Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia produced a near-flawless display to win the Malaysian Grand Prix on Sunday and take a massive step towards his maiden MotoGP world championship title as closest rival Fabio Quartararo kept his faint hopes alive in third.
The result at the Sepang International Circuit ensured that Italian Bagnaia stayed ahead of 2021 champion Quartararo in the standings ahead of what promises to be a blockbuster final round of the championship in Spain early next month.
Bagnaia made a scorching start from ninth place as he held the inside line to surge to second behind Jorge Martin in the first lap, while Frenchman Quartararo also recovered places to remain in the hunt.
Martin, who had set a lap record on Saturday to take pole position, crashed in the seventh lap to hand Bagnaia the race lead, before Enea Bastianini moved ahead with 10 laps to go. However, Bagnaia overtook him with six laps remaining.
Bagnaia held firm from there to take maximum points and ensure he needs to finish 14th or higher in Valencia to wrap up the title.
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