MotoGP Jerez Test: ‘New bikes like lollipops to kids’ - Espargaro

| | MotoGP
Picture: GeeBee Images

Repsol Honda’s Pol Espargaro was back in action at Jerez on Thursday after pulling out of the final MotoGP race of the year last weekend.

Still suffering with the after effects of his monster highside at Valencia last tine out, Espargaro was determined to take to the Andalucian track in preparation of the 2022 season, especially with the ongoing absence of Marc Marquez.

Today’s program focused on getting Espargaro comfortable and confident again after his crash in Valencia. Friday will see Espargaro focus more on future developments that Honda HRC have been preparing for the 2022 season.

Completing a total of 45 laps, the Spaniard concentrated on getting comfortable and confident again with his Honda RC213V. Working through a number of testing items, his best 1’38.165 lap placed him 13th overall, with Friday bring a more concentrated focus on 2022. LCR Honda’s Takaaki Nakagami headed the standings with a 1’37.313 on the new spec machine.

“I feel pretty well used today, there’s some pain in my ribs and also in my wrist and I was struggling to ride properly today because of it,” Espargaro admitted. “But it is really important for the team, and also me, to make some laps with the new bike and get as much information as possible for the next year.

“Today was spent getting comfortable after our huge crash. I’ve been just on the sofa, trying to get as healthy as much as possible before coming here - I did not do any sport or running or nothing so I feel quite tired as well!

“Tomorrow we have another day of testing which will hopefully be a bit better. The plan for tomorrow is to work more for the future, with he prototype bikes and based on what we have seen today with the LCR guys, that looks promising. It was more important for them to start, we know they were fast, Taka showed today, and the information that they take is very, very good. They are very fast and it’s great.

“New parts and bikes are like lollipops for children to us! I’m really looking forward to try the new bike, I tried already in Misano and it was very good. Trying the new bike was helping us to take some important decisions on the current bike we finished with this year so it was quite helpful to use the new bike. Today, Taka is riding very fast. I’m very smooth also on the rhythm, and the pace is very, very quick so I’m looking forward to jump on the bike and see what next year is going to bring to us.”