Lombok Tengah (ANTARA) - Heavy rain showering the Pertamina Mandalika International Street Circuit in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) on Sunday afternoon delayed the start of the Pertamina Grand Prix of Indonesia or the 2022 MotoGP series in Mandalika.

The drizzle started to fall at the end of the Moto2 race and was getting heavier towards 03:00 p.m. local time as the original schedule for the MotoGP race to start.

The race director decided to postpone the race and commanded the Safety Car to circle the circuit to check train conditions during rain.

The pit lane was planned to be reopened at 03:55 p.m. but the committee again postponed the race for an undetermined time.

The riders had already anticipated the unpredictable weather in Mandalika since similar conditions had been experienced during the World Superbike (WSBK) season in November 2021.

Race1 which was originally scheduled on Saturday had to be postponed to Sunday due to the heavy rains. The start of Race2 in the afternoon was also delayed due to rain at around 03:00 p.m. local time.

Fabio Quartararo claimed the pole position with a record of 1:31,067 overshadowed by the Pramac Racing team duo, Jorge Martin and Johann Zarco who completed the front row.

Brad Binder (KTM), Qatar GP champion Enea Bastianini (Gresini) will start the race from the second row with Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati), who must pass Q1 first.

Bastianini is currently leading the riders' standings from his first win in MotoGP when he took the podium in Qatar.

Bastianini on a Ducati GP21 motorbike proved to be one of the serious threats to rivals after a promising start to the season.

Brad Binder also took the podium in Qatar for the first time for KTM in Lusail after finishing P2 ahead of Pol Espargaro.

Meanwhile, rider from Repsol Honda Marc Marquez was declared unfit for racing following an accident he experienced in the warm-up session on Sunday morning.

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Marquez experienced a high side until he bounced off his motorbike at Turn 7. The rider's RC213V motorbike was also badly damaged by the impact at a fairly high speed in the flowing corner.

The Spanish rider was able to stand and walk after the crash but had to undergo a medical examination in the paddock before being taken by medical officers to the hospital.

"After Marquez had a serious accident today he was rushed to a local hospital in Lombok where he underwent a number of serious tests and returned here," MotoGP Medical Director Angel Charte said in Mandalika on Sunday.

Charte informed that Marquez had no serious injuries following the observations in the next few hours, however the circuit doctor and the team still declared Marquez unfit for the race.

"Marquez will return to Barcelona for further examination," Charte noted.

Marquez previously had two accidents during the first qualifying session (Q1). After several slides, Marquez suffered a low-side and crashed at Turn 13 with five minutes remaining before rushing back to the garage to change bikes and get back on track.

In his last attempt, Marquez tried to push hard but he crashed again for low-side at Turn 12 and vented his anger on the gravel.

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Translator: Aditya Eko Sigit W, Resinta S
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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