A faultless weekend for Marc Márquez at the Malaysia Grand Prix, in which he has claimed his eighth win of the season and recovered the 125cc title lead.
After a race from low to high, the Repsol rider battled with his world title rivals in the first half of the race, breaking away from the group mid-race and crossing the finish line alone, registering a solid victory that gives him back the lead in the overall standings.
Starting from the leading position on the grid, Márquez got off to a good start, which put him at the front of the pack by the first turn, however, having chosen the hardest tire compound for his front wheel, he took the opening moments of the race with care and a few turns later was passed by Nico Terol.
Espargaró and Smith also overtook him before the end of the first lap but in the second lap he climbed back up to third and then to second in the final straight.
Out in front, Terol had taken advantage to open a one-second gap, but after two consecutive fast laps, Márquez was on his wheel, dragging Pol Espargaró behind in his slipstream and forming a front group of three riders; the three who are currently battling for the 125cc World Championship title.
A lap later, Márquez took the lead and started to pull the group. However in the sixth lap both Espargaró and Terol overtook him at the end of the final straight, lowering the group’s pace and allowing the chasing group to catch them.
Buried in a group of six riders, Marc Márquez recovered second in the eighth lap and the lead in the tenth. With complete confidence in his bike and his tires at the ideal temperature, the Repsol rider tried a change of pace, which definitively broke up the group with just six laps to go.
Márquez registered the fastest lap of the race with five laps to go and did not give his rivals any options to take away his hopes on the two long straights of the Sepang track.
The Repsol rode solo towards the chequered flag, scoring 25 points, which hand back the 125cc World Championship lead to him. Eighth victory of the season, which confirms he is in good form at a crucial moment of the championship, with just three races left before the World Championship ends in Valencia.
Marc Marquez says: “At the beginning of the race, I wasn’t as confident in the bike because we chose to risk it a little and use the hard tyre up front. As we expected, during the first few laps the feelings were not too good and I wanted to warm up the tyres well so as not to make any mistakes.”
“I think that I did it well; I let a few laps pass, I saw that Nico [Terol] was pushing hard – but with the peace of mind that I could catch him because I had a better pace than him -, and that’s what happened.
“When I felt more confident with the bike, I caught up with him very quickly and in the third lap, I was in front of him. I wasn’t completely comfortable and with the new tyres they responded well, so I let a few more laps go by and with eight to go, as we had planned with the team, I decided to go up front and try to open a gap. I think that it is important to win in this way, opening a gap with the rider in second because to do that, you have to be a step ahead.”
2010 125cc Malaysian Grand Prix Official Results:
1. Marc MÁRQUEZ (DERBI)
2. Pol ESPARGARÓ (DERBI)
3. Nicolás TEROL (APRILIA)
4. Efrén VÁZQUEZ (DERBI)
5. Bradley SMITH (APRILIA)