The MotoGP title is coming down to the wire, as Honda’s Marc Marquez and Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso are separated by only 21 points going into the final race of the season.
To guarantee his second straight (and fourth overall) MotoGP championship, Marquez will need to finish 11th or higher. And that is where team orders usually come in.
According to Autosport, Dovizioso benefitted from Ducati team orders just last week when his teammate Jorge Lorenzo settled for second place and let Dovi pass to take the win.
Honda could take a similar approach to Ducati in the coming race by telling Marquez’s teammate Dani Pedrosa to let him by if he needs an extra place to clinch.
Marquez doesn’t think that will happen.
“In Valencia, there won’t be team orders inside Honda,” He said. “The best team order would be Dani winning there. He has to give his 100 percent. It is one of the best circuits for him as he’s very fast there and could win.”
Not that Marques has a problem with team orders in general, he actually takes no issue with Ducati’s decision in the race prior, saying:
“You could be fighting for a victory, but your team-mate and your manufacturer are fighting for the title. Those are things difficult to accept, but are part of our job.”
But the situation is different for Marquez because he only needs to finish 11th if Dovizioso wins the race. Having his teammate, who is typically fast at this track, fight for the win actually benefits Marc more than giving up one free place.
As for the possibility that both Honda riders are farther back than they expect, thus necessitating some team orders of their own, Marc didn’t seem concerned about the possibility.
“I won’t start the race to finish just 11th.”