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Stressed Marc Marquez suffered hair loss in early 2017

Stressed Marquez suffered hair loss in early 2017
By AutoSport

14/11/2017 at 17:42

Newly-crowned MotoGP champion Marc Marquez has revealed that he suffered hair loss and stress early in the 2017 season.

In the first six races of the year, Marquez crashed out twice and took only two podiums - leaving him 37 points behind championship leader Maverick Vinales.

Though he began to turn things around with second in round seven at Barcelona, he crashed five times prior to the race that weekend.

"It has been a really tough season, many ups and downs, many difficult moments, many good moments," said Marquez.

"Especially in the first part of the season it was very hard.

"After Montmelo [Barcelona] I was with my hairdresser, and she says, 'what is going on, what happened? You are losing the hair', and it was true.

Marc Marquez (Honda HRC) - Grand Prix of Valencia 2017

Marc Marquez (Honda HRC) - Grand Prix of Valencia 2017Getty Images

"I said 'no, I'm 24, it is impossible!' My grandfather, my father have hair.

"Then I went directly to [MotoGP medical director] Dr [Angel] Charte to the hospital and he said, 'you need to change the approach to racing, because you have too much stress inside your body'.

"I realised, I'm always smiling, always happy - but inside of me, we are humans, and the tension is there, we are nervous."

Marquez said changes to the Honda, particularly during a Brno test in the summer break, and his approach allowed him to recover.

In the season's final 11 grands prix, Marquez was on the podium nine times and won five races.

"I changed my approach but especially changed the feeling with my bike," Marquez explained.

"We did a big change on the bike and then I got the correct feeling again and I started to enjoy it again on the bike."

Marc Marquez (Honda HRC) - Grand Prix of Valencia 2017

Marc Marquez (Honda HRC) - Grand Prix of Valencia 2017Getty Images

He said a conversation with manager Emilio Alzamora and trainer Jose Luis Martinez after crashing out of the French Grand Prix proved pivotal.

"After Le Mans, we were in the car, going to the airport and I told them, 'I am not enjoying it on the bike, I am just riding because I need to ride but I'm not enjoying it'," said Marquez.

"Then we changed the mentality. First of all, we needed to find a way to enjoy it on the bike then we would find the result.

"We were going that way, we just worked hard in the tests, we did more than 100 laps every test day and we found the way to enjoy it.

"This second half of the season for me has been perfect.

"We controlled all the sessions all the time, all the moments and finished always in the podium [except] Malaysia, but we were there."