MotoGP: Final showdown in Valencia as Marquez and Dovizioso stand on the verge of glory

MotoGP: Final showdown in Valencia as Marquez and Dovizioso stand on the verge of glory

Thursday, 09 November 2017-After 17 rounds, the final countdown is on to the #FinalShowdown – but before the Press Conference proper at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo, there was a start to the show with a difference for the Valencia GP as Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) interrupted proceedings early to pay tribute to MotoGP™ commentary legend Nick Harris. Inviting the voice of the Championship to take a seat with the riders, a special video tribute was then played with contributions from paddock legends past and present ahead of Harris’ retirement at the end of the season.

There was also another special extra for the occasion, with the riders present given a copy of the ‘Racing Together’ book, celebrating the 25th anniversary of the collaboration between the FIM, IRTA, the MSMA and Dorna – with the book set to be launched on Thursday evening, ahead of a special screening of the documentary celebrating the same.

Lorenzo, Pedrosa, Rossi, Marquez, Dovizioso and Zarco with their ‘Racing Together’ books ahead of the launch on Thursday evening

Then it was down to business, with Rossi joined by points leader and reigning Champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), his teammate Dani Pedrosa, Championship challenger Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) and his teammate Jorge Lorenzo – as well as top Independent Team rider and Rookie of the Year Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3).

First to speak was Championship leader Marquez, who arrives as the favourite with a 21-point lead: “It has been a tough season, and one race decides everything. We’ll see, we’ll try to approach the weekend the same as always and give 100% in the practices but of course you feel it and feel it’s a special race. But we’ll try and enjoy the party at 2pm and it will be a special race in front of my fans at a circuit I like. In motorsport, anything can happen. To finish the race is the most important thing. It’s not the first time I’ve fought for the Championship here and it’s difficult but I’ll try to manage it the best I can. I’ll push like always throughout the weekend, then after Warm Up we will see. I will go out, try to find the feeling with the bike and try to enjoy the race.”

Then the mic passed to Dovizioso, as he faces down his final challenge of the year – and it’s a race he must win to stand a chance at the Championship: “I wouldn’t have believed I’d be in this situation, and no one watching expected it. That’s why I’m so happy and proud of what we’ve achieved in this Championship. From Mugello on we’ve become very competitive. Some ups and downs but we’ve been able to arrive at the last round fighting for the Championship. We will see…21 points is a lot and very difficult, but it’s still open. We have to focus. We have to win the race, which will be difficult, but we have good speed now. Let’s see what we can do in the race. We have one strategy: try to win. I don’t feel much pressure because I know what we’ve done this season and I’m so happy about the results up to now.”

Next up it was Rossi taking over once more, this time to talk about racing: “We have been struggling a little bit, but in Sepang and Australia in the dry we were ok. And here the weather forecast is good for the weekend and that’s important, so we have to wait and see.” Asked about his opinion on the title fight, the Italian was pragmatic. “Dovizioso has just one way he can do it: trying to win the race. But Marquez, he can control the situation. But then you have to wait and see, wait for Sunday and understand your level.”

Dani Pedrosa, meanwhile, arrives with the best record of the lot and could have a big role to play this weekend. He also called out the weather forecast as a positive, and will be looking to end the season on a high: “This is a track I like, here with the support of the fans it makes it even more special. And it’s the last race and it’s always good to finish strong. Last year wasn’t positive, but I hope this time we can start in a better position. The weather looks more stable than in the last races, it’s going to be helpful for practice and you can get into a rhythm and try more things on the bike.”

Whilst Pedrosa counts six victories at Valencia, Lorenzo is the next man in the record books and has the most premier class wins – and first rode the Ducati at the track last season. “I have good memories at this track, especially in MotoGP. It has been one of my best tracks, unfortunately for the bike it may not be one of the best. It’s a slow track with narrow corners. But I think our bike has improved a lot in this area, I feel more and more comfortable and I think we’ve understood some things that could be helpful here.” The five-time World Champion also weighed in on the title fight, saying he will help his teammate if necessary: “The situation is better for Marc and not so simple for Dovi, but I will check – if I’m fighting at the front, I’ll check my pitboard and dashboard.”

Zarco, finally, weighed in on his incredible rookie season that has seen him take both the Rookie of the Year crown and the award of top Independent Team rider for the season. “I’ve enjoyed this year it a lot, I’ve done better than what I expected at the start of the year and I’m very happy about that. You race to win, so this year has been a good year to improve and it has given me hope. Like in Malaysia I could think about the win, and it wasn’t a crazy target!” It certainly wasn’t, and the Frenchman says he’ll be trying to aim for the front once more this weekend.

The front is the place Dovizioso has to be. 21 points down, the throne is only within the Italian’s grasp if he wins the race. He’ll be pushing to do just that, and waiting see how the dice fall for Marquez. The lights go out for the race at 2pm (GMT +1), with preparations and practice beginning on Friday.

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33 minutes ago

MotoGP

2019 Best clips 🎥

The #AustralianGP couldn't have got off to a more dramatic start! 💢

#MotoGP
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That was a vicious highside I'm glad they both came out ok

Lukas Griganavičius

ن

Sangar

Spat out off the track...

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13 hrs ago

F1

Meet Yan Ting - an F1 volunteer in Singapore for ten years 😊

One of hundreds helping F1 run safely and smoothly every year 👊
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Heck I'd volunteer as well. So you don't get paid with money. You get paid with the excitement of being part of the greatest sport and just plain fun.

I would volunteer... What a privilege to be a part of this amazing sport and to have the chance to get so close to the action. Everyone appreciates all of the hard work they do in all weathers and if they didn't love it they wouldn't do it... Thanks to everyone who helps to keep the sport that I love going ❤️🏁🏁🏁

Considering the volume of comments complaining they don’t get paid you don’t hear volunteers complaining. They do it for the love of Motorsport and the chance in some small way to be involved. Not everything has to be about money!

I just don't get it. F1 is a multi million if not billion £ business. So why don't theses fantastic people get paid? Without them there would be no F1. Don't treat people's passion as an excuse to use and not pay them for their very important work. Am I wrong?

Singapore F1 has the greatest staff & so friendly

The very fact that F1 moves so many millions, and there are unpaid volunteers workers sickens me to be honest. Selling people the idea that by volunteering, they are doing good, they have a super opportunity, post their face on social media, making them feel special, and saving yourself the wagesnin the process sickens me.I love watching the races, the tech etc, but F1 shame on you. I'm pretty sure there is no one in the F1 scene short of a few quid, and I'm pretty sure that some of these volunteers would most definitely appreciate the money as well as the chance to work on the circuit. Everything isn't about the money unless your a capitalist company making money off the backs of others. Shame on you f1

For everyone complaining about the free labor. Its VOLUNTEER work not like it's against anyone's will. Secondly volunteer for a race sometime and you will understand the point. I volunteer for the pikes peak hill climb every year. I get to experience a badass event for a little work while others are paying $180+ for the same experience. A little free work is well worth it.

Why are people complaining about money? They are volunteers not slave. I volunteered at the Montreal tennis tournament for over 10 years. Doing office work. I got to watch all the matches for free and got to meet/talk to all kinds of players like Agassi, Graf, Hingis and Federer. It was fun. I’m guessing the people volunteering at the race gets to watch F1 for free and see/hear the cars up close. For any race fan that is just priceless.

It is impossible to not get paid, unless you do work for a non profit organization. I'm very sure the "volunteer" name is just that, a name, I refuse to believe F1 is exploiting human workforce to save some bucks.

I'd bang Yan Ting I'd have her panting #yeahman

I agree...why can’t F1 pay these people. We lost one volunteer due to an accident at the Montreal F1 a few years ago. Is it worth volunteering for nothing and risking your life?

Why does F1 even need volunteers when you are willing to spend endless piles of money on everything else? Props to the people who do it but when you charge 5k for Paddock Club tickets it seems to me you could do with paying all these wonderful people for their work...

Singapore GP is the best one I have been to. Vietnam is next on my list as I have fancied a holiday there for a while but will take me a few years to save enough money.

Why is everyone so outraged that the volunteers don’t get paid? People travel all over the world for some events and this is something they’re willing to do as a hobby/do it in their spare time. I’ve been doing it for a year now and did this years Singapore Grand Prix. I would always volunteer to do this as it is an absolute privilege to be officiating at such an awesome event. The organisers always look after us so well with meals and nice souvenirs. So for those that are outraged by it. Maybe you should come join us sometime.

She speaks pretty well. Of course her accent is really hearable, but her grammar is on a high level!

With the money the sport brings in they should be payed.

Those idiots that run F1 should pay these people, sky and channel 4 pay their team money.. loads I imagine.. probably don’t get even a Christmas box

Do they get paid for their work? because the tickets are very expensive

More on these behind the scenes people they're also very important 😎

Really enjoyed my days in timing and scoring.

That’s amazing! So jealous she gets to work on track !

I wonder why no one sponsors them.🤔. Plenty of space for logos on their overalls. Might earn themselves a few quid too.

Many people asked ...."Why do you still officiate/volunteer? .. Do they pay you? "......If you have to ask, you simply won’t understand

Nice one for a toughest race in F1

👏👏👏for japanese volunteers!!!!!

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13 hrs ago

MotoGP

Check out the new look of the Ducati Team for 2020! 👀 ... See Less

Check out the new look of the Ducati Team for 2020! 👀

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I cant wait to see what the new honda will look like....

Unfortunately in Brazil we will not be able to see this top bike this year, the closed TV channel that was broadcasting did not renew and we ended up staying at a loss !!! Too bad for Moto Gp lovers in Brazil, last year without a super bike and this year without a Moto Gp !!! What the hell!!!

Je ne trouve pas qu il y est de grand changement une écriture en noir a la place du blanc . Ducati fait du Honda . Les couleur de pramac était belle

That's the least Ducati looking Ducati I have ever seen.....

Killer look! Love it! 😎 great job! It has been the most 'non traditional looking' bike and it's getting more and more different and high tech looking.

Should’ve been Miller with Dovi. Much better rider on the second rate bike, would smash it on the factory bike. Typical euro decision

Great looking bike, a pity you don't have a rider to exploit its full potential. Jack Miller would fill that requirement perfectly.

Amazing, Ducati fan here but hope we have a good season this year. Im more on, close competition and pushing the skill and other bikes to the limits. That's more exciting keeping my *ss on my couch.

Awesome lookin bikes, Hope their up the pointy end more often but with 43 on the front 🇦🇺

Looks more WSB than Moto gp. Sponsors looking crowded and messy. Also needs more white. Just my opinion but it's a shame as it used to be the best looking bike and the best colour.

A top innovative team with mediocre riders. Always poor rider choices who can win few races but not championship. Give this bike to Bagnaia/Miller and see the magic. The biggest mistake was getting rid of Lorenzo.

Hoping for consistency for top riders and teams this season to challenge the atomic ant!🐜

Look great but I don’t think the 2 of them together can catch. 93

Ducats is under VW motors so it's Germany machine & Italian passion design qual to super straight line speed, hopefully they worked on the cornering speed so well

Looking forward to the Honda v Ducati battle again.Amazing to watch,great TV.

So looking forward to the start of the new season 😁😁

Bikes look amazing...So do the performance....Pity that Ducati doesn't have a championship winning rider...🤕🤕..

It’s the same as last year, the year before, and every other year.

Red and white has become red and black really. I don't like the tail section, it can be more sleeker.

Essas Ducatti estão tops é só esperar o show✊

L avant de lla moto est bien plus affûté

la seule chose visible qui a changé c'est les couleurs du casque de Dovi 😉

Linda che, aunqe para mi nunca superara en el aspecto visual a la gp7 u 8

Bonsoir je voudrais savoir si le Moto GP est toujours diffusé sur Canal+ cette année

Go Dovi all MotoGP fans support you for win MotoGP titles and we so boring watch marq win the boring titles

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16 hrs ago

Dakar Rally

It took a strong showing from Ricky Brabec in a tough race as he became the first American to win the Dakar in the Bike category 🇺🇸

See the very best moments here 🎬

#Dakar2020

تألق ريكي برابيك خلال رالي داكار ٢٠٢٠ الذي كان مليئا بالتحديات، ليصبح أول سائق أميركي يفوز بفئة الدراجات 🇺🇸

شاهدوا أبرز اللحظات 🎬

#داكار2020
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Pleased that organizers are making changes to the 2021 event. The pace was too fast this year resulting in many accidents, injuries and at least one death.

What a great rally! Really enjoyed it, especially watching Ricky finally win it! Also never knew Saudi had such a stunning scenery.

Alot of ups and downs this year but definitely a great year watching from the couch! Want to thank my sponsor lazy boy 🤣

Unbelievable impressions of one of the most fantastic and dramatic Dakars ever! They leave one speechless.

Congrats, Ricky and Team Honda! Great RIDE!!! 👍👍🎉🎊👏👏🎊🎉

Such grueling conditions day after day. The scenery is magnificent. The video production can not be beat. Just spectacle to watch.

Thanks for adding some images of Paulo Gonçalves. We will miss him 🙁

Ça roule fort!!! magnifique 😍

Nice Honda, after 31 years come back with Ricky Brabec,

Great memories of Dakar 2020 Saudi Arabia !! 👍

Love how the presence of the camera gets the front wheel off the ground - hardly ever fails

RIP Paulo.

Wonderful 😎👍😎👍😎👍

Beautiful👍👍🏍

Great stuff

GOOD NIGHT. Tank you

Robert Müller

Adam Wilkening

Paulo Gonçalves! ✨👏

Irvin Materne 🤪

Pac Cullen.... amazing vision. These guys are truly tough as nails

Stephanie Costechareyre😍😘

Great year..

Nair Rejudev Dev

Vassily Cassonnet

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