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Alex Marquez takes a safe second place to become the first rider to win both a Moto3 and Moto2 world title

Brad Binder and Thomas Luthi did everything they could to keep the championship alive until the last round; Alex Marquez did everything he needed to do to prevent that happening.

While Binder (Red Bull KTM) won a third victory in five races, Marquez (EG-VDS Kalex) successfully kept second permanently out of reach of the ever-pressing Thomas Luthi (Dynavolt Kalex).

With Marc having tied up MotoGP four races ago, this is the second time two brothers have won titles in the same year. The last was in 2014, when Alex won the Moto3 title and Marc his second in premier-class. Alex is also the first to win both Moto3 and Moto2 titles.

Binder grabbed the lead off the line from Marquez and fellow front-row starter Tetsuta Nagashima (ONEXOX Kalex); with second EG-VDS rider Xavi Vierge following ahead of Luthi and Remy Gardner (ONEXOX Kalex).

Gardner would soon drop back; Luthi moving forward, taking third from Nagashima after the Japanese had a major wobble on lap eight.

Marquez had led from laps four to seven after Binder ran wide, but after the South African outbraked him into the first corner, the front race was tense, but lacked variety.

Brad Binder, Malaysian Moto2 race 2019

On the penultimate lap Luthi was still within eight tenths of Marquez, but over the line he was almost two seconds adrift.

Vierge had gained fourth from Nagashima with five laps to go, and he managed to hang on to it by half-a-second from Beta Tools Speed Up rider Jorge Navarro, though from 15th on the grid. He had passed fellow-Spaniard  Iker Lecuona (American Racing KTM), two tenths away, and able to fend off Lorenzo Baldassarri (Flexbos HP40 Kalex), with Nagashima dropping to eighth on the final lap.

Closing right up at the end, Marcel Schrotter (Dynavolt Kalex); while SKY VR46 Kalex’s Thai and Japanese GP winner Luca Marini had dropped four seconds away for tenth.

The Kalexes of Fernandez, Bulega, Pasini and Gardner plus Aegerter’s MV Agusta rounded up the remaining points. Gardner had steadily lost ground, and was lucky to survived when hit hard from behind by a falling Sam Lowes.

This was one of many crashes, with star rookies Di Giannantonio, Bastianini, Martin, Chantra and Bezzecchi among them.

With Marquez impregnable on 262 points, Binder moved to second on 234 past Luthi (230), then Navarro (210) and Fernandez (197), who was 12th today.

Alex Marquez, Moto2, Malaysia MotoGP 2019