Johann Zarco Shuts Honda Door - "I Expected Much More"
Published: 19th October 2023
Following Marc Marquez’s Honda exit, the Japanese are continuing to look for an adequate replacement. Johann Zarco rules himself out.
At the Australian Grand Prix, Johann Zarco has ruled out a possible move to the Repsol Honda factory team following Marc Marquez’s departure.
The Frenchman, currently riding the Desmosedici GP23 of the Pramac Ducati team, had announced his signing with LCR Honda for 2024 and 2025 in the weeks prior.
Zarco admitted he believed he was the most suitable candidate to take Marquez’s place int he factory team, as he joined Gresini Ducati. However, he mentioned that Honda had a different perspective on the situation.
“I really thought I would be the natural candidate, but there are many other reasons that it didn’t turn out ‘naturally’,” Zarco explained.
“It’s not bright to be in the factory team just because the seat is free. I have to be there because they wanted me. “
Zarco also expressed disappointment at the lack of enthusiasm from Honda and the factory team after Marquez declined the opportunity.
“At the moment Marc said ‘no’, I expected much more enthusiasm from Honda and the factory team to push for this.”
By staying with the satellite team, Zarco believes he has a better chance of extending his MotoGP career beyond the upcoming year.
“It makes sense that Lucio wants to continue working with me because I’m consistently competing for a top-five position in the championship, which can benefit his sponsors,” Zarco stated.
“It’s more appealing to fully commit to this project with Lucio and Honda rather than pursuing a single-year stint in the factory team.”
“Perhaps a two-year project may offer a more attractive salary compared to investing energy in just one year.”