Lorenzo arrival 'forced Marquez not to lower standards'

Jorge Lorenzo may be yet to challenge team-mate Marc Marquez, but his arrival at Repsol Honda 'forced Marquez not to lower his standards'  resulting in a 'devastating' message to his rivals.
Lorenzo arrival 'forced Marquez not to lower standards'

Jorge Lorenzo's arrival at Repsol Honda 'forced' MotoGP champion Marc Marquez not to lower his standards and 'avoid falling into the trap of self-satisfaction', resulting in a 'devastating' message to his rivals.

That's the opinion of Juan Martínez, a suspension technician at Repsol Honda for Mick Doohan, Alex Crivillé and Valentino Rossi before serving as crew chief for the likes of Sete Gibernau (Gresini Honda) and Nicky Hayden (Ducati).

"I think Marc has gone through difficult moments in his career, and the fact that when he was younger he took longer to grow was an important handicap that helped him to work hard and not give up," said Martínez, who now works as an expert commentator for Spanish TV.

"The arrival of Jorge to the team has forced him not to lower his standards, which is the most important thing for an elite athlete to avoid falling into the trap of self-satisfaction.

"This year Marc looks more solid than ever, because everything he does, he does through knowledge, and the message that sends to his rivals is devastating."

Marquez - who didn't win a race until his third season in 125GP - currently holds a 37-point lead in his quest for a sixth MotoGP title. But on the other side of the garage new team-mate and triple MotoGP champion Lorenzo is yet to score a top ten for Honda.

"What is happening to Jorge, happens to us all as we get older: We find changes harder to digest," Martinez said. "We have to use more experience to try to make changes and take on new challenges.

"I don’t think anyone can question Jorge’s greatness. I think he’s one of the best riders to have ever raced in MotoGP, at least in the years that I’ve followed it. At Barcelona he showed a sign of improvement in terms of his speed.

"The challenge is very difficult, because the class is getting tougher all the time and almost all of the bikes are exceptionally good, which means that when you can’t give one hundred percent, you will be relegated down the order.”

Nonetheless, Martinez backs Lorenzo to 'soon' be fighting for victory.

“Jorge has shown that he has always come out of complicated situations well. Being older, more things can go through your head, and since last year at Aragon he has been unlucky with injuries, which hasn’t facilitated the calmness that favours his adaptation.

"But I have no doubt that in the end, if he keeps up his effort and the Repsol Honda Team put the necessary tools at his disposal, soon we will see Jorge fighting to win a race.”

Lorenzo delivered his best showing as a Repsol Honda rider by fighting amongst the lead group early in the Catalunya race, only to fall and bring down three other riders, but is confident he can carry that speed over to this weekend's Assen round.