The worst kept secret in the MotoGP paddock was confirmed this morning with the announcement that the Moto2 championship leader, Marc Marquez, will race in the premier class for the Repsol Honda squad next season.
Marquez, a former 125cc world champion, will form an all Spanish lineup for the team alongside German Grand Prix winner Dani Pedrosa.
Marquez’ graduation to a factory ride with Honda has come as little surprise given that the factory was instrumental in overturning the rookie rule which saw riders such as Ben Spies forced to spend a season racing satellite machinery before being eligible for a factory seat.
The news that Pedrosa will continue with the team was also expected given that Casey Stoner will retire at the end of the current campaign. Pedrosa has been in consistent form thus far this season and finds himself second in the championship standings.
The all-Spanish partnership will thrill Repsol who have used both riders extensively in marketing campaigns over the last number of years.
With this announcement another piece of the MotoGP silly season has been confirmed leaving the factory Ducati rides as the biggest question marks remaining. Cal Cruthclow has admitted to being deep in discussions for one seat with Valentino Rossi making positive noises about remaining with the Bologna outfit.
The second factory Yamaha ride, alongside Jorge Lorenzo, is also still to be confirmed but it now looks to be a straight fight between Andrea Dovizioso and Ben Spies.