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MotoGP podium trio give views on Marquez clash
4 June 2012
Catalunya MotoGP podium finishers Jorge Lorenzo, Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso have given their views on the controversial Moto2 incident involving Marc Marquez.
Marquez and Espargaro clashed on lap 21 of 23 as Marquez cut back across to the racing line after a near fall from his Suter at turn ten. Espargaro, who had been leading the championship, fell following the contact (pictured).
Marquez said that he hadn't seen Espargaro coming by on the inside. A one-minute post-race penalty was initially imposed on Marquez by Race Direction, but then cancelled by the FIM Stewards.
The MotoGP podium finishers all had slightly differing opinions.
Race winner Lorenzo commented: “In Qatar [when Marquez made contact with Luthi on the last lap] I said that for me Marquez was at fault, but this time it was a little risky for Pol to overtake there. Because Marquez was in front and Pol knew he was going to close the line, so maybe a little risky for Pol. He saw the opportunity and wanted to pass him, but maybe it was not the right moment.”
Runner-up Pedrosa felt that Marquez should have been aware that another rider could move into the space he had left by running wide.
“I really don't know who was at fault because, for example, when Jorge passed me [at that turn] it was a little different, but almost the same,” said Pedrosa. “I ran a little wide. I knew I left the door open. I didn't know if he was there, but I couldn't come back like no-one was there just in case.
“Maybe, yes, Pol was a little behind at that moment, but also Marquez has to be aware that if you leave the door open someone can get in. So it is difficult to say.”
Dovizioso, who took his first finish for Tech 3 Yamaha on Sunday, believes it would simply have been hard for either rider to see the other.
“For me it was 50-50,” declared the Italian. “Marquez was in front so he couldn't see Pol. He only saw him just before they touched. With a helmet it is very difficult to see out the side. Also for Espargaro it was the same, because he was leaning over on the inside of his bike, so with his bike [in the way] he couldn't see exactly where Marquez was. It is bad to see this kind of crash, but I don't think there is a fault.”
The initial penalty, which briefly gave Esteve Rabat a podium finish, was for 'infringement to article 1.21.2', which states: "Riders must ride in a responsible manner which does not cause danger to other competitors or participants."
Marquez himself said of the incident:
“With laps three to go I made a small mistake and that brought me into contact with Pol Espargaro. I'm sorry for him and I apologise for it happening - I hope that he isn't hurt, because I didn't even know that he had crashed until the end. I noticed that we touched, but I didn't see him because we have no mirrors and I can't see what is going on behind me".
Marquez remains second in the championship, now led by Thomas Luthi, with Espargaro dropping from first to third due to his DNF. Espargaro escaped injury in the incident.
Marquez is expected to move up to MotoGP next season.