Today at Honda’s home track of Twin-Ring Motegi, Marc Marquez became the youngest rider in history to take back-to-back MotoGP world titles, beating the existing record held by the late, great Mike Hailwood by some 18 months.
The works Repsol rider took second place in the race, finishing behind former champion Jorge Lorenzo, and celebrated in style with a trackside Samurai ritual before returning to parc ferme for a massive celebration with his team and family. Marquez is 21 years 237 days old while Hailwood was 23 years 152 days when he won his second successive 500cc title in 1963.
It was a double celebration for the Marquez family as younger brother Alex also won the Moto3 race to increase his lead in that championship over Jack Miller to 25 points with three races left.
“I am really happy for the title at Honda’s home circuit, it’s incredible to get it. Thanks to my family, the team and Honda for giving me the best material for win the title,” said Marquez, who now has four Grand Prix championship trophies in his cabinet.
“Last year was difficult and this year it maybe looked easy but there was a lot of pressure there. I tried to manage well but felt it. I managed a perfect first half of the season but made some mistakes in the second part. It was really difficult to keep the level of concentration, people always expect a lot from you and the pressure is high.
“When I start the season I feel so go, we got a good advantage with Jorge and Valentino struggling. Until the end you never know, you can pick up injuries and you know there will be some mistakes. There was a lot of help from Honda to my team which was important to keep the motivation.
“It was not an easy start, breaking my leg with lots of people saying I was stupid for going dirt-track but you have to train. I was able to win at Qatar which gave me a lot of confidence. I was able to use that and the small advantage we had.
“It is difficult to believe I have two MotoGP title but I enjoy it. I look forward to next year when maybe we can raise our level.”
Key stats for Marquez' second title:
He is the first Spanish rider to win back-to-back world titles in the premier class of Grand Prix racing.
During 2014 Marquez became the first rider since Giacomo Agostini in 1970 to win the opening 10 premier class GP races of the season.
The 10 successive wins by Marquez in 2014 is a new record for most successive wins in the MotoGP class.
In 2014 he also became the youngest rider to win 10 successive premier class GP races, at the age of 21 years 174 days, taking the record from Mike Hailwood who was 24 years 94 days old when in 1964 he won the tenth of a twelve race winning sequence.
Marquez is the first Honda rider to clinch a world title at the Motegi circuit, which is owned by Honda.
With three races remaining in 2014, Marquez has already stood on the top step of the podium 11 times during the year, equalling the record for most MotoGP victories in a single season that was achieved by Valentino Rossi in both the 2002 and 2005 seasons.