MotoGP: It’s four of a kind for Marc Marquez after Spain win

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Marc Marquez recovered from a slow start on the opening lap to stay perfect so far this season in MotoGP with a wire-to-wire victory at the Spanish Grand Prix in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain.

The series’ reigning World Champion now has four wins in as many races this year, a rampage that includes a win in Round 2 at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

Today in Jerez, Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo got out to an early lead on Marquez, only to both be cleared by him before the field came back around to complete the opening lap.

From there, Marquez pulled away and left Rossi to fight Marquez’s teammate, Dani Pedrosa, for second place. Rossi was able to take that battle for his second podium finish of the year and his first at Jerez since 2010.

Lorenzo, celebrating his 27th birthday, came home in fourth, while Andrea Dovizioso picked up fifth to lead the Ducati camp.

“I’m really happy, it’s a different kind of victory,” said Marquez on the series’ official web site. “I struggled a little bit this weekend and the level is so high with Pedrosa, Jorge and Valentino who are all very strong.

“In the beginning, I was able to open a gap and push. I know that Dani and Valentino are so strong at the end of the race and with new tires I felt better than on old tires so I pushed very hard at the start.”

Marquez is now the first to win the first four premier-class races of the year since Mick Doohan pulled it off in 1992. Prior to today, Marquez had never won at Jerez.

MotoGP returns to action on May 18 at Le Mans, France.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.