Author: Oli Rushby in Valencia Posted: 08 Nov 2015
Marc Marquez has said he is insulted by claims he chose not to fight for victory in today’s MotoGP race in order to help Lorenzo win the world title.
Valentino Rossi has hit out at the Spaniard for sitting on the rear of Lorenzo throughout today’s 30-lap race, suggesting he did so deliberately to ‘protect’ Jorge Lorenzo in the title fight.
It’s not the first time Rossi has made such allegations. Ahead of the race in Malaysia, the Italian claimed Marquez deliberately slowed him down in the previous race at Phillip Island.
The situation wasn’t helped when the pair ended up in a heated battle during the race in Sepang, which resulted the controversial coming-together that saw Rossi handed a three place grid penalty for the final round.
Marquez denies deliberately staying behind Lorenzo and says the only reason he didn’t go for the overtake was that he was suffering with his front Bridgestone tyre over-heating, something he’s mentioned across the weekend.
“We know that with hot temperature we have front problems with the tyre,” said Marquez after the race. “We expect today that the temperature would be lower but it was 5 degrees higher than yesterday. I was struggling with the front, especially in the beginning. In the last six laps I saw that it was possible with the victory but when Dani overtook me I lost half a second.
“I accept when I win and lose. With my mentality, when the people say that you go out and you didn’t try to win the race to help another rider, I feel insulted because in the end for me I think you know me and I think that always when I go out on the track I give my 100%. This weekend I gave 100% in practice, and the race. I always did and will do this.”
Rossi has said he believes Marquez wants Lorenzo to win the championship as revenge for the events in Argentina, where Marquez clipped Rossi’s back wheel and fell off, and Assen, where Rossi and Marquez came together on the final corner with Rossi winning the race after cutting the chicane.
Marquez says he doesn’t know why Rossi would think this, especially when at Phillip Island he beat Lorenzo giving Rossi five points.
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“It’s something that I didn’t understand because in Phillip Island I give to him five points and Iannone take him four points [Iannone beat Rossi to third in the closing stages]. In Phillip Island it was like this. After the finish line he come to me, say sorry because we overtake sometimes shaking the hands and everything. And then we arrive in Malaysia, and what happened on Thursday happened.
“If I tried to be the bodyguard of Lorenzo I would be five seconds or six behind and not following him. I took a lot of risk this race to try to follow him but if the target was this one [to protect him] I stay five seconds or ten seconds behind and not take the risk. My target was like always try to give my 100% and try to fight for the victory.”