Marc Marquez intends to spend more time upright in 2018 as he bids for a fifth MotoGP world title after enduring a incredible 27 falls this season.

The Repsol Honda rider successfully defended the premier class crown after wrapping up the championship at Valencia in the deciding race on Sunday, narrowly avoiding a spill at Turn 1 as he defied the odds yet again by saving the bike on his knee and elbow.

Marquez said the new stiffer front Michelin tyre introduced at Mugello aided his cause a little, although he also experienced many tumbles after using a different specification chassis later in the season.

“The new tyre was a little bit more helpful for safety for all riders because you see the first part of the season, first four or five races, when have many strange crashes. So this was a small help for everybody and it helped the level increase for everybody,” Marquez said.

“After Le Mans, we did the Montmelo test and we tried a different chassis – it was not a new chassis – it was another specification being used by Cal [Crutchlow] and the others. I felt a little bit better and step by step we tried a few different things and I get the feeling. When we are riding in the limit at that level, it’s so difficult one day to the other to try one thing and be half-a-second faster and be safe,” he added.

“I was faster but I was not safe 100 per-cent and for that reason, many crashes, but for next year I want to understand why and I want to understand during the pre-season how to get a better feeling with the front and understand better where is the limit.”

Marquez says he finds it hard to explain what he gains from crashing when he is pushing to find the limit in practice, except that he ‘understands many things’.

“During the practice I have many crashes but I learn something and they are safe crashes. I crash 27 times but I have been close to crashing maybe 50 times,” he said.

“I don’t know how I can explain but that gives me some feeling on the bike and with 27 crashes, you can understand many things. Of course I want to improve for the future and try to be the same level, but safer.

“During the season, for some reason everybody have many ups and downs but when you start not so good, it is more difficult to get back again. Le Mans was difficult, Mugello was so difficult but then I say OK, change the approach and finish the race.”

Marquez highlighted the new big bang engine introduced by Honda this year as one reason why he struggled at the beginning of the season, but stressed the new motor did not contribute to the higher number of crashes he was involved in.

“This is one thing that is impressive: not many manufacturers can put one engine new without experience in the first season and win the championship. This is the power of Honda and they did an incredible job, but this was maybe the main reason why we start not so good the season,” he said.

“But this is normal and when we get the experience, we understand many things. The crashes are not related to the engine but of course always if you have more power, then you can be slower in the corners because the lap time comes easier. They are working hard on the engine and chassis side and trying to be faster and improve every year.”


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