MotoGP 2020: Honda in crisis ten days from the start of the season 
 The pre-season tests at the Losail Circuit in Qatar have ended with Honda HRC having to face a delicate and worrying situation regarding the behaviour of its new machine. Team director, Alberto Puig, has confirmed that the RC213V has problems and is generating doubts among the pilots and within the Japanese team in general, ahead of 2020 calendar.

He has also acknowledged that they are going through a difficult time and this is with only two weeks left before the start of the season in the same circuit of Losail.

We still don’t know what bike we will be competing with. Perhaps it won’t be with the new one or with the one from two years ago but with the one that we had planned to use next year” – said the Catalan ex-pilot generating more unrest rather than attempting to reassure the fans and the press. 

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It is hard to believe that the team which had swept the championship last year and conquered the triple crown of Pilots, Manufacturers and Teams, has plunged into such a crisis.

The situation is so bad that during the last day of training on Monday, Marc Márquez completed part of the training using the 2019 Honda of Takaaki Nakagami.

 At the root of the problem seems to be the instability of the front half of the eastern bullet, more pronounced than in previous campaigns. Some dynamic defects seem to be making the bike very unstable in the corners.

 

Puig has, therefore, admitted the need for a solution and recognised to the press that Marc had been training with the old bike. This drastic measure exposes both the size of the problem with the 2020 model and the overall lack of direction of the team of the golden wing. 

“Of course, at the moment we are not in good shape, this is clear. We are trying things from last year but also things from two or three years ago. Unfortunately, we don’t have much time but we will try to the last minute. Clearly, it’s a difficult situation but it’s part of our job to solve the problems”, said Puig. 

Marc and Alex Márquez and Cal Crutchlow, Honda’s three official pilots, have been repeatedly complaining about the temperamental reactions of the new bike which seems to be more unpredictable and harder to control than usual in the bends.

The #93, who is the one that best knows how to tame the Japanese bullet has suffered several accidents. Crutchlow also declared that he had to drive like an amateur so as not to fall off.

As if these problems were not enough, the champion from Cervera is not yet fully recovered from last November’s surgery of his right shoulder. Last Saturday, in fact, he had to quit the training session ahead of schedule because of the pain. 

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Just as the rest of his teammates, Marc Márquez is worried about the behaviour of his more unruly than usual RC213V. The force and unpredictability of the Japanese beast must be quite considerable if the only pilot that until now was able to control it is now scared of it.

The six-time MotoGP Honda HRC champion had already given a warning a few days ago when asked about the state of his shoulder, whose recovery is proving more complicated than expected.

Marc then acknowledged that what he was most worried about was the new Japanese machine rather than his convalescing situation.

On Saturday he had to finish the training session an hour and a half before schedule as he was not feeling up to it, finishing more than a 1 second behind the best time. This is the state of things at the team that has dominated the MotoGP World Championship with an iron fist over the last few years. 

Images: Honda HRC.

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