125 GP Interview
This weekend, Marc Márquez has a very special Motorcycle Grand Prix. The race at the Circuit de Catalunya always gives any Catalan rider an extra boost, as racing a few kilometres from your house, surrounded by your home crowd, including family, friends, acquaintances and thousands of fans rooting for the local motorcycle riders, always gives added incentive.
Like everyone, Marc Márquez has a special history with the Montmeló track, a history that starts when he was just ten years old.
What is your relationship with this circuit? When did you first step foot on it?
“I don’t really remember it but I know that the first time I was at the Circuit de Catalunya was to compete in the Open Racc 50. It was the first time I’d competed at major circuits and this was one of the first that I raced at, where I also won. The initial feelings I had on this track were very special because it was a very wide and very long circuit and it seemed liked it would never end. Since then, as you go up a class, everything gets narrower”.
Does being at a World Championship venue when you are, in your case, ten years old and arriving at this track for the first time have an impact?
“Yes it does have an impact because whether you like it or not, being at such a big venue, where you know that World Championship races are held makes it very special. But it’s also true that at that age, you’re not really aware of where you are. You go to a track, you race, you go to have a good time and you treat it just like any other circuit”.
What is your best memory of the Circuit de Catalunya?
“My best memory is perhaps my two World Championship visits. Last year, I had a very good race, in which I clocked up the fastest race lap and I lost a podium finish in the last minute. And two years ago, I finished the race for the first time among the top ten in the Grand Prix here. They’re nice memories but there are also some bad”.
What are they?
“Here I lost the Catalunya Championship in the last race. I clashed with another rider and fell. They’re things that happen in races and it just so happens that it was here”.
This circuit is always in video games. Who has the record in your house, your brother Alex or you?
“It changes every weekend because we are very competitive and we are always beating one another. It depends on the day and there are always good and bad but he usually beats me. Although there’s a big difference between the video game and the real circuit; if you fall in the game there’s no danger but here it’s very different. At home on the sofa, you can risk it a bit more because nothing is going to happen”.
Does racing in a Grand Prix in which you know that your family, friends, classmates and fans will be nearby supporting you put added pressure on you or does it give you an extra boost when you go out on the track?
“It’s true that there is that pressure because you want to do it well in front of your friends, family and all those people who trust in you and have always supported you but you always try to change it into motivation to improve and get that extra push. I try to treat it like any other Grand Prix so that too much motivation doesn’t play a dirty trick”.