Marc Marquez & Dani Pedrosa salvage 5th & 6th from difficult race at Losail
The opening MotoGP race of the season was a difficult one for Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa, who finished fifth and sixth, respectively, in Qatar.
After running wide on the opening corner, Marquez was forced to fight back from last place in order to claim fifth. He overtook some 19 riders in the process. Dani Pedrosa crossed the line just behind him in sixth, having suffered from discomfort in his right forearm throughout the race.
Starting from the front row of the grid, the two Repsol Honda riders dropped down the order at the beginning of the race. Marquez ran off track when attempting to take the first corner, relegating him to last place.
Pedrosa was seventh off the line and conceded a further two places before the end of the first lap. The duo gradually regained ground, until Marquez slotted into fifth and Pedrosa sixth, with the four frontrunners unreachable thanks to an advantage of over 4 seconds.
The next round of the World Championship takes place in a fortnight at Austin, USA, where Marquez and Pedrosa have two one-two finishes from as many visits.
Marc Marquez – 5th – at 7.036 sec.
“We should be happy because we have salvaged eleven important points, when we could easily have left here with none. It was a tough race, in which I made a mistake at the first corner and dropped back to last place. This meant that I had to make a comeback, pushing hard all through the race, but in the end I saw that I could not catch the group at the front. The positive that I’ll take from today is that we rode at a similar pace to the lead group. In Austin we will continue to work hard, with an even stronger desire to do well.”
Dani Pedrosa – 6th – at 10.755 sec.
“Tonight’s race didn’t go to plan and unfortunately, I had serious problems with my right forearm which isn’t good news for me. I worked very hard over the winter in order to find a solution, because I was suffering in every race last season. Every doctor recommended that I not undergo another operation and I have tried to look for alternatives, but by the looks of things nothing is working positively for it. Now I have to assess my options and see what I can do. It is probably the most difficult moment of my career. I will do my best to find a solution but in this moment it is difficult to imagine what it could be.”
Source: Repsol Media