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Marquez and rivals all set for Silverstone showdown
Thursday’s preliminary press conference brought the top guns of Moto GP together to address the media at Silverstone, on the eve of the 2014 Hertz British Grand Prix.
To preview the 12th round of the season, World Champion Marc Marquez was joined by his Repsol Honda colleague Dani Pedrosa, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP pair Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo and British duo Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team).
Having visited London on Wednesday to ride his Moto GP prototype across the Millennium Bridge Marquez now turns his focus back to competition, having seen an incredible ten race winning streak come to a halt last time out at Brno.
Marquez finished fourth in the Czech Republic as Pedrosa won the race but the MotoGP title holder took a characteristically upbeat approach as he looked forward to getting back on track at Silverstone.
He said, “In the end it’s the same situation really, of course that day we couldn’t win at Brno. Maybe it was my worst race in Moto GP, but on the Monday we found a solution so it’s ok and we are positive. Silverstone is a great track and the weather looks good for this weekend.”
For his part, Czech Republic victor Pedrosa commented, “We had a great weekend in Brno, and a good test on the Monday. We had quite a good race here last year, I had to recover some gap to the front but it was good. I’m happy to be here and the weather is looking good, so hopefully we can have a strong weekend. At the beginning you have to get used to the circuit, it’s quite different. It’s very flat so you have to really watch for your reference points.”
As popular in the UK as he is throughout the world, Rossi added, “I’ve started the second half of the season well and I have enjoyed the races. Sadly it wasn’t enough to fight for the victory, we have to keep working to improve our pace until the last lap.”
“Silverstone is a very long and technical track, wide and fast, I like it. It’s very difficult to learn the lines and we haven’t had the best results here. We were better last year, but it was still not enough. This year we are better on braking so we should be able to keep improving.”
Rossi’s teammate Lorenzo has an excellent record at Silverstone having won three of the four Moto GP races at the track since Grand Prix racing returned to the venue in 2010. The Spaniard stated: “I like the circuit a lot and I have always been quite fast here. Silverstone is a good track for me and it’s nice to ride, very fluid. Now, this year everything is improving for us and in the last few weeks we have made big steps with the bike. We are trying to keep improving.”
Englishman Smith, meanwhile, knows Silverstone well having grown up in Oxfordshire, a short drive from the circuit, “I only lived 30 minutes away from the track so I am very excited to be here. Last year here was my first home Grand Prix on the MotoGP bike. We have 12 months more experience now and I’m a lot happier with the bike. I’ve had some good results in the past and we’ve had some good form after the summer break.”
Coming from Coventry, Crutchlow is also highly familiar with the track and he was in a lighthearted mood as usual. He joked “It’s not my real home GP now as Bradley is the top British rider, so he can have all the pressure!”
The Ducati man added, “We had a test this week and we found some more settings so hopefully we can get closer to the front and challenge (Andrea) Dovizioso.”
The action at the Hertz British Grand Prix gets underway on Friday at 9am local time (GMT +1), with the Moto 3 riders first out on track for free practice.
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