until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League


Marquez hints at Honda deadline after ‘very important’ meeting

by Simon Patterson
3 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Repsol Honda rider Marc Marquez appears to have given something of an ultimatum to his MotoGP factory after a key meeting at last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.

The six-time world champion admitted on Thursday ahead of action at his beloved Sachsenring, that the Misano post-race test in September will be a crutch date for their future together.

It’s no secret that Honda has been completely lost in recent months, something underlined in bold at this weekend’s German GP by the absence through injury of both Marquez’s team-mate Joan Mir and LCR satellite rider Alex Rins, both of whom crashed heavily at the last round of the championship in Mugello.

And with increasing speculation rising in recent weeks even though Marquez remains contracted to Honda until at least the end of the 2024 season, it seems that the talks with two very senior representatives of the factory last weekend has resulted in both a promise to improve and a deadline for when he needs to see some change coming.

“It’s not the first meeting I’ve had with HRC, with Honda,” he said in the pre-event press conference. “But it was an important meeting especially because it was with Aoyama-san and Watanabe-san who is one of the biggest bosses in Honda Motors and the president of HRC.


“It was important, the feeling was good in the meeting, but now of course in the future, not the far away future, we need some reaction. We have very good riders in Honda, and we need something more to fight.

“Now in MotoGP the level is super high, and it looks as if Honda and Yamaha are the ones that are struggling more. Especially the European manufacturers are pushing more, and they are going in a very aggressive way to develop the bike.

“It’s there where we’re trying to make a reaction with Honda, to try and improve this year and especially for the Misano test that will be looking to 2024.”

In the shorter term, though, he’s got another issue to face this weekend: one that could increase the speculation about his future. An undefeated winner at the Sachsenring in every race he’s started there since 2009, it’s a record that’s the envy of many – and, should he fail to defend his title in 2023, could well be one that turns up the pressure on Honda even more.

And, worryingly, right now Marquez sounds far from confident that he’s going to emerge victorious on Sunday, especially after his injury-struck start to the season and multiple crashes in recent weeks that means he’s very much on the back foot right now.

“I’m interested to see how it is in Sachsenring,” he said, “because the two circuits that are good for my riding style, in Argentina and in Texas, I couldn’t race. This is the first circuit this season I’ve raced at where I feel comfortable from FP1 normally. But I know that it’ll be difficult.

“I’m not coming from my best moment, I’m coming from two crashes in a row on Sundays and of course this makes the confidence go lower and lower. I go in with a good mentality though, and I’d like to be on the podium.”

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Email
  • More Networks