Moto GP Motegi: Yellows force Marquez to abandon pole bid

MotoGP championship leader Marc Marquez says he surrendered his chance to take pole for the Japanese Grand Prix when he saw yellow flags for Cal Crutchlow's crash on his final lap

Moto GP Motegi: Yellows force Marquez to abandon pole bid

Marquez was the form rider in the first half of qualifying, the Honda pilot's 1m44.134s good enough to lead the way by 0.265 seconds over Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo.

However Marquez's second run on new tyres was scrappier, and he did not manage to improve, as he was jumped by Lorenzo's team-mate Valentino Rossi at the end of the session.

Running behind Rossi and Suzuki's Maverick Vinales on the road, Marquez made mistakes on his third- and second-last laps, then arrived to yellow flags at Turn 5 after the chequered flag, when LCR Honda's Crutchlow had fallen.

Marquez cited his controversial warm-up crash at Silverstone in 2013 - also involving yellow flags and Crutchlow - as a motivator in backing off and abandoning the lap.

"I have the experience of 2013 at Silverstone," he said.

"Every time when I see the yellow flag, I slow down.

"I knew that it was the last lap of qualifying, I was thinking to push, but I saw many people there, also Cal, [and there was] too much risk.

"I lost the lap, but I prefer this than to have a crash and have a thing like Silverstone."

Rossi did not back off, and ultimately only lapped 0.175 seconds slower than the 1m43.954s he recorded on the previous tour to take pole.

"Usually I lose a lot of time with the yellow flags, I lose time to understand who has crashed," he said.

"In the last races I tried to stay concentrated.

"I saw one bike out, it was not on the line, and I continued to push."

While mistakes dimmed his qualifying output, Marquez was fastest in both of Saturday's practice sessions.

Chasing his maiden MotoGP victory at Motegi, and an outside chance to clinch a third title if he wins, Marquez says he feels comfortable with his race pace.

"This morning I was very happy because yesterday we were fast but I didn't feel the best feeling with the bike," he said.

"This morning we did a big improvement. This afternoon in FP4 we tried some things but for quali we went back and it felt stronger, just some little mistakes with the second tyre.

"Race pace is where I felt slightly better.

"It looks like with new tyre I struggled a little bit to find the feeling on the braking point, but when it drops a little bit I'm able to manage better the limits."

shares
comments
Jorge Lorenzo feared severe injury in Motegi MotoGP practice crash

Previous article

Jorge Lorenzo feared severe injury in Motegi MotoGP practice crash

Next article

Motegi MotoGP: Marquez seals 2016 title after Rossi, Lorenzo crash

Motegi MotoGP: Marquez seals 2016 title after Rossi, Lorenzo crash
Load comments
Why MotoGP will miss its gentle giant Plus

Why MotoGP will miss its gentle giant

Danilo Petrucci’s days in MotoGP appear numbered, as KTM looks to completely reshuffle the Tech3 team for 2022. Though the Italian's 2021 season so far hasn’t been standout, the giant Italian covertly became a top runner in MotoGP across the last decade and brought with him a personality that world sport sorely needs more of

MotoGP
Jul 22, 2021
Why Mir's MotoGP title defence can’t be written off yet Plus

Why Mir's MotoGP title defence can’t be written off yet

Joan Mir’s defence of his MotoGP title has had an underwhelming start as Suzuki didn’t progress its championship-winning GSX-RR as much as its rivals did with their bikes over the winter. Speaking to Autosport, Mir lays out why his title defence has been stalled so far and why he’s confident title number two is still within reach

MotoGP
Jul 12, 2021
The Rossi replacement who’s become the MotoGP leader Yamaha needed Plus

The Rossi replacement who’s become the MotoGP leader Yamaha needed

It's been six years since Jorge Lorenzo gave Yamaha its last MotoGP title in 2015. Since his departure at the end of 2016, Yamaha's form has been inconsistent but it has at last found a new talisman to return it to the top spot in the form of a precociously talented Frenchman who currently leads the standings

MotoGP
Jul 6, 2021
Why the Vinales/Yamaha MotoGP divorce satisfies both parties Plus

Why the Vinales/Yamaha MotoGP divorce satisfies both parties

On Monday Yamaha announced it will part ways with Maverick Vinales at the end of the 2021 season - a move requested by the rider. As the already strained relationship between both parties in MotoGP hit rock bottom in recent weeks, this divorce - as ORIOL PUIGDEMONT writes - is good for both Yamaha and Vinales for a number of reasons

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2021
The unexpected Rossi/Ducati MotoGP sequel offering redemption Plus

The unexpected Rossi/Ducati MotoGP sequel offering redemption

A decade after first linking up with Ducati in what turned out to be an ill-fated period in his MotoGP career, Valentino Rossi has joined forces with the Italian marque once more - this time as a team owner. And the VR46/Ducati tie-up beginning in 2022 has the potential to right the wrongs of Rossi and Ducati's nadir of 2011/2012

MotoGP
Jun 24, 2021
Why Yamaha is about to risk losing Valentino Rossi Plus

Why Yamaha is about to risk losing Valentino Rossi

With Valentino Rossi’s next career move imminent in MotoGP, it is set to have wide-reaching influences on a number of riders and teams on the grid. But one of the biggest impacts will be felt at Yamaha, with its pivotal role in the saga set to see it lose its appointment with ‘The Doctor’

MotoGP
Jun 22, 2021
How Marquez beat his Honda in his heroic MotoGP comeback win Plus

How Marquez beat his Honda in his heroic MotoGP comeback win

Marc Marquez has been through hell and back in the 581 days between his win in the 2019 Valencia season finale and his heroic MotoGP comeback victory in Germany last Sunday. Despite battling physical limitations and a difficult 2021-spec Honda, the Sachsenring provided the perfect storm for the Spaniard to return to the top step

MotoGP
Jun 21, 2021
Why Quartararo’s Catalunya suit penalty highlights a wider issue in MotoGP Plus

Why Quartararo’s Catalunya suit penalty highlights a wider issue in MotoGP

OPINION: Fabio Quartararo racing with his leather suit open and subsequent penalty has been the main talking point of the Catalunya MotoGP weekend, which has highlighted a wider issue with MotoGP’s stewarding that risks a negative precedent going forward

MotoGP
Jun 8, 2021