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MotoGP Valencia November testing

Marquez: Honda unable to fight for 2023 MotoGP title with test bike

Marc Marquez says Honda will not be able to fight for the 2023 MotoGP world championship on the bike it brought to the Valencia test.

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

The six-time MotoGP world champion said he “expected more” from the test package but acknowledged that the Japanese manufacturer is “working more for February than now.”

He tested a prototype at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo on Tuesday, which featured new aerodynamics and the same engine but with a small modification.

Marquez said he was happy with the engine progression, which brought “a little bit more torque,” but said the team needs “a bigger step” to be closer to the other manufacturers.

Asked by Autosport if he had expected more and was disappointed, Marquez said: “Yeah of course, I expected more, because you always want more and more.

“I cannot say I’m disappointed, because Honda is working and they’re trying and they bring a new bike, but we need more if we want to fight for the championship.

“With the one that we receive here, we will not fight for the championship.”

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Marquez said that though the bike had “a bit more feeling in the front,” this led to a loss of performance in other areas and prompted some compromise.

He also said that the lap times on the new bike were similar to that of the RC213V which he raced here on Sunday.

Marquez added: “In one of the problems it was in the correct direction, but as we expected already, we improve in one area and lose in another one.

“So it’s a compromise, but we are always there on the same character, more or less same problems, we improve one thing then there always is the same characteristics. So they must understand it to improve in February.”

Marquez said it was important to hear the first impressions of new Honda riders Joan Mir, who will race alongside him at the factory team, and Alex Rins, who joins LCR alongside Takaaki Nakagami.

He said: “They are part of Honda and it was important for me to hear their first impressions.

“When you ride a bike, you get used to the problems. If you are a talented guy like Mir and Rins, then you start to adapt to the problems because you are talented.

“They will be fast, but we see on the lap times if it’s an easy bike or not.

“If it’s an easy bike, you go out and you are on the same lap times as the other bikes. If it’s a difficult bike, you go out and you take all the day to be in an acceptable lap time.”

Joan Mir, Repsol Honda Team

Joan Mir, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Repsol Honda team boss Alberto Puig was also unhappy with the result of Tuesday’s test, and said there were not as many positives as the team had expected.

Puig told MotoGP.com: “We tried different bike concepts and we were expecting a little better result at this moment.

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“We find some positives but not as much as we expected, so we have to keep going.

“We have to keep working, because since the last Misano test we did a lot of work but it didn’t show.”

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