FIM MotoGP World Championship
Twin Ring Motegi, Japan
October 12, 2014
Race Results (all on Bridgestone tires):
1. Jorge LORENZO, Spain (YAMAHA), 24 laps, 42:21.259
2. Marc MARQUEZ, Spain (HONDA), -1.638 seconds
3. Valentino ROSSI, Italy (YAMAHA), -2.602
4. Dani PEDROSA, Spain (HONDA), -3.157
5. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Italy (DUCATI), -14.353
6. Andrea IANNONE, Italy (DUCATI), -16.653
7. Stefan BRADL, Germany (HONDA), -19.531
8. Pol ESPARGARO, Spain (YAMAHA), -19.815
9. Bradley SMITH, UK (YAMAHA), -23.575
10. Alvaro BAUTISTA, Spain (HONDA), -35.687
11. Aleix ESPARGARO, Spain (FORWARD YAMAHA), -40.668
12. Katsuyuki NAKASUGA, Japan (YAMAHA), -51.027
13. Hiroshi AOYAMA, Japan (HONDA), -51.093
14. Nicky HAYDEN, USA (HONDA), -55.792
15. Hector BARBERA, Spain (DUCATI), -59.089
16. Scott REDDING, UK (HONDA), -59.508
17. Alex DE ANGELIS, San Marino (FORWARD YAMAHA), -76.547
18. Michael LAVERTY, UK (PBM-APRILIA), -88.021
19. Mike DI MEGLIO, France (FTR-KAWASAKI), -89.470
20. Broc PARKES, Australia (PBM-APRILIA), -93.253
21. Yonny HERNANDEZ, Colombia (DUCATI), -1 lap, DNF, crash
22. Karel ABRAHAM, Czech Republic (HONDA), -10 laps, DNF, crash
23. Danilo PETRUCCI, Italy (ART-APRILIA), -20 laps, DNF, retired
24. Cal CRUTCHLOW, UK (DUCATI), -23 laps, DNF, crash
World Championship Point Standings (after 15 of 18 races):
1. Marquez, 312 points (clinches 2014 World Championship)
2. TIE, Rossi/Pedrosa, 230
4. Lorenzo, 227
5. Dovizioso, 153
6. Aleix Espargaro, 117
7. Pol Espargaro, 116
8. Iannone, 102
9. Bradl, 96
10. Smith, 92
11. Bautista, 79
12. Crutchlow, 63
13. Redding, 60
14. Aoyama, 54
15. Hernandez, 39
16. Hayden, 38
17. Abraham, 33
18. TIE, Colin Edwards/Michele Pirro, 11
20. Petrucci, 9
21. TIE, Parkes/De Angelis, 7
23. TIE, Di Meglio/Nakasuga, 4
25. Barbera, 3
26. Laverty, 2
27. Leon Camier, 1
More, from a press release issued by Movistar Yamaha:
Twin Ring Motegi Circuit (Motegi, Japan), 12th October 2014
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo dominated at the Twin Ring Motegi for the second year in a row, taking a perfect victory at the Grand Prix of Japan. Teammate Valentino Rossi also shone, making it a double podium for Yamaha with a strong third place.
Lorenzo had a good start to the 24 lap race when he launched off the second row of the grid to arrive at the first corner in third place. He soon overtook Andrea Dovizioso to follow teammate Rossi, who snatched the holeshot into turn one from a second place start position on the grid. Rossi worked to build a gap of just over 0.404 seconds over the first two laps, but Lorenzo was quick to arrive at the back of the Doctor’s YZR-M1. Feeling the heat from Dovizioso and Marc Marquez behind him, Lorenzo took the lead from his teammate on the fourth lap and cleared off at the front to set a new lap record of 1’45.350 four laps later. Lorenzo was then able to create a gap of nearly 2.7 seconds to take the flag and score his second consecutive Motegi race victory.
This result means Lorenzo equals five-time 500cc World Champion Mick Doohan’s record of 54 victories in his Grand Prix career, moving him up in the all-time winners list to a joint fifth place.
Teammate Rossi’s Motegi race was focused on fighting hard to fend off Marquez. On lap 10 Marquez made a first attempt in passing the nine-time World Champion, but Rossi refused to give up his position, immediately retaking second place in the last corner. He was unable to answer the next pass by Marquez before the hairpin, but was determined not to let his rival out of his sight, hoping for another opportunity to keep the championship open for the next race. While the threat came from behind as Dani Pedrosa started to close down the gap, Rossi pushed to the limit and was able to hold on to third place over the line.
Todays’ 25-point gain sees Lorenzo remain in fourth position in the championship standings, increasing his championship points total to 227. This leaves him just three points behind Rossi, who rises to second place with 230 championship points.
1st / 42’21.259 / 24 laps
“It’s unbelievable! It has been a very difficult year but Yamaha has been improving the bike little by little and we’re getting better every race. In Aragón, because of the ‘flag to flag’ we were able to win. We were lucky under the circumstances and I also improved in the race compared to the practice. Here we expected to get more and more strong for the race and be able to fight for the win but we didn’t expect to lead by this much and have a gap of 2.7 seconds in the middle of the race. I’m very happy to win the race for the second time in a row. We are happy for Marc that he won the title. This year he was the best in general, so we want to say congratulations. The good thing about this year was that the four top riders were very similar. We had very strong races that were consistent and equal, so for the next races I expect a lot of fights. We are very close to the second position and that’s our goal. We are going to try.”
3rd / +2.602 / 24 laps
“From one side I’m very satisfied because the race had a high level. We had a high race pace and were braking the lap record. We rode like this from the beginning to the end and I felt good with the bike. From the other side it’s a shame that I was unable to keep the championship open for another week. I tried to get back on Marc, but unfortunately he had something more than me, so he arrived in front of me. I have to say that he deserves this championship. He worked well and was the stronger man this year. Congratulations to him.”
“It’s very special to again come here to our rival’s home and take a second consecutive victory. Jorge rode a perfect race again and showed his skills in managing from the front. Vale was also very strong and definitely didn’t make it easy for Marc, so deserved his podium finish. I’m satisfied with the weekend, the team worked hard from the first day and we have shown we can be competitive in all situations. We are now going to two more tracks where we know we can be strong so we look forward to fighting to continue this winning streak for the remainder of the season. Congratulations to Marc for his title victory, he rode an impressive season.”
More, from a press release issued by Cardion AB Motoracing:
Abraham didn’t finish race in Japan, the breaking failed again
For the second time in the season, Karel Abraham didn’t finish the race due to failure of breaking. The Czech rider was behind point’s positions immediately after the race has started, however ten laps to go, the break betrayed him and he had to go out of the track. He stopped after the crash in run-off area. Team did not finish the race due to technical default second race in row.
“What to say..all weekend I was pointing out that break is not ok. All weekend everyone was looking at me, as there is no problem. It was not good since the start of the race, but I was trying to go. Then, when I was entering into the corner with speed of two hundred kilometers per hour, the break felt in. I think that it is impossible to race in that way. Break is a component that I really need to hundred percent count on, here cant be any chance of failure. And to me, it happed twice in this season. Fortunately it was it situation that i could solve avoiding any injury. I tried to put down the bike at maximum that I could, but still I went on the grass and I finished somewhere in middle of gravel. We asked Brembo to make official and public announcement about this. We don’t know, where is the mistake. If I do something wrong, I want to know what . How can someone race if he is thinking, whether he can break or not? I am really upset and it makes no sense to race if it should be like that.”
More, from a press release issued by LCR Honda:
7th PLACE FOR BRADL AT JAPANESE SOIL
Motegi, 12 October: in today’s crowded Japanese Grand Prix (more than 43.000 fans), HRC rider Marc Marquez won his second world title aboard the RCV while the LCR racer Stefan Bradl finished the Japanese round in 7th position, which allows him to maintain the 9th place in the world standing. The intention of the German rider is to score further points in the forthcoming race in Australia and Malaysia.
Stefan: “Well.. P7 is okay for this weekend considering my position in the qualifying yesterday. I took a good start and could pass Pol Espargaro catching Iannone straight after. I was the whole race behind him but could not pass him especially in the braking areas where the Ducati seemed to be really strong. I made some small imperfection in the last laps trying to overtake him and managed to finish 7th. Now we look forward to the next race trying to qualify in a better position to have an extra advantage during the race”.
More, from a press release issued by Pramac Racing:
At Motegi Iannone crosses the finish line in sixth position; disappointment at the last corner for Hernandez
The race at Motegi was an unusual one for the Pramac Racing Team. Andrea Iannone administered well his qualifying result, starting and finishing in sixth position. Yonny Hernandez has fought for tenth place but at the last corner of the last lap Aleix Espargarò literally hit him down.
Andrea Iannone was the author of a good start thanks to which he was able to move up into fourth place. After a few laps Andrea was overtaken by Marquez and Pedrosa, moving back to sixth place, which he held on to until the end of the race. The GP14.2 proved it’s better performance during the hole race compared to the previous version. Andrea’s only regret is that in the first part of the race he did not have a good feeling with his bike and was not able to fight with the lead group. This is one of the goals that Andrea wants to achieve in the last three events of the season.
Even Yonny Hernandez (EnergyT.I. Pramac Racing) managed to gain two positions at the start. After Crutchlow crash he moved up in tenth place, which he defended with strength and determination for almost the entire race from Bautista attacks. Yonny was firmly in eleventh position when Espargarò A. made a move considered not correct crashing into Hernandez that literally throwing him on the ground. ruining a beautiful race. For this action A. Espargarò was penalized by the race direction. Yonny is satisfied with the handling of his race and is very disappointed for how it finished. Now the important thing is to focus on Australia.
Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing)
“From the start of the race I didn’t have a good feeling with the bike entering the turns and my bike’s acceleration wasn’t also perfect. After a few laps my feeling improved and I was able to push and keep a good pace. Too bad, we could have done better in the early stages of the race and finish closer to the front group.”
Yonny Hernandez (EnergyT.I. Pramac Racing)
“I’m very happy with my race. I fought with Bautista keeping him behind for 3/4 of the race without making mistakes, keeping a good pace and good concentration. Aleix Espargarò collided into me making me crash in the last corner. This behavior will be clarified in race direction.”
More, from a press release issued by Ducati Corse:
GP of Japan: Dovizioso concludes Motegi race in fifth, while Crutchlow crashes out on lap 2
Andrea Dovizioso scored another positive result today in the Grand Prix of Japan at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit, the Ducati Team rider finishing in fifth place at the end of the 24-lap race. Starting from pole, Dovizioso crossed the line at the end of lap 1 in third behind Rossi and Lorenzo. On lap 9 the Italian was then passed by Marquez and by Pedrosa five laps later, after which he was able to maintain his fifth place until the chequered flag.
Cal Crutchlow, who started from row 3 after qualifying eighth yesterday, crossed the line in tenth place at the end of lap 1, but a crash at turn 3 on the second lap brought an early end to his race.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 5th
“I think we have to be upbeat about this weekend’s result and look at things in a positive way. We went really well in practice and qualifying, yesterday we got a fantastic pole position and we have always been up at the top of the timesheets. We are making our fans dream again and so it’s obvious that we are creating expectations, but the fact is that we are still not ready to aim for the win. But it was great to do the early laps in the leading group. I really pushed hard but when the rear tyre started to drop off I was no longer able to keep with them. It’s all good experience that will help us for next year and I’m very pleased with the work we have done so far.”
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35) – DNF
“I’m really disappointed for today’s result, and I’m sorry for the team first and foremost. I made an error by slightly jumping the start, so then on the actual start I released the clutch too late and got a really bad start in the end. I tried to make up some time because I didn’t want the leaders to get away so much, and I pushed too hard and made a mistake on the wide line into turn 3 and crashed. I was actually quite pleased with my pace this weekend, we did a better job of it as a team, so I’m obviously very disappointed with the result. Hopefully we can make amends in Phillip Island.”
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“This weekend was again positive for us: Andrea’s pole position gave us a lot of satisfaction and it is another step in the right direction. At the start of the year I didn’t think we could manage to take a pole this season, so I’m really happy about that. Together with all the guys in Ducati Corse we’ve done a great job up until now, but we know that we still have to improve to be able to stay with the leaders for the entire race. I’d just like to congratulate Marc Marquez for his second successive world title: it’s an exceptional result!”
More, from a press release issued by NGM Mobile Forward Racing:
Espargaro, first Open bike at Motegi
The Japanese GP saw the NGM Forward Racing rider Aleix Espargaro and his Forward Yamaha as first Open bike. On the technical and demanding Twin Ring Motegi, the Spaniard finished in 11th position and on top of the Open bike category.
Espargaro made a good start but after some laps he couldn’t push too hard in order to manage the brakes, that work really hard on this “stop and go” track. He lost some positions and eventually crossed the finish line 11th. With the 5 points earned today, Aleix maintains the 6th position in the World Championship.
It was a difficult race for his team mate Alex De Angelis who finished in 17th position. The rider from San Marino, who was taking the start from the 20th spot on the grid, suffered some technical and electronics problems that spoiled his race.
“It was a really difficult race. I made a good start but in the first laps I started to struggle with the brakes that work hard on this “stop and go” track. I lost some positions and then it was impossible to reduce the gap from the front guys. I pushed hard and I crossed the finish line as first open. I look forward to race in Australia next week, one my favourite racetracks in the MotoGP calendar. My congratulations to Marc Marquez for clinching his second MotoGP title. He has made a great season and he deserved it well”.
Alex De Angelis
“Motegi is a very technical and demanding track and today I struggled a lot. I was confident for the race but since the first laps I had some technical and electronics issues and I couldn’t fight with the other open bikes as I would have wanted”.
More, from a press release issued by Bridgestone:
Lorenzo wins the day and Marquez the MotoGP™ championship at Motegi
Round 15: Japanese MotoGP™ – Race
Motegi, Sunday 12 October 2014
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium & Hard. Rear: Extra-soft, Soft & Medium (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main) & Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 17-18°C; Track 26-27°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo continued his irresistible form in the second half of the 2014 MotoGP season as he won his second consecutive race at Motegi as Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez made it back-to-back MotoGP™ World Championship titles by taking second place in the Japanese Grand Prix.
An exciting start to race saw Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi get the holeshot to lead into turn one, a position he held for the first four laps before Lorenzo squeezed past his teammate to take the over at the front. As his rivals battled behind him, Lorenzo set a scorching pace at the front of the field, setting a new Motegi race lap record of 1’45.350 on lap eight and going on to take the chequered flag by 1.638 seconds from Marquez, with Rossi rounding out the podium in third place a further second back.
Race day at Motegi experienced the coolest conditions of the weekend with the peak track temperature recording during the race being 27°C which was 13°C cooler than measured during qualifying yesterday. The fresher temperatures didn’t have a significant effect on race tyre choice, with almost every rider opting for the same tyre combinations they used in race simulations earlier on the weekend. All twenty-four riders selected the medium compound front slick, while fifteen riders selected the soft compound rear slick, and the other nine riders opting for the extra-soft compound rear. After record-breaking pace in yesterday’s qualifying sessions, more records were set at the Motegi circuit during the race with race winner Lorenzo setting a new race lap record of 1’45.350 on lap eight and the overall race time today being over ten seconds quicker than the existing record.
With Marc Marquez wrapping up the title at Motegi, the focus now shifts to the battle for second place in the riders’ standings. Valentino Rossi and Dani Pedrosa are currently tied on 230 points, while Jorge Lorenzo is now just three points behind on 227 points and fourth in the standings.
– Vice President and Officer, Global Marketing Strategy and Motorsport, Bridgestone Corporation
“Congratulations to Jorge on his victory today and Yamaha on their continued good form which has given them three wins in the past four races. I would also like to congratulate Marc and Honda for securing their second consecutive MotoGP World Championship today, especially here in Japan at Honda’s home circuit. This weekend has been a successful one for Bridgestone with many records being set on our tyres and it is a source of pride for our company to share in such special moments as we witnessed at Motegi today. We now are looking forward to supporting the MotoGP championship for the remaining three races and hope to see more exciting battles to come.”
Shinichi Yamashita – General Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department
“Today was a great end to what was a very successful weekend for Bridgestone. After a new qualifying lap record was set yesterday, today Lorenzo set a new race lap record and the overall race time was also the quickest ever, with the top riders averaging around half a second per lap quicker for the entire twenty-four laps compared to the previous record race time at Motegi. The track temperature today was also significantly cooler than yesterday, but our tyre allocation for this year’s Japanese Grand Prix proved adaptable enough to deal with this change in conditions, so overall I am very happy with our results here at Motegi.”
Jorge Lorenzo, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – Race Winner
“I’m really happy to get this second win in a row after my victory at Aragon. Here I knew I had a good pace, I want to thank Yamaha for the great job they’ve done to make our bike so competitive. I didn’t expect to build such a big gap during the race, but in the final laps both Marc and Valentino were really quick so I had to push right until the end and it was enough to win the race.”
More, from a press release issued by Repsol Honda:
Marc Marquez wins 2014 World Championship in Japan with second place in Motegi
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez has clinched his second consecutive Championship on Honda’s home soil, becoming the first Honda rider to clinch a World title – in any class – at the Motegi circuit, with his well earned second place finish. Teammate Dani Pedrosa fought to the end and finished just half a second off the podium in 4th position.
It was a tense start to the race with both riders dropping places on the first lap. However, they gradually passed Iannone and Dovizioso and by lap fourteen Marc was 3rd with Dani behind him in 4th, chasing leaders Lorenzo and Rossi. Marc battled with Valentino on lap 15, then finally passed him on lap 16, and began to try and open a gap. Valentino didn’t let him escape and kept the pressure on him until the final lap, with Marc taking second place by just 1 second in front of Valentino and just 1.6s behind Lorenzo. He now has an 82 point lead with just 75 points left to play for in the final three rounds, gifting him the 2014 World Championship.
Marc is the youngest ever rider to win two consecutive premier-class World Championships at the age of 21 years 237 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 23 years 152 days when he won his second successive 500cc title in 1963. This is the third time which the MotoGP world title has been secured at the Motegi circuit (previously in 2007 with Casey Stoner, and 2008 with Valentino Rossi).
Dani is now third in the standings but tied on points with Valentino, with Jorge just 3 points behind, and will be fighting in the final three races to earn second in the World Championship. The paddock now leave Japan and head South to Australia for next week’s grand prix in Phillip Island.
2nd – Crowned 2014 MotoGP World Champion
“I am very happy to have sealed this second consecutive World Championship, because although it is difficult to maintain this level, in the end we succeeded! Today is the time to enjoy this title. In the race I had a very clear objective, which was to finish ahead of Valentino and Dani – the other riders did not matter to me so much today. I just had one goal in mind and the important thing is that I was able to achieve it. I want to dedicate this title to all the people who have helped me – they know who they are – and especially to my family and the team, who are the foundation for all of this.”
4th – Championship Standing: 3rd – 230 points
“I wasn’t as fast off the start as the riders at the front, which meant that I lost two or three seconds early on. However, later I was able to come back, set good times and cut the distance a lot. However, as has happened to me before on other occasions this season, I was continually having to make up the time that I had lost at the start. I have to congratulate Marc and his team today, because they have done a really good job this season and deserve the title.”
More, from another press release issued by Repsol Honda:
2014 World Champion – Marc Marquez
It’s been another record breaking season for Repsol Honda sensation, Marc Marquez. The young Spaniard has now won his first two MotoGP campaigns with back-to-back Championships and is rewriting the history books on his way.
Already having broken many milestones in his maiden year in 2013, this season has been no different. Here’s a look back at the records he’s accomplished this season to date.
2014 Highlights so far:
– Marc is the youngest ever rider to win 2 consecutive premier-class World Championships at the age of 21 years 237 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 23 years 152 days when he won his second successive 500cc title in 1963.
– During 2014 he became the first rider to win the opening ten premier-class GP races of the season in the premier-class since Giacomo Agostini in 1970 season.
– He is the youngest rider to win ten successive premier-class races, at the age of 21 years 174 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 94 days old when in 1964 he won the tenth of a twelve race winning sequence. He is also the first rider to win the opening ten races of the season in the premier-class since Giacomo Agostini won the first ten races of the 1970 season.
– He is the first Honda rider to clinch a World title at the Motegi circuit
– He is also the only rider to have started from pole in grand prix racing at all of the circuits on the 2014 schedule. – In addition to his six pole positions this year, Marquez also started from pole at the final race of 2013. The last rider to qualify on pole in seven successive MotoGP races was Casey Stoner in 2008.
– He is the first rider to win six successive premier-class races from pole position since Mick Doohan, on a Honda, won ten successive races in 1997, all having started from pole position. – Ten race wins for Marquez in 2014 is a new record for most premier-class race wins in a single season by a Spanish rider.
2014 race-by-race records:
– His victory at the Spanish GP was his first GP win at the Jerez circuit, which was the only venue on the current GP schedule where he had not won in his grand prix career. He is now the only rider to have won at all of the circuits on the 2014 calendar.
Le Mans GP:
– His victory at Le Mans made him the youngest ever rider, at the age of 21 years 90 days, to win five successive races in the premier-class, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 22 years 160 days old when he won five successive races in the 500cc class in 1962.
– The victory at Mugello made him the youngest ever rider, at the age of 21 years 104 days, to win six successive races in the premier-class, taking the record from Valentino Rossi who was 23 years 148 days old when he took the sixth of seven successive wins in the MotoGP class in 2002, also riding a Honda.
– Although he did not manage to continue his run of pole positions in Catalunya, Marc Marquez once again took the MotoGP victory, making it seven successive wins in 2014. Since the MotoGP class was introduced in 2002 as the premier-class of grand prix racing only one other rider has achieved seven successive MotoGP races; Valentino Rossi in 2002.
– The victory in Catalunya also gave him the record as the youngest ever rider, at the age of 21 years 118 days, to win seven successive races in the premier-class, taking the record from Valentino Rossi who was 23 years 155 days old when he had seven successive wins in 2002.
– It was also the 100th victory for Honda in the four-stroke MotoGP class that was introduced in 2002, as a replacement for the 500cc category as the premier-class of grand prix racing. The number of MotoGP wins achieved by the other manufacturers is: Yamaha – 81, Ducati – 31 and Suzuki – 1.
– At the Dutch TT he became the youngest rider to win eight successive premier-class races, at the age of 21 years 131 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 71 days old when in 1964 he won the eighth of a twelve race winning sequence.
– He is the first rider to win eight successive MotoGP races since the class was introduced in 2002 as the premier-class of grand prix racing.
– At the German GP Marc became the youngest rider to win nine successive premier-class races, at the age of 21 years 146 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 86 days old when in 1964 he won the ninth of a twelve race winning sequence.
– He is the first rider to win nine successive MotoGP races since the class was introduced in 2002 as the premier-class of grand prix racing.
– At the Indianapolis GP Marc became the youngest rider to win ten successive premier-class races, at the age of 21 years 174 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 94 days old when in 1964 he won the tenth of a twelve race winning sequence.
– He is the first rider to win ten successive MotoGP races since the class was introduced in 2002 as the premier-class of grand prix racing.
– The win at Silverstone was the eleventh time this year he stood on the top step of the podium. This equalled the record for MotoGP victories in a single season that was achieved by Valentino Rossi in both the 2002 and 2005 seasons. Another win for Marc this year and he will equal the all-time record for most wins in the premier-class in a single season, currently held by Mick Doohan from 1997.
– His win at Silverstone was his 17th in the MotoGP class, placing him in 16th place in the all-time premier-class GP winners list.
Marc Marquez Bio
First steps (1993-2000)
On the 17th February 1993, a future champion was born in Lleida. Marc has always lived in Cervera, a small town near the capital of the province where he lives with his parents and his brother Alex. Year after year, his father used to drive with thousands of other fans by bike to Jerez, so it can come as no huge surprise that Marc would chose this path.
At the age of four, Marc asked for a motorbike for Christmas and, with two training wheels, he had his first experience. He would go with his father to an esplanade near their house, to an industrial area or even a friend’s field to practice before taking part in his first races. When he was five, he participated in “Enduro for kids” in the initiation category. He would have preferred to practice motocross, which was more fun and where all the riders started at the same time. Marc was able to test himself against other kids, without having to look at the times when the race is over. However, there wasn’t a class for his age at that time in motocross.
In 1999, his father bought him a second-hand 50cc off-road pocket bike, on which he continued to enjoy enduro and also to begin in motocross. In 2000, although he continued competing in enduro, he was also runner up in the Motocross Catalan Championship and, a year later, he took another step forward and won the Catalan Championship of the initiation category. He kept practising enduro, a discipline in which he finished fourth that year.
From dirt to tarmac (2000-2007)
Later that year, The Catalan Motorcycling Federation launched the Conti Cup, a road racing series that included bike, helmet, overall, gloves, boots and licence. His strong performances in the fastest motocross races inspired him to try his luck on the Kart circuits’ tarmac, although the initial stages were a little disappointing. However, by mid season he started to feel more comfortable and decided to repeat the experience the following year.
It was then when he entered in Procurve, a team from Mataro with which he finished third in the Conti Cup. He kept competing in motocross but in 2002 he started to focus on road racing. With the same team he changed to the big circuits by taking part in the Open RACC 50, a six-race Catalan Championship held in Montmeló (2), Calafat (3) and Can Padró (1). His first year was expected to be one of adaptation and learning, but Marc won the Championship with an overwhelming performance, sometimes finishing races with an advantage of 20 seconds over his rivals.
Due to the excellent results of 2003, the following year Marc jumped to the 125 class with a Honda 125 GP. He signed for the RACC Impala team, with Pol Espargaró –who was two years older- as his team mate. After the six races held in Montmeló (2), Valencia (2) and Albacete (2), he took the runner-up position behind his team mate.
A year later, the team changed their name to RACC CajaMadrid and the Monlau mechanics became a part of it. It was an important year for Marc, as it was then when he met Emilio Alzamora, 1999 125cc World Champion with Honda. During that season Marc won the 125cc Catalan Championship, as well as the Supermotard Catalan Championship 85cc class. The following year he repeated the Catalan triumph, and at the same time made his debut in the Spanish Road Racing Championship (CEV), where he achieved eighth overall position.
In 2007 he participated again in the CEV, this time with KTM, but several crashes prevented him from taking a better position than ninth overall. Marc, with 1.50m height and 43kg, was forced to take a 20kg ballast that affected the bike negatively in the changes of direction, as the inertia would drag him out of the track. Nonetheless, he was able to win one of the seven races of the Championship, at the Jerez circuit.
World Championship Debut (2008)
At the end of the 2007 season, shortly before the last race in Valencia, he went with Emilio Alzamora to the Ricardo Tormo Circuit to attend the Valencia Grand Prix. Immersed in the world championship atmosphere, Marc thought he was there to learn and prepare himself for the last CEV round. But Alzamora had a surprise for him: the next year he would be part of the big World Championship family. Both surprised and elated, Marc accepted the challenge and in 2008 he embarked in a new odyssey, in which he would learn and grow as a rider.
His debut in the Motorcycling World Championship was with the Repsol KTM Team livery at the Portuguese Grand Prix that took place in Estoril. During the pre-season, an ill-timed crash ended with a fracture of his right arm that prevented him from being on the starting grid in the first two races. But he was finally able to make his debut around the middle of April. Marc showed glimpses of his talent in that very first race, but it was in the second race, in China, where he took his first two points and made his remarkable potential clear.
In the following races he continued to ride among the top riders, but it was in his sixth race, at the British Grand Prix, where he was able to set a milestone in motorcycling history. Marc took third position, the youngest rider ever to make it onto a World Championship podium.
The Repsol rider alternated great performances, especially in San Marino and Indianapolis, with an occasional setback, such as in the Malaysian Grand Prix, where he ended his season early. In the practice sessions, Marc was run over by a rival, with incredibly bad luck his leg was trapped between the wheel and the swingarm and broke the epiphyseal plate of his tibia. Nevertheless, the season’s assessment was impressive, as he finished in thirteenth position overall, despite having missed four races due to injury.
Second year in the World Championship (2009)
Again sporting the number 93 on his Repsol fairing, celebrating the year he was born, Marc demonstrated in his second World Championship campaign the talent that had impressed everyone. Riding in the official KTM team, he broke new records: at the French Grand Prix, he was the second youngest rider ever to take pole position in the World Championship, and fought week after week to finish on the podium. He achieved it in the third round of the year, in Jerez, and despite being among the top group on several occasions, bad luck and crashes combined to prevent him from repeating the feat for the rest of the season.
Despite all the difficulties, Marc finally achieved his objective: to finish nearly all races in the top five. Considered as one of the young promises of the Spanish Motorcycling, he did not lack offers for 2010, but he decided on joining Ajo Motorsport team riding a Derbi.
World Champion (2010)
It was his third year in the Continental Circus and the first one where he had the same weapons as his rivals. Armed with an identical bike to the rest of the candidates for the top spots, it was the season in which Marc was able to show his full potential and took every opportunity to keep setting records in his short but remarkable career as a rider. From the pre-season, he set a record pace, showing a great adaptation to his new bike and team.
In the first race, Marc showed his aspirations when he took pole position and followed it up with a podium finish, although he had the feeling he could have done better. However, he soon found the first obstacle: after setting another pole position in the second Grand Prix of the season in Jerez, he was incredibly unlucky in the race. He had not completed the first lap when the exhaust system broke, detaching itself and knocking the rear wheel in one of the fast corners at the Andalusian track. Marc was thrown through the air and dislocated his right shoulder.
Putting a lot of effort into his recovery, he once again reached the podium in the following race, in France, and then two weeks later his first victory of his career at Mugello. A success that demonstrated his talent, he went on to win the following four races consecutively, setting all the pole positions and breaking records set years ago by the young Valentino Rossi.
The summer break interrupted Marquez’s winning streak and in the first practice of the Czech Republic Grand Prix he dislocated his left shoulder in a crash. Despite that, he was able to compete in the race and, although he chose the wrong tyres, which ended completely worn, he finished in seventh position. Again with a huge effort in his physical recovery, Marc showed again the high level he had before the summer. Nevertheless, a mistake at the Indianapolis Circuit made him crash again when he was leading the race. He was able to finish tenth – despite receiving a 20-second penalty, and maintained the lead of the Championship.
A lead that, although reinforced by another victory in the following round in San Marino, he lost two weeks later at the Aragon Grand Prix. He was run over by another rider and was forced to leave with no points for the second time in the season. He then faced the Asian leg of the season fully determined and with the personal aim to return to Spain as Championship leader again. He succeeded. Marc dominated in Japan, Malaysia and Australia, winning the three rounds and setting the fastest times in the practice sessions. Undoubtedly, this was an important step forward in his battle for the title, as he set a perfect hat-trick without a single mistake.
Then the Portuguese Grand Prix arrived. Marc astonished all the motorcycling world with an incredible performance. With the race suspended due to the rain, Marc crashed on the new formation lap, less than ten minutes before the restart of the race. His bike was repaired just in time with the help of all his mechanics and even other riders’ mechanics. He started from the last position of the grid, but was already fourth at the end of the first lap after a wonderful performance. In the end, he recorded an epic victory just ahead of Nico Terol. Pol Espargaró, finishing tenth, was out of the Championship battle. The title would be decided in Valencia in a duel between two riders: Marc and Nico Terol.
Marc arrived at the last round of the season with an advantage of 17 points in the overall classification, but perfectly aware that the World Championship had not finished and that he had to remain focused until reaching the chequered flag. In a perfect weekend Marc set yet another pole position, matching the record of pole positions set by a living legend of motorcycling, Repsol Honda’s Mick Doohan. In the race he showed the maturity that had characterised him all season, although for once he avoided entering the battle for victory. His fourth position allowed him to reach the finish line celebrating the title. He was the 2010 125cc World Champion at 17, after taking 10 victories and 12 pole positions.
Runner-up in Moto2 in his first year (2011)
After winning the title, the natural step for the young rider was to change classes in 2011 and follow his unstoppable progression with any bike he might lay his hands on. Marc joined a team created especially for him, boasting engineers and mechanics with experience in Moto2 and MotoGP. It took him four races to get to grips with the class, as three crashes from the opening four races gave him plenty of food for thought. At the French GP, however, he announced his arrival as a serious title contender.
His victory at Le Mans and second place at Montmeló showed that he was not out of his depth in the class, but one race later he suffered another crash whilst fighting for the win at the British GP. This was the final blip before a huge comeback, in which he picked up three consecutive wins —Assen, Italy and Germany—, one second place —Brno—, a further three wins on the bounce —Indianapolis, San Marino and Aragón— and another second place —Motegi.
There was still to be another amazing comeback in 2011 —this time at the Australian GP. After being penalised for an infraction in Free Practice and sent to 38th on the grid, he would have to do something very special to take something away from Phillip Island. That Sunday he overtook 35 rivals to take the last spot on the podium.
Seven wins, three second places and a third place gave Marc the Rookie of the Year honour for 2011, although his season ended on a sour note when he crashed in qualifying for the penultimate race of the season in Malaysia, after marshals failed to display rain flags at that part of the circuit, and was unable to compete in the final two events. That meant that he conceded the title, albeit taking a creditable runner-up spot in the Moto2 World Championship.
Moto2 World Champion for 2012
Marc faced his second year in the intermediate category with the highest possible aspirations. Accompanied by the same team as the previous year, he fought to repeat the form shown in his brilliant 2011 season. The start of the year was not easy for Marc, who missed almost the entire pre-season whilst recovering from the injury sustained in free practice for the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix. Marc had been experiencing double vision which had not improved since the accident and after three months he opted to have surgery on 16 January 2012. He was treated for paralysis of the upper right oblique muscle, caused by trauma to the fourth right cranial nerve. The operation was a success and he recovered in time for the Qatar Grand Prix, the first race of 2012, but had accumulated very few miles on his Moto2 bike. Despite this, he started 2012 as one of the favourites to take the title.
He did not disappoint. Marc overcame everything thrown his way and and took the win in the desert, showing that he was fully recovered and ready to push for the title. That victory was followed by a second in Jerez and another win in Portugal. At the fourth round, held at the Le Mans circuit, the Spaniard took pole position but suffered a crash in an intense downpour on race day. That small blot on his record was followed by 9 podiums from 12 races. Eight wins —in Qatar, Portugal, Holland, Germany, Indianapolis, Czech Republic, San Marino and Japan—, two runner-up finishes —Catalunya and Great Britain—, and three third places —Jerez and Aragon, established his credentials.
With everything going in his favour, rain again caught Marc out at the Malaysian Grand Prix. Three laps into the race, the Repsol rider crashed out. Fortunately, the advantage gained at the preceding races allowed for him to clinch the crown just one week later in Australia, where he was crowned Moto2 World Champion.
Step up to MotoGP
As the Repsol Honda Team bid farewell to double World Champion Casey Stoner, after the Australian announced his retirement at the French GP in 2012, there was a huge amount of expectation on what Marc could achieve in his first season in MotoGP and how he would adapt to the bigger bike. A strong pre-season saw Marc get to grips with his RC213V and by the Malaysian Winter tests, he demonstrated he was able to fight with the elite of the class. On arrival at the private pre-season test in Austin, Marc remained unbeaten in all three days there as he became more and more comfortable on the bike.
In the first race in Qatar, Marc achieved his first podium, fighting with Dani Pedrosa and Valentino Rossi in his first ever race in the premier-class. Then as the paddock flew west to Austin again, this time in race-mode, the young rookie completed the impossible taking pole and recording his first race win in MotoGP in just his second race. In doing so, Marc become the youngest ever rider to win a premier-class grand prix at the age of 20 years 63 days taking the record from Freddie Spencer (who was 20 years 196 days when he won the Belgium 500cc GP at Spa-Francorchamps in 1982).
Unbelievably, Marc was now leading the Championship as the next round got underway in Jerez. A gutsy last corner manoeuvre on 2012 Champion Jorge Lorenzo secured second place for Marc as teammate Dani Pedrosa took his maiden win of 2013. At the next round in France, Marc took his second pole of the season but wet weather on race day saw Marc drop back to 8th on the first lap. It was Marc’s first experience of racing MotoGP bikes in the wet but he used the opportunity to learn and he gradually made his way through the pack. After passing Lorenzo, Bradl crashed out and Rossi made a mistake which promoted him to 5th on lap 18. He then chased down Hayden and Dovizioso to claim a remarkable podium in very difficult conditions.
The Italian GP weekend was one to forget for Marc as he luckily escaped serious injury from a heavy crash in FP2. He was able to ride again for qualifying but was clearly shaken. However, starting from 6th in the race, Marc pushed in the race and was up to second but with just three laps remaining he lost the front and crashed out, unhurt. The next round in Catalunya was a tough weekend for Marc, who once again started from 6th on the grid. However, in the race Marc was able to push and again finished on the podium in third position.
On arrival in Assen, the temperatures were cooler and many riders suffered big crashes. Title rival Jorge Lorenzo fractured his collarbone on Thursday’s practice session and Marc suffered a big crash, breaking a finger and toe, in FP3 on Friday. Incredibly Lorenzo was operated on and returned to race, and Marc didn’t let his injuries hold him back either. Marc took 2nd place and an important 20 points after his DNF in Mugello.
The GP of Germany was a huge turning point in the season. Another crash from Lorenzo sidelined him for the race, as he took time to properly recover, and Marc’s teammate Dani Pedrosa also had a big crash – hitting his head hard and cracking his collarbone. Marc needed no other invitation as he dominated the race and regained the Championship lead as his two main rivals were forced to sit out. Marc continued this run of success winning in Laguna Seca – becoming the first rookie to win in there in the premier-class and became the youngest rider to win back-to-back races in the premier class at the age of 20 years 154 days (the previous record-holder was Freddie Spencer, who won the opening two races of the 1983 season in South Africa and then France at the age of 21 years 104 days). Again in Indianapolis, becoming the third rider of all-time to win three premier-class GP races in the same country in a single season (Jorge Lorenzo in 2010 – Jerez, Catalunya & Valencia, and Casey Stoner in 2011 – Catalunya, Aragon, Valencia, in both cases the three wins were from four races held in Spain). Marc also became the first rookie in the premier-class to win three back-to-back races since Kenny Roberts in 1978, who won in Austria, France and Mugello.
As the MotoGP circus headed back to Europe, Marc was on a roll and took his fourth win in a row at Brno, becoming the first rider since Valentino Rossi in 2008 to win four or more successive races in the premier-class and also the youngest rider to have won four successive premier class Grand Prix races. The run came to an end in Silverstone, when in warm up on Sunday morning, Marc crashed and dislocated his left shoulder. Fortunately he was able to ride and starting from pole, he managed to take second place – marking his 50th podium finish, which at the age of 20 years 196 days made him the youngest rider to reach a half century of grand prix podium finishes, taking the record from Dani Pedrosa who was 21 years 162 days old when he stood on a GP podium for the 50th time.
Marc was back to full fitness two weeks later in Misano and smashed the pole record on his way to securing his sixth pole position of the season. He didn’t have a perfect race but again, was able to take second place and another 20 points, maintaining his lead in the Championship, 34 points ahead of Lorenzo and Pedrosa. In Aragón, the inevitable finally happened. After so many battles and such close racing, the two Repsol Honda Teammates came together – only slightly – on track and the minor contact resulted in the rear wheel speed sensor cable on Dani’s bike breaking, launching the Spaniard into the air and his Championship hopes with him. Marc ran wide but remained unaffected and chased down Lorenzo to take his sixth win of the season and extending his lead by another 5 points.
As the Paddock flew East for the final fly away races, Race Direction pulled in the two Repsol Honda Riders for a hearing concerning the Aragón incident in Malaysia before the race weekend. The outcome was a loss of 25 Constructor Championship points for Honda and another point on Marc’s record (after the two received in Silverstone) – one more would result in him starting his next race from the back of the grid. The team moved on from this and had another fantastic weekend with a 1-2 finish, Marc in second but importantly finishing in front of Lorenzo, putting another four points between them and stretching his lead to 43 points with three races and 75 points.
With no time to rest, the teams flew to Australia for the next race. Cold and wet conditions greeted them in Phillip Island but gradually the weather improved and became quite warm by the weekend. Tyre issues for all the riders (also in Moto2) dictated a dry flag-to-flag race for the MotoGP class, with no rider permitted to make more than 14 laps on any one slick rear tyre. Marc needed to take 7 points or more than Lorenzo – and not lose more then 5 points to Dani – to seal the Championship. Additional issues in warm up on Sunday morning further complicated things and the rules changed once again. The new format dictated a new race distance of nineteen laps with a mandatory change of bikes at least once during the race. Riders were also not permitted to complete more than ten laps on any one rear tyre, meaning they had to change machine at the end of lap nine or lap ten. The race began well and Championship leader Marc held second position from the start, behind pole man Lorenzo. At the end of lap ten, race leader Lorenzo entered the pits – along with the majority of riders – but Marc did not follow, instead completing lap ten and then entering the pits before passing the line of lap eleven. Marc rejoined the circuit as Lorenzo came through turn one and slotted into second. Shortly after Marc rejoinined the race, he was shown the black flag – meaning instant disqualification – as he had exceeded the lap limit as set out in Race Direction’s earlier instructions. The team made a mistake, understanding he was able to complete ten laps and come back in before completing lap eleven, and the ‘BOX’ instruction on his pit board was therefore one lap late.
Marc and his team had to move on from this and he had no time to dwell on the situation. The next morning the team were on their way to Japan for the final of the three fly away races. On arrival in Japan, the typhoon in the South of Japan had begun heading north and with heavy cloud cover over the circuit, the circuit medical helicopter was unable to fly and was therefore not available in the event of an emergency, with the nearest hospital an hour away by road. This meant no track action at all, in any class, on Friday.
After an earthquake in the night, the teams arrived at the Motegi circuit on Saturday to be greeted by another obstacle. The sessions were once again cancelled, this time due to track conditions, and the entire paddock forced to wait patiently again. Finally at 12h50 race direction deemed the track safe and the Moto 3 class took to the Japanese circuit. Conditions slowly improved, although there was still a lot of standing water on track when the MotoGP class session began at 13h55. Race direction declared this session as an extended qualifying session with a time allowance of 75 minutes and Marc took second spot on the grid in preparation for the race. Sunday morning, the Sun arrived and presented everyone with the same dilemma; just 45 minutes of dry track set up time. Marc suffered a high speed crash in the session on a cold front tyre and was fortunate to avoid serious injury and received an injection before the race to numb the pain. Having only experienced 45 minutes on a dry track at Motegi on the MotoGP machine, Marc began to have some issues midway through the race. He attempted a few moves on Lorenzo but was unable to complete a pass and finally stopped pushing and settled for second place and important Championship points.
Now with just 13 points separating him and Lorenzo, the final round of the season in Valencia was to be the Championship decider. Warm weather welcomed the MotoGP teams, as did a sell out crowd at the Valencia circuit. Marc was fastest in FP1, FP2 and FP3 – breaking the pole record – and then recorded his ninth pole of the season. Marc rode a mature race, keeping out of the battle between Dani and Jorge, and took a safe third securing his first MotoGP World Championship in his maiden season.
It was a difficult start to 2014, after Marc broke his leg after the first Sepang test – during training. This meant he missed the second Sepang test and also Phillip Island test, and arrived in Qatar for round one with just three days on the bike. However, after slowly finding his rhythm Marc took pole in qualifying and never looked back. He won the race after an epic battle with Rossi and everyone soon forgot about his healing broken leg.
Marc led every session in Austin and true to form, won the race. He led all sessions – apart from FP1 – in Argentina and also won the race. With three in a row, Marc was on a roll. He continued his dominance to the season mid-way point, winning in Germany and then made it 10 out of 10 in Indianapolis after the Summer break. However, he couldn’t quite manage 11 out of 11 and in Brno, teammate Dani took the victory with Marc finishing in 4th.
He was back on top in Silverstone for round twelve but then came two difficult races. In San Marino, whilst chasing Rossi in the early laps, Marc made an uncharacteristic error and low-sided. He managed to get the bike restarted and displayed his grit and determination by remounting the bike and taking an all important single Championship point, in 15th. The following race in Aragón was also a test for the young Spaniard. After dominating FP3, FP4 and taking Pole Position, everything was looking positive. The race began with a fantastic battle between Marc, Dani and Jorge (Lorenzo). However, late rain arrived to spoil the show and as other riders came into the pits to change their bikes, both Marc and Dani made the choice to stay out – with just four laps remaining. Dani made a small mistake in turn one and crashed out, then unfortunately on the next lap Marc also crashed. Both riders were able to get back to the pit lane and change the bike, but with two laps remaining it was too late. Marc finished 13th and Dani 14th, taking all important Championship points.
On arrival in Japan, Marc showed no signs of pressure. With a 75 point margin his main aim was to go out and win Honda’s home GP and therefore clinch the title, however, finishing in front of Dani and losing no more than 3 points to Rossi and 15 to Lorenzo would also seal the title. It was a closely fought race and Marc battled with Rossi who would not give up the fight easily. Finally he was able to control the gap behind Lorenzo and more importantly finish in front of Rossi and Dani. His second place finish in Motegi and 20 points were enough to deliver him his second and successive MotoGP World Championship, becoming the first Honda rider to clinch a World title – in any class – at the Motegi circuit. He also became the youngest ever rider to win two consecutive premier-class World Championships at the age of 21 years 237 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 23 years 152 days when he won his second successive 500cc title in 1963.
More, from a press release issued by Dorna:
How magnificent Marquez successfully defended the MotoGP™ title in 2014
Repsol Honda’s brilliant young MotoGP™ World Champion Marc Marquez retained the premier class title in style this year – and this is the story of how he did so, sending the hashtag #MM93WorldChamp trending worldwide.
Last year Marquez became the youngest ever winner of the premier class World Championship, securing the crown by four points and winning it at the last race of the season in Valencia. This year a brilliant start to his title defence saw him notch up ten consecutive race wins in the opening ten races, leaving his rivals chasing his shadows.
A pre-season leg break which the rider, from Cervera, Spain, sustained whilst dirt track training close to his hometown, meant he missed the last tests before the new season commenced, but he showed no signs of weakness once the real action got underway in Qatar. Just weeks after his training accident Marquez showed he would be tough to beat this year as he won from pole at the Losail International Circuit following a great battle in the desert with Valentino Rossi.
Returning to the scene of his first MotoGP class win last year in Austin, Marquez was unstoppable at round two as he won by a four second margin from his Repsol Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa. A fortnight later Marquez added another venue to the list of tracks where he has been victorious as he won an enthralling MotoGP race in Argentina at the new Termas de Rio Hondo track.
Just a week on from the Argentina triumph, Marquez cruised to victory in front of 115,000 fans at Jerez with Rossi and Pedrosa also on the podium. It was a fourth win from pole as Marquez continued his ruthless form.
On the back of his early season performances Marquez agreed a new two year deal with his team, tying him to Honda Racing Corporation until the end of 2016.
Further victories were racked up from pole as the series of European Grands Prix continued at Le Mans and Mugello. Pedrosa, Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo were giving it their all to stop the rampant 21 year-old but could not find a way to defeat him.
Marquez’s rivals got a glimmer of hope at Barcelona-Catalunya as he crashed out of Q2 and missed pole for the first time this season, qualifying third. But come the race Marquez was as formidable as ever, crossing the line half a second in front of Rossi, surviving a late scare as Pedrosa touched his rear wheel in the final stages, the latter almost crashing and having to settle for third.
Given his brilliant performances, every weekend Marquez was being asked if he felt invincible and whether he could win every race in 2014. But he played things down and insisted that he had to be prepared for a race when he could not clinch victory. He consistently reiterated that winning the championship, not every race, was his goal.
Nonetheless, the victories kept coming as Marquez got the best out of his Honda RC213V every time he went out to race. Assen brought a huge challenge in difficult conditions, but Marquez adapted best in the flag-to-flag contest and took the win by 6.7s from Andrea Dovizioso. The Dutch TT success made Marquez the first rider since the great Giacomo Agostini in 1971 to win the first eight premier-class races of the year.
Sachsenring was next and the MotoGP riders raced in tricky conditions again. With the track drying quickly much of the field changed from wet set-up to dry after the final Warm Up lap, meaning they had to start from pit lane. Marquez showed he was the man for all seasons once again, winning by 1.5s from Pedrosa.
This meant Marquez went into the summer break with a perfect record of nine wins from nine races and as he relaxed on the beach in Tarifa with his brother Alex and their friends during the summer break, he did so with a healthy 77 point lead in the standings.
That lead increased to 89 points as the action resumed at Indianapolis and Marquez took another win from pole, with Lorenzo and Rossi joining him on the podium. The victory saw Marquez become the first rider since Mick Doohan in 1997 to win ten successive premier class races.
Eventually the time would come for Marquez to show that he was human after all and it was at Brno that his winning streak finally came to an end. Marquez crossed the line in fourth place, behind winner Pedrosa and podium finishers Lorenzo and Rossi.
It was business as usual at Silverstone two weeks later, however, as Marquez struck back immediately for victory after a superb battle with Lorenzo.
Uncharacteristic crashes for Marquez at Misano and Aragon saw him finish the races there 15th and 13th respectively. However the 21 year-old rider still had a significant 75 point lead as MotoGP departed from Europe and headed east to Japan for the first of the ‘flyaway’ triple header of races.
With a calm and controlled ride into second place at Motegi, behind a resurgent race winning Lorenzo, Marquez got the required points to retain his title. Winning a midrace battle with Rossi and managing the gap ahead of the Italian in second place in the second half of the race Marquez wrapped up the World Championship honours with three races to go.
Key statistics on Marquez’s 2014 MotoGP™ World Championship win
By winning the 2014 MotoGP™ title on Sunday at the Motul Grand Prix of Japan Marc Marquez set several new records. Here is a list of those records and some additional milestones achieved by the Repsol Honda star this year.
– Marquez is the youngest ever rider to win two consecutive premier class World Championships at the age of 21 years 237 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 23 years 152 days when he won his second successive 500cc title in 1963.
– He is the first Spanish rider to win back-to-back world titles in the premier class of Grand Prix racing.
– During 2014 Marquez became the first rider since Giacomo Agostini in 1970 to win the opening 10 premier class GP races of the season
– The 10 successive wins by Marquez in 2014 is a new record for most successive wins in the MotoGP class.
– In 2014 he also became the youngest rider to win 10 successive premier class GP races, at the age of 21 years 174 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 94 days old when in 1964 he won the tenth of a twelve race winning sequence.
– Marquez is the first Honda rider to clinch a world title at the Motegi circuit, which is owned by Honda.
– With three races remaining in 2014, Marquez has already stood on the top step of the podium 11 times during the year, equaling the record for most MotoGP victories in a single season that was achieved by Valentino Rossi in both the 2002 and 2005 seasons.
Marc Marquez – The story of a Champion
In 2014 Repsol Honda’s sensational MotoGP™ World Champion Marc Marquez wrote the latest chapter in the story of an amazing career so far in Grand Prix racing for the 21 year-old from Cervera, Spain.
Marquez made his debut in the World Championship in 2008 as a 15 year-old and although his rookie season was curtailed by injury he made headlines by achieving a podium result in just his sixth race at Donington Park. He picked up another podium result in 2009 as he gathered further experience, before becoming a 125cc World Champion for the first time in 2010 by winning 10 of the last 14 races of the year.
In the Moto2™ class the following season he won seven more races after a tricky start and he pushed hard for the title but lost out to Stefan Bradl, after a practice crash at Sepang halted his campaign. Despite ongoing problems with his eyesight from that accident which affected his 2012 preseason Marquez romped to the Moto2™ title that year with a total of nine victories and 14 podiums.
The young Spaniard therefore moved up to the premier class for 2013 joining the Repsol Honda team as the World Champion of the intermediate category.
Last year Marquez became the youngest ever rider to clinch the premier class world title in MotoGP™ thanks to a truly amazing debut season for the then 20-year-old. He also became the first rookie premier class World Champion for 35 years, winning for the first time in the premier class in just his second race in MotoGP at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin.
Over the course of 2013 he would battle with the experienced trio of Dani Pedrosa, Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi, notching up six wins in total, but it was his brilliant haul of 16 podiums from 18 races which saw him win the World Championship. The title was sealed by four points over nearest rival and outgoing champion Lorenzo with an intelligent ride to third place in the last race of the season at Valencia.
The 2014 campaign saw Marquez raise the bar, with Pedrosa, Lorenzo and Rossi unable to challenge his searing pace and consistently powerful performances in the first half of the year. Marquez built up a huge lead in the championship with ten successive victories in the opening 10 rounds of the season and even a mid season blip in form which saw him off the podium in three races in a quartet of Grands Prix shortly after the summer break would not hold him back.
His win at Silverstone after a brilliant duel with Lorenzo and his second place in Japan proved to be decisive as Marquez wrapped up the 2014 crown with three races remaining.
Date of birth: 17th February 1993
Place of birth: Cervera, Spain
First Grand Prix: Qatar 2008, 125
First pole position: France 2009, 125
First podium finish: Great Britain 2008, 125
First Grand Prix victory: Italy 2010, 125
Grand Prix starts: 111
Grand Prix victories: 43
Podium finishes: 67
Pole positions: 48
Fastest race laps: 37
World Championship Wins: 125 (2010), Moto2™ (2012), 2 x MotoGP™ (2013 & 2014)
2008: 125 World Championship – 13th position on KTM, 13 starts, 63 points
2009: 125 World Championship – 8th position on KTM, 16 starts, 94 points
2010: 125 World Championship – WORLD CHAMPION on Derbi, 17 starts, 310 points
2011: Moto2™ World Championship – 2nd position on Suter, 13 starts, 251 points
2012: Moto2™ World Championship – WORLD CHAMPION on Suter, 17 starts, 324 points
2013: MotoGP™ World Championship – WORLD CHAMPION on Honda, 18 starts, 334 points
2014: MotoGP™ World Championship – WORLD CHAMPION on Honda, 15 starts, 312 points
More, from a press release issued by Drive M7 Aspar Team:
Hiroshi Aoyama puts on a show for home fans
DRIVE M7 Aspar rider makes big step forward on race day to finish thirteenth
There was victory for Yamaha on Honda territory today as Jorge Lorenzo repeated his success from last season at Motegi but second place for Marc Marquez was enough to seal a second successive championship for him and the Japanese manufacturer at their home circuit. The Spanish rider only needed to finish ahead of Valentino Rossi and Dani Pedrosa to make sure of the championship and after a steady start he fought his way into contention and made the crucial pass on the Italian on the sixteenth lap.
After two crashes during practice DRIVE M7 Aspar rider Hiroshi Aoyama was determined to put on a good show for his fans in his home race and after some hard work from his mechanics until late last night he was able to delight them with a charge from eighteenth on the grid to finish thirteenth. The day didn’t start well for his team-mate Nicky Hayden, who crashed in warm-up, and luck went against him again in the race when his bike was damaged by debris on the fourth lap. The American fought hard to pick up points in fourteenth place, which is a positive result at a circuit that was always going to be difficult for his recovering wrist.
13th Hiroshi Aoyama: “After two crashes already this weekend, which caused me to lose some confidence, I thought it was going to be a long 24 laps today. I didn’t have a good feeling with the front but the mechanics worked hard yesterday and up until midnight last night to give me a better setting and I was really able to enjoy myself today. It was the best feeling I have had with the bike all weekend and I was able to put on a good show for my fans. We finished as the top Honda in the Open category and we closed the gap to the fastest riders in the championship.”
14th Nicky Hayden: “I crashed early in the warm-up this morning which definitely wasn’t the best way to start the day and it affected my start in the race. Then on the fourth lap Redding ran a little wide and kicked up a couple of stones that hit my fairing and that affected the aerodynamics of the bike, making the front lift up. So it was a frustrating race and I expected to be much faster than we were today. On the positive side we picked up a couple of points and we have come away with something from a race that we knew was going to be tough on my wrist.”
More, from another press release issued by Dorna:
Brilliant Marquez retains MotoGP™ crown in second as Lorenzo wins Motegi race
The 2014 MotoGP™ World title was clinched by Marc Marquez at the Motul Grand Prix of Japan as he finished in second place behind race winner Jorge Lorenzo, with Valentino Rossi also on the podium.
Lorenzo took his second successive victory as his great recent form continued but the story of the race was all about Marquez as he got the job done to secure the 2014 title with three rounds to go. Marquez crossed the line 1.638s behind Lorenzo to collect the crucial points for the World Championship win, as Rossi completed the rostrum in third.
Marquez did not make the best start off the line but overtook Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) and Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) in the opening laps to hunt down the front group. He then picked off pole man Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) and won a midrace battle with Rossi overtaking at the second attempt on lap nine for second position.
Behind Lorenzo, Marquez and Rossi, Pedrosa eventually finished in fourth place, missing the podium by 0.555s, with Dovizioso in fifth.
The top ten was completed by Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing), Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP), Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini).
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team) was the first faller of the race, resulting in a DNF after his Aragon podium. Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing) fell in the second half of the race and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing) crashed on the final lap. All riders were uninjured.
Danilo Petrucci (Octo Iodaracing Team) retired to the pits with a technical problem.
Moto2™: Hard fought Japanese triumph for determined Luthi
The 23-lap Moto2™ contest at the Motul Grand Prix of Japan saw Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Sitag) take maximum points, with the Swiss rider joined on the podium by Maverick Viñales (Paginas Amarillas HP 40) and Tito Rabat (Marc VDS Racing Team).
Luthi rode superbly from second on the grid, getting into the lead on the first lap and managing the gap throughout the race for his first victory since 2012 and his second podium this year.
He eventually crossed the line 1.209s ahead of the increasingly impressive Viñales who pushed hard in the final laps. Rabat rode steadily to third, running in fifth place early in the race after a slow start but doing enough to collect crucial championship points.
Johann Zarco (AirAsia Caterham) looked to be in contention for a podium result in the first half of the race but was ultimately fourth, whilst Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team) could only manage fifth. Rabat’s lead in the standings increased to 38 points with three races to go.
The top ten was rounded out by Julian Simon (Italtrans Racing Team), Franco Morbidelli (Italtrans Racing Team), Hafizh Syahrin (Petronas Raceline Malaysia), Ricard Cardus (Tech 3) and Xavier Simeon (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2).
Riccardo Russo (Tasca Racing Moto2) fell early in the opening lap. Sam Lowes (Speed Up) crashed out several laps later while fighting for a top ten. Sandro Cortese (Dynavolt Intact GP) and Mattia Pasini (NGM Forward Racing) fell with 17 laps to go and were both able to initially remount, but neither would finish the race.
Anthony West (QMMF Racing Team) also crashed and remounted, but pulled into the pits with Pasini several laps later.
The closing laps saw Marcel Schrotter (Tech 3) and Axel Pons (AGR Team) fall. There was a rare mistake from Dominique Aegerter (Technomag CarXpert) late on, the Swiss rider remounting for 18th.
Moto3™: Alex Marquez takes crucial victory in tense Motegi contest
The Moto3™ race at the Motul Grand Prix of Japan saw Alex Marquez (Estrella Galicia 0,0) take control of the World Championship fight with a stunning win, with Efren Vazquez (SaxoPrint-RTG) and Brad Binder (Ambrogio Racing) also on the podium.
Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Danny Kent (Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo) were both in the hunt for victory on the final lap but ran wide to allow Marquez through for the win. The result sees Marquez open up a 25-point gap at the head of the standings with three races remaining.
Ultimately Marquez crossed the finish line 0.357s ahead of Vazquez who had brilliantly worked his way through from 14th on the grid. Binder picked up the second podium of his career in third place having run with the front group throughout.
John McPhee (SaxoPrint-RTG) was fourth, whilst Miller and Kent touched on the last lap and finished fifth and sixth respectively.
Italian trio Romano Fenati (SKY Racing Team VR46), Enea Bastianini (Junior Team Go&FUN Moto3) and Niccolo Antonelli (Junior Team GO&FUN), along with Alex Rins (Estrella Galicia 0,0), completed the top ten. Rins ran wide early on the first lap and made his way back up from 25th place.
The race came to an early end for Niklas Ajo (Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo), Hikari Okubo (Hot Racing with I-Factory), Scott Deroue (RW Racing GP) and Sena Yamada (Liberto Plusone & Endurance), all who fell at Turn 1. Italians Matteo Ferrari (San Carlo Team Italia) and Andrea Migno (Mahindra Racing) fell later on the opening lap with Ferrari able to rejoin.
Alexis Masbou (Ongetta-Rivacold) fell with 14 laps to go and was able to remount briefly. Juanfran Guevara (Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3) took a tumble while chasing the leaders.
Jakub Kornfeil (Calvo Team) and Jorge Navarro (Marc VDS Racing Team) came together mid race, both escaped serious injury. Miguel Oliveira (Mahindra Racing) suffered a big highside fighting for a podium. Luca Grünwald (Kiefer Racing) slid off and remounted in the closing stages of the race.
More, from a press release issued by Paul Bird Motorsport:
No Japanese Joy For Team PBM
Round 15 of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship took place at Motegi with the Motul Grand Prix of Japan but the first of the series of flyaway races saw PBM MotoGP duo Michael Laverty and Broc Parkes unable to add to their points tally.
The Penrith-based PBM team were hoping to continue their remarkable consistency this season but soon it became apparent that there was work to do with both riders languishing down the order during Free Practice. Qualifying didn’t quite go to plan either for Ulsterman Laverty, on the Rapid Solicitors and Silkolene-backed Aprilia ART-powered PBM, nor Australian team-mate Parkes, on the Silkolene-backed PBM, neither of whom could break into the top 20.
Despite starting on row eight of the grid, former British Supersport Champion Laverty and Parkes, twice runner-up in the World Supersport Championship, were confident of a good performance in the 24 lap race.
Both PBM riders made good starts with Laverty gaining a few places before settling into a rhythm just outside the top 20. As the race progressed, Laverty clawed his way up to 19th before crossing the line in a battling 18th place with Parkes just a couple of places further back.
Although neither rider added to their points score, it was yet another pair of finishes for the Cumbrian team meaning that out of the 30 available finishes so far this season, Laverty and Parkes between them have brought the British-made bikes home in 27 of them, remarkably scoring top 20 placings in 23 races.
Parkes, who holds 21st in the championship table, has scored points in Assen (11th), as well as in Qatar and Indianapolis (15th) whereas Laverty, who occupies 26th in the standings, has managed just the one points scoring ride into 14th, also at Indianapolis, where both riders created history for Paul Bird’s British team to score points in the same race.
Parkes is eighth in the Open class standings and third in Rookie of the Year. Laverty occupies 12th in the Open class whilst importantly for the PBM team, they hold sixth place in the Constructor’s table and 11th in the team’s standings.
The PBM MotoGP team is next in action at Phillip Island in Australia next weekend for round 16 of the series, followed the week after at Sepang before the final race of the season in Valencia on November 9th.
Michael Laverty: “It was a tough weekend for us; we really struggled for rear grip right from the first session. We made some improvements throughout practice and qualifying to have our best setting for the race but it was still a struggle. The race was fun though; it was a good battle with Di Meglio and Broc keeping me on my toes throughout. We have a quick turnaround now as we move onto Phillip Island in just a few days and do it all again at one of the best circuits of the season.”
Broc Parkes: “At the start the race was OK although I didn’t have a great pace but I was in the battle with the Open class guys and could just hang in with them but unfortunately could not attack them. I felt I was losing a lot of time on the back straight and had to work hard to catch back up. My lap times were consistent so I’m happy with that. We lost rear grip and I had still a lot of chatter which is something I have struggled with all year but it was not as bad here. The last five laps I dropped off a couple of seconds to the guys in front. I gave good feedback to the team so I hope we can fix the problems for my home race at Phillip Island this weekend.”
Phil Borley, Technical Director: “We have had another difficult weekend and again struggled for pace, with similar problems to those we encountered at the last race. Although we made some improvements during the practice sessions, we did not find a setting that gave us the rear grip we needed to be more competitive. Hopefully at our next race, the flowing nature of the Phillip Island circuit will suit our bike more and we can be closer to some of the other Open bikes.”
More, from a press release issued by Scott Redding’s publicist:
Disappointment in Japan for Redding
Motegi, Japan – 12 October 2014: Scott Redding was disappointed to miss out on a 13th consecutive points scoring finish by less than half a second today, as he crossed the line at the end of the Japanese Grand Prix in 16th position.
Redding had started strongly, running as the first open class rider in the early stages of the race, before dropping back to 16th after a couple of off track excursions aboard his Open Class Honda RCV1000R.
The 21-year-old Briton now heads to Phillip Island for the Australian Grand Prix, which takes place next weekend.
Scott Redding // 16th
“Today I struggled to follow the right line under braking. I went deep several times, and ran onto the grass twice, losing a lot of time. Over the last five laps the front was pushing a lot, because I’d used the front tyre at the beginning of the race. It was difficult to be consistent today, but we’re not sure yet why we had this problem, so we need to look more closely at the data to find a solution ahead of the coming races in Australia and Malaysia. It goes without saying that I’m far from happy with today’s result.”