Gresini Ducati’s Alex Marquez couldn’t hide his frustration at ending his MotoGP Grand Prix of The Americas weekend without a single point to his name after being caught up in Jorge Martin’s lap one crash.
On an eventful weekend for one of the season’s form riders, Marquez began the COTA event showing competitive pace through practice before going on to qualify fourth, even if clumsy attempts to tow Pecco Bagnaia drew the ire of his stablemate and failed to work anyway.
However, after contracting suspected food poisoning in the run up to the Sprint Race, Marquez’s Saturday came to a nasty end when he crashed moments after vomiting in his helmet.
Feeling better for Sunday’s main GP feature, Marquez was targeting the podium but only got as far as Turn 6 when he was wiped out by Martin’s sister Pramac Ducati after it low-sided while running alongside him.
Leaving him awkwardly ‘dancing’ between two spinning Ducatis, Marquez was relieved to escape major injury, even if he was frustrated to see two good results go begging given his rapid pace.
“My leg was trapped between both bikes and I also touched the wall. So it was not an easy crash,” Marquez told Crash.net. “But I’m angry because we lost many points today. It was a good opportunity.
“It's a little bit strange to have the best performance of the season here and get 0 points! And in Portimao and Argentina, where we were not really good, we were able to catch many points. But that’s racing.”
“He was already on the outside [at turn 2] and he tried to recover what he lost on turn 3 that, all the riders know, is so tricky,” Marquez explained. “He was coming from the dirty side, putting a lot of lean angle. And touched the brake.”
Marquez went on to issue his annoyance at Martin - himself suffering with a flu virus - for committing an avoidable mistake, even if he accepted the Spaniard’s apology.
“If you touch the brake at that angle, you will crash. More so in the first lap when the front tyre is not in the right moment.
“But it’s something that can happen to me tomorrow. It has happened in the past, will happen in the present and will happen again in the future. So I accept he's sorry and that's it. For me, it's closed. It’s racing.”
It compounded a fairly disappointing return for Ducati on the Sunday, with Marquez and Martin being joined on the sidelines by its lead rider Bagnaia.
CLICK HERE for 2023 MotoGP World Championship standings after Grand Prix of The Americas, Round 3 of 21