One of the unique factors surrounding Marc Marquez's latest MotoGP title triumph was that no other Honda rider won a race this season.

Marquez won twelve of them, on the way to a new points record and almost single-handedly sealing the triple crown of riders', teams' and constructors' titles for HRC.

The next best Honda rider, LCR's Cal Crutchlow, finished just ninth in the world championship and was the only other RCV competitor to feature on the podium.

But although this year's victory tally reads 12-0 for Marquez vs the other Honda competitors - and HRC has openly praised the Spaniard as being "from a different planet" - Repsol team manager Alberto Puig insisted the perception that only Marquez can be successful on a Honda is short-sighted.

"The fact is that in the last 18 years Honda has won the MotoGP title ten times, with four different riders. Yamaha [has won the title seven times] with two riders and Ducati [once] with one rider," Puig said.

"So, with these facts, we can say that the easiest bike to ride is a Honda! Because it has won the championship with many riders - Rossi, Hayden, Marc, Casey.

"I don’t know what the other teams are saying, but we don’t care so much about this. The total performance of a team is not only about the bike or rider it's the complete, whole structure.

"So I think this [impression of Honda only winning because they have Marquez] is just an idea, but it's not a fact."

Only two riders have ever beaten Marquez in a MotoGP championship season.

That was back in 2015, when Yamaha team-mates Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi finished first and second in the standings.

Marquez is now just one MotoGP title away from matching Rossi on seven premier-class world championships and nine in all classes.

But if the MotoGP clock could be wound back ten years, how would Marquez compare against Rossi in his prime?

"It's difficult to say because maybe it's interesting to fight with Marquez at the same age!" Rossi smiled. "Can be very interesting, yes!

"But unfortunately, I'm a lot more older and we need to concentrate on the reality and try to be stronger in this situation."

Marquez, 26, is currently recovering from shoulder surgery for the second winter in succession. Marc will joined by younger brother Alex as his new team-mate at the factory Repsol team next season.

 

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