Jorge Lorenzo says he feels that Valentino Rossi was given lenient treatment by the race stewards for his clash with Marc Marquez in order to keep the title fight open.
Rossi and Marquez came to blows at Turn 14 on the seventh lap of the Malaysian Grand Prix, Rossi running Marquez out wide, making contact and causing the Honda rider to fall.
The stewards ruled that Rossi’s penalty would be merely to start from the back of the grid at Valencia, the Italian keeping his points for finishing third place behind Dani Pedrosa and Lorenzo.
Speaking in the post-race press conference, Lorenzo made it clear he felt the penalty was unfair, and that Rossi received favourable treatment from the stewards in order to keep the title battle open for the Valencia season finale.
“To be honest, I don’t think it’s a good decision, because he takes out Marc, he crashes and gets zero points but Valentino keeps his 16 points,” said the Spaniard.
“It’s unbelievable. When I saw it, I couldn’t believe it. Never in my life has it crossed my mind to do something like that.
“Minimum, Valentino should have the same points as Marc: without this action, Marc would not have crashed and would have probably have finished third or fourth.
“He didn’t finish the race, gets zero points, Valentino should have the same. Other riders are penalised more harshly for being less aggressive than that.
“His name is important for the championship, so they don’t take away any of his points. He will start last, but it’s not fair.”
"A lot of people lose respect for him"
Lorenzo added that he doesn't think Rossi would be the rightful champion if he prevails in Valencia, and that his reputation has been tarnished for the incident.
“It won’t be a fair final race knowing what happened today. If he wins, he will not be the fair champion this year.
"A lot of people will have lost respect for him as a sportsman. He may be the greatest rider in history, but as a man, a lot of people will change their opinion.”