With 8 Grand Prix world championship titles under his belt at the young age of 26, Marc Marquez is one of the most accomplished motorcycle racers of all time. It’s a name like his that makes you want the same tires for your motorcycle as he uses when you go shopping for replacements. 6 of his 8 titles are in MotoGP, and he is also the proud owner of several other records, such as the most premier-class victories in a single season, in 2014.
Marc Marquez’s story and passion for motorcycle racing started in his young childhood, and it has continued to this day. With his name being synonymous with successful racing, more is expected of him in the years to come. Here is his story, from beginning to present day.
Born in a small town in Spain, with an early passion for motorcycling
This successful racer’s place of birth is Cervera, a small town located at the heart of Catalunya, about 100km away from Barcelona. Cervera counts around 10,000 residents, with Marc Marquez being, without a doubt, its most famous native. Although, due to his success, he could live anywhere else, it is here that he returns whenever he doesn’t compete so that he can be with his friends and family.
Marquez’s passion for motorcycle racing started at a very young age. When he turned 4 years old, he wished for a motorbike, and his parents decided to grant him his wish on Christmas. Little did they know at the time that their choice would help their son become such a famous name in the history of motorcycle racing.
As close to their town, there was an industrial area where he could ride in his new motorbike, his father took him there, and Marquez had his first taste of what racing felt like. In 1998, at only 5 years old, he took part in Enduro for Kids, as a competitor in the Initiation category. Although his declared love was already motocross, at the time, there was no such category for kids his age.
He would start performing motocross training a bit later, in 1999, when his dad bought a used 50cc off-road bike and helped him expand his horizons. During these years, he continued to participate in Enduro events, and in 2001, he won the Catalan Championship in his category.
Until his first World Championship debut, in 2008, at the age of 15, Marquez took part in various motocross events, and it was during those times that he realized he would like to do road racing, as well. In 2003 he took the title in the Open RACC 50 event, and in 2005, he won both the 125cc Catalan Championship and the 85cc Catalan Supermotard Championship. His Catalan success continued in 2006.
The youngest racer to make the World Championship podium
The rider’s ambitions would not be limited to the borders of the region he was born in. Marquez took any chance he was given to prove his worth. In 2006, for the first time, he took part in the Spanish Road Racing Championship (CEV) and placed 8th. However, the next year, he only came in 9th because of several crashes.
That might have been a bit of a setback, but Marquez soldiered on. As part of the Repsol KTM Team, he took part in the Portuguese Grand Prix. Although the start of the season was not favorable, at first, in his 6th race, at the British Grand Prix, he came in 3rd and was celebrated as the youngest rider to ever climb on the podium at a World Championship event.
However, due to multiple problems related to crashes and injuries, he couldn’t take part in 4 races. Still, he managed a personal achievement as he came in 13th on the overall leaderboard. Seeing how much missed from the competition, it was a remarkable feat and a sign of the success he would know later on.
The following year, he did better, as he managed to come in the first 5 places in most races. Another record would be achieved, too, as Marquez became the second-youngest rider ever to take pole position in the World Championship, at the French Grand Prix.
Marc Marquez’s first World Championship Title and what followed
His career was already on an ascending path when he became a part of the Ajo Motorsport team in 2010. That would be a glorious year for Marquez, and mark the beginning of a series of crucial achievements that continues. While at first, some problems with his bike prevented him from showing all he got, his lucky star would start to shine.
It was during this season that Marquez achieved the first victory in his professional career as a racer, at Mugello. At only 17 years old, Marquez became the World Champion, with 10 wins. What naturally followed was for him to climb the ladder and participate in Moto2 events, which started to happen the next year, in 2011.
A series of victories happened that year, but Marquez would also know some bad luck. He finished Le Mans in first place and second place at Montmeló. With ups and downs, he came in second in the overall score calculations. A crash prevented him from taking part in the final two races, and that was the cause of his inability to get the title. However, due to his outstanding performance, he received Rookie of the Year honor.
2012-2019 – the road to legend
If there were one thing to define Marc Marquez and his career as a motorcycle racer, that would be determination. Although 2012 started badly for him since he needed extensive surgery after a crash, the same year, he managed to secure the title of Moto2 World Champion. From 2013, he started to take part in MotoGP events, and from that point forward, the array of successes would not stop.
It would take Marc Marquez only two races to earn his first MotoGP victory. That also brought him another record: the youngest ever rider to win a premier-class GP. He would obtain other records during the same year, and by now, everyone knew his name and what he was capable of at the young age of 20. Another notable record from that year was snatched when Marques became the youngest rider to have ever won 4 successive premier-class Grand Prix races.
His first MotoGP season was also the first when he became a MotoGP champion for the first time. From there, the door was open to all the possible achievements in this category. Marquez would repeat the same performance in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019, thus bringing the number of his MotoGP World Champion to 6 in total.
To prove that he could only get better year after year, Marquez managed an impressive feat in 2019. During the first 14 rounds, he managed to accumulate 300 points, proving that he could be a consistent rider all around. To make it clear what heights Marquez’s career managed to reach, with his 2019 World Championship title in the premier class, he brought his total number of absolute victories to 8.
Also, he was recognized as the youngest rider to achieve 6 premier-class World Championship titles and the youngest rider to come in first place in 8 World Championships.
The Ant of Cervera
Marc Marquez has a deep love for his place of birth, and that is where he still chooses to train as he considers that there are hardly any other better dirt tracks where he could ride to his heart’s content. In Cervera, there is a fan club carrying his name, managed by his uncle, and there is also an exhibition dedicated to him housed by the Museum of Cervera.
The motif Marquez prefers is that of the ant, a symbol that can be noticed on the gear he wears during competitions. There is a strong reason why he chose this creature as his motif. It referred to his beginnings when he was so small compared to other riders that he earned the nickname Ant. The nickname was also an endearing term as it alluded to an ant’s ability to carry 100 times its body weight and Marquez’s incredible feats on the track.
In his hometown, however, people prefer to call him El Tro de Cervera, which translates as the Thunder of Cervera, something that they believed would express better his impressive achievements.