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Maverick Vinales makes MotoGP history in Grand Prix of Americas

Vinales celebrates after his win
Vinales celebrates after his winAFP
Maverick Vinales (29) overcame a horror start from pole on his Aprilia to claw his way back and win the Grand Prix of the Americas MotoGP in Texas on Sunday.

Exciting teenage rookie Pedro Acosta took second with Enea Bastianini completing the podium of the third race weekend of the season.

Vinales, who had dropped back to 11th after a disastrous run from pole to the first corner, wrote his name into motorcycling history as the first rider to win a MotoGP race with three different teams - Suzuki, Yamaha, and now Aprilia.

"Thank you guys, I was feeling everyone pushing me, here in America," Vinales told the fans at the circuit in downtown Austin.

"History made, thank you America, I'm super happy. We need to keep working, the pace was amazing."

In a race as exciting as any rodeo show in the Lone Star State there was high drama with 10 laps to go, Marc Marquez crashing to the ground seconds after taking the lead - the veteran Spaniard's chances of an eighth win at the track and a first for his new Ducati satellite Gresini team buried in the Texan dust.

Championship leader Jorge Martin came in fourth with defending world champion Francesco Bagnaia's factory Ducati in his slipstream.

Untouchable

Vinales had been untouchable all weekend, posting a record qualifying lap and winning Saturday's sprint.

But the Spaniard's golden touch deserted him at lights out as he went wide into the first turn to leave Acosta out in front.

Acosta remained in control to lead a lap of MotoGP for the first time in only his third race in the elite division, followed by Martin and Bagnaia.

After a number of failed attempts Martin finally got the measure of Acosta, who slipped back to fourth.

Regaining his composure after his start to forget Vinales had crept up to seventh place with 15 of the 20 laps remaining.

Just before the halfway point Acosta had muscled his way back into the front, showing racecraft of a rider way beyond his years.

The race script turned on its head on lap 10 with Marquez first hitting the front and then exiting the stage.

Eight laps left and Acosta was overtaken by miracle man Vinales, who was finally back in the position he had started the race.

But with only two seconds covering the top five it was still too close to call.

The speed Vinales and his Aprilia had shown all weekend emerged though in startling fashion as he pulled over a second clear of Acosta with five laps to go.

He avoided any late mishaps to cross the line and create history, but despite his sensational weekend he had a rival for the headlines.

For Acosta to finish second was a truly remarkable performance and a reminder of his tender years came on the podium when he was denied the traditional celebratory bubbly - the legal age for drinking in the United States is 21.

"We don't have nothing to lose, I'm more than happy," the 19-year-old smiled.

He moved up to fourth in the world championship on 54 points, two behind Vinales. Bastianini climbed into second place on 59 points, with Martin on 80 points ahead of the next race in Spain at the end of the month.

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