Marquez: Race leader key to 'big or smaller group', trying not to 'override'

'The crucial thing will be who will lead the race. We will see if it’s a big group or a smaller one' - Marc Marquez discusses the keys to what kind of Qatar MotoGP we will see.
Marc Marquez, Qatar MotoGP, 5 March 2022
Marc Marquez, Qatar MotoGP, 5 March 2022
© Gold and Goose

Despite not being fully comfortable with the new 2022 RC213V as of yet, Marc Marquez has put himself in a brilliant position to fight for victory at the Qatar MotoGP. 

The eight-time world champion was twice on provisional pole before eventually settling for P3 in Q2. 

And while his one lap pace has been very impressive throughout the weekend, so has his race pace, especially with regards to FP4. 

With last season’s Qatar MotoGP races producing huge groups at the front, and the field looking closer than ever so far this season, similar types of races to 2021 are perhaps more likely than not. 

But with that said, Marquez believes whoever leads during the early stages will play a big role in dictating what kind of race we see and whether a big or small group is in play. 

Marquez said: "The crucial thing will be who will lead the race. Of course, I think the three guys here (himself, Jorge Martin and Enea Bastianini); we don’t have the best pace, those are starting from the back.

"So it depends who will lead the race and what is the pace. We will see if it’s a big group or a smaller one. 

"We must understand the track condition because every time we go out it is changing. There are many riders with a similar pace but it’s not the same to ride alone as it is to follow somebody when you need to take care of the front tyre, how to stop the bike and all these things affect a lot."

When it comes to himself, Marquez is a firm favourite for tomorrow even though ‘I still don’t understand where the limit is’. 

Marquez, who has been crash-free so far this weekend, acknowledged that usually it’s something that’s occurred at this point of a weekend, therefore lending him to feel the limit of the bike a lot more.

Marquez continued: "I still don’t understand where the limit is (with the 2022 bike). I didn’t crash so far this weekend. Normally I crash one time in the practice. 

"This bike is riding in a different way and it’s true that if you want to override sometimes you are slower. 

"Also in the qualifying practices it can be difficult to understand where the limit is. For example, in my fastest lap I rode in a smooth way the T1, T2, and I was fast. T3 I felt like I will push more and I override. I was slower. I made a mistake. 

"So it’s still tricky to understand the way to go into the corner. Mid corner and exciting it’s much better than the previous years."

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