The guessing game is over, at least for Honda.
For weeks, there’s been speculation over who would replace current MotoGP world champion Casey Stoner when he retires from motorcycle racing at the end of the season. Stoner races for Honda’s Repsol factory team, one of the most prestigious slots in motorcycle racing.
Now, Honda has officially announced what the rumour mill had suggested for a long time: Moto 2 ace (and current series leader) Marc Marquez will make the jump to Honda’s big-league team next season.
Until recently, this would have been impossible, thanks to a MotoGP rule that prevented rookie riders from riding for a factory team; instead, they were restricted to satellite teams or CRT teams. Like the rest of the MotoGP rulebook, though, this was a rule made to be broken; series officials voted it down recently, and now Marquez has a ride with Honda’s top team.
This means we can likely expect some interesting riding next season. Marquez is certainly a polarizing rider — some fans love his wild style, others say he’s reckless. Because he’s from Spain, we can also expect some off-track fireworks as well, since every time officials in the Spain-based series make a ruling in his favour, everyone else will accuse them of favouritism.