Marc Marquez says, “I’ll understand if my level has dropped this year.”

Spread the love

The eight-time world champion asserts that he is “unprepared to contend for the podium” in the upcoming Qatar opener this weekend.

Among the myriad of questions Marc Marquez aims to address in MotoGP this season is whether his athletic prowess has begun to decline.

The eight-time world champion made a sensational move, walking away from a lucrative Honda contract to join his brother at the satellite Gresini team for this season. He will be riding a year-old version of the title-winning Ducati Desmosedici.

“My goal is to regain a sense of competitiveness, and then I’ll find joy and the drive to push forward,” Marquez stated on the eve of the Qatar season opener this weekend.

“The expectations are sky-high, but I am aware of the challenges I’ve faced in the last four years. It will take time. No rush.

“I’m not aiming to win right from the start because that would be a significant error, especially since I haven’t won a single race.

“Now, I find myself in a team with two to three riders, especially Pecco, Martin, and Bastianini, who are riding this bike incredibly fast, with great skill.

“I need to observe and learn from them, and adapt.”

However, the 31-year-old conceded, “We mustn’t forget that every athlete has their peak and then begins to decline. Then it requires more and more effort to maintain that level.”


“Young riders are coming in, like Fabio in his first year, now Pedro, Pecco, Martin, who are riding at a faster pace. So I need to learn from these younger riders and aim to maintain that level for as long as possible.”

When asked if he believes the inevitable decline in performance may have already begun, Marquez responded:

“I will come to terms with it this year. Last year, I struggled, but even then, I was the top Honda rider. In seven years, I won six championships and finished third one year.

“2020 changed everything for me. Since then, it’s been a tough four years. Now, I have many questions to answer for myself.

“That’s why I need time. I don’t need to have all the answers after the first race. I need to progress step by step, as I did in the pre-season. If some days I finish 14th, there’s no need to panic.

“My goal is to feel competitive again. But that doesn’t necessarily mean winning the championship; it means fighting for the top 5-6 positions.

“This is what I aim for, but not right away in the first race. You can’t build a house from the top.”

Despite posting the fourth fastest time at the recent Qatar test, Marquez tempered expectations for this weekend.

“I feel comfortable but not yet ready to challenge for the podium, not ready to vie for victory,” he remarked. “We need to build a foundation step by step and understand where we stand during the weekends.”

The Gresini team has secured victory in the last two Qatar Grands Prix through former riders Enea Bastianini (2022) and Fabio di Giannantonio (2023).

Free practice for the 2024 event begins on Friday afternoon.

Stay tuned with We4GP for more news.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *