MotoGP Round Four Report | Bagnaia flexes his muscles

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What a wild weekend at round four of the MotoGP World Championship, the Gran Premio Estrella Galicia 0,0 de España, at Jerez. An exciting Friday backed up by a wild Saturday and Sunday that produced some of the best Grand Prix racing in history. Report: Ed Stratham/MotoGP


Check out our other race news, including MotoGP, here


Friday Practice and Saturday Qualifying
MotoGP

Day 1 served up the perfect aperitivo ahead of a tantalising round in Andalucia.
It was a hard battle for the top 10 in MotoGP Practice at the Gran Premio Estrella Galicia 0,0 de España as the shootout for direct entry to Q2 went down to the wire, setting the stage for a truly super Saturday. By the end of play, a top three split by only 0.143 had emerged: reigning Champion Pecco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team), COTA winner Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing) and eight-time World Champion Marc Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP™). All three were under the previous lap record, not just Bagnaia, and that teased plenty of action on super Saturday.

Marc Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP) duly raised the roof on home turf on Saturday, taking his first pole on a Ducati and the 93rd pole of his career. It was pure vintage Marquez too, crossing the line to take provisional pole, setting the only 1:46 and, as it would turn out, the only one of the session.



No one could overhaul his lap, as the #93 led the grid ahead of Marco Bezzecchi (Pertamina Enduro VR46 Racing Team) and Championship leader Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing).

Moto2
Joe Roberts (OnlyFans American Racing Team) rocketed to the top spot at the end of Friday action in Jerez as the American continued to show immense pace on his way to setting a strong 1:40.664 to end Practice 1 ahead of pre-season favourite Fermin Aldeguer (Beta Tools SpeedUp) by 0.234. Race winner at COTA and Championship leader Sergio Garcia (MT Helmets – MSI) rounded out the top three after a brilliant session for the #3.

Fermin Aldeguer (Beta Tools SpeedUp) stormed to pole position, producing a statement performance on Saturday in his search for that first win of the year. Joining the #54 on the front row was Albert Arenas (QJMOTOR Gresini Moto2™) who snuck onto the front row after a great final lap – ending the session 0.438s adrift. CFMOTO Aspar Team’s Jake Dixon secured third, claiming a first front-row start of the season.

Moto3
David Alonso (CFMOTO Gaviota Aspar Team) dominated Day 1 by posting an incredible 1:43.710 to destroy a lap record which had just been set by the Colombian on Friday morning. Alonso was almost a second clear of rookie Jacob Roulstone (Red Bull GASGAS Tech3), with Collin Veijer (Liqui Moly Husqvarna Intact GP) only a further 0.083 adrift on a very impressive Friday for the Dutchman.

David Alonso (CFMOTO Gaviota Aspar Team) has been the fastest rider in Moto3 since Sunday at the Portuguese GP, and in Jerez even more so. The Colombian has been untouchably quick in most sessions so far and was so in qualifying, typically a second clear of the field until a late attack from David Muñoz (BOE Motorsports) to cut the gap to just over two tenths. After duelling Alonso on the timesheets earlier in the session, Collin Veijer (Liqui Moly Husqvarna Intact GP) completed the front row.

Row 2 was Joel Kelso (BOE Motorsports), Rysuei Yamanaka (MT Helmets – MSI) and, Q1’s fastest rider, rookie Angel Piqueras (Leopard Racing).


Check out the full Practice and Qualifying results here…


Saturday
Tissot Sprint
For Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing), it was a smooth Tissot Sprint. But behind the #89, who extended his Championship lead, chaos reigned in Spain. 15 riders crashed, all ok. Most remounted. As the lights went out, Marc Marquez bolted left to cover Bezzecchi and Martin, but Binder nailed it from P4 and nabbed the holeshot instead.

Marc Marquez was next to strike, seeing the Prima Pramac machine starting to pull the pin and shoving Binder aside to give chase. But it wasn’t job done quite yet, with Binder replying at the final corner, pushing the #93 wide and then having his own moment on the exit.

The drama then started really heating up. Three into one doesn’t go, and as Bezzecchi divebombed Bagnaia at Turn 1, in fairness getting it stopped pretty well, the reigning Champion was pushed a little wide. So Binder went for the gap, but Bezzecchi had gathered it up, leaving Bagnaia sandwiched as the #1 got punted out of action, rider ok but left on the sidelines. It seemed like the big drama of the day at the time, but it was only the half of it. Next was Binder, Alex Marquez and Bastianini as they all slid out, leaving Acosta in third after he’d caught the group following his own misadventures in the early stages.

Up front the gap from #89 to #93 had been coming down, and fast. Marc Marquez was on a charge and one small error from Martin had seen him lose the momentum with six laps to go, giving the Gresini a chance to strike. And it didn’t go begging, with the eight-time World Champion taking over in front. Martin would try to respond, but not long after that, he needed to no longer as the number 93  suddenly slid off, leaving Martin in free air in the lead on home turf. Acosta was at a distance, and now the race was on for the #89 to hold on. For Marc Marquez, the race was on to recover as many positions as possible.



Viñales then fell, adding another key contender to the list, before the spotlight went back to Marquez as his charge saw him start elbowing riders out of the way, including a nudge of former Repsol Honda teammate Joan Mir, for which the #93 was consequently given a drop position penalty. Meanwhile Quartararo was on his own march, gaining 14 positions in the first two laps on his push for the podium as he kept the hammer down, but he had close company from Pedrosa. As Martin crossed the line up ahead, Acosta followed him home around three seconds back in a Spanish 1-2 on home soil. And it was a first for both – Jerez win for Martin, and Sprint podium for Acosta.

But behind, the battle for third went to the wire as Pedrosa homed in on Quartararo, after Johann Zarco (CASTROL Honda LCR) proved another faller, forced to forfeit that battle. The #26 shadowed the Yamaha ahead round the final lap but couldn’t find a gap, forced to settle for fourth before that post-race penalty for Quartararo. Then, it was that historic P3 as the Frenchman’s 8s penalty demoted him to fifth. Amongst the chaos, Franco Morbidelli (Prima Pramac Racing) kept it together to take his equal best Sprint result in P4, ahead of Quartararo’s ultimate position.



“It was a difficult race, the track conditions were super hard,” Martin insisted. “I made a good start, but then I saw Marquez was coming. Marc overtook me. Then I tried to follow him, to push him, and he made a mistake.”


Tissot Sprint Race Results

  1. Jorge Martin Pramac Ducati
  2. Pedro Acosta Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 (+2.970s)
  3. Daniel Pedrosa Red Bull KTM (+7.102s)
  4. Franco Morbidelli Pramac Ducati (+8.481s)
  5. Fabio Quartararo Monster Yamaha (+15.052s)

Check out the full Tissot Sprint results here


Sunday
MotoGP
As the lights went out, Marquez took the holeshot – just – as Martin got incredibly close to the rear of the #93. But the Championship leader was forced to settle for second as Bezzecchi and Bagnaia slotted into third and fourth in the aftermath. Fourth wasn’t enough for the #1 though, even in the early stages, as Bagnaia went for an incredible 2-for-1 move at the end of the back straight… round the outside.

By the final corner on the same lap, Marquez was just wide enough on the exit to open the door. Bagnaia sliced through to lead, but by Turn 1 the #93 was heading back up the inside, both were slightly wide, and Martin was trying to pick their pocket. Bagnaia shot back into the lead, though, now with the #89 on his tail and Marquez relegated to third.

By the final corner next time round it was all change again, with Bagnaia getting passed by Martin and Marquez but the latter only temporarily as the #1 hit back at Turn 1. The next key move came from Bezzecchi at the final corner as he got through on Marquez, and then came the big title drama.

With Bagnaia right on his tail but a potential huge points lead up for grabs, Martin then suddenly slid out from the front as the Championship took an instant twist. Rider ok, but leaving key rival Bagnaia to lead Bezzecchi and Marquez in the chase for 25 more points, and letting that home GP win go begging.

Up ahead, the race pounded on. Bagnaia led the way as the tension rose on his tail, with the #93 inching closer to Bezzecchi ahead before scorching past the VR46 machine.

Marquez tagged onto the rear tyre of the Ducati Lenovo machine with five to go, and he didn’t stalk his prey for long. Marquez went for it at Turn 9, but Bagnaia responded immediately into 10, slicing straight back alongside the #93 as the two bashed into each other and jostled over the racing line. The #93 was ahead but as Bagnaia sliced through into the next apex, Marquez had no choice but to concede.

A lap later, the stadium section got another show. This time Marquez divebombed it instead, and the door for the cutback was left a little more open. Bagnaia needed no second invitation to surge back into the lead, slicing straight through. As you were. Three to go.  The #93 was forced to regroup, but over the line to start the next lap, Bagnaia had found even more – setting a new best race lap as the #1 put the pedal to the medal.

Both on the absolute limit, the crowd on their feet. Two laps, four tenths, two riders, one win. The #1 pounded on. The #93 cut back into the gap, centimetre by centimetre. But the tarmac left to race at the Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto was disappearing in metres and kilometers, not centimetres, and Bagnaia was holding strong. The final chance for Marquez to create his fairytale was the final corner but he just wasn’t close enough. So Bagnaia completed his.



0.372 is a small margin to be part of such a big statement, but it was a mammoth race win for the reigning Champion after a tough run – and it brings him to just 17 points off Martin in the Championship.


“It was simply fantastic. We needed such a win, not only for myself but also for the team and everybody working with me,” an overjoyed Bagnaia explained.


Marquez took his first dry weather podium since 2022, but that win will likely be on his mind as the paddock arrives at Mugello. Bezzecchi, meanwhile, was back on the rostrum for the first time since his incredible Indian GP win in 2023. Behind, Alex Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP™) took fourth to just deny Enea Bastianini (Ducati Lenovo Team) by the flag.


MotoGP Race Results

  1. Francesco Bagnaia Ducati Lenovo
  2. Marc Marquez Gresini Ducati (+0.372s)
  3. Marco Bezzecchi VR46 Ducati (+3.903s)
  4. Alex Marquez Gresini Ducati (+7.205s)
  5. Enea Bastianini Ducati Lenovo (+7.253s)

Check out the full MotoGP race results here

MotoGP Championship Points After Round Four

  1. Jorge Martin Pramac Ducati – 92 points
  2. Francesco Bagnaia Ducati Lenovo – 75 points
  3. Enea Bastianini Ducati Lenovo – 70 points
  4. Pedro Acosta Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 – 69 points
  5. Maverick Viñales Aprilia Racing – 63 points

Moto2
Fermin Aldeguer (Beta Tools SpeedUp) was the pre-season favourite for many after his brilliant end to the 2023 season, and came into the year with a 2025 Ducati contract in his pocket to boot. But the first three Grands Prix were a mixture of bad luck and trouble, a run he put to an end at Jerez on home turf, and in some style.

Behind, a charge from Joe Roberts (OnlyFans American Racing) saw the American slice up the order to duel Gonzalez over the final laps, coming out on top and those 20 points for second put him in the Championship lead.

It’s the first time an American has led a World Championship since Nicky Hayden in 2006, the first time an American has taken three podiums in a row since the very same campaign and Roberts’ score at the top of the table is 69 points. Once the lights went out, Gonzalez pounced to steal the lead, setting the fastest lap early on and holding off Aldeguer on the opening lap. Americas GP winner Sergio Garcia (MT Helmets – MSI) also had a strong start, looking like he’d defend or extend his Championship lead coming into the race.

Roberts was the rider with the pace in the middle stage of the race, stealing the fastest lap after setting a 1:41.020 on lap 10. The American had worked his way up and pulled off an unbelievable move to steal third from Garcia, who had no response. By the final lap of the race, Aldeguer even had time in hand to celebrate with the crowd throughout the last lap. Roberts, having arrived at Gonzalez, attacked, and held on for a memorable second.

Further down the order, Garcia claimed fourth – losing time in the latter stages of the race but staying ahead of Albert Arenas, who capped off a great weekend for the QJMOTOR Gresini Moto2™ squad in the top five.


Moto2 Race Results

  1. Fermin Aldeguer Beta Tools Speed Up
  2. Joe Roberts OnlyFans American Racing Team (+1.287s)
  3. Manuel Gonzalez QJMOTOR Gresini (+1.568s)
  4. Sergio Garcia MT Helmets – MSI (+6.226s)
  5. Albert Arenas QJMOTOR Gresini (+8.059s)

Check out the full Moto2 race results here

Moto2 Championship Points After Round Four

  1. Joe Roberts OnlyFans American Racing Team – 49 points
  2. Sergio Garcia MT Helmets – MSI – 64 points
  3. Fermin Aldeguer Beta Tools Speed Up – 54 points
  4. Manuel Gonzalez QJMOTOR Gresini – 46 points
  5. Ai Ogura MT Helmets – MSI- 43 points

Moto3
Collin Veijer (Liqui Moly Huqsvarna Intact GP) was back on the top step! The Dutchman put in a perfect final lap to hold off David Muñoz (BOE Motorsports) to clinch his second Grand Prix win in style. Muñoz got the start and then banged bars with Alonso, pushing the number 80 down to second. But the Colombian hit back later on Lap 1 before he and Muñoz started to make a small gap, but the dream was over by the end of the very first. The number 80 slid off at the final corner, rider ok and able to rejoin but the freight train of riders disappeared into the distance.

That left Muñoz in the lead, but Veijer soon attacked and made his way through. Veijer, Muñoz, Ortola, Joel Esteban (CFMoto Gaviota Aspar Team), Ryusei Yamanaka (MT Helmets – MSI) and Joel Kelso (BOE Motorsports) were the leading group of six in the early stages as Dani Holgado (Red Bull GASGAS Tech3) tried to move his way through the second group on his fight back from P18 on the grid. On Alonso watch, the fight back was also on. The Colombian was on the move and by eight laps to go was homing in on the points. By five to go, he was well within reach in P12, trying to make up the gap to the next group.

Meanwhile, the fight at the front was now a four-rider group. Veijer led Muñoz, Ortola and Yamanaka, before another few laps later it became a trio as Yamanaka started to lose ground. Three riders, three places on the podium, and one win. It was going down to the wire.

On to the final lap, and the fight for victory was between Veijer and Muñoz. The Dutchman held strong, though, and his unbelievable pace through the fast final right handers was enough to avoid getting attacked into the final corner, as Veijer did enough to take his second Grand Prix win by just 0.045.

Ortola was forced to settle for third while Yamanaka banked fourth place to equal his best GP result so far. Kelso came out in fifth, as the Australian stayed strong to come out ahead of the chasing pack behind him.


Moto3 Race Results

  1. Collin Veijer Liqui Moly Husqvarna Intact GP
  2. David Munoz BOE Motorsports (+0.045s)
  3. Ivan Ortola MT Helmets – MSI (+0.871s)
  4. Ryusei Yamanaka MT Helmets – MSI +4.849s)
  5. Joel Kelso BOE Motorsports (+10.178s)

Check out the full Moto3 race results here

Moto3 Championship Points After Round Four

  1. Daniel Holgado Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 – 74 points
  2. David Alonso CFMOTO Gaviota Aspar Team – 68 points
  3. Collin Veijer Liqui Moly Husqvarna Intact GP – 46 points
  4. Ivan Ortola MT Helmets – MSI -39 points
  5. Joel Kelso BOE Motorsports – 39 points

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