Repsol Honda Team’s Marc Marquez has made more MotoGP history claiming another victory at the bwin Grand Prix Ceske republiky after an immensely close fight with team-mate Dani Pedrosa and Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo who finished second and third respectively.
The 20 year-old became the first rider since Valentino Rossi in 2008 to win four or more successive races in a premier class campaign and also the youngest rider to have won four consecutive MotoGP races. He has also equalled the most podiums scored by a rider in his rookie season, again matching Rossi, who finished on the podium ten times in 2000.
“Before we came here I didn’t expect to win, because Jorge (Lorenzo) and Valentino had both tested at Brno recently and Dani is always so fast here and won the race last year. It is a completely different track to those at which we have raced before, and these 25 points feel different to Indianapolis.”
“This was a very hard fought win and I enjoyed myself a lot. The battle with Jorge was really good and we are pleased with the victory.”
Dani Pedrosa’s second place finish marked his 78th podium in the premier class, equalling four-time 500cc World Champion Eddie Lawson. Only three riders have more podium finishes in the premier class: Rossi (145), Mick Doohan (95) and Giacomo Agostini (88).
“I am very happy with the result, because after all the problems with my injury and the doubts we’ve had at the last few races, we took a big step forward with my mental preparation today.”
“Unfortunately, our strategy was not the best. I had problems overtaking throughout the race, because I couldn’t brake late and was always the third rider in the trio at the front. I think that I made my final attack one lap too late.”
Lorenzo fought hard today to take third on the podium. He made an incredible start from fifth on the grid, overtaking the entire front row to take the hole-shot into turn one. Although initially able to build a gap of just over a second, he soon had rivals Marquez and Pedrosa close behind in pursuit. Lorenzo was able to hold off the attack and continued leading the race until just seven laps remained, but eventually the Repsol Honda riders had too much for him.
“I think I had my best start in all my career in MotoGP, I took four positions and in the first laps I was really quick. Eventually though I couldn’t keep the same distance to second place so little by little they caught me. Especially under braking and on the straights they were faster than me so I couldn’t do much more.”
The Championship is not lost yet but it’s now getting very difficult. We need just a few tenths to win the race so we have to pray for that at Silverstone.”
In fourth place Rossi ultimately came out on top after a race-long duel with GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista, whereas LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl experienced a quiet ride to sixth spot from Ducati Team duo Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden, locked together once again. The top ten was completed by Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone and Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro, just one second ahead of CRT rival Colin Edwards (NGM Mobile Forward Racing) who had started in front of him.
A second lap collision between Avintia Blusens’ Hector Barbera and NGM Mobile Forward Racing’s Claudio Corti saw both riders retire, with the Italian later undergoing an x-ray to his right hand before spending Sunday night in hospital with concussion.
The other two retirements were Came IodaRacing Project’s Lukas Pesek – from his home Grand Prix – and Tech3’s Bradley Smith, who were both out of action on the third lap. There was frustration for pole man Crutchlow, who crashed out of fourth place on Lap 8, as well as for Czech Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing) who was unable to score points at home. Wildcard Martin Bauer (Remus Racing Team) succeeded in completing the distance.
“I was happy with my pace and I felt comfortable but then I made a mistake. I was trying to get myself back in contention for the podium and I lost the front. I am sure I could have finished fourth but I got back on a damaged bike and set a fast and consistent pace. I never gave up.”
“It is not the best preparation for my home race at Silverstone but I go there knowing I have the pace and that I can be challenging at the front.”
The final race in the ongoing triple-header will be the Hertz British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
1 Marc Marquez 42’50.729 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
2 Dani Pedrosa +0.313 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
3 Jorge Lorenzo +2.277 SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
4 Valentino Rossi +10.101 ITA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
5 Alvaro Bautista +10.178 SPA HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
6 Stefan Bradl +19.807 GER HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
7 Andrea Dovizioso +35.015 ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
8 Nicky Hayden +35.354 USA DUCATI Ducati Team
9 Andrea Iannone +51.149 ITA DUCATI Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
10 Aleix Espargaro +56.392 SPA ART Power Electronics Aspar
11 Colin Edwards +57.420 USA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
12 Michele Pirro +1’05.430 ITA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
13 Danilo Petrucci +1’12.364 ITA IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
14 Hiroshi Aoyama +1’13.500 JAP FTR Avintia Blusens
15 Randy De Puniet +1’14.128 FRA SUZUKI Suzuki Test Team
16 Yonny Hernandez +1’14.991 COL PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
17 Cal Crutchlow +1’20.640 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
18 Michael Laverty +1’34.462 GBR PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
19 Karel Abraham +1’49.713 CZE ART Cardion AB Motoracing
20 Bryan Staring +1’50.024 AUS FTR-HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
21 Martin Bauer +1 lap AUT S&B SUTER Remus Racing Team
22 Bradley Smith DNF GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
23 Lukas Pesek DNF CZE IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
24 Claudio Corti DNF ITA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
25 Hector Barbera DNF SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
1 Marc Marquez 213 pts SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
2 Dani Pedrosa 187 pts SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
3 Jorge Lorenzo 169 pts SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
4 Valentino Rossi 143 pts ITA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
5 Cal Crutchlow 127 pts GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
6 Stefan Bradl 103 pts GER HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
7 Andrea Dovizioso 96 pts ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
8 Alvaro Bautista 92 pts SPA HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
9 Nicky Hayden 80 pts USA DUCATI Ducati Team
10 Aleix Espargaro 62 pts SPA ART Power Electronics Aspar
11 Bradley Smith 59 pts GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
12 Michele Pirro 40 pts ITA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
13 Andrea Iannone 36 pts ITA DUCATI Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
14 Colin Edwards 25 pts USA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
15 Hector Barbera 24 pts SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
16 Danilo Petrucci 21 pts ITA IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
17 Randy De Puniet 20 pts FRA SUZUKI Suzuki Test Team
18 Ben Spies 9 pts USA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
19 Claudio Corti 7 pts ITA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
20 Yonny Hernandez 7 pts COL PBM Paul Bird Motorsport