Marquez charges through field to take another podium after qualifying penalty
When a year ago Marc Márquez signed an amazing race at the Portuguese circuit of Estoril, crashing in the warm-up and recovering from the last position to win a race that virtually gave him the 125cc title, the Repsol rider showed that he was in a different league than the rest. Almost a year later, Marc Márquez did it again, though this time the challenge was even more complicated, as he had in front 38 riders in the starting grid.
A practice session to forget —including a penalty from Race Direction— placed him in the last position of today’s starting grid, compromising a World Championship that was always difficult after an unfortunate beginning of the season and that seemed closer only two weeks ago in Japan, when he took the lead of the championship with an advantage of only one point. Today, signing a superb race where he pushed to the limit from start to end, the Repsol rider recovered 35 positions to finally take the third step of the podium and to toast with a champagne that tasted like victory, more than ever.
At the start, among the huge swarm of 38 riders, Marc Márquez shone again achieving an amazing start from the last place of the grid. As soon as the lights went out, the Repsol rider started overtaking rivals. Five in the first metres after letting go of the clutch in a masterful way, the same amount in the first braking and some more after taking the risk to us the outside of the line in the first corner. And in this way, until overtaking 22 riders in the 104 seconds of the first lap, and finishing that lap in sixteenth.
In the following laps, at a rate of two overtaken rivals by lap, the Repsol rider kept recovering positions at a searing pace, until he reached the fifth position by mid race. After fighting with Pol Espargaró and the always difficult Andrea Iannone, Márquez overtook Scott Redding and went ahead to catch Claudio Corti, who was a surprising third, riding alone behind Stefan Bradl y Alex De Angelis, who rode on top.
Nine laps before the end, Emilio Alzamora’s pupil placed himself at the wheel of the Italian, overtaking him in the slow fourth corner. Nevertheless, after the huge effort to achieve the impressive recovery, he was not able to open a gap in front of the Italian and they fought a fierce battle for third position until the last corner. Without giving up and after exchanging positions in many occasions. Márquez was able to keep Corti at bay to get on the podium, where he was accompanied by Alex De Angelis, winner, and Stefan Bradl, second.
With this result, the German rider recovers the lead of the class with an advantage of three points over the Repsol rider. A margin that keeps the championship wide open for the two races left before the end of the season. The first will be in seven days in Malaysia.
Marc Márquez 3rd at 6.362 sec.
“The race was very tough, the most difficult of the year. The high wind made it even more complicated and, as the time of the race got near, I must confess that I was getting nervous, because starting last the race would always be very difficult. I was lucky to do a great start, which I think was the most important.
With the team we had set us the aim to gather points, but in the end, the third position is a result I would signed for before starting, because from the last place, to lose only 4 points from Bradl is a result with which we must be very happy.
I want to thank the team for the job they did during the weekend, because they prepared two bikes and worked a lot, finishing in the early morning, so this podium is for all of them”.
Source: Repsol Media