Going right down to the last corner of the last lap, Marc Marquez kept the crowd on the edge of their seats as he put it all on the line to snatch fourth place in true Marc Marquez fashion. Behind, Joan Mir authored one of his strongest comebacks to make up seven positions.
Saturday in Buriram was another intense day of MotoGP action as lap records fell from almost the first moment of the day. Marc Marquez triumphed through a hard-fought Q1 session to start the day in Thailand, joining the fight for the top 12 soon after. A best lap of 1’29.622 later in the session earned the eight-time World Champion eighth place on the grid for the day’s Sprint Race and Sunday’s Grand Prix. Starting just behind his brother, Alex Marquez, the #93 shot off the line and immediately began working his way forward.
Sitting comfortably in the group battling for the top five, Marquez saved himself and his tyre for the end of the race. Dropping as low as sixth place, Marquez dug deep and put it all on the line in the final two laps to pass Bezzecchi and enter into an intense battle with Aleix Espargaro for fourth place. As in 2019 with a World Championship on the line, it came down to the final corner and in repeat fashion Marquez got the crowd on their feet as he slipped ahead to seal fourth.
From 19th on the grid after a difficult Q1 session, Joan Mir was immediately in attack mode as he began to relentlessly march forward. Making up a handful of places in the first corners, his progress through the field was steady as he matched the lap times of the top ten. Crossing the line in 12th, the 2020 MotoGP World Champion finished seven places higher than he started. Content with the speed he showed, Mir is hoping to put his learning into action on Sunday and return to a point scoring finish.
Tomorrow’s main event, the Thai GP, is scheduled to start at 15:00 Local Time and will run over 26 laps.
“It was a really busy day today, it’s always like that when you go through Q1. The team did a really good job and we were able to improve, I could ride in a better way and made it to Q2. From starting on the third row we were able to stay in contact with the front group and we were able to put on a good show and have a fun race. The Sprint overall was much better than I expected, we made a good start and battled until the end. The last corner was the opposite of 2019, I attacked and made it stick instead of defending from someone else’s attack. It looks like I have the correct braking point at that corner!”
“It was a harder day than I was expecting. Starting from 19th you have a lot to deal with and even when you have the speed like we had today, there’s still a lot of work to do. Finishing 12th is not bad, it was quite a real position and I think we need to be content with what’s been achieved today. My pace wasn’t for the top five, but certainly if we started ahead we could have been there in the points. Anyway, we learned some more about the bike and we will use this knowledge tomorrow.”
- From Repsol Honda / HRC