2019 Austrian GP at Red Bull Ring Preview
Except for his crash at Circuit of the Americas – a result that ended his streak of six-straight wins in Texas from pole – Marc Marquez has finished second or better at every round so far in 2019 MotoGP.
This tally includes six wins, including last week’s domination at the Czech Republic Grand Prix in Brno. After 10 of 19 rounds, the Repsol Honda RC213V pilot has garnered 210 points – the second highest accumulated in the opening 10 races behind the record that he set of 250 points in 2014.
He leads Mission Winnow Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso by 63 points. But if history proves itself again at Austria MotoGP, Marquez has a chance of losing some of that edge.
As the 2019 MotoGP Championship heads this weekend to the Red Bull Ring for the Austrian Grand Prix for another back-to-back round, only one manufacturer has won there since the track returned to the series in 2016 – Ducati.
Former Ducati rider Andrea Iannone won from pole in 2016. Dovizioso won in 2017, and former Ducati rider Jorge Lorenzo – sidelined in Austria due to recovering from his back-breaking crash in Assen – won last season.
Marquez has finished runner-up in the past two MotoGPs in Spielberg and has secured two pole positions there. He is on the hunt for his first win at the Red Bull Ring – the only track on the 2019 schedule where Marquez has never scored a victory.
“It has certainly been a busy return after the summer,” Marc Marquez said. “Of course we are very happy about the result in Brno but now we must focus again and prepare for Austria. The Red Bull Ring is a very unique circuit that demands a lot from the brakes and from the power of the bike. In the past we have had some very exciting races there so this year I think it will again be very interesting!”
Marquez’s other Ducati threat will arrive from Dovizioso’s teammate Danilo Petrucci, who is third in the point standings, 81 points behind. Petrucci won the Italian Grand Prix this year, but has struggled over the past three rounds, and finished eighth last week at Brno.
Pramac Racing Ducati’s Jack Miller can also challenge at Austria MotoGP – especially since he’s running high on energy after finishing third last week in Brno.
The Suzuki, Yamaha, KTM and Aprilia riders will have loads of work to complete considering Ducati and Honda are the dominate prototypes in Austria. But the beauty of GP motorcycle racing is things can change – from crashes to weather conditions – and fast.
The Austrian GP begins with free practice Friday, followed by qualifying Saturday and Sunday’s 28-lap MotoGP.
For local screening time of Austria MotoGP, visit 2019 MotoGP US TV Schedule.
2019 MotoGP Point Standings (after 10 of 19 rounds)