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Marquez points finger of blame at Zarco for massive Sachsenring smash

Marc Marquez has caused a stir in the MotoGP paddock following Friday Practice at the Sachsenring by suggesting Johann Zarco was the guilty party in their spectacular coming together in P2.

Marquez’s Repsol Honda smashed into Zarco’s slow-moving Pramac Ducati as he exited the pit-lane around the outside of Turn 1, an impact so hard that it split the GP23 in two.

With the point of impact occurring remarkably close to Zarco’s right leg and knee, though the Frenchman was flicked off the bike at an awkward angle, he was able to pull himself up, walk away from the shunt and even jump on the spare bike to complete the final minutes of P2.


Marquez too was lucky to avoid injury after detaching himself from the tobogganing bike just before it hit Zarco, though the crash ruined his chances of making Q2 automatically, unlike his rival.

However, though this is the latest in a string of falls for Marquez, when speaking to assembled media afterwards, a bullish Marquez rejected the notion that he was to blame, saying Zarco should have been more aware of his surroundings as he re-entered the track.

“I'm a guy that if I do mistake, I say this is my mistake, but this time I'm angry because if somebody can avoid the situation it was Johann,” Marquez told media, including sister publication Crash.net.

“I mean, the guy that is coming out of the pit lane is the guy that needs to watch behind and if somebody is coming, especially in the last minute [of a session], you need to stop in the pit exit.

“There’s no meaning to stay out of the line because as we see in that corner in the past and even this morning, with Aleix Espargaro and Quartararo, it's so easy to lock the front and crash there. Even more so when you are pushing in the end of the practice.

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“We were super lucky that we escape, both of us, from that crash. But yeah, I already heard that some people [said] ‘Marc is dangerous’. I mean, if somebody can avoid that situation it was Johann, not me.

“I was pushing for a whole lap. Yeah, sorry guys, I crashed. But I don't want to crash, like many riders today. Nobody wants to crash. But yeah, I already visit Zarco and he's OK. So we were super lucky.”

Is Marc Marquez's thick skin beginning to thin

If you happen to be a body language expert, then watching Marc Marquez during Friday’s Practice sessions for the German MotoGP offered a treasure trove of content to analyse.

It’s been a tough start to the season for the eight-time World Champion as he attempts to smile through multiple crashes, bear the pain of another injury respite, not react to riders pissed off with his (admittedly irritating) towing tendencies, dismiss journalists constantly asking about his future and wring the neck of a bike that is clearly flawed.


He’s done a great job so far of keeping up the mask, but today at the Sachsenring - an 11-time race winning happiest hunting ground for Marquez - the stress began to tell, whether he was getting bolshy with media in response to his crash with Zarco, stomping around the garage as he chased set-up or, amusingly - albeit childishly - flipping the bird to his own bike after saving another tank-slapper.

In many ways his collision with Zarco was a freak accident for which no-one is to blame. After all, countless riders crashed at Turn 1 today as they do every year, such is the tricky, rear wheel kicking surface, and Zarco might well have been better to wait for clear air.

But sniping about Zarco and then throwing other names into the mix to admonish them is shooting from the hip.

Perhaps it’s about time though - after all, Marquez is an immense talent and it’s been a while since Honda has been able to live up to that. 


Indeed, while Marquez can get away with - and even relish - being something of an underdog against the mighty Ducatis, his record at the Sachsenring is so good that victory is expected and he knows that.

That’s not to say he shouldn’t barb rivals or swear at his (let’s face it, pretty s****y) Honda, it’s up to those who competed during the gnarly days of walls in pit boxes and press conference side-eyes to ruffle things up a bit and make what is an annoyingly pally grid of riders show their teeth more.

The mask is slipping, but perhaps Marquez should just rip it off and be the villain.

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