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Maverick Viñales Creates History in Epic Grand Prix of Americas MotoGP Race


Maverick Viñales created a new history when he won at an epic Grand Prix of the Americas MotoGP race at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) this morning.

Viñales had become the only rider in the championship to ever win with three different manufacturers, namely Aprilia, Yamaha, and Suzuki. Such a record had eluded even Valentino Rossi who achieved wins with Honda and Yamaha.

The Aprilia rider had started from pole position, followed by the teenage sensation Pedro Acosta on the GasGas, and Jorge Martin on the Pramac Ducati. However, Vinales was beaten to the first corner by a quick starting Acosta, followed by Martin, defending champion and Ducati factory rider Francesco Bagnaia and his teammate Enea Bastianini, Jack Miller of Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, and seven-time winner at COTA Marc Marquez on his Gresini Ducati. The chaotic battle for the first turn shuffled Viñales back to 11th at the end of the first lap.

As Acosta took over the lead for the first time in his MotoGP career, there began a series of thrilling overtakes among the leading group. However, Acosta had chosen the less grippy medium compound rear tyre compared to the Ducati riders on the soft option, thus he had to yield to Martin who took off into the distance.

On the other hand, Marquez knew he had to make a move before Martin checks out so he began to up his aggression, which saw Miller bumping into him and taking away the Ducati’s front left aerobody.

While the camera focused solely on this leading group, Viñales was making his way forward in a take-no-prisoner manner, dispatching rider after rider.

Up front, just before mid-race, Martin’s rear tyre began to deteriorate, allowing Acosta and the following Marquez to close the gap, and finally overtake Martin.

Marquez, eager to cement his place as the “King of COTA” flew past Acosta into the lead. Unfortunately, he locked up the front tyre just several turns later and crashed out of the race. He revealed later that he was having braking issues.

With Marquez gone, Acosta began putting in some quick and steady laps, once again pulling away from Martin, Bagnaia, and Bastianini.

But hold on, here comes Viñales on his Aprilia “Bat Bike” (he had dubbed himself “BatMav” over the weeked). Viñales overtook Acosta into the lead, prompting the latter to fight back, but Viñales had none of it and went back into the lead immediately after. It was during this time that he put in a series of blistering laps including the fastest ever race lap at COTA despite on being worn tyres. Acosta tried to go with him, and although he was the only other rider to lap in the 2m:02s bracket, Viñales put in 2m:02.5s laps, while Acosta could only manage 2m:02.9s.

So, BatMav held on to win the race and place in the history books. It was a stunning display over the weekend, as he had taken pole position, won the Sprint Race, and now the Main Race.

Acosta also made history as the youngest MotoGP rider to take back-to-back podiums.

Bastianini managed to pass Martin in a daring move at over 350km/h at the back straight to come home third. Martin was fourth and Bagnaia struggled with rear tyre chatter to fifth.

The next round is the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez, Spain in two weeks’ time.

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