Box Confidential: Phillip Island, the circuit that nurtures talent


THE DATA: Phillip Island, the circuit that nurtures talent.

Phillip Island is for motorcyclists the equivalent of ‘Mecca’ for Muslims, that is, a place that should be mandatorily visited at least once in a lifetime. And this weekend all the ingredients are there for us to see the mother of all races on Sunday. And to say that about a stage that has seen some of the most spectacular races in GP history is very bold. Due to its characteristics, Phillip Island brings out the difference between great drivers and those who are not in the class… Valentino Rossi won there five years in a row, Casey Stoner did it from 2007 to 2021 and Marc won Márquez every race he finished there. This weekend, there, at the end of the world circuit -the next land south of Phillip Island is Antarctica-, Fabio Quartararo, Pecco Bagnaia and Aleix Espargaró will play this weekend the first set of matches that should proclaim the 2022 MotoGP World Champion . But the three will not race alone. To the unexpected rain, fierce wind and cold typical of those latitudes today, we must add the Marc Márquez factor, who did not know defeat in MotoGP at Phillip Island; of a Jack Miller racing at home and arriving hyper motivated after his latest results or the attitude that some Ducati satellite teams may develop because of the policy followed by the brand in the last GGPP… I say, the mother of all races.

THE SITUATION: Although no smoke was visible, there was fire.

The first day of practice for the Australian GP held this morning where the inhabited world ends – the island of Phillip Island – confirmed the situation of how the two leading contenders for the title will face the race. There is no difference from the script of the previous 17 GGPP, meaning: the most complete solitude for the Yamaha rider, and an army around the Ducati rider. But I know that around Bagnaia there is not exactly harmony that reigns. Ducati’s ways of managing to support Pecco in his battle with Fabio opened some festering wounds. Among the Ducati riders there are currently two sides: the “obedient” and those who will go their own way when they see Bagnaia on the track. Zarco and Bezzecchi have announced themselves as part of the first side, Martín or Marini remains to be seen, while Bastianini has repeatedly made his position clear. A position I know he will maintain at Phillip Island despite the pressures he has been receiving in recent weeks; Or maybe because of that. Kay Miller, another self-confessed “submissive”, this time a free verse. Because I don’t see about giving up playing for success if the opportunity arises. Again, following what happens in the Ducati world on Sunday will be a show per se.

THE COMMITMENT: Marc has the racing driver gene.

Several times since his return from the fourth operation on his left arm we have heard Marc Márquez say that, for the rest of 2022, he and Honda will basically work towards the next season to face 2023 as candidate for the title, and that the results are passed on in the background. I confess that at first I believed; it made perfect sense. But at this point, every time I hear him say this, I can’t stop smiling and I say to myself ‘Yeah, yeah…of course’… Because, don’t believe it! That Márquez and HRC are doing tests for 2023, yes, we see it in every GP; that Marc gave something to the race for 2023, ha! And I use Marquez for one situation and Marc for another with every intention. Márquez is the one for the press conferences every Thursday; Marc is the one under the helmet, giving in to the competitive gene every time he dons a suit. And racing fans will love Marc.

Source: La Verdad


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