‘Anti-hero Marc Marquez is not a diva’ – Honda MotoGP boss

Marc Marquez is not the 'diva' he is sometimes perceived as, with Team HRC boss Alberto Puig instead describing him as an 'anti-hero'

Marc Marquez - Repsol Honda

Team HRC boss Alberto Puig has described Marc Marquez as a ‘normal guy who becomes an animal’ on a bike, adding that he is delighted he took the step to re-sign for another four years.

Earlier this year the Spaniard – a six-time MotoGP World Champion – put pen to paper on an unprecedented four-year extension with Repsol Honda that will take him up to the conclusion of the 2024 season.

That puts him in range to continue working with Honda in his quest to become the most successful premier class rider in history.

However, Marquez’s dominance in recent years – which has seen him with his six titles in only seven attempts – has come at a relative price an indifferent image among fans, particularly in his occasional clashes on and off the track with Valentino Rossi.

It’s an image that Puig intimates is merely because of his sheer excellence on the bike, insisting his an ‘anti-hero’ who is perfectly normal the rest of the time.

“I have to confess, I know that this sounds like a prepared answer, but that's not true. Marc is really a very, very simple person.

"He is an anti-hero, he is not a superstar, but a real, normal guy who behaves quite normally towards others. He is not a diva, but when it comes to racing, he becomes an animal," says the former GP driver, looking at his protégé.”

From a team perspective, Puig says keeping Marquez at Repsol Honda is ideal for him because he is easy to work with.

“It's as simple as that. And of course that makes the work of everyone around him easier - his mechanics, his team manager, his trainer and also Honda benefit from it. We know that we work with one of the best drivers in the world, so it is obvious that we too have to get the most out of it.”

Could Marc Marquez ever leave Repsol Honda?

It’s a question we won’t be visiting for a while now Marquez has tied himself to a long period at Honda but there are many who believe the Spaniard has given himself the best opportunity to break MotoGP’s remaining records with the ‘best team’ before considering other options.

Interestingly, despite being MotoGP’s target, Marquez has never been realistically approached by any rivals to poach him. This is a reflection of how intertwined he is within the machinations of the Repsol Honda team, making his presence for any team complex at best, disruptive at worst.

However, should Marquez go ahead and push past Giacomo Agostini and Valentino Rossi’s seven premier class wins, it’s realistic to think he will attempt to assure his ‘GOAT’ status by attempting to do it all again with a different team.

While it is far too early to speculate as to whom, many predict he could be on KTM’s future radar. By 2024 the manufacturer should be right up to speed with its MotoGP programme, while its close ties to Red Bull – Marquez’s personal sponsor – should take the pressure off financially.

Either way, at 27, he certainly has time on his side.