Marc Marquez‘s victory in Sunday’s German MotoGP extended his unbeaten run at the Sachsenring to a stunning eleven in a row.
More importantly for the Spaniard and his Honda team, it was their first win since Marquez was sidelined for nine months by complications to a fractured right arm.
“Winning here at the Sachsenring is very important. It has been an incredibly important day, but even more so for the rider. Marc Márquez has spent a long-time suffering, without racing, without results and this is very painful for a rider like him,” said Repsol Honda team manager Alberto Puig.
“We have to appreciate what he has done and thank him for all his efforts during this period, then what he did in Germany was truly amazing.
“It was very important for the Repsol Honda Team, for all the staff working in HRC, all the people supporting us here at the track and behind the scenes, engineers, technicians, everyone. It’s a special day. It’s a day to thank everyone, especially Marc.”
The 581 days since Marquez and Honda had last won a race, at Valencia 2019, also formed HRC’s longest losing streak since 1982.
But Puig is under no illusions that the persistent rear grip problems with the current RC213V have suddenly been solved and it’ll be straight back to work at Assen this weekend.
“For a company such as Honda, that is used to winning many races throughout their racing life, this period has been very painful. But we understand that life can be difficult sometimes and at this moment we have some problems,” Puig said.
“We know as well that Marc is not one hundred percent fit, but Sunday was an important day because we could manage a victory, but we do not believe that our problems are fixed.
“We will work to give all our riders, not only Marc, the best bike possible.”
Puig added: “Speaking honestly, I do not think [this win changes the rest of the season]. I think we have to solve our problems and Marc still has to keep recovering. We will have ups and downs this season.
“The result at the Sachsenring was very important, but it doesn’t mean we have now fixed everything. Thinking like this would be a mistake, we should think about what we can improve little by little and face the new battle in Assen.”
Team-mate Pol Espargaro was the next best Honda rider on Sunday, in tenth place at 14.8s from Marquez. Espargaro now plans to use the same machinery and set-up as Marquez as soon as possible, to try and get ‘closer’ to the #93.