2016 German MotoGP Preview | Another Marquez Blitzkrieg?

2016 German MotoGP Preview | Another Marquez Blitzkrieg?
Honda's Marc Marquez

2016 German MotoGP Preview

2016 German MotoGP Preview | Another Marquez Blitzkrieg?
Honda’s Marc Marquez

Since joining the premier MotoGP class in 2013 with Repsol Honda, Marc Marquez has dominated the German Grand Prix at Sachsenring.

Ahead of this weekend’s 2016 Germany GP, round nine of 18, Marquez has continually provided his own MotoGP Blitzkrieg at the 2.28-mile Sachsenring track that contains 13 corners – some of the tightest on the 2016 MotoGP calendar.

Piloting an RC213V at one of the slowest tracks in GP, the 23-year-old Marquez has not only won all 30-lap races there, he has also completed the task from pole and set the fastest lap time each time (currently 1:20.336 in 2005).

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Marquez, who has won in Germany at every race since 2010, including victories in the former 125cc and Moto2 classes, also enters this weekend’s race with the points lead; Marquez has 145 points, 24 ahead of the reigning MotoGP Champion, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo.

“We’re going to the German GP aiming for a podium position and of course possibly to fight for the win. The Sachsenring is normally a very good track for me that I like very much, maybe because it has so many left-hand corners, a bit like a dirt track,” Marquez says.

“On the other hand, it’s another one on the calendar where the weather has sometimes played a crucial role in the past, so we’ll see how it goes there. We’ve learned from the past and we’re approaching this season race by race, trying to be ready and make the most of what we have and what the situation requires. In any case I’m happy we’ll be back in action shortly and I’ll do my best to get another positive result before the summer break.”

Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo heads to Germany MotoGP 2016
Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo

Two weeks ago at Assen MotoGP, Marquez finished second in a rain-soaked race where only 13 riders cross the finish line. Marquez could have challenged eventual winner Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS’ Jack Miller, but displayed patience usually only found in seasoned riders. Marquez proved that he has grown up, not needing to challenge for every win in a season.

As for 21-year-old Miller, he became the first Australian to claim a race win since 2012 (Casey Stoner), and became the 10th youngest member in the class to win. Following his first-ever MotoGP win, he said “this makes it clear that we do know how to ride a motorbike and I’m not an idiot.”

Lorenzo finished 10th in Assen, but was not upset about the finish due to the conditions at the Dutch track. Lorenzo seeks another win ahead of the summer break, and has some luck in Germany – just not any wins. His has earned five podiums in Germany, including four second-place finishes.

“We are facing the last round of the first part of the season and we are eager to have a great result before summer holiday. I didn’t expect such a difficult race in Assen but ultimately we were able to get some valuable points for the championship,” Lorenzo says.

“Now we are visiting Sachsenring, a circuit where I’ve never won. It’s always a challenging track for both me and the YZR-M1, but this year – with different electronics and tires – you never know. Every race is a question mark so let’s see if this time we can be more competitive in Germany!”

In third, 42 points behind Marquez, is nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi. As the 37-year-old Italian chases a 10th world title, he enters Sachsenring with nine podiums at the German circuit, including four wins across the premier class. His last victory in Germany was in 2009, though he garnered an additional two wins since.

Rossi has three DNFs so far this season – Texas, Italy and the Netherlands – so he has to seriously amp up performance. History proves this is possible; back in 1998 Mick Doohan (Honda) earned the title with three DNFs.

“I really want to get back on track. Over these last few days I’ve rested at home, but now I want to leave for the race at Sachsenring,” Rossi says. “In Assen we worked well throughout the weekend and we were really fast, both in wet and dry conditions, but the race was not very lucky for us.

“At the Sachsenring circuit we will have to work well as we have been doing during all weekends this season. We are fast and I’m comfortable with the YZR-M1 and with the Michelin tires. I like this track and Sunday I will do my best to make it a good race.”

Ducati's Andrea Iannone heads to Germany MotoGP Sachsenring 2016
Ducati’s Andrea Iannone

In fourth, 59 points behind Marquez, is the other Repsol Honda pilot, Dani Pedorsa. Like Rossi, the Spaniard also crashed out of Assen MotoGP, but enters Germany with some momentum due to past performances at Sachsenring.

Pedrosa has won there six times, including four times in the MotoGP class. He has work to do, though, as he continues to chase a first premier-class title. Only seven points behind is Rossi’s future teammate on the factory Yamaha, current Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Maverick Vinales.

Just back from appearances in World Ducati Week at Misano, the Ducati Team of Andrea Iannone and Andrea Dovizioso continues to struggle. The GP16 pilots both crashed out at Assen, and are far back in points – Iannone eighth with 52, and Dovizioso 11th with 43. Thanks to Octo Pramac Yahknich Ducati’s Scott Redding’s third-place finish in Assen, Ducati seeks its 100th premier-class podium this week in Germany.

The top Independent Teams rider is Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Pol Espargaro, who is sixth in points with 72, 14 ahead of Avintia Racing Ducati’s Hector Barbera. The latter is seventh overall, but second in the Independent Team battle.

MotoGP reports that the 2016 season has been one of massive improvements for both Aprilia and Stefan Bradl (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini), the combination scoring points in all but one round and ending inside the top 10 on four occasions. In 2015 Bradl was forced to miss his home round due to injury, but there are no such issues for the Moto2 Champion in 2015.

2016 Sachsenring MotoGP on TV

beIN will provide live coverage of Sachsenring MotoGP at the following times (all ET):

  • Live Qualifying: 8 a.m. Saturday, July 16
  • Qualifying (replay): 12:30 p.m. Saturday
  • Qualifying (replay): 12:30 a.m. Sunday, July 17
  • Live MotoGP Race: 8 a.m. Sunday
  • MotoGP (replay), 2 p.m. Sunday
  • MotoGP (replay), 10 p.m. Sunday

2016 MotoGP Point Standings (after eight of 18 rounds):

1Marc MARQUEZHondaSPA145
2Jorge LORENZOYamahaSPA121
3Valentino ROSSIYamahaITA103
5Maverick VIÑALESSuzukiSPA79
7Hector BARBERADucatiSPA58
8Andrea IANNONEDucatiITA52
10Eugene LAVERTYDucatiIRL48
11Andrea DOVIZIOSODucatiITA43
12Stefan BRADLApriliaGER37
13Jack MILLERHondaAUS33
14Scott REDDINGDucatiGBR32
15Bradley SMITHYamahaGBR32
16Alvaro BAUTISTAApriliaSPA29
17Danilo PETRUCCIDucatiITA24
19Michele PIRRODucatiITA19
20Tito RABATHondaSPA18
21Loris BAZDucatiFRA8

2016 German MotoGP Preview – Photo Gallery