On the second day of the 2013 pre-season test in Valencia, Repsol Honda riders Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez were finally able to complete some laps of the Ricardo Tormo track. The main use of this test was for Dani to have his first taste of the 2013 bike and for Marc to begin his learning curve on the bigger 1000cc prototype machine.
It has been a frustrating few days in Valencia, especially for Moto2 champion Marc Marquez, who has been waiting patiently for his first experience on the Honda MotoGP bike. Bad weather prevented any track action yesterday but today at around 15h00, Dani went out on track on slick tyres to see if it was drying up at all. After recording a 1'34.911 on his first run, Dani proved the track had a reasonable grip level and Marc followed him out on track at 15h30. Dani tested the new 2013 machine and completed 30 laps recording the fastest time of the day, 1'32.322, two tenths quicker than the circuit lap record (1'32.582).
Marc tested the 2012 bike and did an initial run of 5 laps with his first flying lap timed at 1'44.934. By the final lap of his first run he had brought this down to 1'35.846 and he continued to shave time off this for the rest of the session. In the end, his fastest lap was 1'33.403 placing him 7th fastest of the day after a total of 28 laps and just 1.081 off his teammate.
The next opportunity for Marc to test will be in Sepang on the 26, 27 and 28 of November, where he will get a chance to test the new 2013 prototype and Dani will be back on track on the 5, 6, 7 February 2013.
"In the end we were lucky because after almost two days doing nothing due to the bad weather we were able to go out on track for two hours and do the basic work we needed to do to have the first feelings on the new bike. It's been a useful test for me; I started with the bike I raced on Sunday and then switched to next year's bike. It's basically the same but with more weight to adapt it to the new regulation for 2013. We had pretty good feedback and now the engineers will check the data and analyse if we need to move something on the bike to better adapt to the extra weight - I could feel it on braking and also on the straight. Now it's time to relax a little after a strong season and be fresh and ready to start working again in Fe bruary at Sepang, which will be the first test in 2013. It's always good to finish the year and the test in front, but even more to know that everything works well and what we need to do to improve a bike that has finished at a very good level in order to start the next season strongly."
"I feel so happy! We waited the whole day for the track to dry so that we could finally try the bike, but it took such a long time. In the end I began to get impatient and the track was drying up so we decided to go out. In the beginning it was quite difficult but very nice to feel the power of the bike! I had a lot of wheelie on the straights but I gradually gained confidence on each exit and got faster and faster on every run. I tried to adapt my riding style from Moto2 because there was quite a big difference. There are many things to improve and try, the front tyre was also very different to what I'm used to but the main thing is that we have had good start and I have a very good feeling with the team."
Press release courtesy of Repsol Honda Team