Honda ahead with 2017 MotoGP preparations - Marc Marquez

Honda is already ahead of where it was for this MotoGP season with its preparation for 2017, championship leader Marc Marquez believes

Honda ahead with 2017 MotoGP preparations - Marc Marquez

Marquez and team-mate Dani Pedrosa tested Honda's 2017 engine after the San Marino Grand Prix last month, looking to get on top of what has been its Achilles heel in 2016.

The factory squad also stayed on at Aragon for a test last Wednesday, and running its new engine for the first time at Misano represents a significant step over having to wait until the start of winter testing after the Valencia season finale.

"We got a lot of good information," Marquez said.

"I'm happy, because the positive thing is we put the engine on track before Valencia.

"Last year, one of the mistakes was that we arrived in Valencia with the new engine and the [off-season] break to modify something was not enough time, and this time we have tested already.

"We need to improve some areas, but it was an interesting test."

Both Honda riders were tight-lipped on the new engine, but Marquez suggested it was already on par with this year's unit straight out of the box.

Honda has struggled with acceleration issues this year, but has made progress with the new-for-2016 control electronics during the campaign, even though its engine has been sealed.

"Just for a start it's at the same level," Marquez added.

"I was happy. I cannot say more, but it's different.

"I was having a different feeling, but in the end for being the first time that it was on the track, I was very happy."

Marquez leads the championship by 52 points over Yamaha's Valentino Rossi, with four grands prix remaining.

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