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Austin MotoGP: Marquez plays down debut title chances

23 April 2013

Marc Marquez, MotoGP's newest and youngest ever race winner, expects a tougher time when the championship returns to Europe.

The 20-year-old Repsol Honda rookie won at only his second attempt with a confident victory in Sunday's inaugural round at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

The result also moved Marquez to the top of the early championship standings. 'King' Kenny Roberts is the only rider to have so far won the premier 500cc/MotoGP title at his first attempt.

"Since I've arrived in MotoGP everything has gone so well and now with the first victory your confidence always changes a little bit more," said Marquez. "But we cannot forget that this is my first season and from now on it will be more difficult.

"Some tracks are coming where Yamaha will be strong and also circuits where everybody else has experience with these bikes and some base set-up. It will be new for me.

"So our battle is race-by-race. We cannot think about the championship, because they are so strong and as we saw today with Jorge - he was struggling in qualifying, but in the race he was so close."

Between Marquez and Yamaha's reigning double champion Jorge Lorenzo on the Austin podium was Dani Pedrosa. As in Qatar, Marquez studied his experienced team-mate for over half the race before making his move, this time for victory.

"In Qatar I learned more," he said of his laps behind 2012 title runner-up Pedrosa. "Today I saw also saw his riding style and he was so fast on the exit of tight corners. But this time the rear tyres were different and we each had our strong points at different parts of the circuit."

Marquez took four races to claim his first win in the previous Moto2 class - so does that mean MotoGP is easier?

"No, no, no!" he smiled, before admitting: "When I started in Moto2 yes, because I crashed three times in a row!

"But in Moto2 with your physical condition you can start the race at 100 per cent and finish at 100 per cent. Here it is different. If you start at 100 per cent you will get tired, especially here because there are many changes of direction.

"Also there are many more things to manage in the race - the engine maps, traction control. It is quite interesting!"

Round three of the 2013 championship will be the first of the home Spanish races for Marquez, Pedrosa and Lorenzo - at Jerez, from May 3-5


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