The world, sorry, the motorcycle world championship is awaiting the decision of its biggest and best champion of the last decade, Marc Márquez Encourage. The ‘paddock’ wants to know if MM93 Does or does not grant the last chance to Sling to offer him a motorcycle with which he can compete for the first five places in each GP or, simply, they amicably break the remaining year of his contract and he goes to equipment ‘satelite’ from Ducatithat of the missing Fausto Gresinibecoming, once again, the companion of his brother Alexas they already were in the ‘team’ Repsol Honda.
It is evident that from what has been seen to date, the winged firm is not yet in a position to guarantee that possibility to the eight-time world champion, who has won the six major titles with Honda. Hence, the whole of Italy, at least the world of two wheels, already takes it for granted and even makes fun of it, that either Honda or Márquez this week will announce that he is leaving and signing for the deceased’s team. Fausto Gresini to ride a Ducati ‘Desmosedici’ that will allow him to enjoy the track again.
When I say that the whole of Italy is already laughing at the mystery with which both Márquez and Honda have wrapped their decision, it is because even the guru of the world champion firm, the engineer Gigi Dall’Ignahas entered the controversy and, with his words in Motegi (Japan) before the microphones of Sky TV Italia, he has confirmed, although he later tried to deny his statement, that “Marc has decided to change his Honda for one of our Ducati, which makes us happy”.
I insist, when the Sky TV Italia journalist told him “I mean, Marc has already signed for Ducati?”, Dall’Igna, being part of an already well-thumbed story, tried to backtrack without success: “Well, well, that That’s what I’ve heard, so it’s clear that there’s nothing official yet. I think there are many things to do, that there is a complicated contract to break, in case he clearly wants to break it. But it seems to me that the statements he has made are these, and from our point of view it is pleasant,” the Venetian expanded.
I repeat, the mockery was completed, by Dall’Igna, with another comment that was too revealing to not be true: “This year we are still focused on the championship, which has a lot to say. Then, without a doubt, Marc is a difficult driver to handle for many reasons and there is concern that he could upset some balance. In the end that will be part of the game and it will be up to us to manage it.” The entire paddock knows that there is no greater desire on Dal’Igna’s part than to work with the best driver in the world.
“Márquez is a difficult rider to handle. We should be happy that he is signing for Ducati, but I am worried that he could break the balance that exists.” Gigi Dall’Igna. Top technical manager of Ducati Corse
On that same circuit, in Motegi, the British Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha test rider, was very forceful demonstrating the admiration he feels for Márquez: “I always said that, if Marc got on a Ducati, the others could stay at home. That’s why I don’t want him to get on a Ducati, and try to turn around the situation he’s going through with Honda,” responded the 37-year-old veteran British rider. “I had the privilege of riding with Marc and, honestly, “It is impossible to pilot like he pilots. It is another story.”
“I always said that the day Marc got on a Ducati, the others could stay home.” Cal Crutchlow. Yamaha factory test rider
When I say that the whole of Italy begins to joke about the possibility of Márquez or Honda, well, perhaps the announcement of the agreed, peaceful, friendly breakup between Japan and Márquez was made by the Japanese firm, it is because even, the last end of week, during the celebration of the Japanese Grand Prix, an Italian journalist, one of the most veteran of the paddock, already suggested to the Gresini team’s DIRCOM that they place a photo of Márquez in their statement.
The possibility that Márquez was willing to change motorcycles in 2024, already started, in April 2023, from the North American champion Wayne Rainey who said that “having his brother Àlex on Fausto Gresini’s team, seeing him enjoying the Ducati, hearing him talk about its virtues, will make Marc think what many of us champions have thought at some point when our bike stops being competitive: look for another motorcycle that allows you to enjoy the track, have fun, have a good time, which is the only way to win.”
During all these months a lot of things have happened and almost all of them, together with the great mystery with which Márquez has wrapped his decision, not Honda’s, have made the case begin to have a show point. Since Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Corsesaid that they were not interested in Marc (June 6) to the desperate cry of Koji Watanabe, president of HRC (Honda Racing Corporation)that “we will never withdraw” (August 17), through the understanding demonstrated by Alberto Puig, Repsol Honda Team Managerwhen he said “Marc has a contract with us in 2024, but Honda will never retain someone who wants to leave.”
The mockery, the laughter, the joke with which all of Italy observes, analyzes, comments and intuits the arrival of Márquez to Ducati, was also evident in the attitude of the current champion of the Italian firm, ‘Pecco’ Bagnaia, who in the same press conference prior to the Japanese GP, in Motegi, launched a “Bye, bye, Honda” and, later, he added that if Márquez ends up signing for Ducati “I will wait for the kiss with Valentino to come”clearly showing his perplexity at the fact that MM93 is willing to do anything for the chance to win again.