Marquez eyes Lorenzo's points record in Sepang as Nine points in Malaysia will see the eight-time Champion surpass his teammate’s 2010 18-race tally
Marc Marquez’ (Repsol Honda Team) superhuman 2019 season can reach new heights on Sunday at the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix if the reigning World Champion can claim nine points.
In 2010 then-Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo notched up a record 383 points across the 18-race calendar on his way to the title. After 17 races so far in 2019, Marquez has managed to total 375 – eight off now-teammate Lorenzo’s number from nine years ago. So, in order to surpass the 18-race record, all Marquez has to do is finish P7 or higher, something he hasn’t done in a 'normal' race for his entire premier class career.
After five wins on the spin, Marquez’ form is blistering. It has been all season. Ahead of the weekend’s action, the number 93 spoke about the record in the Press Conference, saying it isn’t something he is worried about, and it isn’t something that is going to change his mentality in the lead up to the race.
“No, I never changed the strategy even when I was fighting for the Championship,” said Marquez, in response to a question about the points record. “The strategy will be the same. It’s true I can score the most points over 18 races but it’s a record we will remember if somebody gets it again, so I don’t care about this record. I’ll keep the same strategy, target to try finish on the podium but of course today my target is to win. My opponents will give an answer whether that will be possible over the weekend.”
Finishing P7 is - 99 times out of 100 - a straight forward task for the 55-time MotoGP™ winner. The Malaysian GP is far from shaping up to be a straight forward weekend though, for every rider. Sepang’s tropical climate is set to bring wet weather for much of the weekend, so it looks like the riders are in for a challenging penultimate Grand Prix of the year.
Every rider and team will be looking to end the flyaway races as strong as possible before heading to the season finale in Valencia.
It’s time to get yourselves prepared for the last 2019 flyaway race as the MotoGP™ paddock heads for the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix.
09:00 local time (GMT+8) on Friday is when the Sepang International Circuit will be filled with the sound of motorcycles for the first time this weekend, as the Moto3™ riders kick off their opening Free Practice session. Moto2™ (09:55) and MotoGP™ (10:50) follow suit on Friday morning, with the premier class getting their FP2 session underway at 15:05.
Qualifying begins with the same time schedule as we see on Friday morning, before qualifying bursts into life at 12:35 with Moto3™ Q1. The front of the Moto2™ grid will be decided at 13:55 with Q2, before MotoGP™ riders go all-out for the penultimate pole position of the season at 15:30 (Q2).
The business end of the season happens on Sunday with the races. 12:00 will be the Moto3™ race, 13:20 is the kick off time for Moto2™ and it’ll be lights out for MotoGP™ at 15:00.
See below for the full schedule in local time (GMT+8):
Friday 1 November:
09:00-09:40 – Moto3™ FP1
09:55-10:35 – Moto2™ FP1
10:50-11:35 – MotoGP™ FP1
13:15-13:55 – Moto3™ FP2
14:10-14:50 – Moto2™ FP2
15:05-15:50 – MotoGP™ FP2
Saturday 2 November:
09:00-09:40 – Moto3™ FP3
09:55-10:35 – Moto2™ FP3
10:50-11:35 – MotoGP™ FP3
12:35-12:50 – Moto3™ Q1
13:00-13:15 – Moto3™ Q2
13:30-13:45 – Moto2™ Q1
13:55-14:10 – Moto2™ Q2
14:25-14:55 – MotoGP™ FP4
15:05-15:20 – MotoGP™ Q1
15:30-15:45 – MotoGP™ Q2
18:00 – Qualifying Press Conference
Sunday 3 November:
08:40-09:00 – Moto3™ Warm Up
09:10-09:30 – Moto2™ Warm Up
09:40-10:00 – MotoGP™ Warm Up
12:00 – Moto3™ Race
13:20 – Moto2™ Race
15:00 – MotoGP™ Race
16:45 – MotoGP™ Race Press Conference