2019 Thailand GP (MotoGP) – Preview

It was a completely dominant performance at Motorland Aragón from Marc Márquez to claim his 78th race victory across all classes, his 52nd in the premier class, and his eighth for the season to give himself the perfect opportunity to claim his sixth MotoGP World Championship, and his eighth across all classes as the grid heads to the Buriram International Circuit for the 2019 Thailand Grand Prix, Round 15 of the 2019 MotoGP World Championship.

Márquez (300 points) leads the championship for the Repsol Honda Team by 98 points over Mission Winnow Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso (202 points) after dominating the Aragon Grand Prix, winning by a very comfortable 4.836 seconds over Dovizioso to make a sixth premier class world championship seemingly just a mere formality, if not in Thailand, certainly at the next round at Motegi in Japan.

For Márquez to claim the championship this weekend in Thailand, he must finish ahead of Dovizioso by two points, which means if Márquez is inside the Top Four, and ahead of Dovizioso, he will win his fourth-straight world championship. However, if Márquez is fifth or lower, Dovizioso must finish two spots (or more) behind Márquez for the Spaniard to claim the championship this weekend.

However, if Márquez suffers a retirement, or finishes outside the point-scoring positions, the championship battle will continue onto the Japanese Grand Prix in a fortnight’s time.

Behind the Top Two in the world championship, there is a great battle developing for third in the standings between Álex Rins (156 points) from Team SUZUKI ECSTAR, Danilo Petrucci (155 points) from Mission Winnow Ducati, and the two Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP riders in Maverick Viñales (147 points) and Valentino Rossi (137 points), while Fabio Quartararo (123 points) from Petronas Yamaha SRT, and Jack Miller (117 points) from Alma Pramac Racing remain outside chances of claiming third-place in the championship after relatively strong results at Motorland Aragón, with Miller claiming his third podium of 2019, and Quartararo finishing in fifth.

Both Rins and Petrucci struggled at Aragon, finishing ninth and 12th respectively, with Rossi also being below par in eighth, while Viñales is the form rider at the moment when you take out the Top Two in the world championship with four-consecutive Top Five finishes.

Cal Crutchlow (98 points) is ninth in the championship for LCR Honda after finishing the Aragon Grand Prix in sixth, while Petronas Yamaha SRT rider Franco Morbidelli (80 points) remains in 10th position in the standings despite being taken out of the Aragon Grand Prix by Rins after Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider Pol Espargaró (77 points) was ruled out of the race due to a broken wrist.

So, who is going to win the 2019 Thailand Grand Prix?

It is sure to be a tight battle between about eight or nine riders you sense this weekend when it comes to the race, but you feel like the one to beat is Marc Márquez, and I feel he will claim his sixth premier class world championship this weekend, but he won’t have it all his own way.

2018 Thailand GP (MotoGP) – Preview

After a breathtaking race in Aragon, and an absolutely brilliant performance by Marc Márquez to take his fourth MotoGP victory in Aragon (his fifth across all classes), and his sixth victory of the season to place one hand on his fifth MotoGP World Championship, the grid heads to Buriram for the first time for the inaugural Thailand Grand Prix, Round 15 of the 2018 MotoGP World Championship.

Márquez (246 points) leads the championship for the Repsol Honda Team by 72 points over Ducati Team rider Andrea Dovizioso (174 points) with just five rounds remaining in the season. Dovizioso was also fantastic in Aragon last time out, giving Márquez a really hard time, but all things being considered, Dovizioso is the only rider that can stop Márquez from winning another world championship, but he will need things to go his way to stop the great Spaniard.

Valentino Rossi (159 points) is somehow still third in the championship for the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team despite finishing in what was a good 8th after starting in 17th position on the grid, but the speed is not there from the Yamaha, and it is very hard to see it appearing anytime soon.

Jorge Lorenzo (130 points) is fourth in the world championship, but could have been second in the standings after two crashes, including one at the opening corner of the opening lap in Aragon, cost him two probable podium finishes, and perhaps a race win in Aragon, and is equal on points with Rossi’s teammate Maverick Viñales (130 points), who like Rossi, is struggling to find strong pace on his Yamaha, but the Ducati rider is ahead on the standings due to achieving three race wins to the Yamaha rider’s zero.

Cal Crutchlow (119 points) is sixth in the championship for LCR Honda after crashing out in Aragon, and is tied on points with Alma Pramac Racing rider Danilo Petrucci (119 points), who finished in seventh at Aragon, but Crutchlow remains ahead in the standings due to his win in Argentina back in Round Two.

Johann Zarco (112 points) is eighth in the championship despite finishing in 14th-place at Aragon for Monster Yamaha Tech 3, while the two Team Suzuki Ecstar riders in Andrea Iannone (108 points) and Álex Rins (92 points) complete the top 10 in the standings, with Repsol Honda Team rider Dani Pedrosa (87 points) close behind in his final season in MotoGP.

So, who is going to win the inaugural Thailand Grand Prix?

Despite the recent dominance of Ducati since the mid-season break, I think this one of the races in the flyaway sequence that is about to start that Marc Márquez marked down as a huge opportunity to win, and extend his championship, considering his good record at adapting to new circuits, and if he does win, you sense that the 2018 MotoGP World Championship will be his.