SportMotoGPNakagami detects the main problem with Marquez's Honda

Nakagami detects the main problem with Marquez's Honda

Takaaki Nakagami is still looking for his first podium in MotoGP. Last year he came very close to achieving it on several occasions with the 2019 Honda RC213V . In the 2021 season he has the latest specification and official material.

However, the Japanese driver has fourth and fifth best results after 11 grands prix, and is 12th in the championship with 55 points. Last year, Nakagami had 92 points after 11 races.

The comparison between the two grand prizes at Spielberg in 2020 and 2021 is remarkable. Last year, in the second race in Austria, Nakagami was running second when he stopped. Not having a new rear tire for the restart, he couldn’t maintain the result, but still the balance is better than this season, where he hasn’t come close to the podium. The Japanese explains this step back.

“There are many things,” he says. “I can’t say that I have a very good feeling with the bike. It’s also because of the electronics; I don’t know exactly. The rear wheel always spins a lot. That’s why the tire overheats very quickly.”

“When the tire performance goes down, there is nothing to do. Lap times are getting slower and slower. It is difficult to control and manage. That is why it is difficult to maintain lap times. That is our main problem.”

The rest of the Honda riders are also suffering from a lack of grip on the rear wheel. Marc Márquez, Pol Espargaró, Alex Márquez and Nakagami all wear slightly different set-ups as HRC works in all directions.

“After practice we discuss everything with the team. I explain everything. We have identified the problem and we know where we are losing. But we still haven’t found the solution. That is the main problem,” says Nakagami.

“In qualifying I was a tenth of a second quicker than the first weekend in Spielberg, but the feeling was the same. You reach the limit very quickly. I didn’t have the confidence to keep up with the lead group.”

“Last year I was more confident with the bike and I felt I could fight for the podium. But these two weekends were very difficult. We are trying to find a solution, but at the moment we don’t know how to improve.”

Hopes are pinned on the British Grand Prix, where it was last raced in 2019. In 2017, Nakagami won the Moto2 race there.

“We are going to see how Silverstone goes, a different track. There could be different temperatures. We can only go ahead,” he insists.

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