Title: “It sounds strange to me to be the Championship leader” – Andrea Dovizioso at the Sachsenring

Author: Myanna Wedes

Assen and the Sachsenring have two things in common: bad weather! On Thursday during the pre-race press conference we had buckets of rain pouring down as fans tried to capture a glimpse of their favourite riders. The riders have their fingers crossed for good weather after Assen shook things up and caused chaos for some riders like Johann Zarco and Jorge Lorenzo. The Sachsenring circuit features some challenging corner entry and exit points and is a circuit that Marc Marquez has dominated at in the past. In terms of the grid, Maverick Vinales feels very blessed to be able to race at the German track after last weekend’s accident, which could have been a lot worse. The ability and reaction speeds of DesmoDovi to miss Vinales was incredible especially in this part of the circuit where the riders take almost the exact same racing lines. If anything, Vinales is looking to reset and aim to finish in the points because another DNF could impact his mental strength to stay close to fellow Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi who is chasing down Andrea Dovizioso the title leader.

Andrea Dovizioso feels as though his title lead is strange. “It sounds strange to me to be the Championship leader and I’m so happy with how we’ve worked in these eight races to be first – it’s a dream and I’m really happy. We’ve worked really hard in these five years.” The Italian rider over the last five years has been vocal about his thoughts around the Ducati bike and performance and it appears that the changes are really paying off. Dovi has never given up on the red beast and wants to continue racing with consistency because as we know in sport, if you are consistent the chances of winning are much higher than a win here and a DNF there. Vinales knows what the latter feels like. Regardless of how certain riders feel in the wet, the new asphalt surface will have big questions marks around it.

Dovi: “The weather here isn’t new and we’ve had it here before but the new asphalt will make a difference. We have to try it tomorrow, and no one could test here so we don’t have feedback to know about the tyres. Anything can happen and that’s positive – it means you don’t think too much about it!” On the other side of the box is Valentino Rossi and he is hoping for a dry race though the predictions do not look good. The Doctor is aware more than ever that he must be clever in weather situations and also be ready for what arises at the last minute. Rossi has trained his mind and body to focus on what takes place in front of him rather than on the predictions of what could happen. He is ready with a game plan for every scenario, which is why he is the master of the mind when it comes to racing for a World Championship, as he is the most experienced rider out there!

The rider that wants to improve at the German track for 2017 is Danilo Petrucci. Last year he crashed out and he wants to avoid this at all costs because he is proving himself worthy of a MotoGP ride and one day a potential title bid. Petrucci is very happy to be racing against the top riders and pushing himself to a new limit. However, in the back of his mind is the idea of winning a race and in Assen, his chances were stolen by Alex Rins. Petrucci has the fire within his belly to go hard with a smart plan of attack and also challenge others who ride with a reserved style to protect their title points. The Italian rider has nothing to lose and everything to gain.

The hardest task for the MotoGP grid is to beat Marc Marquez on German soil considering he has won the last seven races from pole position. “Sachsenring has always been a good circuit for me and for Honda.” The new surface is where Marquez will spend a lot of his time exploring during practice. His goal is to test the grip on the surface and what impact it has on his race pace and performance. Marquez admitted that he had made some mistakes early in to the season and wants to continue now focusing on staying ahead and riding his bike with complete accuracy and precision. He knows how costly a small mistake can be in such a tight World Championship.

Overall, it is the first time since 2009 that Ducati has led the World Championship and Casey Stoner was and is the only Ducati rider to be victorious in the 2008 German race so Dovizioso and Lorenzo have a goal to work towards this weekend. With that said, this is going to be quite the test considering that turn eleven is one of the hardest to conquer in regards to the entire World Championship. There are plenty of crashes here due to the fact that it is one of the fastest corners, which sees the riders in 5th gear and at speeds of 200km/h plus. The rider’s arms take a beating and so do the tyres, which makes the German Grand Prix one to remember. We look forward to seeing the teams in action on Friday!

Credit: Movistar Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP Team

About The Author

Myanna Wedes

Myanna has an incredible grasp and knowledge of the sport in detail and continues to secure lead stories every week. She is in constant contact with team and rider media management. She is an admitted lawyer with two degrees and is currently writing a biography on Alan Jones MBE 1980 F1 World Champion. She is a fond lover of two wheel motorsport, predominantly MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3.