500cc legends Phil Read and Wayne Gardner have expressed some strong opinions regarding the controversial incident between MotoGP stars Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez at Sepang last season.

Read, speaking alongside Gardner during a televised interview on stage at the 2016 Autosport International Show, brought up the episode when Gardner was talking about modern grand prix machinery:

Gardner: "Now obviously the manufacturers have changed [from 500cc two-strokes] to four-strokes, which I think makes it a little bit dull to watch. Particularly now all the electronics on these bikes. Obviously, the safety has improved but you just don't sit on the edge of your seat worrying about are the riders going to end up high-siding or not, it's all electronically controlled..."

Read: "Yeah but Wayne, it doesn't stop riders crashing into each other, does it? Like Marquez and Valentino, I mean - totally unfair at the Malaysian Grand Prix for Valentino to be penalised. To start at the back of the grid in the last Moto Grand Prix. When to my mind and most other people I speak to, it was Marquez's fault, who leaned on Valentino."

Gardner: "Yeah I think it was the wrong call by the race steward to penalise Rossi and put him at the back of the grid. And Phil's right, where the whole situation was aggravated by Marquez trying to hold Rossi up so he could let Lorenzo go away. And then for that to happen, and then Marquez fell off on his own accord. Rossi didn't push him off with his knee, he pushed him off because he was leaning on him, but I think Marquez has grabbed a handful of front brake and gone down the road himself.

"But then to penalise Rossi and make him start from the back of the grid, particularly in the last race of the championship, and he'd fought all year for it, it was a little bit unfair. I thought it was an unfair call, but that's what they did and that's racing."

Read then claimed MotoGP being "run by a Spanish group" was a factor.

Rossi was handed three penalty points for deliberately causing the incident with Marquez, forcing the #46 to start the final round in Valencia from the back of the grid. The Italian went on to lose the championship by five points to team-mate Jorge Lorenzo.

Honda's double world champion Marquez denies all of Rossi claims about trying to help Lorenzo in the closing rounds.

Read won the 500cc title with MV Agusta in 1973 and 1974, also claiming four championships in the 250cc class (Yamaha) and one 125cc crown (Norton).

Gardner was Australia's first premier-class world champion, in 1987, riding for Honda.


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Wow, no messages on this? Guess the truth speaks for itself.... I said the sam thing but not that Marquez grabbed a handful of brake - actually, he was mad Rossi turned sideways to say something (Rossi quote - "What the f... are you doing?" and as he powered away his front brake hit Rossi's knee and caused him to lowside the front. Either way it was aggression fueled from his ignorance that took himself out. Oh well, glad others see the same truth.....

Guna4699: what race was grandpa watching, Lorenzo
had left Rossi for dead way before Rossi got in
the fight with Marquez??
@Garcia... Don't try to sound smart, How many times you ever saw VR going neck to neck with JL MM in initial 2 laps? VR getting dropped in early laps not happened just in Sepang but in almost every race in last 2 two years barring a few... The time around which VR's lap times would generally start to peak was the time at which Marc started to play dirty. The situation is MM managed to perfectly exploit VR's early lap weakness,, still that fight from MM would be 100% acceptable if he was really fighting for his own benefits. The thing is, MM's right to fight was never questioned but the intention behind the fight was questioned...[\blockquote]

Do you seriously believe Rossi was going to catch Lorenzo in Sepang?? Even after Marquez crashed Rossi only fell further and further away behind him...

Two former riders and legends of the sport support Rossi. Looking at the film footage I think Marquez caused the crash. Yes Rossi ran wide but Marquez clearly turned into Rossi and hit him. He may have been able to avoid the crash by slowing, its hard to say, but clearly at the last moment he increased his lean angle and turned into Rossi and crashed.