The Spaniard was unassailable from the 2nd lap in his 1st ever pole start at the Motegi Twin Circuit
MOTEGI • MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez (picture) won the Japan Grand Prix (GP) yesterday to notch his 10th victory of the season and earn Honda its fourth manufacturers’ title running.
The Spaniard ran the race in 42min 41.492sec, followed 0.870sec later by French rookie Fabio Quartararo of Yamaha-SRT and Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso 1.325sec later.
Marquez was unassailable from the second lap in his first ever pole start at the Motegi Twin Circuit, with dry conditions after bucketing rains during practice sessions last Friday and on Saturday.
Quartararo managed to edge in front for a brief moment shortly after the start, but Marquez quickly regained the lead and shot ahead with a one second gap early in the race.
“It was not easy. I was pushing from the beginning because our strategy was clear,” Marquez said.
“This time I tried to open the gap from the beginning because I felt very strong in the warm up.”
He said he lost focus during the race when he realised his bike was burning through fuel too quickly, forcing him to “play a lot with switches”.
But Marquez was never directly threatened and enjoyed a two second gap ahead of Quartararo through most of the second half.
He had already secured his season victory by winning the Thailand GP earlier this month.
His victory at Motegi also secured Honda’s 25th constructors’ championship overall and its fourth on the trot.
Quartararo finished with his third narrow defeat to the championship winner in recent races but was left smiling after winning the “Rookie of the Year” award.