Martin “mentally destroyed” after Thailand MotoGP win as title pressure mounts

The Spaniard converted pole into his fourth grand prix victory of the 2023 season, having seen off immense pressure from KTM’s Brad Binder and chief title rival Francesco Bagnaia on the factory team Ducati.

Martin led for much of the 26-lap contest, only briefly losing out to Binder before regaining the lead on the penultimate tour and holding firm over the KTM.

Binder was later forced to drop a position for exceeding track limits on the final lap, boosting Bagnaia to second, but Martin has still cut his points deficit to 13.

Speaking after the race, Martin revealed that he hadn’t slept ahead of Sunday’s race and needs time away from the mental strain he was placed under.

“I can admit that I already feel the pressure,” Martin said on Sunday.

“This Saturday I did not enjoy the victory [in the sprint] at all because I was completely focused on Sunday’s race.

“I have not slept. I need four or five days of not thinking about motorcycles. I am mentally destroyed.”

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

Martin branded his Thailand win the best race of his career next to his Moto3 title-winning outing in Malaysia in 2018.

It comes after back-to-back GPs in which he lost the victory while leading comfortably in Indonesia (due to a crash) and Australia (due to a failed tyre gamble).

He noted that those tough moments have made him stronger, and that today’s Thailand race showed he can still battle.

“I think the difficult moments are super tough and really difficult to get back up from and difficult to get the motivation [again],” he added.

“But, for sure, they made me stronger. Today, I changed my strategy instead of pushing like crazy the first 10 laps, I tried to just keep that one tenth, two tenths to the second one to save tyres.

“And when I saw 12 to go I tried to push and when I saw I didn’t pull away, I thought ‘Ok, today a third is a good position’.

“Then when Brad overtook me, I thought he was going to pull away, but then I saw he used more tyres and I was stronger. I was able to overtake him and push like hell to win today.

“It’s amazing. I think it’s a real hit on the table, pushing on the table to make the people see that I can battle.”

Martin was found to have run tyre pressures lower than mandated in the rules during the Thai GP, but was only handed an official warning as it was his first offence.

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