A couple of years ago, Marc Marquez would have been in a bad mood because of a 4th place, but times have changed and, after the Misano race, he welcomes this result with satisfaction. Neither he nor Honda are at their best, but a lion, even when injured, won’t hold back.
“It went better than I thought,” he admitted. “I thought I’d be in a position between fifth and seventh. In the first part of the race, I didn’t do so well, But, in the end, I was strong enough because I was able to handle my body well at the beginning.”
Without forgetting that this is a right-handed track, so more critical for his shoulder.
“A fourth place today is more important than a second place in Aragon. It has greater significance,” he confirmed. “But my goal is to fight for the win, and I’m still a long way off. I couldn’t keep up with Quartararo, Bagnaia and Bastianini today. I realized that, on one hand, I have to improve physically, but also that our bike has some big weaknesses. I don’t want to be the first Honda rider to cross the finish line, but to fight for the title and for the victories.”
But it's not time yet, and Marc knows this perfectly.
“When you’re in a difficult situation, you need to understand it and be realistic,” he explained. “You can’t chase ghosts, but you set goals that you can achieve, otherwise the frustration level increases. Yesterday, I had an idea about my performance, and that’s why I’m happy today."
To get back on top, like he said, he’ll need to work on himself and on the RC213V.
"That’s how competitions are. We need to keep improving. Sometimes it was Honda that gave me the title and others it was I who gave it to them, We’re a team,” he stated. “When I came back, the direction to take for development wasn’t clear. Now it is, and the tests on Tuesday and Wednesday will be important. The goal for 2022 is to ensure that all Honda riders can fight to stay in the top ten.”
How do you manage to do it?
“Working on acceleration and corner exiting, which are linked,” is what the Spanish champion answered. “Now, to make the time, we force the brakes too much, taking risks, and sometimes falling. I was behind Bastianini in the race. He braked like an animal and came out of the corners like a rocket. I think Ducati is more competitive than Yamaha right now, but Quartararo is the fastest rider.”
He and Bagnaia could be his rivals for the title.
“Pecco had already started strongly in Qatar, but he didn’t have Quartararo’s consistency. Many things can change in a year. Just look at the difference in Fabio’s performances between last season and this one.”
Who knows if Bastianini will also be part of the game, Meanwhile, Marc complimented him.
“I had already seen in Q1 that he was fast,” he recalled. “When he passed me today, I immediately understood that he would have a great opportunity. I followed him, and we were catching up with Quartararo, but I was over the limit, and I let him go. He figured out how to ride the Ducati. He does nothing special, but everything goes well.”
The next stop for Marquez will be Austin, a track he really likes.
“But the second sector is tough, even when you’re physically fit,” he warned. “I’ll go there trying to have fun, without starting off defeated, as in all races. My goal on my return from the summer break was to be in the top five in all races, and I’m succeeding.”