Pons Team Appeal Rejected: No Penalty On Marquez For Barcelona Crash

Marc Marquez will not receive the time penalty initially imposed upon him by Race Direction after his crash with Pol Espargaro during the Moto2 race at Barcelona. The International Disciplinary Court (CDI) has upheld the decision of the FIM Stewards, who overturned the penalty imposed by Race Direction, meaning that the results of the Barcelona Moto2 race will stand, and Marc Marquez keeps his 6 point advantage in the Moto2 championship standings.

Espargaro's team, the Pons 40 HP Tuenti team, had appealed the decision of the FIM Stewards to the CDI, but after reviewing the evidence, the CDI decided to scrap the penalty and uphold the decision of the court. The team now has five more days to appeal the CDI decision to the CAS, the Court of Arbitration of Sport, sport's highest legal body.

The decision of the CDI was based on looking at the Barcelona incident in isolation. They classified the clash as a racing incident, undeserving of the penalty. They did not follow the reasoning of Race Direction, who imposed the penalty as a cumulative punishment for Marquez' prior misdemeanors. The Spaniard had already put a questionable move on Andrea Iannone prior to colliding with Pol Espargaro, and this, combined with the fact that Marquez was already on a yellow card from the incident with Thomas Luthi at Qatar, tipped the balance for Race Direction to impose the penalty. The FIM Stewards and CDI, however, regarded the penalty as having been imposed for the Barcelona collision alone, and judged that the crash was a racing incident.

Below is the official FIM press release on the CDI's ruling:

FIM Road Racing Grand Prix World Championship

CDI: Appeal of team Pons 40 HP Tuenti

The International Disciplinary Court (CDI) chaired by Judge Frantisek Schulmann, convened a Hearing today at the TT Assen Circuit to judge the Appeal lodged by the team of the Spanish rider Pol Espargaró against a decision of the FIM Stewards taken following the Moto2 race of the Grand Premi Aperol held on the circuit of Catalunya on 03 June 2012.

Rider Marc Márquez, #93, was initially sanctioned by the Race Direction with a 1-minute time penalty to be added to his overall time for infringement of Article 1.21.2 of the Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix regulations. As a result, he finished with rank 23.

Upon an Appeal lodged by rider Márquez before the FIM Stewards against the decision of the Race Direction and after having viewed and reviewed many times the collision between the riders Márquez and Espargaró, the three FIM Stewards unanimously decided that the behaviour of Marc Márquez showed no deliberate intention to cause an accident. Consequently, the first appeal body composed of the three FIM Stewards quashed the decision of the Race Direction.

Following the FIM Stewards’ decision, the team of rider Espargaró, Pons 40 HP Tuenti, lodged in due time an Appeal against the FIM Stewards’ decision. Following today’s Hearing of the Appellant and due consideration having been given to all arguments and to videos of the collision, the CDI judge decided to receive but then to dismiss the appeal of the Team Pons 40 HP Tuenti.

A reasoned decision will be notified to the Appellant in due time. An Appeal against this decision may be lodged before the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS) within five days following the notification of the written Appeal to the team Pons 40 HP Tuenti.

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Granted, I've never looked at whatever rules apply to Moto2, but how can the standard be as low as "deliberate intention to cause an accident?" Does that mean riders can exhibit reckless disregard? I'm not partisan to either Espargaro or Marquez, but seems there's something rotten in the state of Denmark.

But apparently it's OK now to make an error and resume racing without checking for the position of other competitors, or make efforts to ensure you resume safely. To most young people a slap on this wrist like this is tantamount to an endorsement that they did nothing wrong.
This will play out sometime in the future in a slightly different scenario, I predict, and when something seriously bad happens there will be outrage that we have allowed rider etiquette to deteriorate so far, and there will be pious and sanctimonious hand-wringing, but still nothing will change.
Some of the pilots ride with the immaturity of those who have no developed regard for the universe outside their own immediate selves. Let's hope that as they mature they lose some of this selfishness, and develop a broader understanding of the obligations of participating in the motorsport community.
But as long as we drag kids barely out of short pants into a high pressure world where their highly specialised skillset is much more advanced than their psyche, what do we really expect????
Put a group of 16-20 year old males in a room and get them to compete for any limited resources (cans of Red Bull, Playstation controllers, females, money, Nike trainers, you name it) and watch the reptilian behaviour emerge very quickly.......

We may not like it but this "yellow card" given to Marquez is irrelevant.

He made a questionable move on a fellow competitor and it is futile in the extreme to say that because he made similar moves in previous races this somehow exacerbates the offence.

I have already posted that Marquez shows an unhealthy contempt for his fellow competitors and he may yet pay the ultimate price.

The events have to be judged at the time and the specific circumstances that prevailed must be considered.

With the hindsight that is afforded to us by replays often show, the ball crossed the line or was seen to be saved, but life is too short for endless replays, so please lets move on.

As with many an aspiring sportsman, Either Marquez will dazzle us with his expertise or, more likely, just become another "nearly man".

They dont call the moto2 gang the axe murderers for nothing all Espargaro has to do is punt off Marquez to regain his points back.

On a more serious note, I've noticed that other riders are starting to put more elbows and knees towards Marquez , not necessarily dirty riding, just tougher than normal racing , for example Scott Redding at Silverstone . Scott is a big kid and has talent to match , I bet if they had a minimum combined weight for rider+ bike youd see different riders near the front . The Pedrosa effect.....

You have to be careful because you end up reaping what you sow

It scares me to see just how often Marquez cuts people off, or runs them out to the edge of the track. And trouble seems to follow him around. I can't help feeling that one of these days somebody's going to get hurt. So maybe one of the older statesmen should have a quiet word with him and explain the difference between hard riding and dangerous riding. Like, say, Capirossi. Oh, Wait. ;)