MotoGP

Marquez still ‘doesn’t have special feeling’ on 2022 Honda MotoGP bike

The six-time world champion ended Sunday’s final day of 2022 pre-season testing in Indonesia 14th having elected against a time attack owing to his right shoulder giving him some pain.

Honda team-mate Pol Espargaro topped the test outright with a 1m31.060s, with both riders pleased with the gains HRC has made with its radically revised 2022 bike.

On Friday Marquez admitted it was the first time he “felt something special” on the new Honda, and said again on Sunday the lap time kept coming easily regardless of what his team did to the RC213V.

However, he conceded that, despite feeling much better on the bike, he is still missing something heading into the Qatar season-opener on 6 March.

“You never know, I mean it’s true that today I was fast,” Marquez said when asked if he felt ready to win in Qatar.

“I was in good pace, I was riding well. When I try different set-ups, the lap time was still coming.

“I tried different aerodynamics and the lap time was coming. I tried different tyres, medium, soft and the lap time was coming.

“So, when you have this feeling it’s because the potential is there.

“It’s true that it’s a special track also, it was slippery and these conditions I normally feel very good.

“But in the end the grip was really high. So, I’m happy because we go out of the Mandalika test with the job done.

“It’s true I need more, I still don’t have that special feeling with the bike. But I’m happy.”

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: MotoGP

Marquez also says his physical condition meant the only way he could get through Sunday was by “enjoying” riding.

“Today I enjoyed it a lot with the bike,” he added.

“It’s true that the enjoying was the way to survive today because I was very tired from the beginning [of the day].

“I think everybody was, but today I felt pain on the shoulder. For that reason, I did not do the time attack because on the time attack you use too much power.

“So, I just did my race pace and I just worked on the set-up of the bike.

“I enjoyed it, I started to feel the bike, I started to feel the slides.

“We will see, I want to reconfirm this feeling in Qatar, but it’s a big difference between Malaysia and here.”


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