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Marquez identifies 2021 Honda MotoGP bike weakness

Marc Marquez says he was better able to understand the weak points of the 2021 Honda MotoGP bike compared to its predecessor during last weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix. 

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

The six-time MotoGP world champion rode to eighth in last Sunday’s Jerez race, the second of his comeback from a nine-month injury layoff.

Though he is still not at his physical peak yet, he admitted his condition was better on the bike than it was in Portugal, and this allowed him for the first time this year to understand more about the 2021 RC213V.

Having followed team-mate Pol Espargaro, HRC test rider Stefan Bradl and Pramac Ducati’s Johann Zarco in the Spanish GP, Marquez noted the 2021 RC213V is weak mid-exit of corners.

“I had the opportunity to follow Stefan, to follow Pol and also to follow Johann for a few laps,” Marquez said when asked by Autosport where he found the bike to be weaker compared to the last Honda he rode.  

“And where we are losing more is mid-exit corner.

“So, it’s where normally if you want to ride fast and consistent, it’s where you need to be strong and it’s where we are losing more.

“So, we need to understand why. Now we are trying to analyse all the thing.

“I mean, for me the key of this weekend is that I improved a lot my physical condition compared to Portimao.”

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Marquez had hoped to further evaluate the bike in Monday’s post-race test at Jerez, but pulled out after just seven laps owing to pain in his neck from his big FP3 crash – which he admitted left him “destroyed” after the grand prix.

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“So, we didn’t test. We just did one run and the second run I already felt something,” he said on Monday.

“My body was locked, especially the neck and also the right shoulder.

“It’s something similar but in a better way to Portimao. In Portimao I rode and I suffered a lot, and then on Monday I was completely locked. But here in Jerez I felt better.

“It’s true the crash I had on Saturday didn’t help the situation, but anyway I tried because I thought that maybe when the body got warm it would be ok.

“But immediately I saw I was not in a good level to ride the bike and try things.”

Honda riders had a busy test on Monday, with all of them trying various new parts – with the marque bringing five different aerodynamic fairings to evaluate.

After declaring his RC213V “a mess” in the Jerez race, Espargaro expressed frustration at the fact all Honda riders during the Spanish GP weekend were working with different packages and felt this is holding back development.

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