Honda told to “write this season off” and focus on new 2027 rules

“To crash out from last place almost sounds like a joke but that’s the position they are in."

Luca Marini, MotoGP, Spanish MotoGP, 26 April
Luca Marini, MotoGP, Spanish MotoGP, 26 April

Honda have been advised to prioritise bike development during race weekends for the rest of this season.

The Japanese manufacturer is lagging at the back of the MotoGP grid and has now been told to focus on the new 2027 regulations, on the basis that they won’t be able to win by 2026 anyway.

Honda, traditionally a MotoGP powerhouse, have been unable to drag themselves out of the woeful form which resulted in Marc Marquez’s departure.

“They are in a big hole, a huge hole,” Neil Hodgson analysed on TNT Sport.

“The way they’ve started the season is so far off the pace.

“In America, the four Hondas were the back four. It’s one thing to be slow, it’s another thing to be slow and crash.

“What that tells you is that the riders are still pushing, still giving it everything. And crashing.

“To crash out from last place almost sounds like a joke but that’s the position they are in.

“But they are throwing a lot at it, and that’s what they have to do now.

“They have to write this season off. They might as well, in my opinion, try things every weekend. They have to. To fast-track.

“We know they’ve got concessions so they’ve got more testing anyway, but they might as well use tyres for the race weekends as testing.

“Because they won’t finish anywhere in the championship, they are nowhere. That’s how I see it.”

Sylvain Guintoli added: “In Austin it was a disaster, Luca Marini was last in the sprint and the grand prix, and the other three riders crashed out of the sprint and the grand prix.

“Absolute disaster, they have a lot of work to do.

“How much time will they spend working on the current rules? Once the new rulebook comes out, would it be better to work on 2027 onwards?”

Hodgson replied: “In Austin, Marini was beaten by Alex Marquez who crashed then picked his bike up! Unheard of.”

Even fellow strugglers Yamaha - at a disadvantage with two fewer bikes - are outperforming Honda at the moment.

The crash-fest of last Saturday’s sprint race in Jerez enabled Repsol’s Joan Mir to finish ninth, and LCR’s Takaaki Nakagami and Johann Zarco to finish 10th and 11th, while Marini crashed out.

But disappointingly Marini was again the last of the riders to complete the Spanish MotoGP. Mir came 12th.

Read More