It’s a statistic that sums up Honda’s current predicament.

While Pol Espargaro may have taken the heavily-revised 2022 RCV’s only podium so far, in Qatar, results since have shown that HRC remains heavily dependent on Marquez.

Honda is not alone in that respect; Yamaha is in a similar situation with reigning champion Fabio Quartararo.

But while Quartararo is leading this year’s standings, the problem for HRC is that – physical issues aside - not even eight-time world champion Marquez could extract enough speed from the latest bike.

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Before he withdrew for another round of surgery on his troublesome right arm, Marquez was frequently heard making pre-race comments that would have been unthinkable: “5th-10th is our position at the moment and it’s where we will try to fight.”

And he was right.

In the eight races before heading to the US for bone realignment, Marquez took a best finish of 4th, plus a 5th, three 6th places and a 10th.

Honda’s best result since Marquez stepped back is 10th place, leaving them sixth and last in the constructors’ championship. Espargaro has dropped from the early 3rd down to 17th in the riders’ standings, with LCR’s Takaaki Nakagami and Alex Marquez 16th and 18th respectively.

“We Honda riders need help from Japan, that there is a change because all the riders are suffering,” Marc Marquez told DAZN.

“[When] I raced this year, I too had difficulties, not just because of my arm but also because I couldn't get along well with the bike and that's where we are forced to change and fight for the championship in the coming seasons."

Marquez will attend this weekend’s Austrian MotoGP to get a direct update on Honda’s plans for the 2023 bike, a prototype version of which could be available for September’s Misano test.

Might Marquez be fit to ride at that test? While his arm is progressing well, the #93 is yet to get back on any form of bike and made clear he won’t rush his return.

"At the end of August, 12 weeks from the operation, I will do a CT scan where we will have to see an evolution in bone recovery and will give us indications,” Marquez said.

“But if for any reason I have to extend the recovery by two weeks, I will have to. I cannot throw away all the work that has been done so far.

"When the doctors' give the okay and I have sufficient strength, riding a motorcycle will be one of the first things I will do because that is where the specific muscles work best and we will be able to get to 100% as soon as possible.”

'Interesting year for the rider market'

The 2023 season won’t just see technical changes at Honda, but a big shake-up of its rider line-up.

Alex Marquez is already confirmed as leaving LCR for Gresini Ducati, and being replaced by Alex Rins, while Espargaro is expected to depart for Tech3 KTM and be replaced by Joan Mir.

Nakagami’s LCR future is also unclear, with Moto2 race winner Ai Ogura also in contention.

“It is turning out to be an interesting year for the [rider] market, there are a lot of movements,” Marquez said. “[Some] riders who were in Honda moved on, my brother to Ducati, Pol Espargaro to KTM.

“Two places remain free, one will be occupied by Alex Rins, a great rider as he demonstrated at Silverstone, where he rode at a high level. It seems, so they say, that the other Repsol Honda will be for Joan Mir. There is nothing confirmed, at least that I know of.”

Of his brother’s Ducati move, Marquez said: “We live together and, speaking with him, he needed different motivations. It is difficult to keep them when you fall so far behind.”

HRC test rider Stefan Bradl will continue to replace Marquez, alongside Espargaro, at the Red Bull Ring, where Espargaro's KTM return could be officially confirmed.