheel and as a team owner.
While a respectable turnaround in results occurred – Carpenter finished between seventh and 12th in five of his six oval races after a nightmare season of ending 18th or worse in each of his 2016 starts – this is still not what he sets out to strive for in the races he does. Lost opportunities loomed larger than any official result he or the Ed Carpenter Racing team achieved.
Carpenter and new teammate JR Hildebrand, in for the departed Josef Newgarden, dominated preseason testing in Phoenix but Hildebrand could only muster third in the race, Carpenter a season-best seventh. Then at Indianapolis, Carpenter (second) and Hildebrand (sixth) flew the flag for Chevrolet in qualifying and practice pace, but they fell to 11th and 16th on race day owing to a front-wing change and late-race penalty for passing before a restart.
Both drivers got collected in incidents at Texas. Hildebrand qualified and finished a season-best second in Iowa but that result came only after the ECR crew rebuilt his car from a crash in practice. Then Carpenter had a practice crash in Pocono and despite a rapid rebuild, they missed the clock to qualify by mere minutes and were unable to do so. Carpenter’s spin on a slick Gateway track at the start of the race sent him over Will Power’s nose assembly in one of the scarier looking incidents of the year, although fortunately he was OK.
In a similar refrain as we often write, it’s not that Carpenter’s lost his ability to drive and he remains one of the series’ savviest and smartest people in the paddock. There have been a lot of extenuating circumstances of late, and it almost felt as though this team had “empty nest” components. Since September, Carpenter has had to secure his team’s future with a move away from its Speedway, Ind. shop, line up Spencer Pigot for a full-time drive replacing Hildebrand in the No. 21 car, find a new road/street course driver in the No. 20 car, and manage both driving and owning himself.