MotoGP Brno: 'Strange' speed tactics to break up pack - Dovizioso

Brno MotoGP race winner Andrea Dovizioso says his "strange" pace at the head of the race was a deliberate attempt to break up the pack behind him

MotoGP Brno: 'Strange' speed tactics to break up pack - Dovizioso

Dovizioso led all but three laps of the Czech Grand Prix, but ran an initial pace that was almost a second slower than the practice times as he and the other frontrunners worked to preserve their tyres.

This meant the Italian spent the first half of the race at the head of a large lead group, and he explained he had tried to disrupt those behind him by varying his lap-time speeds.

"At the beginning, I was trying to make something strange, because the [lead] group was big," he said.

"It's always better to have less riders when you start to fight [for the win], especially when you have to manage the tyre.

"But [it] didn't work. Because the group stayed six [bikes] until five laps to the end."

Dovizioso said he was expecting a stern late-race challenge from Honda's Marc Marquez, who followed him closely for much of the race before slipping behind Jorge Lorenzo.

"I decided the strategy lap-by-lap," he said. "I was trying to understand Valentino [Rossi] for the first laps of the race.

"At the end I was waiting for Marc because I heard his engine in every braking [point] and every time he opened the throttle. I thought he had some margin.

"But at the end Jorge came with really good speed and we started battling. It wasn't easy because the last five laps the tyre dropped, I think for everybody."

Brno marked Dovizioso's first win since the season opener in Qatar, but he insisted this victory drought had concealed the improvements Ducati has made with its 2018 bike.

"For sure, when you win six races, like last year, everybody expects you to win," he said. "So we won just one in Qatar and everybody says, 'You are living a bad moment'.

"But if you really study everything, it wasn't like this, because we are faster than last year in every track. We did a small step during the winter.

"We did three mistakes [in the season] - if you look at the championship and if you look at the last two results before this, you can think that [Ducati got worse], but if you study the details, if you look at last year and make a comparison, it's not like this.

"And this weekend is the confirmation, our bike is a bit better than last year."

But Dovizioso stressed he is "still not happy 100%" as he believes the Ducati is lacking in tyre management - which is something he intends to work on in the post-grand prix test day.

"I don't know if it's our bike or the tyre, we are working on that," he said.

"This weekend we improve a little bit to manage [the tyres], but still I'm not happy about that detail."

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Series MotoGP
Drivers Andrea Dovizioso
Teams AB Motoracing
Author Valentin Khorounzhiy
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