Marquez continues charge at Phillip Island as 2016 MotoGP Champion

 2016 MotoGP Mugello Marc Marquez After a remarkable win at Motegi last week, Marc Marquez heads to Round 16 at Phillip Island as the newly-crowned MotoGP Champion. The Repsol Honda camp has made a change in its riders line-up for the Australian race as 2006 MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden is set to replace Dani Pedrosa, who underwent surgery to his right collarbone.

Marquez has two wins to his name at Phillip Island, in MotoGP last year when he took a victory (the 50th of his career) by just 0.249 seconds over Jorge Lorenzo and in 2010 (125cc). He also has a second-place finish and a third in Moto2 (2012, 2011). “It’s fantastic to arrive at Phillip Island with no pressure for the championship, as the track is one of my favorite in the calendar, along with Austin and Aragon. It’s so fast and flowing and you really have a lot of fun riding there. One of the main issues to take into account there is the weather. It’s usually very cold during this period of the year and always windy, something that you feel a lot, especially at the end of the final straight. You have to find a setup to make the bike as stable as possible.”

Following heartbreaking double non-finish, Yamaha MotoGP go to Phillip Island with their heads held high. Valentino Rossi looks forward to defending his second place in the championship from his teammate. As one of the most successful riders at the Phillip Island circuit, he will be using his experience to secure a top result and visit the Australian rostrum again. After taking third place in 2000, the Doctor enjoyed an impressive five-year winning streak from 2001 to 2005, followed by five more consecutive podium finishes in the premier class. He claimed second place in 2008 and 2009 and scored three third places in 2006, 2007, 2010. Rossi returned to the podium again three years later with a third place in 2013 and a first place in 2014, when he, teammate Lorenzo and Yamaha Tech3‘s Bradley Smith made it an all-Yamaha podium.

Lorenzo is also prepared to take on the competition on Phillip Island, one of his favorite circuits where he got to lift a trophy after the race many times. He scored two second places in the premier class in 2010 and 2012. From that point on the Mallorcan has not finished off the podium, securing the victory in 2013 and two more second places in 2014 and 2015. Lorenzo aims to keep the trend going this year and fight for second place in the championship.

Ducati MotoGP squad will be represented by Andrea Dovizioso and temporary team mate Hector Brabera, who replaces the injured Andrea Iannone since the GP of Japan. Dovizioso took secured second place for Ducati at the dramatic Motegi race, while new team mate failed to impress and finish a lowly 17th. Dovizioso has plenty of experience at Phillip Island and aims to push for another podium finish. Meantime, Brabera intends to keep up the momentum on his switch from a private team to a factory squad.