Marc Marquez: Maverick Vinales is still a MotoGP title threat too

MotoGP points leader Marc Marquez admits he is still keeping "half an eye" on Maverick Vinales as his championship duel with Andrea Dovizioso enters its final stages

Marc Marquez: Maverick Vinales is still a MotoGP title threat too

Following a lacklustre to run to ninth at Motegi last weekend, Yamaha rider Vinales has fallen 41 points adrift of Marquez with only three races remaining and 75 points left to play for.

It leaves Vinales, whose last win came at Le Mans in May, in need of a big result in this weekend's Phillip Island race to remain in mathematical contention for the title.

But, even with Dovizioso now only 11 points behind following his thrilling Motegi win, Marquez says he is refusing to fully count Vinales out of the fight just yet.

Asked if the title fight is now a two-horse race between himself and Dovizioso, Marquez replied: "Dovi of course is the most dangerous one.

"But still half an eye is looking at Vinales because he is far [behind in the points] but not far enough.

"The approach for the race is much different to last year. We will try to compensate our level with the risk, because it's important to manage well.

"We will see after qualifying if we can fight for victory or if it's better to think about the championship."

Asked about his own title aspirations, Vinales admitted that he would now have to rely on Marquez and Dovizioso hitting trouble in order to be able to close the gap.

"For sure, now it's not in our hands," said the 22-year-old. "Our opponents have to make mistakes, so it's going to be very difficult.

"Now I'm just trying to enjoy, to bring the Yamaha to the maximum level and try to repeat the win.

"In the pre-season [Phillip Island] was the track where I was most fast and constant, but we arrive here in a totally different way, with a totally different bike.

"For sure Motegi was a difficult race. We have to forget, no pressure now, and continue riding like we were riding before."

Vinales, who has not even led a race since Mugello in June, added that the Phillip Island event should provide an opportunity to assess how the M1 has evolved since the winter.

"In the pre-season I felt really strong, all the laps I did here at Phillip Island were good, 1m29s and 1m28s, it means we were at a good level," he recalled. "We see this weekend if we reach this level or not.

"Honestly it's been difficult during the races to be at the front. At Silverstone we found a way to be strong, especially at the end, but finally we attacked too late to win the race.

"We'll try to be at the level we were before and give the maximum as always."

shares
comments
Marquez has edge over Dovizioso in MotoGP title fight - Crutchlow

Previous article

Marquez has edge over Dovizioso in MotoGP title fight - Crutchlow

Next article

Zarco dismisses Lorenzo's 'PlayStation' jibe

Zarco dismisses Lorenzo's 'PlayStation' jibe
Load comments
How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest Plus

How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino Grand Prix will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP’s present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia’s flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021
How Ducati’s Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Plus

How Ducati’s Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Plus

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Plus

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Plus

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the circuit's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge Plus

How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge

The 2020 MotoGP season was an utterly enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if thought it the world championship was a poorer place without its biggest star Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021
The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP Plus

The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP

The headlines after MotoGP's Austrian GP were naturally dominated by Brad Binder's heroics on slicks in the rain. But although seventh was, on the face of it, a fairly average result in the context of his season, that Fabio Quartararo was in contention for victory before the rain at Yamaha's worst venue should sound alarm bells for his rivals

MotoGP
Aug 17, 2021
Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales in MotoGP - but won't fix his big problem Plus

Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales in MotoGP - but won't fix his big problem

The prelude to Maverick Vinales' move to Aprilia has been his tortured exit from Yamaha. But the Spanish rider must put allegations of sabotage, suspensions and unwanted personnel changes aside once he embarks upon his new journey, while Aprilia must find a way to get Vinales firing on all cylinders once again

MotoGP
Aug 16, 2021