Marc Marquez is the last rider who needs races to be given to him; Jorge Lorenzo the last rider who would volunteer such a gift. But that’s how it happened, at their home GP in Catalunya. It was only the second of 24 laps when the new Repsol Honda rider triggered bedlam, taking out not only himself but Marquez’s three greatest rivals in one go.
After a less than easy run up to the race, Marquez just took the lead, into the notorious tight Turn 10 at the end of the fast back straight – scene of no less than 40 of 73 crashes during an incident-packed weekend at the 4.627-km circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya.
The title leader was ready to unleash his strategy … the only rider on the soft rear Michelin, he planned to exploit his strength in the early laps, then control the race from the front.
That is what he did, without knowing how much easier the job had been made. “I only knew that Dovizioso was out because I told my pit to signal only about him,” he said later.
Marquez went on to take a convincing win, followed by Fabio Quartararo in second with Danilo Petrucci claiming the third step on the podium. Aussie Jack Miller took 5th after suffering rear tyre issues.
“It’s always a race of attrition here. You’ve got to ride smart. With about 10 laps to go I saw Fabio past Danilo and I thought I’ve got to do it now. I was making some headway, then I just hit a wall, lighting up the rear. Every time I opened the gas it was twitching and sliding.”
Grab Thursday’s issue of Australian Motorcycle News for complete coverage of Round 7 from Catalunya.