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Marquez bemoans “worst MotoGP weekend of the year” in German GP

Marc Marquez has described the German Grand Prix weekend as “the worst of the year” so far, as a spate of crashes and mechanical troubles prevented him from fighting at the front in the MotoGP sprint.

The Gresini rider has a record eight wins around Sachsenring in MotoGP, but sixth was all he could achieve in Saturday’s half-distance race after qualifying on the fifth row in 13th.

The Spaniard’s troubles began in practice on Friday with two high-speed crashes, the second of which at Turn 11 left him with a fractured finger and bruises on his ribs.

Forced to go through Q1, Marquez had to abort his second run due to a mechanical problem on his GP23 before a final effort on his second bike was wrecked by Honda wildcard Stefan Bradl, who was found guilty of impeding him and handed a three-place grid penalty for the offence.

Although the six-time MotoGP champion was able to make some progress from outside the top 10 in the sprint, overtaking Aprilia’s Maverick Vinales at the final corner to grab four points for sixth place, it was still a case of what could have been for a rider who was previously unbeatable at the Sachsenring.

Speaking after the sprint, the 31-year-old bemoaned the issues he encountered both on track and in the Gresini garage as he finished more than six seconds behind race winner Jorge Martin on the GP24-spec Pramac Ducati.

“I already said that if I had a perfect weekend I would be able to fight with the top riders. But I had a disastrous weekend, the worst of the year,” he said.

“All the mechanical problems we can have, happened this weekend.

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“With Q1, with second tyre, we had a mechanical problem there and for that reason, we say this bike, ‘no’. We jumped on the other bike and unlucky for us there was a traffic jam.

“But there are some things you cannot control and this weekend ‘somebody’ say that you cannot do it.

“But even like this we continue to fight and starting from 13th place in the sprint race we were able to finish sixth.

“The good thing and the positive thing is when I had free track the pace was very similar to the top.”

Marquez reported a lot of physical pain in the wake of his scary highside crash in second practice despite being declared fit by doctors to take part in the sprint.

The Gresini rider explained that the anti-clockwise nature of the track allows him to see out the weekend, but even then it wasn’t easy to ride the bike for longer durations.

Asked for an update on his condition, he said: “About the physical side, in two hours I will know because it’s true that I ride with the strongest painkillers we can take, with an injection, [and it takes time for the effects of the painkiller to wear off]

“The finger is not a problem, it’s broken but okay, it’s acceptable. But with the ribs, especially when I do more than five laps I start to breathe more deeply and then the pain increases a lot.

“But fortunately, we have only two right corners. I promise you that if we are in a right [corner-heavy] circuit, [it was] impossible to ride. But with only two right corners I can accept and tolerate that pain.

“I checked with the doctors they said I can take the risk with what I have. But I feel something strange on the ribs, I feel that the finger was broken, I was moving [it was making] krr krr [sounds].

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“But they said [yesterday] that it’s not risky to continue, it’s an acceptable risk. So for that reason I’m riding. If they say it’s too much, I stop.”

Marquez has made a number of podium comebacks this year after failing to break into Q2, with Le Mans and Catalunya standing out as two races where he was able to bounce back from difficult qualifying sessions.

But he was downbeat about his chances for Sunday’s race, explaining how Sachsenring is known to be notoriously difficult to overtake.

“Here it depends a lot on the start and the first lap,” he said. “On the first lap, you already lose a lot of time because you cannot overtake. You have only one two points to overtake. Last corner and turn 1, and then you cannot do anything.

“As soon as you are past Turn 1, until Turn 12 you cannot overtake. It’s impossible. So we need to be patient and try to understand that the situation is like this. Like today I was not crazy. I was just riding on my limit, fighting, trying to find my feelings and do my 100%.”

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