MotoGP: Marquez Backtracks On Ducati Criticism, Calls Dovizioso A "Contender"
Back-to-back MotoGP champion Marc Marquez has earned the right to talk a little smack. That’s the kind of cache you earn for winning the last two MotoGP titles. But the 22-year old is also not afraid of calling his own number when he’s wrong. Such was the case in the run-up to the Argentina Grand Prix when the reigning champion admitted that Ducati would be a title threat this season.
His take on the championship picture is a surprising reversal from previous comments he made in March 2014 when he basically called Ducati a “non-threat” to the championship.
But after two races that saw Ducati consistently challenge at the front of the pack, the world champ has changed his tune.
Marquez singled out Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso as a serious threat to his crown, noting that Dovizioso’s pace in the first two races of the season was something Repsol Honda needed to take seriously.
Speaking of Repsol Honda, Marquez’s concerns about Ducati also extends to the three-time constructor’s champion, which now has to deal with both Ducati and Yamaha if it hopes to make it four titles in a row.
It might not be an ideal place to be in for Marquez and Repsol Honda, but Ducati’s reemergence as a threat this season is a fantastic thing for the sport.
At the very least, we’re going to have a pretty exciting season ahead of us with Marquez, Dovizioso, and the two Yamaha riders - Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo - all primed to have big seasons.
Continue reading to read more about what lies ahead for the 2015 MotoGP season.
Why it matters
I loved Marc Marquez’s comments saying that winning the MotoGP title this season won’t be as easy as he made it out to be during the offseason.
The recognition of Andrea Dovizioso as a contender is a measured way of understanding that he’s going to have to consistently be on his A-game if he wants to win his third MotoGP title in a row.
That said, Marquez still tabbed Valentino Rossi as the biggest threat to his crown and for good reason.
Rossi currently leads the championship table with 41 points, followed by Dovizioso at 40, and Marquez at 36.
The three have separated themselves early but we all know that there’s still a lot more racing to go before we crown a new champion.
But I gotta say, it’s nice to hear the reigning champion admit that it’s going to be a barn-burner of a season. That at least lets me know that we’re not going to see anybody run away with the title as has been the case in some seasons over the past few years.