Published on July 19th, 2016 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Masterful Marquez Wins Seventh ’Ring GP in Tricky Conditions
Marc Marquez achieved a historic result in the wet soaking German Grand Prix, scoring a unique seventh consecutive victory at the Sachsenring across three categories: 125cc, Moto2 and MotoGP. To complete Honda’s joy in this most enthralling of races, Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda RC213V) finished a superb second to make it a Honda one-two.
Both Marquez and Crutchlow were delighted with their results. Marquez’s third win of the year doubled his championship lead at the halfway stage to 48 points over reigning champion Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) who could only manage a 15-place finish this afternoon. Meanwhile Crutchlow was ecstatic with his first podium since last year’s Argentine GP, just a few weeks before he and his wife Lucy are expecting their first child.
Marquez, who suffered a high-speed spill in morning warm-up, could hardly have achieved his 53rd career victory in more treacherous and challenging conditions. The race started on a soaking track but by half-distance a dry line appeared at certain parts of the circuit. Marquez was the first rider to enter the pits and change to a bike fitted with full slicks. This was a brave and risky decision because the track was still damp in many places, which made it very difficult to work enough heat into his slick tires.
But the 23-year-old’s spectacularly aggressive riding style soon had his slicks up to temperature and he became the fastest rider on track, catching the leading group, who were still using rain tires, at the rate of six seconds a lap! So his decision to change bikes turned out to be inspired, but it was anything but an easy decision when he took it.
Most of the leading group did finally enter the pits to change bikes and tires – some to intermediates, some to slicks (including Crutchlow) – which left Marquez with only one rider ahead of him: last month’s Dutch TT winner Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda RC213V). Marquez quickly swept past the Australian and was soon well ahead, while the battle for the runner-up finish waged between Crutchlow and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati), who had led much of the earlier stages. The Briton pounced on the Italian at the final corner with two laps remaining and then established himself in second place.
Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC213V) had high hopes of a great race after topping this morning’s rain-affected morning warm-up session. However, a challenging qualifying session had put the 30-year-old Spaniard tenth on the grid, so it wasn’t easy for him to fight his way through the pack. At one stage it seemed like he might have a shot at the podium but it didn’t quite work out like that and he ended the race in sixth place, a fraction ahead of Miller and Valentino Rossi (Yamaha).
The MotoGP circus now embarks on its summer break, reconvening in Austria at the Red Bull Ring over the weekend of August 13/13/14.