Mar­quez ad­mits crash was his fault af­ter he pushed too hard, too soon in bid to break away from world ti­tle ri­vals

Motorcycle News (UK) - - News - SIMON PAT­TER­SON MO­TOGP RE­PORTER simon.pat­ter­son@mo­tor­cy­cle­

World Mo­togp cham­pion Marc Mar­quez has come back down to earth with a bump – a big bump – af­ter crash­ing out of Sun­day’s Ar­gentina GP while lead­ing.

The Rep­sol Honda star gam­bled by start­ing fast and he pow­ered away from the chas­ing pack un­til a mis­take on only the fifth lap left him down and out, knock­ing not only his con­fi­dence but his ti­tle chances as he slumps to eighth over­all.

Sun­day’s mis­take harks back to the wild and loose Mar­quez of old – a char­ac­ter­is­tic style he learnt to con­trol in 2015 and 2016 as he re­alised that the dif­fi­cult-to-ride RC213V Honda pun­ished small mis­takes. He ad­mit­ted af­ter the race: “It was a mis­take, and last year I didn’t make any mis­takes. I said it in Qatar and I say it again here in Ar­gentina – a mis­take at the start of the year pe­nalises you quite a lot. But we’re hu­mans and we need to un­der­stand what caused it.

“I don’t know what hap­pened – I was only leaned over 25º, com­pletely sta­ble in the brak­ing point, and for some rea­son I locked the front. Maybe the tyre wasn’t ready, but I was feel­ing re­ally good with the bike. Sure I was push­ing, but not a lot.”

How­ever, the Spa­niard was adamant that the added pres­sure of Mav­er­ick Viñales was not to blame for the crash and says he feels less stressed now than he did a year ago.

“Of course you feel some pres­sure of fight­ing for the cham­pi­onship, and it looks like both Yamaha riders will be there fight­ing for the cham­pi­onship, be­cause they are re­ally strong and very con­sis­tent. We need to work with Honda to find a bet­ter way to im­prove.”

How­ever, there are plenty of pos­i­tives to take from the week­end for Mar­quez. He added: “The new bike is dif­fer­ent, and it’s true that we’re still work­ing hard to get the best from it. We started the week­end far away, worked hard, and ar­rived closer dur­ing the warm-up, and it’ll be this way in the early races be­cause of the char­ac­ter of the new en­gine and we have to bet­ter un­der­stand the elec­tronic base.

“I think that the bike has a good po­ten­tial, we just need to find the best way to use it. But even like it is now with all these prob­lems, Cal was on the podium and I was lead­ing the race, so we can im­prove it.”

‘Maybe the tyre wasn’t ready. Sure, I was push­ing, but not a lot’

Hands up who’s just been try­ing that lit­tle bit too hard

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