Honda were back on the top step of a MotoGP podium for the first time since November 2019, following Marc Marquez’ ninth premier class Sachsenring victory.
Since returning to the sport in Portimao following a nine month layoff due to breaking his right humerus, Marquez had struggled to replicate the type of performances we have become accustomed to seeing.
It was a length of time away from competitive racing that was completely new to him, however, Marquez found solace during the difficult period when speaking with close friend and former five-time MotoGP world champion Mick Doohan.
During the post race press conference, Marquez discussed what a ‘30 minute phone call’ with the Australian entailed, but also if returning to the form that saw him claim an 11th straight win in Germany was possible.
“When I was injured, always I feel like I will come back and I will come back strong. But since the first time I ride the MotoGP bike in Portimao, I say ‘okay, I am far, very far from my level,” added Marquez.
“From that point it was very hard. The next races was even harder. It’s difficult but I just forget everything and focus on my personal and professional side. When I say forget everything; I mean extra comments, comments from outside.
“I just listen to the people that want to help me, and I try to find something or some comments that helped me – which was a phone call from Mick Doohan. I met (with) him in Mugello and I know that he had a similar situation in 92 and 93.
“I was 30 minutes in a phone call with him and I was just listening, he was speaking everything. He was explaining his situation, but was also like he was explaining my situation.
“It was the exact same problems like understanding the bike, not riding like you want to, stupid mistakes, stupid crashes, some races you will be fast, practice you will be slower and you don’t know why, and all the problems that I have this year – he explain and had in the past.”
Aside from one legend talking to another, Marquez also alluded to the role his close circle has played in making this comeback possible.
Marquez said: “When I crossed the line I thought about all the people that helped me to be here today. From a difficult situation it is impossible to go out alone, you need the people, the team, the doctors, the physio, the manager, the family, the friends, everybody together to help you and I find (this).
“All of them were helping me a lot and they are helping me a lot to come back. It’s true that the next race we will come back in our real situation, but today it’s time to enjoy and to say thanks to all of them.
“I especially want to say thanks to Honda because the respect they give to me during all these years was something that I appreciate a lot.”