Michelin witnessed another victory for Marc Marquez at Sachsenring today as success in the GoPro Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland saw the Spaniard win his fifth consecutive German MotoGP™ race and his eighth in succession across all classes at the ‘Ring’.
Starting from pole, Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) got to the first corner ahead of the field and stayed there for the first lap. Using a pairing of medium compound MICHELIN Power Slick tyres, the reigning World Champion led for the first five-laps and was then passed by Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3). The German rider was making his first premier class appearance in a MotoGP race and the home crowd got behind him as he produced a string of quick laps, including a new lap-record on the fourth circulation. Folger also had the medium front and rear slick tyre combination and the German put these to good use to lead the race until lap-11, before Marquez regained the lead. A position that the Honda rider then held until the end of the race, despite Folger pressurising him for the remaining laps. Victory for Marquez – with a new race duration time – saw him move to the top of the World Championship standings and Folger’s second place was also good enough to earn him the position of First Independent
Michelin had brought a range of tyres to Sachsenring that it believed were best suited to the new asphalt that had been laid earlier this year and that due to test restrictions the French tyre firm had not had a chance to evaluate. The selection of tyres proved ideally matched to the 3,671m anti-clockwise circuit in all conditions, as the riders produced very fast lap-times with both wet and dry tyres in the practice sessions and it was further emphasised with today’s new race duration and lap records for Marquez and Folger respectively. Most of the slick and wet tyres were used at some point during the weekend – in-fact the only tyre not used was the medium front wet. Choice for the riders was again a main aspect with different pairings being used throughout the field in today’s race, again underlining Michelin’s ability to supply tyres for all manufacturers and riders to give them the opportunity for optimum performance.
Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) was the next across the line to claim third place after what proved to be a solitary race as he was unable to chase down the leaders, but pulled well clear of the pursuing pack. The encounter behind the first three was the most intriguing of the day, as Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) came from eleventh on the grid to take fourth after a spirited battle with his team-mate Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) who finished fifth. Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) also made a significant move through the field, as he took sixth from twelfth on the grid. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) was seventh, a position that saw him surrender his championship lead, as the battle for the title sees Marquez, Viñales, Dovizioso and Rossi separated by just ten points. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) took ninth to keep his lead in the Rookie and Independent Rider championships – both from team-mate Folger. Cal Crutchlow rounded out the top-ten.
Michelin and the whole MotoGP field now heads to a mid-season break before the championship regroups for the 10th round of the season at Brno in the Czech Republic on Sunday 6th August, a race that signals the start of what promises to be an exciting climax to the 2017 title chase.
Marc Marquez – Repsol Honda Team:
“This weekend was very good for us, especially with the tyres. We felt really good with the front tyre and we had confidence in it, particularly the medium one as it worked very well. With the rear tyres, they all performed for us, but there was a big question mark because with all the tyres I could be fast, constant and able to finish the race in a strong pace, so it was difficult to
choose the one to go with. In the end, we went with the medium one as it was very consistent and with just two-laps to go I did my personal fastest lap of the race. I am very happy because I was feeling strong throughout the race and Michelin did a very good job. It wasn’t an easy weekend for them because with a new surface it was very critical and they did an impressive job.”
Piero Taramasso – Michelin Motorsport Two-Wheel Manager:
“We did not know what to expect as we headed to Germany and the new surface. We brought what we thought were the correct compounds and were totally correct with our selection. With the changing weather and different temperatures, almost every tyre was tried during the practice sessions and we had some very fast times in the wet and the dry. The new asphalt has a lot of grip and the compounds we brought all worked very well. This was underlined in the race as had soft and medium front slicks were used along with soft, medium and hard rears and they all worked well. We were especially pleased with the wear considering how abrasive the new surface was and we saw no drop-off in lap-times, in fact Marc (Marquez) set his fastest time on lap-28 of 30. We also had a new fastest lap in the race and a race duration record, so we are very pleased with how the whole weekend has been. We will now go into the mid-season break and work on the data from the first nine races and continue our quest to keep producing the best tyres for all the riders.”