MotoGP: Honda set to struggle in Austria

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Honda’s winning streak of recent rounds may well come to a end when MotoGP returns from their summer break to head to the Red Bull Ring next month, with MCN’s sources in the paddock suggesting that it will be all but impossible for the machine to be competitive at the track.

With aggressive acceleration and long straights, the areas that will make the track perfect for the Ducatis that topped the test will also work directly against the Honda RCV213’s issues with corner exit and top speed.

Looking better in recent weeks than it did at the start of the season, the bike is nonetheless still far from the refined package of recent years, and while Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa were not present at last week’s test at the Zeitweg track, the Honda trio of Cal Crutchlow, Jack Miller and Tito Rabat finished the three days well down the timesheets.

However, despite the issues they faced over the course of the two days, Cal Crutchlow instead said he was nonetheless reassured leaving the track, pleased that the gap to the leaders was less than he had anticipated when they arrived.

“We worked in a positive way and I was pleasantly surprised with the lap times we were posting and the time of day we were doing them. In the end we have to try and improve for the race weekend here, but we are satisfied at having covered everything we needed to.”

Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer