The Marc Marquez we see at the track has become a very familiar figure highlighted by his unique riding style, impossible saves and aggressive racing which, more often than not, results in the Repsol Honda rider ending the weekend on the top step of the podium.

But the Marquez off the track is a character those outside his inner circle rarely get a full insight into. The Red Bull and Dorna collaboration Marquez Unlimited , which plots his recovery from his first shoulder surgery and charge to a record-breaking sixth MotoGP world title, gives a snapshot into the world champion and what makes him tick.

While the truly raw and sensitive parts are likely to have been edited out of the final cut, given the documentary is produced by a key Marquez sponsor, there’s still plenty on show from the Spaniard and how he operates within his team to secure the biggest prize of all.

Here’s a breakdown of the key moments from the documentary, while the full film can be found here.

Marquez’s devotion to his recovery from shoulder surgery was a mental and physical battle

“I really needed this. I even got my elbow down,” Marquez says fresh from his first time back on a bike. “Once I was turning and trying to get my elbow down, which is what I was aiming for, it was bothering me.”

Marquez came into 2019 having undergone corrective shoulder surgery after suffering numerous dislocations, with the reigning MotoGP world champion effectively given reconstructed shoulder ligaments using a part of a bone on the shoulder and titanium screws to anchor the muscle in place.

The extensive operation in normal circumstances would mean six months rehabilitation but in reality Marquez had under three months to regain his fitness in time for the 2019 opener in Qatar.

Marquez’s team disassembled all the wheels from his bikes at his training complex in Cervera, forcing him to focus on physiotherapy and conditioning work to allow his shoulder to heal and regain strength.

While the physical challenge became clear, light is shed on Marquez’s mental battle – often against his own instincts – as he grows desperate to get back on a bike.

Carlos J. Garcia, Marquez’s physiotherapist and the person credited with overseeing his accelerated recovery, described it as “keeping him on a tight leash” with a constant reminder of the ultimate goal.

The sense of relief when Marquez first gets back on a bike, albeit a minibike at a local karting track, is clear but it also sharpens his focus on the seriousness of his condition just one week before testing restarts.

A careful balance of sticking to his tight rehabilitation schedule but not overworking and causing more problems is a challenge both Marquez and his entire team faces up to, especially when restricting his pre-season testing programme, with the Spaniard accepting both he and Honda would be on the backfoot coming into the season.

While conceding he wasn’t 100% fit for the Qatar opener, despite telling the world’s media and his rivals the opposite, second place to Andrea Dovizioso in a final-corner fight delivers a huge psychological boost knowing his efforts over the winter were paying off.

Marquez’s maturity makes him a tougher opponent

2019 marked Marquez’s seventh season in the premier class and the MotoGP spotlight, and the experience shows as a methodical and confident rider comes across on screen compared to the occasionally rash youngster of previous years.

The detailed approach, which Marquez often credited for each of his wins last year, is apparent in every part of his race weekend from pre-weekend briefings to weighing up different race strategies for each of his rivals.

While Marquez’s instincts and natural ability have never been questioned, we get a sense of greater race craft guided by his crew chief Santi Hernandez, which leads to his record-breaking season in terms of most points (420) and most podiums (18).

Marquez even concedes while he remains an aggressive rider on track, he has aimed to control his emotions and uses them to his advantage.

Aside from his domination on the track, Marquez’s ability to pull off stunning saves and avoid crashing has also become a distinct strength in his armoury.

But rather than put down to luck, Marquez and his team detail how the art of saving crashes has become a well-honed skill.

“The truth is that it’s about the way he rides, he’s always on the limit, on the edge,” Hernandez, Marquez’s crew chief, explains. “So, he’s always ready or waiting for the moment when the bike reacts, which means that when it does, he’s ready, and he can respond instinctively.”

Marquez takes greater joy from seeing his brother succeed

This might have been something we already expected, but Marquez has a keen eye to track his young brother’s exploits fighting for the Moto2 world title.

With his 2019 MotoGP crown already sealed back at the Thai GP, Marquez’s focus shifts to Alex Marquez’s chance to secure the Moto2 world crown in Malaysia.

The tension from watching his brother’s Moto2 race at Sepang while preparing for his own race later in the day becomes palpable, as he genuinely looks in more stress than at any point during his own season, while the celebration and elation at seeing his brother wrap up the title demonstrates the tight bond between the siblings.

The film ends with the announcement the pair will be Repsol Honda team-mates in 2020, striking up intrigue on how that will affect their dynamic for the season ahead.

 

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