Marc Marquez is hoping to build on his podium finish in Qatar as he heads to the question mark of Argentina for round two of this seasons MotoGP World Championship.
Marquez put an underwhelming pre-season behind him as he claimed an impressive third position during the season opener last time out in Qatar, despite his RC213V Honda still looking less than a easy bike to ride.
The Termas de Rio Hondo circuit in Argentina will present new challenges to the riders and teams, with a lot of the teams going in “blind” with no testing from the factory riders – although Ducati’s test rider and Pramac Ducati stand in Michele Pirro did test the Michelin tyres in Argentina last year – meaning track time will be crucial to help find the perfect set-up and correct tyre choice.
Last season’s Argentine Grand Prix saw a tyre battle and the different compound Bridgestone rubber react to the new surface in different ways. It also saw the first clash between Valentino Rossi and Marquez, something Rossi later attributed to Marquez’ “actions” in Philip Island.
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Despite the drama of 2015, Marquez said he enjoys the Argentine track and is hoping that the base set-up he and his Repsol Honda team found in Qatar will transfer over to South America.
“We come to Argentina in a positive mood after achieving a third-place finish in Qatar, a result that wasn’t really predictable before the start of the season,” said the Spaniard.
“We worked very hard and very well with Honda and with the team over the weekend, and on race day I was able to push as hard as is currently possible.
“Of course we haven’t had a winter test here to count on and we’ll have to see if the set-up we found in Qatar will also work here. That would be a good step forward for us, generally speaking, and we could even aim for a little bit better result on Sunday,” he said.
“Of course it will be a question mark until Friday but all in all, Argentina is a circuit that I like. We’ve always been fast here, so I feel positive for the weekend.”
Photos via Repsol Honda