Marc Márquez, on his return to Portimao: “I don’t quite understand how the bike is doing”

There were some days, between the months of October and November of last year, when Marc Márquez lost his temper. Desperation seized him. It had been almost three months since the second operation for a humerus fracture in his right arm and although there were no negative clinical reports, he knew something was wrong. He doubted whether he could recover. He had enough clues. “I couldn’t even get a bottle of water at home. It made me nervous and I paid for it with mine ”, he confessed in a very long press conference this Thursday, the day of his return to the MotoGP World Championship.

That same Márquez, who underwent surgery a third time – and who had to assume, as he repeated on several occasions, that there are many races, “but there is only one body” -, seemed not to have experienced such an ordeal when he got back on the motorcycle this Friday. He finished the first practice third and the day with the sixth fastest time, 0.4 seconds behind the fastest, Pecco Bagnaia (Ducati).

“He is Marc Márquez, eight times world champion. We already expected them ”, said one of his rivals, Álex Rins. The protagonist, however, declared to be surprised by his own performance. Hence, he couldn’t contain his laughter after his first pit stop. “I got the smile of what do I do here. I was nervous, ”he conceded.

“It has been a great day. The track was not very good, but I immediately had a good feeling with the bike. In the afternoon I noticed more fatigue, it took me more for my arm to warm up. But I’m in a much better situation than I expected when I got here ”, he declared at the end of the first free practice sessions of a weekend in which he believes that his arm will go from more to less, due to accumulated muscle fatigue. “This circuit is quite demanding from a physical point of view. It’s anyone’s guess how I’ll get up tomorrow ”.

The experience on the RC213V that Márquez referred did not correspond much with the images seen from the Algarve international circuit, where he was seen rushing the margins of the track and marking more than one fastest lap. However, according to his story, he ran more out of inertia than with full awareness of what he was doing: “I have no control over the braking and the sensation of speed was difficult to assimilate in such a short time and with so few laps. Many of the times I thought that the bike would not stop. I braked late because everyone stopped late, but not because I felt like I had to brake at that point, “he confessed. “I don’t quite understand how the bike is doing. I don’t really feel the limit when I drive, and I don’t have enough information to get it ready, ”he added.

The six-time MotoGP champion, who took to the track with the configuration left by Stefan Bradl, test rider and his substitute, will try this Saturday to give his team some indication to put the Honda more to their liking, a task for which he wanted to wait for the first laps after nine months of absence: “I don’t want to start changing things and lose our way.”

On the other hand, assume that your arm and body will suffer as the hours and sessions go by. “The arm at the bone level is fine, but at the muscular level, not. I am suffering with my shoulder, because I operated on it a year and a half ago (in December 2019), I had problems with the nerve and the deltoid was weak. I got it back, but being inactive all winter hasn’t helped. ” He still has some capsulitis, this is stiffness and pain in his shoulder. And even though his humerus is in place, he suffers with all the stabilizing muscles of the shoulder and elbow. “I will suffer in qualifying,” he assumes. It is your next challenge.

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