Marc Marquez And Honda Part Ways After The 2023 Season
After what can only be described as a soap opera-type story, Marc Marquez and Honda will part ways at the end of 2023.
In a stunning turn of events, one of the most successful partnerships in the history of MotoGP is coming to an end. By mutual agreement, Marc Marquez and Honda will part ways after eleven seasons together.
The Spanish-Japanese collaboration has been nothing short of extraordinary, yielding a total of six world titles between 2013 and 2023
Marquez’s journey with Honda began in 2013, a debut season that culminated in a championship win. He repeated this feat in 2014 and then embarked on a dominant streak from 2016 to 2019, clinching the championship title four consecutive times.
His last victory in 2021, followed by a series of setbacks due to injuries and Honda’s declining competitiveness, marked the beginning of the end of this iconic alliance.
Marquez’s trajectory with Honda faced a significant hurdle at the start of 2020 when a serious arm injury required multiple surgeries over the next two years.
Additionally, bouts of diplopia (double vision) forced him to miss crucial races. Despite these challenges, Marquez showcased his resilience by winning three races in 2021.
However, his podium drought since October of that year and the declining performance of the RC213V over the past two seasons signaled a need for change.
To Ducati, we go!
Rumors of Marquez’s departure intensified in recent weeks, linking him to Gresini and a year-old Ducati. These speculations gained momentum after Marquez tested the 2024 Honda prototype at Misano, which received a lukewarm reception.
The move to Gresini, yet to be officially announced, will reunite him with his brother Alex Marquez, who joined the team in 2023 after a stint with LCR.
Interestingly, Marquez’s contract with Gresini will only be for a year, allowing him the freedom to evaluate his options in 2025 when major contracts across the MotoGP grid will expire.
The prospect of having both Marquez brothers racing for the same team has undoubtedly influenced this decision, adding a familial dimension to Marc’s career trajectory.
Despite attempts to bring his trusted technicians with him, Marquez will transition to Gresini alone. Ducati’s reluctance to expose its latest prototype to engineers potentially signing with rival companies in 2025 played a pivotal role in this decision.
Alberto Puig, HRC’s team manager, worked tirelessly to retain Marquez, but the limited maneuverability within the Honda hierarchy and the refusal of renowned European engineers to join the team contributed to the inevitable outcome.
Honda’s decision to replace technical general manager Shinichi Kokubu with Shin Sato was insufficient to persuade Marquez to stay.
As Marquez embarks on this new chapter with Gresini, the motorsport world eagerly anticipates his performance on a different machine.
His departure from Honda marks the end of an era, leaving fans in anticipation of what the future holds for both the legendary rider and the iconic manufacturer.
The 2024 MotoGP season is shaping up to be one of the most intriguing yet, with Marquez’s move setting the stage for a thrilling showdown on the tracks.