Marc Marquez was probably going to win the Catalan GP anyway. But once Repsol Honda teammate Jorge “El Gato” Lorenzo skittled Ducati‘s Andrea Dovizioso and both factory Yamaha riders out of the proceedings on Lap 2, it was done and dusted in Barcelona. The Catalan’s lead in the world championship ballooned from 12 to 37 points. Valencia is groaning, joined by most of the rest of the motorcycle racing world. Here we go again.
The Existing World Order in MotoGP remained intact on Sunday in Barcelona. A resurrected Jorge Lorenzo won his second race in a row, from pole no less. He has shuffled the tranches more than he has the standings, as the riders look ahead to The Cathedral at Assen.
Virtually lost amidst the frenzied game of musical chairs being played in MotoGP is the fact that, pursuant to his careless crash in Italy ten days ago, Marc Marquez has returned to Earth. Though the title still appears to be his to lose, his margin of error has been trimmed. Another off in the next few rounds will breathe life into his six closest pursuers. Or, he could win the next three rounds without breaking a sweat, forcing us to start thinking about 2019. Dude records way more wins than DNFs.
Marc Marquez inadvertently took a tumble during warm-up at the Catalunya MotoGP. No one’s fault, really, but we bet that jack-man was fearful of losing his job after it happened. Fortunately Marquez was a good sport about it, mimicking his fall again during the podium celebration. See both videos below.
The small fleet of 747s that is the MotoGP Moving & Storage Company lands this week in Barcelona for the second of four Spanish rounds. The track, recently reconfigured for safety reasons, has been roundly criticized by the riders as no longer fun or “MotoGP-worthy.” Blah blah blah. By the time Friday rolls around, every rider with a drop of Spanish blood in him will be banging on about the history of Montmelo and overflowing with optimism about his team’s prospects. Business as usual amongst the yachting class.
Just like Bruce Allen says in his preview of Catalunya, “Suddenly, the season is getting away from Rossi.” Can the chosen one earn his first win in Barcelona in seven years? Is it a foregone conclusion that one of the three dominant Spaniards will win? Or maybe the kid from Figueres will mark his arrival as an official alien, having now sewn up the Yamaha contract, by winning on homeground. The spoilers to the party are Dovizioso and Iannone, both with something to prove.
Heading into Mugello two weeks ago, the world appeared to be Movistar Yamaha matinee idol Valentino Rossi’s oyster. Sure, he was sitting in third place, courtesy of his slide-off in Austin. But he was within striking distance of both Repsol Honda nemesis Marc Marquez and teammate/rival Jorge Lorenzo. His sense of the moment led many to expect a dramatic win at his home crib. Instead, a blown engine on Sunday has put him squarely behind the eight ball, the not-so-magic eight ball that had falsely predicted something grand in Scarperia.
As qualifying for the 2015 Grand Prix Monster Energy de Catalunya closed on Saturday, one got the sense that The Usual Suspects might not make it to Sunday’s podium. The ascendant Suzuki Ecstar team had crashed the party, seizing the first two spots in Row 1 (for the first time since 1993), while Aliens occupied spots #3, 4, 6 and 7. The upstart Ducati duo of Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone were mired in 5th and 12th places, respectively. On Sunday, eight riders failed to finish, but when the smoke cleared, the Alien Class of 2012 – Yamaha mandarins Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi, and Repsol Honda #2 Dani Pedrosa – climbed the steps, the cheers of 97,000 Spanish fans ringing in their ears.
I’ve been told you can put a frog in a pan of cold water and set it on a low fire, allowing the water to heat up gradually until the frog, just sitting there minding his own business, is cooked. Playing the role of the frog at present and wearing #93 is defending world champion Marc Marquez, trailing series leader Valentino Rossi by 49 points as the 2015 season passes the one third pole. Marquez fans around the world are going all Nelly, suddenly aware that “it’s getting’ HOT in here.”
As the bikes lined up for the start of the 2014 GP Monster Energy de Catalunya, the racing gods appeared to have had enough of Repsol Honda upstart Marc Marquez. His first crash of the season at the end of qualifying relegated him to the third position at the start, ending a string of seven straight poles. Teammate Dani Pedrosa looked ready to rumble, and storm clouds were building to the west; the smell of a flag-to-flag fiasco was in the air. Would his 2014 winning streak come to an end in the rain at his home track?
Round 7 of the 2014 MotoGP season thunders into northeastern Spain, home to the historic Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya and, as luck would have it, Repsol Honda boy wonder Marc Marquez. Growing up 70 miles west of here, Marquez considers Montmeló his home track. Sunday is likely to be Friends and Family Day in Catalunya.
Factory Yamaha #1 Jorge Lorenzo won a number of battles today at the Gran Premio Aperol de Catalunya. He beat challengers Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez to the finish line for his second consecutive win of 2013 and his second in a row at Montmelo. He beat the Spanish summer heat that had a number of riders seeing stars. He beat the racing surface itself, which was hot, greasy and abrasive. So why does he seems destined to finish second in 2013?