When complicated track conditions and Marc Márquez come together in the same equation, the end result is not usually disappointing, even though the eight-time world champion is returning from a two-year injury and is still in the process of recovering, ensuring, each Whenever he gets a chance, his goals are limited to physically rehabilitating himself for next season.
While that arrives, this Saturday the classification of the Japanese Grand Prix was held at the Motegi circuit, owned by Honda , which opened the pitlane after two hours of torrential rain and extremely delicate asphalt conditions, a combination that Cervera handle masterfully. The result may be unexpected, but not surprising, and the Catalan took the 91st pole of his career, the 63rd in the premier class.
“It’s just a Saturday, nothing else is a pole position and it was in wet conditions, but we needed it. We didn’t expect it so soon, but we needed it, both me and the team and Honda needed, and it’s very good, to have this guy of sensations, of stimuli, of celebrating things again, even if it’s just a pole position, but it starts somewhere and we have to help ourselves with these stimuli to continue working, because to turn around the situation that Honda is going through It’s not done sitting in a chair, it’s done by working,” said the Spanish runner.
The day already started well for the Honda rider in the morning practice, which ended up leading in conditions with a lot of water on the asphalt.
“Today I saw that it was the day. In FP2 everything came easy to me and when it comes to you this way and it was in the water, Alberto (Puig) has already told me to please not mess it up, not to exaggerate, that it didn’t matter first row than second; but I took risks. I tried to drive fine, the best I could without exaggerating too much, because sometimes when you have more strength, the slower you go. Tomorrow they will put us back in our place, but today we already have pole” he explained.
The rider who has achieved the most pole positions in the history of motorcycling had not achieved it for 1,071 days, the last one in October 2019 on this same circuit.
“It’s destiny, my last pole position was right here, and it had to be here again. Many things have happened in these three years that I didn’t expect at all, many things have also happened in the world, like the pandemic. I have suffered and I continue to suffer, because I am not yet in the place where I would like to be, but the tortilla is not turned from one day to the next in one night, it is done based on work and perseverance and the objective in this final part of the season is to generate small stimuli and celebrate what can be celebrated. This Saturday morning we celebrated with the team having gone directly to Q2, and you think, are we celebrating going to Q2? Well yes, you have to know how to assess where we came from and where we are. Where we want to get to is another story, but we have to know how to value the small happinesses that come along the way”.
Pole winner Marc Márquez, Repsol Honda Team
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Complicated track conditions have always been an ally of the #93, but with nuances.
“It’s true that I’ve always been fast in the wet, even last year and this year (Mandalika) I was good in these conditions, but I wasn’t comfortable. The difference is that today I’ve been fast and I’ve been comfortable, and this gives me peace of mind. facing the arm (operated), I see that the position was good, I could lift the bike in curves to the right, which I couldn’t before. These are little things that make the light at the end of the tunnel shine a little more. Then we will see what is the hundred percent of the arm, but we have already gained something by making the decision to operate again”, referring to the fourth surgery on June 2 last.
“Tomorrow’s race is a good test to do 24 laps in a row, to see how we can manage it in the best way, tires, fuel, physicality. One thing is to drive like I did today, just thinking about driving. The other is driving thinking about keeping yourself physically, that’s where I will have to manage many things and the more variables you have in your head, the more difficult it is to drive as you want”.
The pole achieved this Saturday is super important for Márquez , as it is for Honda, but mentally it is just as important, if not more so, to check that the arm allows him to drive as he has.
“I’m happy about that. It already happened to me in the Misano test and in Aragón , in laps I manage to drive as I like, but only in a few laps. Now we have to make these laps more consecutive, more one after the other. In the water it has been the confirmation that I can ride as I want, at least with the position (of the body) that I want. Then my problems come in, with the bike, everything, but this does give me peace of mind. From Aragón I have noticed A little jump on the arm, not having ridden today in the dry will help me tomorrow, Sunday, because the whole weekend in the dry it would have been difficult to do well. They are stimuli, we must look for them at the end of the season to build motivation for the next season”.
At the end of qualifying, with pole in hand, the Honda engineering staff could be seen celebrating a success for the first time in a long time.
“It is that the drought of Honda has not only been mine, but also of Honda during all these months and achieving this here, in Motegi , in Japan, is very important for them, but it is also for me and for everyone. But I I’m the first to push myself and push myself. Yes, it’s a pole position, it’s very good, but our reality is different. By taking pole position in Japan , the bosses will say that everything is going well and no, we have to keep working because if tomorrow the The race is dry, they are going to put us in our place. The Ducatis are going very well, we have to work and stay in the reality of where we were and where we are today”.
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Photo by: Repsol Media
Author of 91 pole positions in his career, 63 in MotoGP , no one has more ‘watches’ than Marc, who is always used to giving someone close to him the ‘Tissot’ that they give to the poleman.
“Today’s watch is for me. I could give it to many people and it would be difficult for me to decide on one of them, but I am going to keep this one because what I have suffered, I have suffered,” he said.
“The people around me have suffered with me, many people have helped me since the Jerez accident until now, all the people who have been involved in my recovery, in my day to day, they know who they are and I am very grateful to them. And today we continue working, all together, to continue evolving”, settled the one from Cervera .