With Johann Zarco ruled out of becoming Marc Marquez's 2019 team-mate by signing for KTM, the reigning four-time MotoGP champion was asked who he would like alongside him in the Repsol Honda garage next season.

"With Johann, I think he was of course one of the strong riders that Honda was thinking about," Marquez said.

"He's very fast. He showed to us that he improved every season and I think KTM have taken a very good rider for their project.

"So we will see now where he can arrive [with KTM], but still there is one season until then.

"About my team-mate, I already said that I want a strong team-mate," added Marquez, who has been partnered by Dani Pedrosa since joining the premier-class in 2013.

"Of course now for the riders all the pieces are starting to fall into place and everybody is looking for a team. But I think the only two riders [left] that are very strong are Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso. We will see.

"But of course I'm [signed] so I'm already happy."

2017 title runner-up and current world championship leader Dovizioso is expected to re-sign for Ducati.

The Italian said on Thursday they are "still speaking about that, but not really a big step".

Pedrosa's future is less clear, given Honda's discussions with the likes of Zarco.





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