After dominating the 2017 Moto3 series, then taking podiums after a handful of races in Moto2, Mir was snapped up by Suzuki.

The Spaniard’s four seasons to date could be roughly plotted as a bell curve: 12th overall in an injury-interrupted rookie season before rocketing to title glory with his first podiums and win in 2020. Mir then descended to third in 2021 and a new low of 15th, after more injuries, in 2022.

Suzuki’s shock decision to scrap its MotoGP team has now sent Mir into the arms of Repsol Honda for the start of what the 25-year-old describes as a “second chapter” in his premier-class career.

“When I came into MotoGP there was an important challenge and now this is another one,” he explained. “If everything goes well then it will be an important moment in my career, if not then I’ll have to re-think things, but I’m in a really good moment to face this and I’m very prepared. I’m really looking forward to it, which I think is fundamental.”

While Mir’s 2020 title triumph was the first for Suzuki since 2000, Honda has won the premier-class world championship eleven times over the same period.

Six of those were by Mir’s new team-mate Marc Marquez, but Honda’s success all but dried up with Marquez’s injuries over the past three seasons.

While the #93 was at least able to take three wins and five podiums in-between his arm operations and diplopia, team-mates Alex Marquez (2020) and then Pol Espargaro (2021, 2022) managed just two podiums each.

With Jorge Lorenzo also winless at Repsol Honda in 2019, Mir is seeking to become the first Repsol Honda race winner other than Marc Marquez since Dani Pedrosa at Valencia 2017.

Mir insisted he isn’t dwelling on the past difficulties for the likes of Lorenzo and Espargaro.

“I did not stop to think where Pol or Jorge missed to triumph in this team,” Mir said. “As a professional I try to have everything controlled when training and giving 100%. I give the maximum of what and who I am and that’s all I can bring. I can’t worry about others, just myself and go 100%.

“I’m a different rider to those who have been mentioned and that’s not to say being different means it will go well, but it’s in my hands to sort this out and I will do everything I can to have success. That’s our objective.”

Mir added: “When I say different, I mean that every rider is different. It doesn’t mean ‘better’ or not, simply ‘different’. It’s clear that with the team-mate I have, the subject is even more complicated!

“But, in a way, he wants the same as me: to win. If he can do it, then this means I can also.

“It’s true that I have arrived to his team [that Marquez has been in] for many years and with a bike that he knows perfectly, but it’s a challenge for me to adapt to these circumstances.

“I have arrived at a good point in my career and I’m really excited for this challenge. To wear these colours is a dream.

“I think you always have to be wary of failure, but the truth is that I have a lot of faith in my abilities and I trust this team to have a competitive bike and to be to fight.”

Acceleration ‘needs more discovery’

Twelfth fastest at the recent Sepang test, two places behind Marquez, Mir now has just two more days of testing (at Portimao on March 11-12) before his first race for Honda; the Saturday Sprint at the Portuguese season opener on March 25.

“For me the part that needs more discovery is the acceleration part,” he revealed. “It is something that I think we can improve more and it is one of our weak points and for sure it is something that you can work a lot on the electronic side.

“This part is the one thing that I need more time to understand and to make more laps with, and to improve more lap-by-lap with the confidence.”

“Regarding the expectations: they are high,” he added. “Every year you want to be as competitive as you can but obviously this year we have a big challenge in front of us.

“I don’t know, honestly, if I will be fighting for the podium from the first race. I would love to. But I don’t know. We have to be realistic and we have to see now on the test to try and improve the performance – that’s the main thing – then we will start the first race and we will see.

“I think my style is to do a season [building up] from less to more and increase the intensity a little race-by-race with better feelings: this is something I would sign for now!

“If I can be as competitive as possible from the first race I will be happy.”

Mir's former team-mate Alex Rins has also switched to Honda this season, riding for LCR, while former Suzuki technical director Ken Kawauchi is now in charge of the RC213V project.

"I have the experience of seeing Ken work and he is a very methodical person and very disciplined and ordered," Mir said. "If they signed him then it’s because they believe in what he can bring. I think he could bring interesting things.

"I didn’t work with Ken’s predecessor [at Honda] and can’t comment on that but I think he will bring interesting and important things after working with another brand and evolving the Suzuki so much. He has good information to bring to Honda and the merits of a good motorcycle.

"I think it will be positive."