13 November 2014
Valencia MotoGP Test: Marquez 'New Honda needs change of direction'
“They [Honda] have gone in one direction and I didn't like it, we must go in the other one” – Marc Marquez.
Marc Marquez brought an end to his second title-winning MotoGP season by leading the final official 2014 track action during testing at Valencia on Wednesday.
The only problem was that, contrary to initial reports, he did so with this year's RC213V, rather than the new 2015 machine.
Riding at a circuit where he claimed a record 13th win of the year in the season-finale, the Repsol Honda star completed his first laps on next year's prototype since the Brno test in July.
“Today I did the fastest lap with the 2014 bike. I concentrated all day with the 2015, to try and improve it, and then on the last run I tried the 2014 bike again and improved the lap time. Because it looks like for me that bike is easier,” Marquez said.
Marquez likes the front end of the 2015 chassis, but admitted the engine braking, exit of corner and rear of chassis still needs work.
“We improved with the 2015 prototype in some areas, but lost a little bit in others. I didn't feel comfortable and it is not the time to take a lot of risk. The important thing is that Honda understands more what is the character of the engine and chassis that I like,” he explained.
“Because this is the first big change [to the bike] that we did since last year. They have gone in one direction and I didn't like it, we must go in the other one. We have improved the entry to the corners and will try to fix the other problems in the Malaysian test [next February].
“I didn't like the new engine character a lot and then with the chassis, I like the front but not the rear. So we must try to find the best compromise. But the positive thing is that we know the 2014 bike has really good potential and where are its strongest points.
“With the  prototype we have made some further improvements, so now we need to make a compromise between both bikes to try to make the perfect bike.”
Marquez's words backed up earlier comments made at the circuit by HRC boss Shuhei Nakamoto:
Marquez's fastest time of 1m 30.973s, was just 0.130s off Valentino Rossi's pole position and put the Spaniard 0.146s ahead of team-mate Dani Pedrosa.
Pedrosa, who spent a few laps on the new machine on Monday, also confessed the new RCV needs some fine tuning - but did set his best lap with the new machine.
“The new bike has a powerful engine and some positive points, but we need to make everything fit together,” Pedrosa said. “The technicians here in Valencia have gathered a lot of data to take back to Japan and I'm sure we'll see a big development when we're back on track in Sepang next year.”
Marquez and Pedrosa will not take part in a private Honda test later this month and will next be on track for the first official 205 test, at Sepang in February.
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