MotoGP Portimao test: ‘Best feeling’ leaves Marquez ‘optimistic’| MotoGP Staff | MotoGP
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez left Portimao confident on Sunday despite his 14th place finish in the MotoGP combined times.
With pre-season testing now concluded, the eight-time world champion was buoyant in the recovery signs his RC213V Honda was showing after setting a 1’38.778 best mid way through Sunday’s 78 laps.
“Today, for me was the best day or the best feeling I had during this preseason,” Marquez confirmed on the final day of testing. “I was riding in a good way, I was able to do the sprint race 12 laps and the rhythm was not bad - not for win the race of course but not bad.
“Today we choose what chassis we feel better and then we start to work more with the setup of the bike and we keep improving. We need a few steps. Always you want more and you want more laps but now you need to feel ready for the first race.
“Always I believe in me, I believe in Honda,” he continued, after a difficult winter. “Yesterday was, it’s not normal to be so far. It’s true that today we are not very, very close. I mean, still we are far but I know that when I put the soft tyre and I make that long run, I was able to ride in another way. I was able to concentrate more in my riding style, because it’s not easy when you try many things on the bike.
“For me the most important is that today was the best feeling I had with the bike, is true that still we are far from the top guys, but it’s trying to find the best with our package.”
While Marquez has had a battle with both personal fitness and the ailing Honda, Repsol also has a new teammate, in the form of 2020 Champion Joan Mir, to bed in. A partnership that already appears to be bearing fruit, at least in terms of a unified voice.
“Was a very, very busy five days - Malaysia and two days here in Portimao test,” the 30-year-old explained. “Especially because we had many things and as you saw we try many, many things. It’s true that the most important for Honda is me and Joan, we are following the same direction. We give the same input, same comments and this is positive, easier for the project.
“I want to be optimistic but we cannot be super optimistic because today we finish 13/14/15 the three Hondas there together. So still we are far.”