Marquez struggles with front end issues

A rise in temperature saw many riders struggling due to lack of front grip

IT WAS a tough race for both Repsol Honda riders, but Marc Marquez is experiencing difficult with the front end.

Conditions were very different to those seen in Free Practice and Qualifying. Pedrosa crashed out on his return to the MotoGP paddock, but fortunately did manage to remount to finish just outside of the points in 16th.

Spanish compatriot Marquez had issues with the front of the RC213V after dropping down to 6th place on the fifth lap. Struggling but pushing on, Marquez passed both Smith and Iannone to slot into fourth place.

The battle began between himself and Ducati rider Iannone over five laps, but Marquez held onto 4th to take away 13 important Championship points.

Speaking after the race in France, Marquez explained: “The temperature rose sharply; we had not ridden in such conditions at any time this the weekend. On the fourth lap I started to notice that I had a lot of problems with the front end.

“I think all the Hondas had the same trouble; in fact a lot crashed after losing front grip because we were really suffering. We knew that with a rise in temperature, conditions change, but we expected it to be for the better and this time it was for the worse.

“We must learn from this race and especially from the data we have gathered.”

Crutchlow, who also rides the RC213V, suffered from front end issues as did Movistar Yamaha’s Lorenzo and other riders some of which crashed out. 

Marquez is now fourth in the Championship standings after the fifth round at Le Mans. The sixth round takes place at the end of May at Mugello in Italy.