Hulk Marquez, Jorge Lorenzo, and audacity in motor sports

Lorenzo wasn’t sanctioned (for now) for the Barcelona strike. Jim Clark had done much worse in Monza in 1961 and was acquitted because his audacity was considered correct. Times have change but, in some cases, it’s right not to interfere.


Marc Marquez didn't need to swell his muscles in Spain. His victory in the Barcelona Grand Prix, the fourth of seven races, went smoothly after Jorge Lorenzo, battling it out in the group, knocked down Dovizioso, Vinales, and Rossi during the second lap.

A few moments earlier, right where the accident occurred, Marc had overtaken Dovi, thinking it dangerous to stay on his wheels because Andrea kept "stopping" the bike too often when riding the corners and was afraid of making contact.

A stroke of luck, but also of great clarity of mind because if he hadn't done so, he would have been the first to end up in front of his teammate's wheels.
The first laps of the race, after all, are always the most dangerous for this reason. Everyone rides following their instinct and style, but when there are many variables, it's difficult to keep track of them all.

That's to say that the accident was certainly triggered by Lorenzo, who lost the front while braking. Obviously, the responsibility is his, but there are a whole series of causes to take into account: Jorge was overtaking Maverick, who had already braked very late and had gone wide. And when he realized he was dangerously close to rear-ending Dovizioso, he asked his Brembos to decelerate a bit. They did, but the tire gave way.
It's his fault and his alone.

Maio Meregalli ungenerously called it, "a rookie's mistake". To us, it seemed like a mistake made by a rider who's been on the sidelines for too long.

It's true. Races are not won during the first laps but neither by waiting. And motorcycling history is full of accidents like that. Moreover, Jorge Lorenzo  is recognized for his precision in riding. A fact that cannot be ignored.

But if he's be penalized in the next Grand Prix, that's ok, too.

The important thing is not to fall into the trap of wanting to sanction everything. During the Grand Prix, Rins shouldered Petrucci hard when overtaking him. But also thanks to his physical prowess, Danilo didn't even bat an eye.

As someone said: this is not classical music.  And until it's not intentional, we should all be grateful for the show. Within some limit, of course.

In the past, irregular passes were not sanctioned, carried out off the track - it's useless to repeat places and dates - and no sanctions were given when actual contact took place.

Recently, it seems like the tide is turning. During the Superbike, Johnny Rea in Jerez made Alex Lowes fall and was sanctioned. It's also useless to repeat that similar accidents took place at the same turn without these being brought to the attention of the Race Direction.

Judging an accident is always a moot point. And Emanuele Pirro knows this well - five victories in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, McLaren test rider when Senna was racing, rider, and straight as an arrow - was attacked for having penalized Seb Vettel, along with FIA's judging panel, in Canada.

On the contrary, with a 1965 ruling that made history, the Court of Monza - pronouncing itself on the tragic collision between Wolfgang Von Trips' Ferrari and Jim Clark's Lotus, which occurred during the 32nd Italian GP in 1961 and caused the death of the Ferrari driver and 15 spectators - wrote that "no reproach can be made for his conduct. Conduct that may be considered too bold, but audacity is an unfailing fact in motor sports."

The consequence of this is that Jim Clark was acquitted of the accusation of manslaughter and criminal negligence, not with the formula of "not having committed the act", but simply because "no fault could be recognized in his conduct."

Who knows how it would have ended today.

 

 

Related articles