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Luca Marini Leaves VR46 Ducati To Replace Marc Marquez At Honda

Honda Racing Corporation officially announces Luca Marini as the replacement for six-time MotoGP champion Marc Marquez, securing the rider on a two-year contract
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By Yashraj Singh

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1 mins read

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Published on November 28, 2023

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Highlights

  • Marini's move to Honda alongside teammate Joan Mir for the 2024 MotoGP season reshapes the factory lineup.
  • The shift marks a renewed tie between the Marini family and Honda.
  • Late-season standout Fabio Di Giannantonio is anticipated to fill Marini's vacancy at VR46.

Honda Racing Corporation has made a pivotal announcement regarding its MotoGP lineup, confirming Luca Marini from the VR46 Ducati squad as the official replacement for six-time champion Marc Marquez, who departs to join Gresini Ducati after an illustrious 11-year journey with the team. Marini's move to Honda was widely anticipated after VR46 recently revealed that he wouldn't remain with them for the 2024 season, ultimately solidifying the growing speculation.

 

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An intriguing detail within Marini's contract has now come to light, with Honda securing a two-year commitment from the 26-year-old rider. This development diverges from Honda's previously reported inclination towards offering only one-year deals, a strategy aimed at retaining flexibility for the 2025 season. Marini's extended commitment to Honda indicates a notable departure from the anticipated one-year deal approach and potentially signifies the closure of the Marquez chapter at Honda.

 

The move brings Marini alongside his new teammate, Joan Mir, for the 2024 MotoGP season, leaving Mir as the sole representative within the factory line-up entering the final year of his current contract. Marini is scheduled to debut on the RC213V during the post-season test on Tuesday, an exciting moment following his notable late-season performances.

 

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Marini's transition to Honda has also led to reshuffling in the MotoGP landscape, as late-season standout Fabio Di Giannantonio is expected to fill Marini's spot at VR46. The formal announcement from Honda indicates their enthusiasm in welcoming Marini, acknowledging his successes in Moto2 and the premier class, where he has secured multiple podiums, pole positions, and sprint podiums during his tenure.

 

Interestingly, Marini's move revives the historical ties between the Marini family and Honda, as Valentino Rossi, enjoyed success with the Japanese manufacturer earlier in his career. Rossi secured three of his seven premier class titles with Honda between 2001 and 2003 before transitioning to Yamaha in 2004. The anticipated shift of Di Giannantonio to the VR46 squad is further bolstered by a string of recent strong performances, hinting at the Italian rider's potential move next season following his victory at Losail during the Valencia Grand Prix weekend.

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