The third operation that Marc Marquez underwent yesterday might re-open the riders’ market, at least with regard to Honda... While most MotoGP riders have already signed a contract for 2021, there are a few who haven’t. Marc Marquez’s estimated recovery time, of roughly 5-6 months, means he might not return until after the season has begun, leaving Honda to consider various scenarios. A replacement is needed... but who?
Bradl or Alex Marquez: both in with a chance
There are various possibilities, the most obvious being the return of Stefan Bradl. The Honda test rider, who already stood in for Marquez this season, would be a good choice. He does his job and can help improve the rideability of the RC213V.
But, considering that the 2020 season has been one of its worst to date in terms of results, HRC may well consider other solutions.
Another possible might be Alex Marquez who exceeded expectations this season to score two podiums and quickly adapt to the RC213V in a way not even five-time champ Jorge Lorenzo was able to do. Or even Andrea Dovizioso.
Would Dovizioso accept?
The former Ducati rider is the only ‘missing peg' in the 2021 MotoGP championship. But would he agree to replace Marquez for two or three months, even if it’s with a factory team? Don’t forget that Dovi has turned down various offers, both to ride and test ride, as he didn’t deem the projects valid, so a substitute role for only a few races might not suit him.
On the flip side though, being away from the tracks for a whole year might mean the end of his career, particularly if we consider the new ‘revelations’ coming up through the lower categories.
Many question marks
So while the Honda option might be something for Dovi to think about, at the same time the choice of replacement is particularly important for HRC.
Who looks to be the most likely replacement for Marquez? Tell us what you think by voting in our survey.
Translated by Heather Watson