05/03/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 05/03/2021 07:21
Ahead of a crucial test in Jerez, the Repsol Honda rider bemoaned the fact there were three different RC213V packages at the Spanish GP
Repsol Honda's Pol Espargaro was left disappointed by the 'different packages' HRC were using during the Red Bull Grand Prix, branding the weekend as 'a mess'. The Spaniard revealed that at least three variations of the RC213V were in use at Jerez: one for Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), one for satellite squad LCR Honda, Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Idemitsu Honda), in particular, running the 2020 chassis and then one for himself - something that he believes 'is hurting the group'.
The Japanese manufacturer are already hard at work in Jerez as they try find some answers to the questions that have blighted their start to the 2021 MotoGP™ World Championship. Marc Marquez has been spotted with both the 2021 and 2020 chassis in his box, as well as testing a new aerodynamics package along with brother Alex Marquez (LCR Castrol Honda) and Nakagami. However, the eight-time World Champion's day is over having completed just seven laps to make matters worse for the Repsol Honda squad.
Marc Marquez: Jerez Test vital to understand HRC's problems 02/05/2021
It's a massive day for the eight-time World Champion and his team as they try overcome their issues with the 2021 RC213V
Meanwhile, the former KTM rider's outburst on Sunday came after finishing the Spanish Grand Prix in tenth, a place behind teammate Marquez. Espargaro suffered a handful of hevay crashes throughout the weekend and was far from pleased at the conclusion of the weekend: 'We do not have traction, we do not turn and our speed is not good. I cannot ride smoothly, so I'm riding tight. I'm trying to gain every time more and more time on the brakes, until the brakes then give up and then I go wide. Because in the other areas we are a mess, so… it's like this.'
'I would love to tell you but I have no idea,' responded the number 44 when asked if we would be testing the 2020 chassis Nakagami took to fourth during the Jerez Test. 'I'm just an employee of Honda and I'm going to do what they want me to try and I'm going to work with the package they want me to work on. But there were different ones during today's race, different Hondas and… that's it.
'We are all using different packages. He's using one, I'm using another one. And the satellite team they are using another one. I'm going to go on the test and try different things and let's see what they want me to test and if we can improve the overall situation. Because I think we are going too much individually and not as a group and this at the end is hurting the group. And this is not good.'
Is the 2020 chassis giving Nakagami the edge at Honda? 01/05/2021
The Japanese rider has been HRC's best performer at the Spanish GP as he secured a second row start in Jerez
Espargaro's biggest frustrations have come from not understanding where he's going wrong. After a positive pre-season testing and showcasing pace during the opening two rounds of the year that could've seen him challenge the leading contenders, he now admits he's totally lost: 'I don't know if it's me, if it's the bike, if it's the package I'm using, if it's my riding style, if it's my electronics, I have no idea. We are using different packages, different riders are using different things, and it's difficult to understand what is working and what isn't.
'I always like to know that when I have problems, I want to know why I have the problems so that we can stop them from happening. And I have the feeling that we don't know what is happening. I don't know, and this makes me very angry. I am very frustrated because I don't know what I have to improve [during the Official Test]. Because I am the only rider using my package, so who can I compare myself to? What am I doing wrong? Why am I going slowly? This is my frustration, not understanding things. I think we will all improve if we all have the same things.'