Valentino Rossi’s choice of the extra-soft front Bridgestone was crucial to his second MotoGP victory of the season today at Phillip Island in a race that saw Marc Marquez crashed out for the third time this year.
While both Repsol Hondas elected to run the asymmetric front, The Doctor went a compound softer and was able to make it work over the 27 laps as the track temperature cooled. Marquez fell victim with ten laps to go, losing the front at MG with a nea four second lead and giving Rossi victory.
“What a race. I was not so bad during the whole weekend but yesterday I did a mistake in the qualifying and now everybody is so fast in the one lap, so I have to start from the eighth position that is a lot, a lot more difficult now in MotoGP. Without the mistake of Marc is very difficult to win but we know that tyre had some advantage but was very dangerous on the front so you can build the victory during the weekend,” said Rossi speaking at Phillip Island.
“My start was quite bad but on the first corner I was able to gain quite a bit. In turn two I already saw Marc and Jorge and I think it is better somebody is with them as they have the pace to go.
“I try to lose not a lot of time, was strong from the beginning and when I arrive in third place I have one second to Jorge. I try to concentrate on him because I saw Marc was a little bit faster but my pace was quite good. I was happy because I know that when I arrive to Jorge it could be a good fight. We had some good overtaking, I was a little bit faster.
“The choice of the front tyre was crucial as a lot of riders crash. With the extra soft we were a lot at the limit but my bike was good so I can push and when I saw Marc, I was surprised. To come back in the number one spot at Phillip Island after ten years is a great achievement.”