‘Bring on Mav vs Marquez’
What a start to the 2017 season it’s been! We’re only four rounds into the series and already we’ve had highs and lows, drama and excitement, and plenty to talk about as new Yamaha sensation Maverick Viñales lines up against his old sparring partner Marc Marquez.
On top of that, there’s a resurgence in form from the old hands of the paddock, with Dani Pedrosa taking a stunning race win and of course Valentino Rossi remaining as title leader – but only just!
After four races, only four points now separate the top three in the championship, with Rossi a mere two points ahead
of Viñales, and Marquez two more adrift – and with Sunday’s win thrusting Pedrosa right into the title fight for the first time in years, he’s only ten points behind Rossi in fourth place.
And that’s all before you even start to consider Jorge Lorenzo’s resurgence, as he sets out to build on his Ducati return to the podium at Jerez by taking his first race win on the red bike sooner rather than later.
Yet, despite all that excitement, it’s still only the build up to the main event that we’ve all been waiting for – a straight head-to-head duel between Marc Marquez and Maverick Viñales. Sure, we’ve had a great start to the season, but we haven’t yet had a fight to the bitter end for the win – in fact, only the first race of the year at Qatar has seen the lead change in the last five laps of the race, when Andrea Dovizioso briefly took the fight to Viñales.
But it’s coming, and as the series heads back towards the old narrow knife-fight circuits of Europe, things are only just kicking off.
‘ Things are only just starting to kick off’ SIMON PATTERSON, MCN