US MotoGP 2019: Alex Rins claims Maiden Victory
Alex Rins secured Suzuki’s first MotoGP win since the 2016 British GP after edging out Valentino Rossi to an extraordinary win at the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, which saw the king of COTA Marc Marquez crash out of the lead.
As the lights went out it was Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) who got the better launch out of the front three on the grid, with Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) also getting off the line well as the duo pulled alongside Marquez up the hill, but it was the pole man who was bravest on the brakes to grab the holeshot. Rossi and Crutchlow slotted into second and third as the duo tried to keep tabs on the leader, with Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) making a stellar start from P13 to move up to P6 on the opening lap.
Marquez didn’t get away from the clutches of Rossi straight away in an opening couple of laps, but the reigning World Champion then started to pull the pin and by lap five, the gap was 1.4 seconds. It was quickly becoming a battle for second and in it was Rossi and Crutchlow, with Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) and Rins right in the hunt.
10th went the way of Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu), the leading Honda in Austin, with Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) 11th. Both he and compatriot Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) were handed ride through penalties after jump starts, with Vinales taking the long lap penalty at least once before coming through pit lane. Andrea Iannone (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini), Johann Zarco (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) and Reale Avintia Racing’s Tito Rabat completed the points.