2016 Sachsenring MotoGP Press Conference
As if the tumultuous weather two weeks ago at Assen MotoGP wasn’t enough, rain and cold temperatures are predicted for this weekend’s German Grand Prix at the tight Sachsenring.
Weather conditions highlighted Thursday’s German GP press conference, which included the current points leader who dominated ever premier class race in Germany since 2013, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez; two-time MotoGP Champion Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP); Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team); Stefan Bradl (Aprilia Gresini Racing); Scott Redding (Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati); Jack Miller (Marc VDS Honda); and the man who just signed with Monster Yamaha Tech3, Moto2 pilot Johann Zarco.
Marquez, who not only one every premier-class race from pole since 2013 at Sachsenring, but also set the fastest laps, was the first to talk. Marquez enters round nine ahead of summer break with 145 points, 24 ahead of the reigning MotoGP Champion Lorenzo.
Marquez first discussed the weather: “Like we’ve seen today it’s very cold and Sunday also looks unstable.”
Due to the tight and technical layout of the 2.28-mile circuit containing 13 corners, Sachsenring caters to Marquez’s riding style: “Usually with left corners I feel better maybe from Dirt Track but we’ll see this weekend if we can keep the level.”
As for Lorenzo, he has never won at Sachsenring, though he has finished on the podium five times. He lost many points in the last two rounds after finishing 10th in Assen, and a DNF at Catalunya due to crashing.
“Important weekend because in the last two races we’ve lost a lot of points. We come here looking to finish on the podium but we’ll see how the weather is,” Lorenzo says.
Everyone knows the YZR-M1 pilot is known for his comebacks: “Last year on three occasions I’ve been further back than 18 points and I recovered three times the same points.”
Ducati Team’s Andrea Iannone was next to talk. The Italian has suffered four DNFs so far this season, and Sachsenring is a difficult track for Ducati. “Sachsenring in the past is difficult for us because it’s a narrow track and for my bike it’s a problem. For sure we try the best we can this weekend,” Iannone says.
The only rider hoping for rain was the winner of the rain-soaked Dutch GP – Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS’ Jack Miller. “The smile hasn’t left my face since last week. It feels stupid saying it but a top ten is what we’re looking for unless the weather keeps up like this, then who knows! We’ll give it a go.”
Like Marquez, Miller is looking forward to the mainly left corners of Sachsenring: “Left hand corners which will help me out because we’re still not perfect on the right hand corners with my leg.”
Earning third at Assen MotoGP was Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati’s Scott Redding, who knows a podium in the dry would be hard earned: “I always say I’m happy for top ten, top eight, top six I’m over the moon. We have to see with track conditions too. When it’s completely dry against the factory guys it’s tough but in the mixed conditions you have more of a chance.”
The only local rider, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini’s Stefan Bradl, will continue to work on the Aprilia. His future is uncertain, though he knows he won’t be with Aprilia: “It’s not clear yet, there are a few talks around but I have nothing concrete. We’ll see what the next few days bring but I’m concentrating on my home GP and it’s a bad time to have other things on your mind.”
The last rider to speak was the 2015 Moto2 Champion, Johann Zarco. The Frenchman, who is tied for the Moto2 points lead with Alex Rins, will join the premier class in 2017, riding next to Jonas Folger on the Monster Yamaha Tech3 team.
“I’m just so happy and I really hope I can do the best job I can and be ready to do the best I can. I think even though it’s the first year if you prepare well you can get good results,” Zarco says.
The 22-rider grid will begin free practice on Friday, with the action starting at 9 a.m. local time.
Photos below by Luciano Bianchetto
2016 German MotoGP Press Conference – Photo Gallery