Dovizioso: Marquez's 2016 title "much more important" than first two

Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso says that Marc Marquez's third premier-class grand prix championship title was "much more important" than the two he had scored earlier.

Dovizioso: Marquez's 2016 title "much more important" than first two
Race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Podium: race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team, second place Andrea Dovizioso, Ducati Team, third place Maverick Viñales, Team Suzuki Ecstar MotoGP
Andrea Dovizioso, Ducati Team
Race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team, third place Maverick Viñales, Team Suzuki Ecstar MotoGP
Race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Race winner Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Honda rider Marquez secured the 2016 MotoGP crown with three races to spare, his early coronation made possible by a victory in the Japanese Grand Prix coupled with crashes for Yamaha duo Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo.

It's Marquez's third premier class title for Honda as he also won in his debut MotoGP season in 2013 and doubled up in 2014.

Dovizioso, who had left Honda a year prior to Marquez's arrival, said of the Spaniard's 2016 campaign: "I have to say big congratulations. I think everybody knew at the beginning Honda wasn't the best bike and he managed the championship in a perfect way and, apart from that, his speed with the limit of the bike, it was unbelievable.

"I think this championship is much more important than the first two he won. Big congratulations."

Suzuki's Maverick Vinales, who joined Marquez and Dovizioso on the podium at Motegi, said: "I think he did a really intelligent championship, he pushed when he needed to push and stayed calm in some races that maybe he could do the podium [in] but finally, like in Misano, he preferred to do fourth.

"I think they deserve it - they started the championship struggling a little bit but they resolved it and I think the Honda team did a really good job.

"And also, winning the race when you are trying to win the championship is not so easy, but he managed well."

Marquez: Sometimes I forgot to enjoy it

Responding to Dovizioso's comments, Marquez seemed to agree his third title was the most important as it was the season where he felt the most pressure to deliver.

"This championship is really important. '13 I didn't expect and it was 'okay, you win'," Marquez said.

"I didn't feel the pressure but this championship, I cannot explain the pressure.

"Even my team sometimes said 'hey, Marc, smile, you are not the same Marc, you must enjoy' and sometimes I forgot to enjoy it because the pressure was too high. But when the first victory, second victory arrived, this pressure calmed down - and the team was a big help this year.

"And one important thing is I forgot the other riders. It was so easy to be confused, be not doing your job."

Marquez then reiterated that learning patience was key to his success.

"Of course you must take the risk but this year I was really patient in some races and this was maybe the key point. I crashed many times in practice, I tried to find the limit always in the practice. And in the races, I just felt where the limit was and kept my position."

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