After two difficult campaigns, Honda has radically revised its RC213V for the 2022 season in an effort to fix the rear-wheel drive problems it has suffered from.
This problem of lack of traction has seriously affected Paul EspargaraThe process of adapting to Honda last year: the Spaniard took only one podium in 2021, and in 2020 – five behind KTM.
Despite massive refinements, Honda came out on the motorcycle last November on tests in Jerez, and its strong form continued in pre-season tests this month in Malaysia and Indonesia – Espargaro led the latter.
In an exclusive interview with Motorsport.com, Espargar admits he is “surprised” that a brand new bike can be so good right away, and “feels very happy”.
“It’s weird,” Espargara said when asked how he felt about Honda’s efforts over the winter.
“You can see Honda’s muscles by bringing a brand new bike from scratch to the Jerez test.
“And right after Jerez, Malaysia, two-tenths of the best racer, we had an amazing rhythm in Malaysia.
“It shows why I’m surprised.
“From a bike from scratch, without data, to create such a bike is incredible.
“So I was very lucky to be where I am. So now I think I have the opportunity to show what I can do with this bike. ”
Paul Espargara, Repsol Honda team
Photo: Gold and Goose / Drawings of motorsport
Espargara added that now Honda “brought me what I wanted”, due to the rear-wheel drive, which he lacked in 2021, he feels that now “the ball is on my side”.
“It was the main goal – to build a bike on which I will feel comfortable,” he said.
“Honda also thought about it.
“I’ve complained, like other riders, about the rear handle, but I’m more than others because my riding style is largely based on the back.
“Every time I didn’t have the rear ready, it was a big trouble for me, I complained more than others.
“But now Honda has brought me what I wanted and now I feel like the ball is on my field.”