Czech Republic, Aug 3 : A perfectly timed switch to slicks and a masterful ride aboard the RC213V saw Marquez run away with pole position for the Czech GP and equal Doohan’s premier class pole record.
Torrential morning rain ceased just ahead of Free Practice 3 for the MotoGP World Championship but left the Brno circuit soaking wet. Although conditions improved throughout the morning session, the rain returned during the lunch break to ensure every Saturday session at the Czech GP was wet.
Able to immediately achieve a good feeling with his Repsol Honda Team RC213V in the wet, Marc Marquez continued to challenge for the top spots as he had done throughout the weekend. Second in FP3 had the reigning World Champion confident of a strong result in the wet or dry. Even with the rain, the grid would be decided on slicks and Marquez was the first to head out as the dry line appeared. Expertly navigating the treacherous conditions of the Automotodrom Brno, Marquez claimed pole by a staggering 2.5 seconds.
This is the 86th pole of Marc Marquez’s career and his 58th in the premier class. He and five-time World Champion Mick Doohan now share the record for most pole positions in the premier class with 58 each.
On the other side of the garage, the conditions meant another session of learning and adapting for Stefan Bradl as he got up to speed in the wet. Unable to improve his overall standing on the combined times due to the wet morning conditions, the German rider entered Q1. With the track transitioning from wet to dry, Bradl set a fastest time of 2’05.974 for 17th on the grid for the Czech GP but is confident of fighting forward come race day.
“At the start I believed in the slick tyres with how the conditions were changing. In the end when the rain came back and the track got wetter it was difficult! Maybe in hindsight I took a little too much risk, but in the end we finished in a good way and I am happy. Tomorrow it looks like it will be a sunny day, so a normal race. With the conditions we have had, it is hard to know where everyone is but the target is the podium,” Marquez said.
“Today was a tough day with the conditions, it was difficult for me as it has been over a year since I’ve ridden a MotoGP machine in the wet. I needed some time to get adapted but we found a good direction quite quickly. Of course I would like to be further up the grid and the target is to finish in the points and push for the top ten. I also want to say a big congratulations to Marc because what he did was incredible to watch,” said Bradl. (UNI)