9 April 2015
MotoGP Austin: New chassis for Crutchlow
"It might not give us anything at certain circuits. But if [Repsol Honda] didn't believe it was better, they wouldn't be on it"
Cal Crutchlow's LCR Honda will move a step closer to Repsol Honda specification with a new chassis and seat for this weekend's Austin MotoGP.
The Englishman, seventh in the season-opening Qatar round, said: “It was already planned a long time before Qatar, so Qatar [result] made no difference... [and] this wasn't because Dani's not riding. But obviously I'm thankful to Honda for putting their faith in me.”
Crutchlow, like fellow satellite RC213V rider Scott Redding, has been using the 2014 Valencia test specification machine - rejected by Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa in favour of another new bike brought to February's Sepang test.
“Dani and Marc had already tested the bike that I'm on now, which was their Brno test bike and Valencia test bike, and they also immediately got rid of it at the end of the test in Sepang. But obviously, we had nothing to go onto,” Crutchlow confirmed.
“We got told quite early that we would get the bike - because of your speed, because of the information going back to Honda, because we're nearly there - and I believe this will bring us closer to the front.
“But I was happy with my package anyway, and I'd already said so. I would have been happy with that package for the whole year. You have to ride the package as best as you can ride it.
“What they also say, and what I also believe, is don't think that it will give you half a second a lap, or even two tenths. It might not give you anything at certain circuits. But if they didn't believe it was better, they wouldn't be on it.”
Crutchlow believes the new parts should help with “consistency in corner entry, which is what we have been struggling with. But it's more consistency over race distance.”
Although he finished as the top satellite rider at the Losail night race, it's not a target for the #35.
“I don't understand why people are interested in being top Brit, top satellite. You want to try and win the race first. From the perspective of saying top satellite, or top non-factory, I have no interest in that.
“If I finished third satellite bike, but I'd had a great race, then great, I'm happy with that. But I prefer the other two satellite bikes to be first and second, so I finish on the podium, you know what I mean?
“You can't aim to be just one thing, you want to aim to beat the guy who is fastest, it's as simple as that. I'll aim to be as fast as possible at every race. It was nice at the end of the year in Tech 3 [in 2013] to say great, we're the top non-factory, but we had some great battles with the factory bikes.”
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