With the return this winter of Marc Marquez to his Repsol box, we first thought at Honda that we could slow down the pace of the transfer market by giving Pol Espargaró time to assert himself, to possibly to confirm. But since then, there has been Indonesia, and at the end of the second Grand Prix, the HRC troops find themselves again without their leader. He again sank into the throes of unfit for service due to diplopia, triggered after a concussion following his horrific fall at Mandalika. It is hoped that the eight-time World Champion will quickly regain his vision, but the fact is that this is a new alert for Honda on the need to strengthen its workforce with another recognized champion on the market. Four names are rumored to fill the void.
Several scenarios are currently declined regarding the situation of Mark Marquez. Either the diplopia is only passing through and he will resume service from the first weekend of April in Argentina. Either he will once again have to take his troubles patiently, leaving Honda alone with its responsibilities and Pol Espargaro his destiny. And then there is the worst: Mark Marquez, exhausted, is done with MotoGP. But in any case, the imperative for the HRC is to find the equivalent, at least, of its eight-time world champion so as not to be at the mercy of his injuries and other repeated convalescences.
We are talking about a rider who, in 142 MotoGP starts since 2013, has won 59 victories, 99 podiums, 62 pole positions, 59 fastest laps and six world titles. Which are to be added to the other two taken in Moto3 and Moto2. A track record that hypnotized leaders Honda who will now have to come down from their ivory tower and organize job interviews. A hunt that they will have to do in enemy territory. Because Honda does not have a talent incubator worthy of the name.
Honda looks into the cases of Quartararo, Mir, Jorge Martin and Enea Bastianini
The first option would be to go and get a KTM Raúl Fernandez or one Pedro Acosta. But time is now running out with a Mark Marquez approaching his thirties and more and more often in the infirmary. So there is this approach that the rumor favors: to make a big hit on an established pilot.
Four names are put forward, and we will remember that there were only two during the off-season… These two, we inevitably find them with Fabio Quartararo and Joan Mir. The first city has even more embellished its rating by showing in Indonesia that the wet track no longer scared him. The other two potential candidates who have added themselves to the list since the start of the season are jorge martin and Enea Bastianini. Knowing that the recruitment of one would be one less obstacle for the other to settle in the place of Jack Miller next to Pecco Bagnaia. Honda is about to move. It remains to be seen in which direction.