Live updates from Friday's pair of MotoGP free practice sessions at Sachsenring!

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Back-to-back races at the Sachsenring and Assen will sign-off the first part of the 2021 MotoGP season, starting in Germany this weekend.

The Sachsenring, the shortest and slowest circuit on the calendar, was not part of last year's shortened Covid calendar, which also meant Marc Marquez's record of winning every race at the circuit since he joined the MotoGP class in 2013 remained intact. Add in three victories in the 125cc/Moto2 classes and the Spaniard is unbeaten at the track since 2009!

Marquez faces a mighty challenge to continue that run this weekend, with a best of seventh place since his return from injury and Honda without a podium this season.

But while still struggling for strength in his right arm (originally injured last July) and corresponding shoulder area, Marquez has less trouble with left-hand corners, which dominate the anti-clockwise German track...

Among those eager to end Marquez's dominance will be the two French riders at the top of the world championship, Fabio Quartararo (Monster Yamaha) starting round 8 with a reduced 14-point lead over Johann Zarco after his 'wardrobe malfunction' in Barcelona.

While Quartararo has already tasted victory three times this season, Zarco is still seeking a long overdue debut premier-class win. The Pramac rider is hotly followed in the standings by factory team riders Jack Miller and Francesco Bagnaia, with reigning champion Joan Mir the top Suzuki in fifth but 37 points behind Quartararo.

The lack of a long straight could play into the hands of Suzuki and Yamaha this weekend, but the man of the moment is Miguel Oliveira, who has finished 2-1 in the last two events for KTM…