Marc Marquez 'provoked' Andrea Dovizioso into Motegi crash

MotoGP champion Marc Marquez believes his pace "provoked" Andrea Dovizioso into crashing out of the title-deciding Japanese Grand Prix

Marc Marquez 'provoked' Andrea Dovizioso into Motegi crash

Marquez sealed his fifth premier-class crown in six years with three races to spare by triumphing at Motegi, as Dovizioso fell at Turn 10 on the penultimate lap trying to chase him.

Dovizioso had controlled much of the race, rebuffing an attack from Marquez shortly after half-distance, but was unable to shake off the Honda rider and ended up conceding the lead at Turn 9 on lap 21, two laps before his crash.

Marquez said it was his strategy to try and pass Dovizioso before the last lap and pull out a gap, mirroring his tactics two weeks earlier in Buriram - and believes it was his pace in the latter stages that caused his rival to push too hard.

"I provoked Dovi's error when I started to push," recalled Marquez.

"Starting sixth, I knew I had to ride in a perfect way on the first lap, with a perfect rhythm, and already on the first lap I was second behind Dovi, that was the main target. Then I tried to analyse [the situation].

"I saw I was strong enough to fight him until the end and I tried to attack with eight or nine laps remaining.

"Then Dovi overtook me again and pushed really hard, we started to be in [1m]45s again. I was able to follow him in a good way and I attacked before the last lap - the same strategy as in Thailand.

"I saw on the last lap he had slightly more chance to win because he was slightly faster on acceleration."

Marquez added he was "disappointed" that the fight ended with Dovizioso crashing out of the race.

"When I saw 'Dovi out' [on the pitboard] on the last lap, my first thought [was that] I was very happy as I won the title," said Marquez. "[But] I was disappointed because he deserves to be here too. He did an incredible season, an incredible race."

Marquez's fifth MotoGP title draws him level with Mick Doohan haul of premier-class crowns, with only Valentino Rossi and Giacomo Agostini having scored more than the 25-year-old.

Motegi marked Marquez's first chance to clinch a championship that has looked likely to go his way since the early part of the campaign, and the Spaniard underlined the importance of taking the title on the first time of asking, and on Honda's home soil.

"Since Aragon I knew the championship was very close, but the difference is when you have the first 'match point' and you take it," he said.

"It was important to celebrate the title in front of the bosses - I'm sure the big boss will enjoy it."

shares
comments
Cal Crutchlow was 'swearing in my helmet' over rivals' pace tactics

Previous article

Cal Crutchlow was 'swearing in my helmet' over rivals' pace tactics

Next article

Valentino Rossi says Suzuki now 'stronger' in MotoGP than Yamaha

Valentino Rossi says Suzuki now 'stronger' in MotoGP than Yamaha
Load comments

About this article

Series MotoGP
Drivers Andrea Dovizioso , Alex Marquez , Marc Marquez
Author Jamie Klein
The impossible problem Honda faces with its 2021 MotoGP bike Plus

The impossible problem Honda faces with its 2021 MotoGP bike

Honda hasn’t enjoyed an easy start to the 2021 MotoGP campaign, despite gains last season which looked to have carried over into the pre-season. Now admitting it does have issues in serious need of resolving, it faces an almost impossible task in doing so

MotoGP
May 11, 2021
How Jerez underlined MotoGP's speed problem Plus

How Jerez underlined MotoGP's speed problem

The brutal nature of a series of crashes at Jerez has reopened the debate about whether current MotoGP speeds are beyond the safety limits of the tracks. But even if riders are supportive of the move, getting the manufacturers to find a consensus on how speed reductions should be achieved may be altogether harder

MotoGP
May 4, 2021
How a Crutchlow helped Miller to Jerez MotoGP redemption Plus

How a Crutchlow helped Miller to Jerez MotoGP redemption

Jack Miller’s tough start to life as a factory Ducati MotoGP rider left him mentally battered and bruised, but a pep talk and positive reinforcement from a surprising source aided the Australian to show his full potential with victory at the Spanish Grand Prix

MotoGP
May 3, 2021
What does Marc Marquez have to do to get back to his best? Plus

What does Marc Marquez have to do to get back to his best?

Following his resounding MotoGP return with a seventh place finish in Portugal, Marc Marquez now must work to rediscover his best form before turning his attention towards results-based targets

MotoGP
Apr 20, 2021
How Yamaha’s rookie-spec MotoGP star is taking charge Plus

How Yamaha’s rookie-spec MotoGP star is taking charge

Fabio Quartararo is on a roll in 2021, having stormed to victory at a venue where he last year served up one of his worst races. Contrasting Portuguese GPs for Yamaha’s factory duo make it hard to understand just how good its 2021 MotoGP bike is, but the Portimao weekend has revealed one key improvement compared to 2020

MotoGP
Apr 19, 2021
The hurdles Marquez faces next in his Portugal MotoGP return Plus

The hurdles Marquez faces next in his Portugal MotoGP return

Even by Marc Marquez’s own high standards, his MotoGP comeback on Friday at the Portuguese Grand Prix will be considered a success even if he didn’t top the times. But having shown competitive pace on his first day back, both Marquez and his rivals know plenty more challenges are to come

MotoGP
Apr 16, 2021
Where does Honda's new MotoGP signing sit ahead of its king's return? Plus

Where does Honda's new MotoGP signing sit ahead of its king's return?

Pol Espargaro’s first results as a Honda MotoGP rider may not appear special. But dig a little deeper and a clearer picture of his performance emerges. And, as Lewis Duncan writes, it’s cause for celebration at Honda with the return of Marc Marquez set to provide Espargaro with the reference he has been missing so far this year

MotoGP
Apr 12, 2021
The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons Plus

The "pit bull" MotoGP rookie already drawing legendary comparisons

MotoGP’s 2021 rookie crop is one of the strongest in recent years, but one is already standing out. Jorge Martin’s Doha GP heroics have courted many to compare him to numerous MotoGP legends. Autosport spoke to Pramac boss Francesco Guidotti to find out why MotoGP’s latest Spanish star is already making such an impact

MotoGP
Apr 9, 2021