With Warm Up held in the late afternoon and still under the daylight, it only offered the Repsol Honda Team a brief chance to confirm their settings ahead of 2019’s opening Grand Prix. As the sun set and the floodlights flickered to life the ambient temperature settled at 18ºC with the track at 19ºC.
Marc Marquez held his own in the opening laps, keeping out of trouble and moving ahead of the chasing pack with Andrea Dovizioso. The reigning World Champion was soon joined in his hunt for victory, a frantic melee between the leading seven riders playing out over the next 20 laps. Just 0.023s split Marquez from Andrea Dovizioso as they crossed the line, Marquez opening his 2019 account with 20 points.
After yesterdays pair of heavy falls, Jorge Lorenzo’s Repsol Honda Team debut was heavily restricted by lingering pain in his back and shoulder. Focusing on his own rhythm and understanding the Honda over race distance, Lorenzo battled to 13th to earn three points on his debut.
LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow completed the podium in third.
The MotoGP™ World Championship now prepares for Round Two at the Argentina Grand Prix, March 29 – 31 hosted at the Termas de Rio Hondo Circuit.
“It was exactly the same as last year! I tried to push hard but here when you overtake you just run wide and you can’t keep the line. I tried to be there, to push a little and just be there until the end. I’m very happy with these 20 points because normally we struggle here and this weekend especially we worked a lot. We changed some things that meant I couldn’t push like I normally do in braking. But we finished the race and take good points.”
“There are many positive things today even if where we finished is not what we thought we could achieve. I was very limited by the crash yesterday, it was a very big impact everywhere and especially on my shoulder. It limited everything. From then, I was always slower than at the start of the weekend. I had some problems in the opening laps and lost about three or four seconds there. Without doubt we have much more potential and if we’re not unlucky we can be stronger.”
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