Behind-the-scenes: Honda’s big changes in their garage

Honda have been busy making significant personnel changes inside their garage to avoid another disastrous MotoGP season.
Honda bike, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November
Honda bike, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November

Alberto Puig, their long-serving team manager, remains at the helm after a vigorous defence of his style from the team’s star rider Marc Marquez.

The 2023 MotoGP rider line-up with pair Marquez with the incoming Joan Mir for Repsol Honda, while Alex Rins joins LCR Honda alongside Takaaki Nakagami. The four riders could benefit from these behind-the-scenes tweaks…

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Mir’s new right-hand man

Giacomo Guidotti was the Crew Chief for Nakagami at LCR Honda last season but will make the step up to the factory team to work alongside new rider Mir, the 2020 world champion who joins from Suzuki.

Guidotti was formerly Dani Pedrosa’s race engineer.

Ex-rider to work with Nakagami

Guidotti’s move to work with Rins created a vacancy as Nakagami’s Crew Chief which will be filled by Klaus Nohles.

Ex-rider Nohles is the first Crew Chief from Germany since the start of MotoGP’s four-stroke era in 2002.

He had previously been working with Honda’s test team, and their test rider Stefan Bradl.

Nohles had previously stepped in when Guidotti injured himself in a bicycle crash to oversee Nakagami in Valencia last year.

Rins inherits LCR chief

Alex Rins, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November
Alex Rins, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November

Alex Rins, who came across from Suzuki, will inherit David Garcia as his Crew Chief.

Garcia worked with Alex Marquez, who has left for Gresini Ducati, last season.

LCR Honda’s General Technical Director will be Christophe Bourguignon.

New boss of the test team

Ramon Aurin is the new technical lead for Honda’s test team. He has previously worked with Dani Pedrosa, Andrea Dovizioso, Jorge Lorenzo and Pol Espargaro.

The ever-present Santi

Marc Marquez’s long-standing Crew Chief Santi Hernandez is a welcome ever-present and will remain in 2023. Hernandez’s presence may be felt even more keenly by Marc, who is riding without his brother in the team and without their longstanding manager Emilio Alzamora.

How has the leadership team changed?

Tetsuhiro Kuwata will be replaced as HRC Racing Manager by Shinichi Kokubu, who is returning to the paddock after a few years away.

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