Sachsenring MotoGP race winner Marc Marquez says he did not expect to lead the points standings heading into the summer break.
The reigning champion extended his unbeaten run of premier class German Grand Prix victories to five on Sunday, beating Tech3 Yamaha rookie Jonas Folger.
Marquez’s win, his second of the season, also vaulted him to the head of the standings, five points clear of Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales with Andrea Dovizioso and Valentino Rossi also within 10 points.
Honda rider Marquez had lagged 37 points behind Vinales after the Mugello round one month earlier, and said he could not have anticipated leading the championship at the midway point.
“Three races ago I was 37 points behind,” said Marquez.
“But before Assen I received a WhatsApp [message] from [crew chief] Santi Hernandez, and he said, ‘Don’t worry Marc, you will be leading the championship by summertime’.
“I said, ‘OK, what did you drink?’ because we were very far [behind].
“But in the end we need to trust [ourselves], we need to believe in our job, we need to keep pushing like we did.
“I was not counting the days since my last win in Austin, I knew I had to be patient.
“It’s nice to go on holiday leading the championship – only [by] five points, but it’s better to be five points in front than five points behind.”
Marquez said his unbeaten record at the Sachsenring meant he had earmarked the circuit as a track he needed to win at in order to get his title challenge back on track.
“I knew before the weekend that this was an important moment in the championship and that the Sachsenring was an important circuit for us,” he said.
“It was the place to take a risk if necessary and to try to win.
“This was one of the good ones and I knew if we didn’t win here it would be very bad, and we almost didn’t win.
“Assen was another target, was try to finish in the podium.
“And maybe in Assen if I took more risk I was able to fight for the victory, but it was too much risk.
“The championship is very long, and in all conditions we are always there, we never drop a lot the level.”
Alongside team-mate Dani Pedrosa and LCR rider Cal Crutchlow, Marquez will be part of a two-day test at Brno on July 17-18 ahead of the next round of the season at the Czech track on 6 August.