Shortly after Sunday’s Austrian MotoGP, it was officially confirmed that the Frenchman will leave Pramac Ducati, where he has raced for the past three seasons.

His destination will be Lucio Cecchinello’s team, effectively in place of Alex Rins, which offered a two-year deal compared to a single year extension at Ducati.

The move means Zarco will swap the world championship leading Desmosedici for the struggling RC213V, which has taken just one race victory in the last two years.

But the 33-year-old revealed that, had he continued with Ducati, it may not have been in Pramac.

That suggests, despite Marco Bezzecchi now appearing likely to remain at VR46, Zarco might still have been moved from Pramac to Gresini, which currently runs year-old bikes.

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“I had to think for a few weeks about it,” Zarco told “[Despite] doing these good results for three years with the Pramac team, it has been tough to sign again now.

“There are many competitive Ducatis, many young guys, so it seems it was tough to have another signature and even it was not sure if we were going to be with Pramac or another team in Ducati.

“So the offer and discussion with Honda and Cecchinello was pretty interesting. I get the opportunity to have a project for two years, at 33 years old. It’s quite good to project yourself and, as a sportsman, do the best you can.

“I know myself when I'm on the bike, I give a lot and I can give also good information.

“I've grown a lot since 2019 when I got the difficult experience with the KTM. But Honda it’s another story, even if they are struggling now, they don't have the winning bike right now, they are still Honda and they have the power to come back if they find the right way for the development.

“So I will be the most proud if I can be part of this and very glad if I can perform.

“I still have many races to do with Pramac. It seems like tomorrow is already 2024, but we still have almost have half a season to do, and really Ducati is still giving all the best for me, as I'm doing for them.

“We are professional and we will do the best results we can. I think podiums are still there. We have to fight with Pramac for this first position in the teams’ championship and even for myself if I can stay in the top five for the championship overall it will be a great satisfaction.”

Zarco made three starts for LCR and Honda after splitting from KTM in mid-2019. He then joined Ducati, via Avintia, the following season, moving to Pramac in 2020.

Having also completed a private test for Suzuki before two debut MotoGP seasons with Tech3 Yamaha, Zarco has experience of five different manufacturers.

Crucially, while Alex Rins felt disappointed by the slow progress of new parts to the LCR garage, after six years as a factory Suzuki rider, Zarco has been a satellite rider for all but his half-season with Red Bull KTM.

“I don't have the same character as Alex Rins and with the different experiences from Yamaha, KTM, the Honda for three races, I even tried the Suzuki seven years ago. And now I’ve got four years on the Ducati. So I try to adapt myself to many situations,” Zarco said.

“Alex won the race in Austin. That was incredible. But then he has been struggling and he got also the injury so has been a tough time for him.

“I don't know how things inside [HRC] was for him, but it's a challenge I take and I think with the experience I have, I'm ready to control the situation as well as possible.”

Zarco also insists he is much better prepared for the challenge ahead than when he made the short-lived switch to KTM.

“It's going to be different because my life is different now. I grew up as a sportsman, and I can see the situation with one step back. When I jumped from the Yamaha to the KTM, I wanted to win races at any cost, so that's why I've been feeling very bad when I was really back of the classification. That's why I said to KTM, ‘better to stop than pay me for nothing’.

“Now it's another mentality. And as I say, I take it as a project, that is pretty good, Because saving these two years in MotoGP is the best place to be, and is also the place I want to be because I'm very competitive.

“So that's why I want to live well this challenge and I will live it better than I did in KTM because I'm just more mature. So I know that in case of problems, I will handle myself much better than in the past.”