Marquez leaves it late to score Misano MotoGP victory

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Marc Marquez left it late to secure his fourth victory of the 2017 MotoGP season and move back into the lead of the riders’ championship on countback, passing Danilo Petrucci on the final lap of the San Marino Grand Prix at Misano on Sunday.

Starting third after crashing out of qualifying on Saturday, Marquez made a good getaway to sit second early on behind Ducati’s Jorge Lorenzo, who vaulted up the order on a wet circuit.

Marquez slipped behind Octo Pramac Ducati rider Petrucci in the early stages as he struggled in the spray, but moved back up to second when Lorenzo high-sided and was thrown from his bike.

Petrucci led a close train including Marquez and points leader Andrea Dovizioso, with the trio being covered by just a couple of seconds for much of the race.

Marquez looked uncomfortable as he worked to keep up with Petrucci, informing his Repsol Honda team to ready a dry setup bike with different brakes despite conditions still being damp.

Petrucci and Marquez dropped Dovizioso heading into the final few laps, with the Spaniard closing in on the leader heading onto the final lap.

Marquez lined up a move on the main straight on the final lap, passing into Turn 1 before defending well and pulling clear, posting the fastest lap of the race en route to the checkered flag.

The result sees Marquez move back into the lead of the riders’ championship with five races to go, tied with Dovizioso on 199 points but ahead by virtue of having more second-place finishes than the Italian.

Petrucci took P2 to mark his fourth MotoGP podium, but was left disappointed after coming within a lap of his maiden victory in the premier class of motorcycle racing.

Pole sitter Maverick Viñales failed to recover from a poor start, finishing fourth on the sole Yamaha factory bike ahead of Michele Pirro and Jack Miller.

British racer Scott Redding took P7 ahead of Alex Rins and Jonas Folger, while Bradley Smith completed the top 10 positions, having gained places after Johann Zarco slowed on the final lap, ultimately pushing his bike across the line.

MotoGP returns at Motorland Aragon in two weeks’ time before embarking on its final flyaways of the season.

Supercross: Talon Hawkins to debut in Houston in relief of Jalek Swoll

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Talon Hawkins, 19, will make his Monster Energy Supercross debut on a 250 this week in Houston, Texas as a fill-in rider for Jalek Swoll.

During the Anaheim 2 weekend, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team announced Swoll underwent successful surgery to repair a broken arm suffered in a practice crash.

That same weekend, Hawkins made some noise. He took the lead from teammate Casey Cohran on Lap 2 of the 250 SX Futures Main and led for three laps before he was overtaken by eventual winner Daxton Bennick. Cochran also got around him to push Hawkins to third.

This will not be Hawkins SuperMotocross professional debut, however; he made three Lucas Oil Pro Motocross starts last year with results of 19th at Spring Creek in Millville, Minnesota, 27th at Ironman in Crawfordsville, Indiana and a best finish of 17th in the season finale at Fox Raceway in Pala, California.

Hawkins also has a top-10 finish in the 125 All-Star division at Pala in 2019 riding a Husqvarna.

Speaking with RacerXOnline.com before the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals, Hawkins predicted his future with Husqvarna would come down to how he performed in that race.

“It all just comes down to how I perform at Loretta’s,” Hawkins said. “Say I do really well, I get a top three in both classes and do a pretty solid job, I would like to go pro and just kind of finish out the rest of the series. But there’s also the option of waiting a little bit longer, going back out to [Aldon] Baker’s [Factory] or going anywhere and training, and just being prepared. I’m also open to that too. Honestly, it’s whatever the team wants. Whatever we think is the best option is what we’re going to go with. So, I don’t really have a plan right now, just looking into the future.”

Hawkins finished third overall in the 125 B/C and Schoolboy divisions at the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals.