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Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS riders score solid top ten in new Moto2 era

Published: 10 Mar 2019

Alex Márquez and Xavi Vierge have to battle grip issues to secure seventh and tenth places respectively in their first races using Triumph’s 765cc engine.

  • After 9 seasons and 158 races using Honda CBR600 engines, the new Triumph-powered Moto2 era began in Qatar, with Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS team-mates Alex Márquez and Xavi Vierge finished seventh and tenth, scoring valuable points for their championship challenges.
  • Márquez finishes just 5.018 seconds back of race winner Lorenzo Baldassarri, while a lack of front-end feel sees Vierge take the chequered flag 13.865 seconds behind.

Alex Márquez, 7th, +5.018

  • Márquez started aggressively from 9th on the grid, making significant time on the first lap to sit 6th.
  • Márquez’s fastest lap on the ninth circulation when he was in 4th place suggested he could fight for the podium places.
  • By lap 10 he began to encounter issues with rear grip, and lost places to Augusto Fernandez, Sam Lowes and Thomas Luthi to slip to seventh.

“ I was feeling quite good but I started to lose the rear grip, the rear contact mid-corner”

“The start was not so bad. I was there in the first laps, trying to attack. I was feeling quite good. The bike was so fast. The team worked a lot to give me a good bike. I tried to catch the riders ahead and do my rhythm, like I did in the practice. Until lap ten it wasn’t so bad but it was around then when I started to lose the rear grip, the rear contact mid-corner. I started to have problems in that point and some vibration. Seventh wasn’t the result we expected after all the hard work during the winter. But we need to keep working like this, being consistent and we can be a little bit more ready in the next race.”

Xavi VIierge: 10th, +13.865

  • Starting from second on the grid, Vierge got the holeshot courtesy of a brilliant start, and led the race into the first corner.
  • The talented 21-year old wasn’t able to maintain his early pace, and started to experience a lack of feeling with his front tyre five laps into the race.
  • Vierge continued to battle with Brad Binder, and fought to pass the South African on the penultimate lap to claim six points for tenth position.

“I made a really good start but I started to feel really bad with the front of the bike"

“I made a really good start and it went exactly to plan. But after five laps I started to feel really bad with the front of the bike in the middle of the corner so I started to lose half a second on every lap. All the other riders arrived to me and I couldn’t fight for position. I tried so hard to finish the race as well as I could. That’s it. It’s a shame because we worked so hard all weekend. We had the pace, but during the race I didn’t feel good. It was important to finish because the championship is really long. It’s better to finish tenth than crash. Anyway, I want to say thank you to the team because we worked so hard and we’ll try again in Argentina.”

Joan Olivé, Team Manager

"I am happy. We expected a little bit more but this is just the beginning"

"I have to say that we should be happy for the first race because both our riders finished inside the top ten. I feel we did a good job over all the weekend. Today we started very strong, especially with Xavi. On the first lap he was in first and second position. From there we lost some time and found some problems that we didn't see at the last test. Alex started very strong, got to the front but after half of the race he had problems with grip and he started to drop places. Of course we expected a little bit more after the good test we had at this track but I'm very positive. We're doing a good job with the team and with both our riders. This is just the beginning!"

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