TV: BT Sport
Marc Marquez will be hoping for a repeat performance when he lines up for the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez.
The Repsol Honda rider was in unbeatable form as he made it six wins from as many races at the Circuit of the Americas and he will hope to repeat at his home race.
The Spaniard will not be lacking in vocal home support, something that was absent last time out in North America when he was booed by certain sections of the crowd.
Marquez certainly has support from some quarters with his odds to take the win at Jerez at 17/20, with Movistar Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales 11/2 and his team-mate Valentino Rossi 6/1 along with Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso.
Rossi needs a win if he is to keep alive his hopes of winning a 10th world title and should not be ruled out on a circuit where he has silenced the home crowd in the past with stunning race victories.
Marquez’s team-mate Dani Pedrosa won last year at Jerez but is unlikely to repeat, his odds of 6/1 reflecting that he is still recovering from an operation to repair the wrist he broke in Argentina.
LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow, who went from winner in Argentina to crasher in Texas, is 16/1 and unlikely to feature on the podium in Spain.
Suzuki’s Andrea Iannone and Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Johann Zarco are both 22/1 and former world champion Jorge Lorenzo is 33/1 as he continues to struggle to find his way since moving to Ducati over the winter.
For those looking for a long shot, Danilo Petrucci (Ducati) has shown flashes of the ability it takes to win races in the past but at 80/1 is realistically priced to pull off what would be a highly unlikely victory in Spain.
How the Americas Grand Prix finished:
1 Marc Marquez (Honda), 2 Maverick Vinales (Yamaha), 3 Andrea Iannone (Suzuki), 4 Valentino Rossi (Yamaha), 5 Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati), 6 Johann Zarco (Yamaha), 7 Dani Pedrosa (Honda), 8 Tito Rabat (Ducati), 9 Jack Miller (Ducati), 10 Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia), 11 Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati), 12 Danil Petrucci (Ducati), 13 Pol Espargaro (KTM), 14 Takaaki Nakagami (Honda), 15 Alvaro Bautista (Ducati), 16 Bradley Smith (KTM), 17 Scott Redding (Aprilia), 18 Thomas Luthi (Honda), 19 Cal Crutchlow (Honda), 20 Xavier Simeon (Ducati), 21 Franco Morbidelli (Honda), DNF Alex Rins (Suzuki), Hafizh Syahrin (Yamaha), Karel Abraham (Ducati).
Marquez’s emphatic victory at the Circuit of the Americas did three things. Firstly, it showed how he has not been fazed by his trials and tribulations in Argentina. Secondly, it got his world title defence right back on track. And thirdly, it meant he is the only rider to win a MotoGP race at the circuit near Austin in Texas after he made it six victories in a row.
Marquez had been heavily criticised for punting off Rossi in Argentina but he bounced back to take victory in Texas ahead of Rossi’s team-mate Vinales and Suzuki’s Andrea Iannone.
Italian Iannone, nicknamed Crazy Joe for a series of incidents not unlike the one involving Marquez in Argentina, gave Suzuki some rare cheer and also showed the sort of form which made him a podium contender when he was at Ducati.
Rossi’s fourth in Texas was a solid if unspectacular ride and Dovizioso came home fifth, the Italian taking over the championship points lead by just one from a rejuvenated Marquez.
Zarco, linked with a move to both the factory KTM and Repsol Honda teams for next season in the build-up to the Americas race, continued his good start to the season with sixth for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team which is switching to KTM machinery next season.
Marquez’s team-mate Pedrosa came next, riding through the pain of an operation on his fractured wrist two weeks after suffering the injury in Argentina.
Former world champion Lorenzo’s struggles at Ducati continued with a disappointing 11th place and there was also woe for Argentinian GP winner Crutchlow.
The LCR Honda rider crashed while battling for fifth place in Texas, evidence perhaps that his crash-filled past will hamper his ambitions to be a title contender, although he lies fourth in the crowded standings where eight points cover the top five riders.
Past Spanish Grand Prix results:
2017: Dani Pedrosa (Honda)
2016: Valentino Rossi (Yamaha)
2015: Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha)
2014: Marc Marquez (Honda)
2013: Dani Pedrosa (Honda)
2012: Casey Stoner (Honda)