Last Sunday, Marc Márquez finished in style the MotoGP World Championship overseas tour that took him to Thailand, Japan, Australia and Malaysia: with yet another victory, the third of the four overseas rounds. It was his ninth win of the season, that he will complete next week with the Valencia GP. There, Márquez will be able to celebrate with his fans the title he secured in Japan, the seventh of his career, that started at the 2008 Portuguese Grand Prix.
Question. Ten years in the World Championship; you are a young veteran. What do you remember from your debut?
Answer Time passes so fast! I remember the first race as if it was yesterday. I arrived in Estoril after having been injured during the pre-season. I was really nervous and in the first practice everyone overtook me. That weekend I crashed three or four times because I wanted to push more than I really could, as always. Ten years have passed from that first Grand Prix, but I feel as if it was something recent.
Apart from the titles, which are the memories you keep from these ten years?
A During this time, the titles have been the most important, but if I had to keep something from my ten years in this championship I would say the lifestyle, the way in which it sets your day to day, your character. You meet many people, you mature like a boy going from 15 to 25. I’d keep the moments I lived in the circuit but out of the track, which is where we really spend the most time, although people usually can’t see that part.
You keep learning and growing season after season, what did you get from 2018?
A This season we did very well. What do you get? Experience. You find yourself in new situations and you’ve got to learn how to manage them, you learn how to be with your family and friends… This is something that I usually highlight because it’s crucial, you’ve got to know how to be in your garage. On track, you learn and grow from a sporting point of view, but the most important thing is that you mature and see different people, go through different things and you get an idea of which is the place where you need to be.
Q Last year you said that with Dovizioso you learnt not to underestimate anyone. Which is the rider that surprised you the most this year?
A There is a rider that surprises you every year and this one, in the MotoGP category the one that impressed me the most was Jorge Lorenzo. There were races in which no one would bet on him and, in the end, he was one of the references in the championship and has won a lot of races. That means that, when someone has talent and has been a champion, they can be champions again. It’s in those things that you show your mental strength and I think Lorenzo has known how to react correctly.
Q Since the lights went out in Qatar in March, which do you think has been the most important moment?
A There have been several crucial moments, but maybe the most important were the wins at Jerez and Le Mans, where I won two races and my rivals failed, specially Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo. There’s where you get a good advantage that you can manage if you can keep your cool during the most critical moments.