MotoGP 2013 Track Report HRC Team Principal Livio Suppo

Round 16Precious 20 points for Dani, misfortune for Marq

The Australian GP has been a very difficult weekend for all the teams, but especially for the Repsol Honda Team and Marc Marquez, who was disqualified in the race. How and when did you realize that the team strategy was wrong?

It has been a “crazy” weekend, with the situation changing every hour and the final decision of race distance made only on Sunday morning. It was the very first time we had to do a “flag to flag” race in dry conditions, with a two lap “window” to change the bike and unfortunately we misunderstood the number of laps. When Race Direction black-flagged Marc it was a shock, as we believed it was okay as he crossed lap 11 in the pit lane and not on the track. No excuses, we were wrong and we have to learn from our mistakes and improve the team. It is a big pity as Marc showed one more time he had the speed to fight for the win. Dani rode a very good race and keeps himself still in the Championship fight, and this is positive.

Most of the riders complained about the flag-to-flag race. In your opinion, looking at the situation with the tires, was that the best solution?

It was a very unusual situation, not easy to manage. “Flag to flag” was the only way to do a race of more than 10 laps, and we accepted it. Finally it worked, as the race was done and no riders had any problems due to the tires, so, probably it was the right choice.

What can be done to avoid this kind of problem in future?

When a circuit is totally resurfaced, it should be compulsory to organize a test before racing there. Easy to say now, but it would have been the only way to manage the problem for Bridgestone.

Despite Marc’s disqualification, he’s still leading the Championship and has the second chance to win the title in Motegi, where Dani has won in the last two years. How do you see the race in Japan?

Motegi is a good circuit for Honda, with a lot of acceleration and hard braking. Dani is very strong there and I believe also Marc will be very fast. We must go there with a positive mood and do our best as we have done always. Both our riders are in the fight for the Championship and we will not give up until the last lap!

The Aspar Team announced the agreement to compete with the new Honda "MotoGP Production Racer" (provisional name) ┬áin 2014 and 2015 and Nicky Hayden as a first rider. What’s your assessment about this deal?

We are very happy to have closed this deal, both for the level of the Aspar team and for Nicky. He is very welcome back in the Honda family and we look forward to see him and his new team working with us!

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