DOVI DOMINATES AGAIN
Ducati star takes second successive win as series leader struggles
Andrea Dovizioso stunned not only the Motogp paddock but himself as well after taking a stunning race victory in the Catalan Grand Prix in Barcelona only one week after winning his home race at Mugello.
The Ducati rider gave his rivals a tactical masterclass at the Spanish circuit and was completely unassailable in the final laps of the race. He let the Repsol Honda duo of Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa, who joined him on the podium, do the hard work for the early stages of a race run in tricky conditions, before striking when the time was right to pull away and secure the victory.
Yet, despite doubling his total tally of premier class wins in only one week, the 31-year-old admitted on Sunday evening at the end of an incredible few days for him that he was stunned to see success come his way twice on the bounce despite going into the race with a deliberate strategy.
He said: “Before Mugello, no-one expected this result. Mugello was something special, but to come to Barcelona and win again is special too. We realised that the condition of the track wasn’t so good and that it would use up the rear tyre, and that we didn’t need to focus on the speed. We weren’t the fastest, but we focused on riding the bike on a used tyre in high heat.
“No-one had grip and no-one could push because they needed to save the tyre, so we ended up in a very good position. I ended up behind Dani and he was also in a good position, but I was able to save the front tyre better because my acceleration was better and I don’t brake as hard. I was relaxed and I was focused.”
However, despite the stunning run of form of late, he was quick to reiterate what he said last weekend in Mugello about the title battle – that he’s trying hard to not concentrate on the fight for the championship and admitting that the GP17 machine isn’t yet ready to challenge for it.
“Thinking about the championship every weekend is impossible. Every weekend this year has gone a different way, and no-one can predict it. I don’t have any pressure for the title, I don’t want to think about it. Mugello was a great weekend for us, but Barcelona was a very strange weekend and we were able to work in the right way to win.
“We still need to improve in a few areas. The turning problem is the same as four races ago. I don’t want to speak in a negative way, but I am realistic. It’s my fifth year with the bike, and I know what’s changed and how the engineers work, and if we want to fight for the championship we still have to improve. I’m not too excited now and I don’t think we can fight for the title yet, but if you approach the right weekend in the right way, you can win.”
‘We weren’t the fastest, but we focused on riding on a used tyre’ ANDREA DOVIZIOSO
Two wins in a row but Dovi isn’t getting carried away about the title
Dovi was the man with the plan in the roasting heat of Barcelona
Dovi let the Hondas do the hard work and then pounced