MotoGP World Championship leader and Champion elect Marc Marquez has said his target for the weekend is to try and finish on the podium, with the Spaniard only needing two points more than Andrea Dovizioso to secure an eighth World Championship in Thailand.
The Spaniard will start the race from third place after qualifying on the outside behind the Yamaha duo of Fabio Quartararo and Maverick Vinales, but crucially ahead of Dovizioso who starts down in seventh place.
Marquez said he will ride tomorrow like he would any weekend, but targeting a podium knowing that may be enough to secure the 2019 World Championship.
“We are trying to manage the weekend like a normal weekend, we are working, we are pushing we are trying to prepare the race to have the chance to fight for the victory,” said the 26-year-old.
“But we know these two guys (Quartararo and Vinales) will push a lot. One because he’s looking for his first victory and the other one wants to come back to the top of the podium, but it’s not our main goal.
“Our main goal is to stay on the podium one more time, and if it’s in front of Dovi then that’s much better.”
It has been a strange weekend for Marquez, following on from his monster FP1 crash, the Spaniard tipped off in qualifying whilst a quarter of a second under the pole position lap time. When asked about his weekend in general, Marquez said: “Happy about the day, happy about the weekend. Unfortunately, we crashed in FP1 and the body is quite painful, but it’s not a problem, it’s not an excuse for today and tomorrow.
“I can ride in a normal way and fortunately this is the most important and for this we work hard in FP4.
“Unfortunately, in Q2 I crash with the second which is when I felt better, but I knew these guys (Quartararo and Vinales) with new tyres are very, very, very fast but it was not possible.
“Apart from that, we prepare for the race in a good way and tomorrow time to concentrate well in the warmup, the race distance is quite long, demanding in the physical condition but we will try to do our best.”
Marquez mentioned that he was in a bit of pain after his huge FP1 highside, when asked further on it, he said it was painful getting out of bed, but once he was warmed up he was perfectly okay to ride.
“When I woke up this morning going out from the bed was quite hard, but when the body is warm it is perfect, it’s not any problem,” he said.
“We will see tomorrow how the weather and the conditions is. But apart from these two guys (Quartararo and Vinales) I know Dovi have good pace and it will be a tough race.”