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MotoGP, Marc Marquez: “I wouldn't be in the Gresini team if Ducati hadn't wanted me”

“The expectations for me are very high, but thinking about the title now would be a mistake. I don't know if I'll be able to be fast on all the tracks, but I feel comfortable in Gresini and I want to find good feelings again."

MotoGP: Marc Marquez: “I wouldn't be in the Gresini team if Ducati hadn't wanted me”

2024 will be a crucial year for the career of Marc Marquez, who will try to relaunch it after the last difficult seasons spent in Honda, riding the Ducati Desmosedici GP23 of the Gresini team. A challenge that the rider from Cervera intends to approach very carefully. Just as he himself was keen to underline on the occasion of an event organized in Madrid by the sponsor Estrella Galicia 0,0, in which he took part together with his brother Alex. The man with whom he will return to share centre stage on 20 January 20 in Riccione, during the presentation of the Faenza team, and then share the garage for the whole of 2024.

“Everyone has very high expectations of me and one of my tasks is to escape all this. However, it is more difficult than ever after these very difficult last few years. For this reason, expectations cannot be created before the start of the season. It is important to proceed with a low profile, race by race, because this allows you to work more calmly and not generate the initial confusion in which everyone expects the best" admitted the eight-time world champion.

Considered by everyone to be one of the favourites to win the title, the eldest of the Marquez brothers wanted to take advantage of his first appearance in front of the Spanish press, as a Ducati rider, to play down the enthusiasm.

“I'm sorry to say it, but it would be a mistake to think about the title, especially since I haven't won a race for two years. In some Sprints I raised my head, but you can't think of starting a project with such a high goal - observed the 30-year-old - You don't live on illusions, the important thing is to have fun, try things and progress, but you can't face a season with this thought, without even having been through the pre-championship and coming from the seasons I came from."

Despite having impressed his rivals already in his first outing with Ducati in Valencia, the Iberian rider is convinced that he does not represent a major threat to the rest of the grid.

“I don't feel any fear from anyone towards me. If I came from winning several titles in a row, it would be understandable if they were afraid of me, but that's not the case, because I come from a situation where I was beaten by many young and eager riders, I have to reinvent myself, and I will face riders who have been on the same bike for many years and who, a priori, should be in front of me. In any case, my task will be to give my best" said Marc, who nevertheless said he was satisfied with his first contact with the Borgo Panigale bike.

“The Valencia test was positive. I made my debut on a different bike after many years with Honda and with such a defined riding style. The smile that has been talked about so much was a smile of tranquillity" commented the Spaniard, impatient to get back on his new weapon: "Trying a new project allowed me to relax, to just ride, without working on the bike, but now I already have a list on my phone of things I want to improve in view of Malaysia. I am also looking forward to tackling tracks that I find difficult, so that I can make progress and feel as comfortable as possible as quickly as possible.”

Although the first feedback has already been positive, the eight-time world champion is not yet able to estimate how quickly he will be able to adapt to the Desmosedici: "If the bike is good the rider adapts easily, but the big difference between being fast or very fast is consistency - he pointed out - I think I'll be able to be fast on certain circuits, but I don't know if I'll be able to be fast on every track. This is the difference that good riders make."

The Gresini team’s new signing promises to be a tough nut to crack for the other seven Ducati riders and for the top management of the Borgo Panigale company themselves. But the Iberian was keen to reassure us that he had not felt any ostracism from the Italian manufacturer towards his change of team.

“I never had the feeling that they were reluctant to sign me or that they didn't want me, because otherwise I wouldn't have taken this step. I always tried to stay out of the newspaper headlines and I always had a lot of support from the Gresini team, who gave me my time, and that was the main reason why I joined the team: the fact that they never pushed me until I had clear ideas" confessed Marc, still uncertain about what his future will be: "I haven't discussed with anyone about 2025, I'll have to evaluate the best option. As long as I'm happy and on the track and there will be good performances on the track, there will be no problems, on the contrary. Regarding signing for just one year, it must be kept in mind that after a long relationship you cannot enter into another long relationship. Logically, before deciding to switch to Gresini, there were contacts with other brands which I will not reveal. I am very grateful to Honda, Ducati and the Gresini team, where I feel very comfortable now and with whom I want to rediscover all the good feelings."


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