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MotoGP, Marquez: "I can fight for the title even now, but I wish I had it easier"

"Ducati is the bike with the best potential anywhere, even the fans wanted me on a competitive bike. Aleix's farewell? so many talented riders, no one worked as hard as he did. He was the veteran of the category, now that burden falls on me. In MotoGP it's not hard to get there, but it's hard to maintain the level."

MotoGP: Marquez:

Marc Marquez approaches Montmeló as third in the standings, with a haul of 89 points, 40 behind leader Jorge Martin. The Spaniard, in contention for the official Ducati alongside Bagnaia contended precisely with the young standard bearer of the Pramac team and the current holder Bastianini, has found his smile and speed again and proved it in the Jerez and Le Mans races by dueling with the strongest and giving the fans a show that has long been outstanding.

After the difficult years of injury in Honda it is evident now that Marquez in his own future has only Ducati in mind, "it is the most competitive bike, I can fight for the title already now, but it would be better to have life easier," he will later declare candidly to journalists. This increases pressure and expectations at Ducati, which is expected to make a decision on the matter by Mugello. Then there is no shortage of congratulations to compatriot Aleix Espargarò, at the end of the conference in which the Spaniard announced his retirement from the premier class at the end of the season. The seat thus vacated at Aprilia opens a further glimmer in a rider market held at a standstill by Borgo Panigale and ready to explode.

"I still miss the consistency of Martin and Bagnaia, " admits Marc Marquez, "they are fast in every session and in every qualifying. They are always in the top 3 or top 5. Obviously now I am fast and I feel competitive, in Le Mans I was very close to them but I have to work to find this consistency. It will be a challenge to find it here at Montmeló, which has always been a complicated track for me, plus it seems that the new bike has an advantage in cornering, so the goal for this weekend remains the same, to be fast and be among the top riders."

In the past Montmeló has not always been an easy circuit for you.
"It has not always been easy, I have only won here in my two best years, but I have always been the fastest Honda here so I am curious to see how I will be able to ride the Ducati. It will be interesting, although stop-and-go is one of my strengths and it's a smoother circuit here, so I will have to work on the setup and my riding style."

In the past races you have always been on the podium.
"Yes, but I always had to save the races, in today's MotoGP you can't afford to stay out of Q2 anymore, you risk ruining the whole weekend. Here it will be important to see how we can deal with Turns 3 and 4."

You are seven points away from your result at the end of last season.
"I don't want to make controversy, out of respect for Honda to whom I owe a lot in my career. To be honest, it's not an easy situation for them, but as I said last year, after losing four years to injury I couldn't allow myself the luxury of losing more years, especially also because of a mental issue. I'm not looking for excuses, but the fans also wanted to see me on a competitive bike."

Ducati has not yet made a decision about the second official seat, would you also accept an official bike in a satellite team or is the factory team the only option?
"Obviously my situation has changed from last year, I was looking for a way to get back to having fun and having those pleasant feelings on the bike again. Step by step I'm getting back to a good level and that's important. I'm really happy to be able to fight now with these riders, but it's clear that if you want to fight for a championship you can do it like I'm doing this year, but it would be preferable to have an easier life. Every rider is looking for the best for himself, I will have to be smart in my choices as I have been in the past, to understand what I need in my future. If I do a good job on the track I will also have more options available to me."

Do you already have a clear idea?
"As I said in Jerez and Le Mans, I am happy to be able to fight with these riders until the last corner. Martin and Bagnaia are the two strongest rivals right now, so I want to keep working with what I have available to me so I can give my best."

Aleix announced today his retirement from MotoGP at the end of the year.
"He was the veteran of the category, now this burden will fall on me - comments the Spaniard - I congratulate him on his career, he knew how to manage suffering, he knew how to take advantage of it, he saw himself without a bike, be replaced, face new projects and win. We have seen so many riders with a lot of talent go by, but no one has worked as hard as he has."

Should you not get the seat in the factory team, after Aleix's farewell, does the factory Aprilia remain an option?
"The European manufacturers are at a very good level, although for me Ducati remains the best bike with the best potential on most circuits. That's one of the reasons why last year I opted to race on a Ducati with the Gresini team. I was looking for the most competitive bike and it still is, but both Aprilia and KTM are really close, both Maverick and Aleix have shown that you can get wins with the Aprilia, especially here in Barcelona."

You're the most experienced rider, do you think it's harder for today's MotoGP riders to have a long career like Aleix had, especially with so many riders pushing for a seat from Moto 2?
"I think it's especially difficult especially for the teams, because in the last few years the riders have been able to make a difference, but the bikes have also weighed a lot and the overall level is very high. If you see the lap times most of the riders deserve to be in the premier class, but there are also riders who deserve to go up from Moto2. It is not difficult to get there, but it is difficult to maintain this level. It's life, in Aleix's case he had a choice, you don't always have the options. Aleix chose to be able to spend more time with his family."

Automatic Translation by DeepL

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