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Marc Marquez has revealed one of his targets is to make his riding style more “smooth” like his chief MotoGP rival Andrea Dovizioso.
Last weekend’s Thailand Grand Prix was the fourth time in 14 months that Marquez and Dovizioso had engaged in a last-corner battle for a race win, with Marquez coming out on top at Buriram.
They also fought each other for the 2017 championship until the final round.
Their contrasting riding styles have drawn comparisons between their rivalry and that between early 1990s grand prix greats Wayne Rainey and Kevin Schwantz.
Marquez noted that his late-braking style makes him more comparable to Schwantz, before adding that he is working on copying some aspects of Dovizioso’s more Rainey-esque style.
“Of course already last year and this year we have very great battles, and it’s nice because always the battles go until the last corner,” said Marquez.
“Always I try to give everything until the last metre but Dovi is always giving everything until the last metre.
“This is the good way, always we have respect..
“We have different riding styles, different bikes, and he has very strong points, I have other strong points.
“So this creates [a situation] that we are able to play in a good way, the way to overtake the other.
“[I’m] maybe [more like] Schwantz because I am braking more on the limit and that special braking point that everybody has in his mind.
“But my target is try to change my style, try to be like Dovi-style: smooth, lean a little bit [less] and accelerate [more]. But at the moment it’s not possible.”
Answering the same question, Ducati rider Dovizioso said that Marquez’s style is an inevitable result of the development direction pursued by his Honda team.
He doubts either rider’s style would work on their opponent’s bike.
“The style is one thing, and the characteristic of the bike is another story,” said Dovizioso.
“Both things create this big difference, because I think his style is going the same style as Honda – very agile and aggressive.
“He is able to do that, he’s the best at managing that. But also he changes a lot his style during the years in MotoGP, going that way, the bike and his style.
“My style is a bit more relaxed, but you have to ride our bike in that way.
“You can’t ride the Ducati like this [aggressively], I don’t think I can ride the Honda in the same way [I ride the Ducati].
“We try to study and work, try to be better where he’s better, but still there is a big difference from style and characteristic of the bike.”