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Marquez felt like he “won” in German GP after tough MotoGP weekend


MotoGP star Marc Marquez felt like he “won” the German Grand Prix after charging from 13th on the grid to finish second behind future team-mate Francesco Bagnaia.

Marquez has repeatedly been labelled the ‘King of Sachsenring’ thanks to his unbeaten streak at the German venue between 2011-21 in MotoGP and its junior classes, but the Spaniard’s hopes of adding a 12th victory to his tally were derailed when he crashed in Friday practice – breaking a finger on his left hand and bruising his ribcage in the fall.

A combination of mechanical troubles and traffic on his final flying lap left him 13th on the grid on a notoriously difficult track for overtaking, prompting the 31-year-old to label the German GP as the “most difficult weekend” of the year so far on Saturday.

However, the six-time MotoGP champion was able to stage an incredible recovery in the grand prix on Sunday, jumping inside the top 10 on the opening lap before slowly scything his way through the pack to claim an unlikely podium finish.

It marked his fourth result inside the top-three positions in a Sunday race this year, but while he was in jubilant mood to share the podium with younger brother Alex, he didn’t hide his frustration over a weekend that had been riddled with issues and on-track incidents.

“I feel like I won the race, this is the real feeling,” he said. “Incredible, incredible race! I didn’t expect to finish on the podium.

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“The weekend has ended very well because we persisted, and because it’s [like] the Sanfermines [a Spanish festival known for the running of the bulls] .

“It’s true that we leave with a good taste in our mouths, but it was a bad weekend from which we have to learn.

“We had a lot of technical issues, I did that big mistake in Turn 11 that affected all weekend. If I had been able to square it, I would have been able to fight with Pecco Bagnaia and Jorge Martín.”

Marquez had to take part in Saturday’s sprint using the ‘strongest painkillers he could find’, with his ribcage – and not the fractured finger – being the chief cause of his struggles.

But the Gresini rider revealed that he was able to ride in “Marquez mode” on Sunday, having successfully completed a full recovery overnight in order to be fully fit for the grand prix..

“First thing and the most important is that today I got up and felt better with the body,” he explained. “So I arrived [this morning] and said [to my team] I feel better today and I can ride aggressively, I can ride in ‘Marquez mode’.

“Of course, the finger [is broken] but the finger was not even a limitation yesterday. The ribs yesterday were super stiff.

“But today I was able to get up and it was not any[more a] limitation. Without the crash in T11 my performance will be the same one.”

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Marquez clashed with the second Pramac bike of Franco Morbidelli during their battle for fourth late on in the grand prix, with the two making contact as they exited the opening right-hander.

He was eventually able to pass Morbidelli and also overtake his brother Alex on the penultimate lap to grab second place – aided by a late error from long-time race leader Martin on the Pramac Ducati.

Marquez stated that the incident with Morbidelli kicked him on to race aggressively in the final stages of the 30-lap contest.

“We started our race trying not to stress too much the tyres, try to make that comeback in a slow way. Not panic because here it is super difficult to overtake.

“The contact with Morbidelli was the one that was unexpected and then I lost a lot of time.

“Already two laps before that incident Franco went a bit wide in Turn 1 and then there I slowed a bit the bike, but then I closed in. Two laps after he went even more wide and then I said now is the time. But he came back and we had a massive contact.

“But that point also made that click, that off [switch for riding conservatively]. Now [I went] all in.

“And then in the last laps when I was catching my brother. [There were] many question marks, what can I do, attack, take a risk? If something happens [between us] what happens [then]?

“We were both [running] in podium [positions] in the last two laps and [that] makes everything easier.”

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