MotoGP World Championship leader and Brno race winner Marc Marquez explained that his strategy heading into Sundays 19-lap race was to push from the off and try to leave his rivals behind.
Starting from pole position, Marquez got a perfect start, and despite some early pressure from Dovizioso and Rins, the World Champion never looked in any serious danger of being passed.
The World Champion later explained that his plan was to try and push from the off, forcing his rivals to ride on the limit, just to stay with him.
“I’m very happy because to come back from the summer break in the same way we finished in the last race before the summer break is the best thing,” said the 26-year-old.
“In a circuit we normally struggle a lot and a circuit I think Dovi expected to take some points, and in the end, we increase the advantage is the most important.
“Before the race I was convinced about the strategy. I was a little bit worried because we go out on the race with a completely new set up on the bike, because in the warm up the feeling was not the best one. We decided to change completely the bike and from there the Repsol Honda did a very great job to understand what was the problem.
“The strategy was clear to push from the beginning to the end, because I chose the soft option. I didn’t know the drop of the tyres, but I say okay, we will see. But the strategy was to push from the beginning because all the Yamaha riders start behind and that was the main reason.
“Then I saw that Dovi was behind me, but I keep pushing and keep pushing, I say we will see, when I drop and when he drop. In the end I start to drop, but he drop a little bit earlier than me and this make the biggest difference in lap 11/10/9, more or less.”
The start of the MotoGP race was delayed by 40 minutes after a very localised rain storm left the start finish straight and both the first and final corners soaking wet, but the remainder of the track dry. Marquez explained that he was calm about the delay and conditions, explaining with such a big cushion in the World Championship, it wasn’t the end of the world should something happen.
“The advantage gives to you in that moment is like no other feeling,” he said.
“I was very relaxed; I was so calm. Because I knew if something happened, that the advantage would still be there, a little bit less but still will be there. I just concentrate on my race and my bike.
“But then all the race direction came and asked if it was possible or not, how is it. Those conditions were the best ones for me, but in the end, I said it was not possible because it was too risky.
“Sometimes you need to think about the risk side and if it’s helpful to you or not. It was too risky, and they did the correction decision to wait half an hour and then the race was much easier for everybody.
“When we arrive on the grid, there is where we give our point of view about the situation. I arrive a little bit later than them, but already when I arrive Carmelo Ezpeletta come to me and say how is the situation and I say I think it’s better to wait as it’s too dangerous.
“And this is good, because Dorna, race direction, safety commission all these things are very important for the championship and we’re here to race for many years. If you start on the correct time it’s too risky, to arrive on the first corner on slick tyres on wet conditions can be very, very dangerous.
“So, it was very nice that race direction to listen to all the comments from the top one until the last one.”
Today marked the 50th race win for Marquez, when asked if he was worried that he was making MotoGP boring or predictable for the fans, he said: “No I think MotoGP is not predictable, but of course it looks like the way I am racing this year, I feel stronger than last year. Looks like I can go in a better way in some race, but there are some races that are more difficult.
“But like Dovi said last year in the races I was able to attack I was able to attack from the beginning to the end. And the races where I was suffering a little bit there, I was behind Dovi all the race. And Dovi always used the strategy to manage the tyres and push in the end, so for this reason is why we had races with big groups.
“But this year I feel strong, I push from the beginning to the end. We will have time, if we’re lucky, to use another strategy. But at the moment if I feel strong, I will keep my way. It’s nice because the numbers are increasing.
“We’re in between some big legends of this sport, and this is something where I have big respect, but we keep going with the same ambition and enjoying on the track is the most important.”