Martin: If I beat Marquez, I'm one of the best in history

After finishing runner-up in 2023, the Spaniard has thrown down the gauntlet ahead of facing the eight-time World Champion on near-equal machinery

It may only be the second week of the new year but battle lines have already been drawn between two familiar foes: Jorge Martin and Marc Marquez. Ahead of a mouth-watering 2024 where we’ll see the Prima Pramac Racing rider go up against the eight-time World Champion on near-equal machinery, last year’s runner-up has said 2024 brings with it "one more incentive: Marc on a Ducati".

Martin and Marquez have had their fair share of moments over recent years, creating a rivalry that is far from just simmering away in the background. The pair first came to blows at Silverstone in 2021 when Marquez made contact with the number 89, ending his race, just moments after he'd also been nudged wide by Martin. Then at Phillip Island a year later, the pair would swap paint once again, leading to Martin complaining post-race about how aggressive the #93 was. 

It continued into 2023, when Marquez's now-infamous incident with Miguel Oliveira in Portimao also saw Martin caught in the crossfire, and that ruined the Pramac rider's Grand Prix just one day on from finishing second in the inaugural Tissot Sprint. The duo would scrap lap after lap, corner after corner for a podium spot in Le Mans a month or so later. Finally, with the Championship on the line for Martin and in Marquez’s Repsol Honda swansong in Valencia, they collided once more in the most dramatic of circumstances.

It's all building towards a must-watch 2024 World Championship, where no doubt we'll see the Spanish duo going toe-to-toe on more than one occasion.

Speaking at the premiere of his self-titled documentary 'Martinator', available to watch now in Spain on DAZN, the 25-year-old said: "The goal for 2024 is to reach Valencia not with 14 points [to the leader], but with enough margin to be able to enjoy it.

"I think it will be a very long season, we will not have to make mistakes, but it is clear that we have one more incentive, which is Marc with the Ducati. It will be very interesting. For me, I think it's a very good opportunity, because at the end I have the opportunity to beat one of the best in history, or the best.

"Then, if I manage to beat him, I will consider myself as one of the best riders in history too."

He also revealed that the much-talked-about clause in his contract that would see him promoted to the factory team if he clinched the World Championship was in fact true, saying he had "two black suits" ready for the Valencia Test.

"I don't know if I can say this," started Martin. "But on Sunday in Valencia, I already had two black suits ready in case on Monday I got on another bike. But well, it didn't come out and I don't care anymore. I fought to be champion, I was very close to Pecco and I did it for Pramac.

"I’m proud to continue and proud of them, because in the end, if I moved, I wouldn't be back with my team either, so I think they deserve to fight for another world championship and they deserve to get it."