Mirac­u­lous Mar­quez saves ti­tle num­ber six on his el­bow

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Front Page - By Si­mon Pat­ter­son MOTOGP RE­PORTER @MCNNEWS mo­tor­cy­cle­news

‘My most stress­ful ti­tle yet’

Marc Mar­quez is the 2017 Motogp world cham­pion af­ter a dra­matic fi­nal round that saw him come oh-so-close to crash­ing in the clos­ing stages.

Go­ing into the week­end need­ing only to fin­ish in the top eleven to deny ti­tle ri­val An­drea Dovizioso his de­but pre­mier class crown, Mar­quez looked to be play­ing it safe in the open­ing stages of the 30-lap race, let­ting Jo­hann Zarco through to lead and then sit­ting be­hind the Mon­ster Yamaha Tech 3 rookie.

But, feel­ing good and un­able to help him­self, he launched an au­da­cious at­tack in the clos­ing laps of the race de­spite Dovizioso bat­tling back in fifth place. The youngest-ever four­time Motogp cham­pion launched an at­tack on Zarco that nearly ended in dis­as­ter – but said af­ter the race that he’d do the same again!

“I think I made a good high­lights reel of the race! It was hard to con­trol, be­cause the eas­i­est strat­egy is to win the race – but it wasn’t that easy.

“I let Zarco past be­cause I knew he would try to push hard, but while I was be­hind him I was able to ride much faster. But then I started los­ing con­cen­tra­tion be­cause I wasn’t rid­ing in my own way, in my own rhythm. I tried to be calm all race, but I felt re­ally good so I tried to push on. I lost con­cen­tra­tion on the brak­ing point – it was crazy – but it was Mar­quez style right to the end!”

When he lost the front it looked like a crash was about to blow the ti­tle race wide open once again. But, some­how, he saved it.

“I ar­rived at the end of the straight and felt like an­other bike was very close to me – and then I braked too late. That was the first mis­take. I went in too fast, had some small chat­ter that we strug­gled with all week­end, and be­cause of that I lost the front. But be­cause I only lost the front, I tried to stay with my bike to the end even though I didn’t know if we’d fin­ish in the gravel or in the wall.

“But I didn’t lose the rear, and I was able to save it with the el­bow and the knee. But the main rea­son for the in­ci­dent was the ten­sion of the race. I was too stiff on the bike but at the same time I was re­ally sen­si­tive to ev­ery bump. Maybe I could have leaned again and stayed on the track, but I de­cided to go into the gravel and fin­ish the race safely.”

And while Zarco might have been able to beat Mar­quez to sec­ond place the French­man also ad­mit­ted af­ter the race that he had been given a stern warn­ing to go easy on his fel­low racer in Sun­day’s bat­tle!

“On Satur­day night I was go­ing to bed on my scooter and Marc’s Mum stopped me and said: ‘Oh Zarco, please take it easy to­mor­row!’ I told her that yes, of course, I am go­ing to lis­ten to you, Mum! But in the end Marc lis­tened to his Mum even bet­ter than I did!”

Mar­quez is the golden boy of Motogp

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