Pol Espargaro: "The Bike We Had At The Beginning Of The Season Has Nothing To Do With The Bike We Have Now"
Pol Espargaro had a great start to his 2023 season. The Spaniard scored a fantastic third place finish at Qatar’s season opener. But since then, Espargaro tumbled down the order.
Like all Honda riders, Pol Espargaro can’t be pleased with the way his 2023 season is running. After an astonishing podium finish in Qatar, the Spaniard hasn’t achieved much.
Now, Espargaro thinks he found the problem why his results have taken such a hit: His RC213V is a completely different bike than it was at the beginning of the season.
He states: “The bike at the beginning of the season has nothing to do with the one we have now. Neither in terms of riding nor technical. I didn’t suffer a single crash in pre-season.”
Pol Espargaro at the pre season testing in Mandalika – Image provided by Motorsport Images
Espargaro confirms what his results showed to everybody: “Everything came together: Crashes, technical problems, injuries, I had to give up races. Of course, I have my part in that. If the bike is not fast, you have to be at least the fastest boy on it.”
However, looking at the other Honda riders, it is not just Espargaro who struggles a lot. It simply seems, Honda made a mistake in development somewhere at the beginning of the season.
“When you have as many crashes as I had, and they all happen when you are going slow, something is not working at all,” the Spaniard states. He thinks, it is “a clear sign that something is going wrong”.
Pair that with Stefan Bradl’s statement regarding development of the RC213V and that he “doesn’t know in which direction [it] has to go” and you see Honda stuck in a quagmire of their own making.