Marquez opens title defence with second place in Qatar GP thriller

Courtesy of Red Bull Media Service Team

MotoGP race, Qatar MotoGP. 18 March 2018

Spaniard loses out to Italian Dovizioso in MotoGP with Pedrosa back in seventh.

Marc Marquez had another thrilling MotoGP duel with his biggest rival Andrea Dovizioso at the Qatar GP season opener, however had to settle for second behind the Italian.

The Spaniard started second on the grid with Dovizioso getting the better of him before Marquez’s failed last-lap lunge saw him trail home by just 0.027seconds.

Dani Pedrosa finished seventh for Repsol Honda, while Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Bradley Smith finished 18th as team-mate Pol Espargaró was forced to retire.

– Speaking about his last-lap overtake attempt, Marquez said: “I am Marc, I need to try! I was too on the limit, but I tried to do my 100%. The show was great. It was a very difficult race for us as it is one of the worst circuits for my riding style and bike.”

– The 25-year-old battled with Dovizioso for the 2017 MotoGP title with the Repsol Honda rider only getting the better of the Ducati man at the final race.

– The two riders enjoyed a fierce but fair rivalry in 2017 with the San Marino Grand Prix and Japanese Grand Prix producing thrilling races in the wet.

– Marquez’s title win meant he has won four out of the last five MotoGP titles and now lies three behind Italian legend Valentino Rossi in the all-time standings.

– The Cervera native undergoes a gruelling fitness regime in order to give himself the best chance of success on the bike including gym and motocross work.

Qatar GP result

1. Andrea Dovizioso ITA Ducati 42m34.654s
2. Marc Marquez SPN Honda +0.027
3. Valentino Rossi ITA Yamaha +0.797
4. Cal Crutchlow GBR Honda +2.881
5. Danilo Petrucci ITA Ducati +3.821

MotoGP race, Qatar MotoGP. 18 March 2018

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