Dani Pedrosa Out At Repsol Honda

Dani Pedrosa is to leave Repsol Honda at the end of this season, HRC have confirmed. After 18 years together in all three Grand Prix classes, including 13 in MotoGP, Honda will not be renewing his contract for 2019 onwards.

The move had been widely expected. Rumors that Pedrosa would be leaving Honda have been circulating since Alberto Puig joined Honda as head of the Repsol Honda team. Puig is believed to have wanted to replace Pedrosa from the moment he joined the team.

Where Pedrosa goes, and who will replace him, is still something of a mystery. Pedrosa and the empty Repsol Honda seat are part of a much bigger puzzle which MotoGP Silly Season has become. Later this week, we will be rounding up the latest developments and the state of play.

Below is the press release from HRC:


HRC and Dani Pedrosa to end partnership

After 18 years together across three classes in the MotoGP World Championship, HRC and Dani Pedrosa today announce that their longstanding partnership will come to an end at the end of the 2018 season, by mutual agreement.

Although their paths will diverge, HRC and Dani Pedrosa have enjoyed a successful relationship: since 2006, when the Spaniard joined the Repsol Honda Team, he has earned 31 victories and was runner-up in the MotoGP Championship on three occasions.

Over the years, he has provided very useful information and feedback to Honda for the development of its machines, and at the same time, HRC has given him the best technology and full support on the track.

Yoshishige Nomura

HRC President

"Today is a sad day for me. On behalf of HRC, I want to thank Dani for all his hard and successful work, and to express our gratitude for these two decades together. We also wish him the very best of luck and success. Thanks, Dani."

Dani Pedrosa

"I want to thank HRC for all these years of great success. I have grown not only as a rider but also as a person with them. I will always have HRC in my memories and in my heart. In life we all need new challenges and I feel it’s time for a change. Thanks, HRC."

Source: 

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Comments

I just posted a ramble on David's excellent as ever GP round up and figured Dani was out of HRC post Mugello result. Who will aspire to fill his seat at HRC? Marc arguably has as much clout within that team as Rossi had within any team. I would not want to go there. Puig is another consideration of note. Ask the late #69, not that he was in Dani's league but let's face it, the 800 Honda was built around Dani's physical stature just as the current Honda is all about Marc. An aside, David. It would be nice to see Zara (who does excellent work with the race reports), also post current manufacturer standings post race per event. For many of us, constructor standings tells as much a picture in a given year's championship as rider standings.

Total votes: 29

don't fix it. Unless you're Repsol Honda.

He might be underestimated, but the truth is Pedrosa will leave huge shoes behind to be filled and Repsol Honda better get it right.

I hope he does not retire.

Total votes: 85

i have mixed emotions, i just hope he gets a competitive machine for 2019 and this is not retirement. 

because i think dani on a less savage piece of machinery like a yamaha or suzuki or maybe even aprilia will be a force to be reckoned with.

 

 

Total votes: 25

How about Pedrosa and Lorenzo on the Petronas Yamaha bikes? Probably not because if the Petronas thing happens they want Syahrin, but Pedrosa on a bike he doesn't have to fight so much I think would be awesome. Would be a heck of a satellite team.

Total votes: 53

I agree that they would probably be keen to get Syahrin, but from Herve Poncharal's talk he is very keen to keep him at Tech3. I hope he stays there, because I've wanted to see Pedrosa on a different bike for a few years now! So maybe my bias is making me see it that way.

Total votes: 34

It might be hyperbole, but Dani is one of the best riders out there. Bad luck, often resulting in injuries, consistently plagued his career with Honda, but he always came back trying harder than ever.

I hope he takes the dignified step to retire. It would be a shame to see him struggle with a different team and/or bike.

It is a shame that things devolved to the point where a certain Puig forced him out...

Total votes: 44

2012 I think it was. Stoner's season faltered, Dani nearly won it but for binning it a PI. That was the closest he ever came. Desrved it that season.

Total votes: 42

It was his bad luck at Misano which lead him to being torpedoed by Barbera. But yeah, that was the closest.

Total votes: 48

Was it 2010 when the throttle jammed* at Motegi and the ensuing crash broke his collarbone?  From memory he was in a very strong position at that point also.

I hope he gets something that works for him, he's a thoroughly decent guy and one of the most determined.  That said, I'm also happy for him to clear out that second Repsol seat as we have had 12 years of more or less the same performance and it would be nice to see a rider in there who is likely to mix it up the front in most races.  The remaining silly season will be very interesting... should all fall into place in the next couple of weeks.

 

 

* - presumably a ride by wire electronic error, as happened to Stoner in the Suzuka 8hr also.

Total votes: 35

... yeah he would have had to win almost every race & for Lorenzo to DNF... oh wait! :D ... He lost by 18 points winning 4 out of those last 5 races... a 2nd place in Australia would have done it... he had a more than realistic chance up until Australia.

Total votes: 37

Based solely on results, he’s  certainly in the top 5 who hasn’t won the title in the top class. I wouldn’t put him top because he’s had an incredible opportunity to win it by  been on the most successful factory team for such a long time.

Total votes: 27

Randy Mamola was the greatest to never win a championship, cmon!

Total votes: 39

David, could you arrange for Alberto, Lin, Maverick and Dani to meet up and talk a possible rider swap? Or maybe this is happening already as we speak!

Both rider / team relationships have hit a low and at the same time there is no denial that both riders are incredibly talented. A change of scenery could make miracles happen for all parties.

The Honda is obviously the better bike at the moment, so for Vinales it should be a no-brainer. Vinales has won on both Suzuki and Yamaha so he could be a real asset for Honda.

The nimble and smooth Pedrosa on a Yamaha; who would not want to see that? It would save Yamaha from firing crew chiefs and probably hiring a lot of extra people, it would end the frustation within the team and the bad publicity for Yamaha following Maverick's struggles.

 

Total votes: 31

Interesting to read of reports of multiple riders turning down the Repsol ride, one of the most coveted in the paddock if not the #1 choice, Honda factory.  It seems as if people have figured out the bike will revolve around Márquez and his riding style so they don’t want it.  Pay has to be good.  Zarco, Mir turning it down, who else?  Lorenzo turned it down also?  Crazy.

Total votes: 32

Have become a huge Dani fan over the years - nobody has more heart than him in my humble opinion. Agree he is the best to never win the premier class crown (though i was too young to watch Randy M). 

David, in this week’s round up you stated he was leaving -essentially - as payback/revenge. Any insight here?

Hope he gets the yam seat and stays in GP  

What is interesting is that for years we’ve thought and waited for Silly season to be the tsunami this one has become. More manufacturers on the grid has made this a silly season to remember  

 

Total votes: 39

Dani, a choice I feel you should have made long ago!! I'm quite sure that a Yamaha would suit you tailormade so to speak but whatever you do don't quit yet!!

Total votes: 34

. . . . . (motorsport.com) his replacement is Jorge Lorenzo.

Wonderful, the two riders I dislike the most are on the same team.  Time to pack up the (Nicky Hayden era) Repsol t-shirts and donate them to Goodwill.

Total votes: 107

With all the acrimony online and in the grandstands, the sport could use one less "anti-fan". What in the hell have Marquez or Lorenzo done to you, besides put their lives on the line 18 times a year for your entertainment? I'm so tired of this attitude in the sport. It's cancerous. Take your subscriptions and MotoGP comment accounts to the Goodwill too.

Total votes: 160

are racing fans, others are fans of personas.

Total votes: 31

All sports need and do have villains. All sports need and do have ‘the white hatted’ good guys. Both are heros. 

MM93 is a villain to many because he has pummeled VR46 and the entire grid in sheer results. He is undoubty the fastest and most dominating rider i have ever seen other than Stoner. However, MM93 is a bully on track and puts people at risk. That is why i do not care for him. I do not deny his other-wordly talent. I just don’t like how he is prone to utter carelessness. I find it ironic he calls out fans for cheering his crashes rather than display sympathy for those (Pirro) that had crashed heavily given he has time and again punted people off track and literally ignored track conditions (on Philip Island in moto2) and almost killed someone. Literally. Let’s not even mention his early premier class years when he used any and all as a berm. If he doesn’t want to be booed he should care more about being less unsportsmanlike and affecting other riders and their races. 

Lorenzo ate a fair amount of humble pie these past 24 races and remains undoubtly talented. I found myself hoping he would get the win at Mugello. That said, he has always been a terrible winner and a worse loser and his ego runs unchecked. I can’t think of oher athletes that use the third person when referring to themselves. He is just plain old irritating. He is the rash for which their is no ointment.

it is perfectly acceptable to hate both for different reasons just like folks hate Rossi  and his Yellow Army, etc. the motogp circus is a big tent with room for lots of opinions  

 

Total votes: 86

Hate is appropriate for things involving your life and death, your freedom, your rights, your identity. And even then its value is questionable. In any case it's hardly appropriate to have for some motorcyclists riding around circuits for a living. I agree that Marquez should be more harshly punished for his recklessness, but if you want that to happen petition the FIM. Jeering, hissing and wishing physical harm (or worse) at a guy who just risked his life for your entertainment just makes you an asshole.

Total votes: 72

Sorry -you’re attaching harm to hate. They are / should be mutually exclusive. I hated Larry Bird when he played against Magic Johnson but i never hoped he got hurt. I don’t hope Marquez gets hurt but he sure rides like he doesn’t mind if he hurts others. 

And name calling is pretty simplistic. I think those on this site expect better. Maybe you should take it to Crash.net. 

Total votes: 81

All great sporting franchises have great rivals - it's what makes them more exciting for the majority of people that watch. Take any sport and nearly all of its greatest spectacles involve bitter rivals going head to head. People love drama and villians - it's presumably why people sit through things like soap operas. Personalities and the human factor make motorsport more interesting - would you cheer and support a robot rider?

I don't boo or hate Marquez and I certainly don't wish him harm - and whilst I greatly respect his talent and ability, I would also say I don't particularly like him (hello 1 star votes!). That's my choice and if everyone who strongly disliked a rider (any rider) in MotoGP stopped watching, then the sport would very soon die.

And, let's be clear. Marquez doesn't risk his life for other people's entertainment. He does it because (like all of the riders) he is driven by a diamond hard drive to win and be successful - and the rewards (both World titles and financial gain) are what he truly desires. The fact that he would like to be liked is more about wanting to replace Rossi as the greatest of all time, rather than actually wanting to be liked by people he will never meet. The fact that even after being booed for the entired weekend, he still nerfed an Italian rider in the direction of the gravel pit tells you how highly he values most people's opinion of him. He wants them to like him, but he has no intention of changing in order to make it happen.

Is suggesting that someone stops watching MotoGP because their opinion differs from you any better? As great as the internet is, the world was a more tolerant place when words were spoken face to face.

Total votes: 33

What are your feelings about Zarco?  He seems quite aggressive and along with Ianonne always is commented on as two riders you don't want around you in a race.  In fact it is before my time watching MotoGP but wasn't Marco Simoncelli known for dangerous riding?  I only watched one highlight reel so could very well be far off base and if so apologies but your username made me think of it.

Total votes: 36

I am undecided on Zarco. I see his dust up with Pedrosa this year as a racing incident on a narrow dry line. iannone is definitely a candidate for the Red Mist and i think we were all worried what he was going to do to MM93 back in 2015 as revenge for Rossi. And AI and MM def have history from moto2 after MM punted him off track. My username is short for Missing Supersic58. 

His aggressiveness in 250s and then the premier class was what attracted me to his riding style - plus i loves his flamboyant personality. He was a rockstar on a bike. What he did to Pedrosa at Le Mans and a few incidents prior to that were borderline terrible though he showed some serious contrition after causing Dani’s Le Man crash and the paddock and journos turned the heat up on him. IMHo he started to change his style a bit - became a bit more patient while still progressing. And then Sepang happened.

None of these guys are angels and all smell blood and attack!

 

Total votes: 37

Zarco, Iannone, Petrucci, Simoncelli, numerous guys, even Rossi in his time was just as hard barging as Marquez. Simoncelli even said 'in the race, you want to kill the other rider a little bit'. Like Burgess said after Laguna Seca '08: 'would he (Stoner) have been racing in the nineties, he would have seen this kind of hard racing every weekend'.

Sure Marquez goes too far sometimes and gets penalized, just like numerous other great racers in the history of the sport. So I'm not sure why you hate Marquez more than others for hard riding. Maybe because he beats them?

Total votes: 30

Really? Nup. If no-one watched they’d still be doing it, just like the 10’s of thousands of club racers out there. Why? The thrill of it, the ego driven quest to be the best, and the small matter of millions of euro’s for doing something many of us would do for free: queue me walking up and down the pits with a sandwich board slung over me “Will race for bus and food coupons!!”.

Total votes: 29

"FREE!?"  It costs a fortune for me turn laps on a bike that's nowhere near what these guys have access to.  I'd pay a LOT of money for a crack at a MotoGP bike--any of them--for just a single session.

Total votes: 32

More reason to rock the Hayden gear, keep his amazing career/legacy alive. If not you can send it my way to add to the collection.

Total votes: 43

Brilliant! Honda have really scored big. The two best riders in MotoGp have taken the last six WC and will be sharing them amongst themselves for the foreseeable future. With Lorenzo's input the Honda will be a real flyer. Bring it on.

Total votes: 34

Nicky forgave Danny, you should too. Marquez being the “bad boy”, that was the final piece to make me a fan of his. Now my 2 fav riders are on the same team. Forza Resol Honda!

Total votes: 63

Lorenzo to Repsol Honda.

Total votes: 32

Reports elsewhere state that Lorenzo has signed a 2-year deal with Repsol Honda.

Total votes: 33

So, from dark svengali to hooded assassin?  Many have wondered over the years how Pedrosa's career might have played out had it not been guided for so long with Alberto Puig as his (uber control freak) manager.  Kevin Schwantz for one, as I recall? How ironic then that he is the one to push his former protege out of Honda.  Dani is such a class act, he's truly an example to the rest of the grid of how an elite pro should behave.  Sadly, I can't see him winning on Michelins so he really has a problem now.

Total votes: 42

The most undervalued, under-respected, unlucky (barring the injured/dead) rider on the grid gets pushed out by Alberto Puig. Awful. Then again, with championship chances fading, and injuries mounting, sometimes it's better to leave than be taken out. Hopefully he sticks around in some form.

Total votes: 48

I agree with the part about being unlucky. But is Pedrosa actually undervalued or under-respected? I would say the complete opposite in fact. Very few people seem to disrespect him or dislike him or not acknowledge his great talent. I would go so far as to say he might actually be slightly overvalued. How long does a rider on average stay with a full factory team without winning a championship? I'm not saying he should have been pushed out earlier but Honda has always had faith in him and always given him the chance to shine. I would suggest Pedrosa just never took enough of those chances. Whether that is mostly to blame on luck and injury is in the long run not relevant.

I like Pedrosa, as everyone does. But it seems to me to be misrepresenting history to say he's been undervalued.

Total votes: 33

I pray that we see Stoner on a Ducati to see the greates grid of all time line up:

Repsol: Marquez & Jorge

Yamaha: Rossi & Vinales

Ducati: Stoner & Dovi

 

Total votes: 34

Jonny Rea. He was a strong rider for Honda, super loyal, hes not italian and he is a class act.....

Total votes: 49

is too old, according to Puig.

Total votes: 33

What a surprise. Somehow i don't see the Honda making gracefully wide corner entrances for Jorge, and proably a lot of hurt for him.

Total votes: 39

The Honda turns just fine. Can you see Jorge being able to explore what it can also do on the brakes etc? Look at how Dani rides the bike...it can do it like Jorge wants now.

Jorge isn't likeable. But he is going to do just fine there. And not beat Marc. But will beat nearly everyone else.

Total votes: 28

The 93 and the 99 will make up by far The strongest team in MotoGP 

Total votes: 39

Lorenzo to Repsol Honda?!

This has taken me quite by surprise! Holy crap.

Dani, as a little guy and smooth in style, has done well to wrestle the bucking Honda around. It can be hard to get heat in front tires for him. Pedrosa is SO good at early drive out, hefting the bike up onto the fat part of the tire just off apex. Best out there, arguably. What he hasn't been though is an aggressive demon braker, which the Honda favors. Watching Dani, he often LOOKS like he is on a Yamaha. Some skating slides here and there, but mostly as smooth and carving as anyone on that bike.

Many of us have wondered how he would do on a Yamaha. The Suzuki, now not an option for him of course bar huge Mir ditching surprise, is a bike we seem to think would be a good fit for lots of riders. True, this Suzuki looks well balanced and would work for him. I don't see him going to Aprilia, but think him a good pick for them over shiny balls and his baggage of inconsistency and self involvement.

He doesn't look ready to retire. He has some options to stay here. One getting much attention now is the evolving emergence of a satellite team to take the Yamaha bikes. And here, poignantly again, is the issue of what kit the factory provides to a satellite team. The 2018 Yamaha is not all that agreeable right now, but still developing. Will they roll their end of the year bikes over to the customer garage again and wish them luck? Or will they pull their heads out of their tailpipes and join with a Jr Team project? Petronas money and the very invigorated Asian market is knocking at Yamaha's door.

And what of MarcVDS? Is your head about to explode? This is more than silly. And longer than the usual.
Schpholyshite Season and a half.

Total votes: 43

How stupid can you be to switch for the second time to a bike that does not fit your riding style

Career ending move. I hope i will be suprised

Total votes: 49

Betcha a pint he RIGHT AWAY has that thing near the front friend!
I can PayPal you right there while we are at the pub mate.
;)
Marquez will beat him. Lorenzo will beat a BUNCH of folks. Right out of the gate.

Not my one star up there btw. I like your opinion.

Total votes: 51

Cheers. Let's take a bet ! I hope Lorenzo will do well, since it one of th greatest with an excellent style of his own. But i really doubt that the Honda supports his specific riding style well enough, non aggressive braking while maintaining extraordinary high cornerspeed is the opposite from where the Honda seem to excel. The front end saves of Marquez are not voluntary actions, they are necessary. Pedrosa ended up midback, that tells a story

I think Lorenzo's ego simply was to big for signing what is called a satelite Yamaha.

For the racing fans this shaking of the field is an exciting thing. Everybody is so excited about the last 2 seasons since there is such a broad top level compared to previous ehm decennia. But in the meantime I think we would not find it so spectacular without the riding style and actions of Marquez

Total votes: 30

We're on.
Cheers!

(We should define what "at the front" and "right away" mean eh?)
How about front pack finish (contention for podium, in the race for 3rd or better at a test or no later than the Qatar race sound ok?)

Total votes: 32

If the rumour is even half true it strikes me as a move to remind Marc exactly who is in charge. HRC have always gone for the two fastest riders they could get, putting the one rider to beat Marquez to a title alongside him would be their dream come true. Probably not Marc's.

.

The Yamaha deal looks much more likely, but I can see the prospect of Jorge on the 'wrong' Yamaha causing a falling out between Yamaha, Movistar and Vale. Factory teams hate losing to the customer, sponsors hate it more, but the Golden Goose doesn't want to share the nest...

... Serious curveball, Jorge back to Movistar Yamaha, Maverick on a Petronas branded no3 bike.

Total votes: 33

Pedrosa cannot get far enough back on the bike to compete on late braking with the (relatively speaking) taller riders, since rear wheel lift and not front tire traction governs in the dry.

Total votes: 32

It is clear that Jorge has never had a conversation with Jack Miller.

The problem with jumping on MM's horse is that, like Stoner, Marc is one of these true freaks of nature who can ride a lamb chop past a hungry wolf. To hop on a RC213V alongside Marc would be like standing next to Moses after he parted the red sea, and then being told: "OK, mate, your turn".

OTOH:

I have no doubt that Jorge is a better rider now than when he left Yamaha. He has learned some new tricks that may serve him well next year. As far as being a better team mate....???

The optics should be hysterical; Marc with his perpetual smile and enthusiasm, and Lorenzo, who generally scowls like a man with several fresh rat turds stuck in his mustache.

Jorge is much gentler on tires, especially the front (which remains an RC213V weak point) than MM or Cal...but not Dani (but he does weigh @14Kg more than Dani. Hell, the lint in my dryer weighs 14Kg more than Dani).

The Honda is not the acme of edge grip...but neither is the Duck. But as previously noted, Jorge has learned some new skills. Jorge has become quite adept at using the thumb brake while at Ducati, and that will serve him well next year. And the engine should not be a problem for someone of Lorenzo's demonstrated skills. If you have the knack, that Honda motor is the mutt's nuts.

Other than making absolutely sure that Jorge's RC213V is the last word in groin comfort and support, I expect HRC's response to all other requested changes to be "Ask Marc first and see if he agrees". And I am pretty sure Marc will respond "Cállate, campesino". I see no reason for Honda to try and accommodate Jorge in the way that Ducati did. Yes, they will listen, and if the suggested path also helps Cal and anyone else assigned a current year race bike, they may consider it. Eventually. If they have nothing better to do after taking care of MM's requests. And after they cover an aluminum swing arm in genuine "carbon fiber look" 3M vinyl wrap so Cal will finally shut up about it. "Wait, what was it you asked us for, Jorge?"

But if Jorge can take Marc's bike, learn to ride it as MM intended it to be ridden (except with a lot less elbow) and then add a dash of Mamba (Jeebus, what a perfectly stupid nickname), it could all work out very nicely. Well, on the track anyway, I don't know what is to be done about the perpetual scowl issue. Cheers.

PS - It does appear that Lorenzo took at least a 50% cut to his pay envelope to move to Honda, and if someone hands him a Monster energy drink for the remainder of this year, I would have someone else take a big sip of it first.

Total votes: 104

What does Lorenzo need more than anything? Feel, particularly from the front. Given that's what all racers want I hardly see why Marquez would veto changes to improve that, especially since he is so brutal on the front end. Beyond that the RC213V is going to turn better than the Desmo does so it would be odd for Lorenzo to walk and start demanding wholesale changes.

As for the fuel tank change, I think that says more about Ducati than Lorenzo. It wasn't a wholesale change of the bike as it's not even the actual fuel tank that changed, just an add-on piece. But Ducati might be slipping back into their Stoner-era ways, i.e. Dovi went well therefore the bike is fine and the problem is you. I'm sure Marco Melandri was sitting at home watching the race with a knowing look on his face.

Total votes: 40

Monster and Red Bull athletes change over all the time, particularly in sports (including motorsports) where they sponsor the teams as well as individual athletes. They're used to it and won't particularly mind

Total votes: 34

I think quite a few of us over-zealous American Nicky Hayden fans held a grudge against Dani for a while. But for a long time now he’s been fast, modest, and always coming back from bad luck, being overshadowed by team-mates, and/or injury, with speed, grace and style. I hope he stays in MotoGP; doesn’t seem like he’d fit in WSB, but whatever he does he’s got my respect. 

Total votes: 50

Does the RCV....?

Brake well on the front brake - Yes

Turn well - Yes

Have a solid front end feel - Yes

Total votes: 39

btw - google "Jorge Lorenzo & Nakamoto" and you will find the previous years attempts to obtain JL99 services and comments by Nakamoto-San putting Jorge in a positive light..

this was the train that no one saw coming; unless you were looking at the departures schedule...

Total votes: 33

firstly, given the uncertain future of DP I am very pleased to already have a DP signed Scott Jones print on my wall.  Asked Scott to send me that particular print after DP's bike torpedoed Dovi at COTA and the first thing Dani did was run across the track to make sure Dovi was OK.  IMO he is a mountain of a man when it comes to representing MotoGP.

Secondly, JL to Honda seems to be so illogical when you compare the characteristics of the bike and the rider.  I'm still shaking my head just thinking about it.  Wait and see I guess.

Thirdly, I am probably in a long long line of people waiting for someone above to dump a huge stinking turd on Puig's head.

Total votes: 48

eliminates the potential competition to Márquez of Lorenzo on a factory spec Yamaha or Ducati, so even if the RC213V and JLo99 do not get along, it is still a win for HRC.

Total votes: 31

Dani had an outstanding run at Honda.  For many years.  They stuck with him, and he with them.  So it comes to pass; time for a change.  The way of the world.  I believe it speaks poorly of neither party - they did together what needed to be done.  HRC a class act as well in the press release.  Tough to break up; tougher to remain friends.

Lorenzo to Honda?  Maybe a great fit, maybe not.  Time will expose it.  I suspect that JL had at least 4 million good reasons to do it.  And having someone as fast in HRC, if nothing else, prevents another team from having him to be racing against HRC.  On balance probably an OK deal for a year.  Maybe two.  Certainly MM won't mind the challenge; he doesn't seem to ever mind the challenge.

Having Dani on another, perhaps satellite, team likewise can benifit the sport in whole if Dani can assist in development and/or growth of that team.  So maybe a win-win in that regard too.

End of an era for sure.  And the start of another.

Total votes: 39

Hi David,

How straightforward do you think it is to compare Jack Miller's performance this year to that of Johann Zarco last year? Both are/were on "year old" bikes that one could argue were of similar quality in their respective seasons with respect to their opposition, although the 2017 Ducati was probably a "worse" bike than the 2016 Yamaha. There is also the matter of their relative experience; Miller has had more experience in MotoGP whereas Zarco has greater overall experience so maybe those balance out somewhat? One to mull over a pint or perhaps even a blog post ;)

Thanks again for the insight and keep up the good work.

p.s. I'm not saying that I think Miller is performing at the same level that Zarco did last year. I think there are similarities to their situations that make for an interesting comparison.

 

Total votes: 30

I posted this on the friday roundup page... "Dani Pedrosa looses his Repsol seat to Cal Crutchlow - because Honda need a rider on the second factory bike that is hungry, similar in style to Marc, but also willing to be Marcs teammate and not upset the apple cart. Cal is just that guy. That opens the HRC seat at LCR Honda for Iannone... an Italian team with an Italian sponsor, why not? "

Still think this is on the cards.. Cal has outperformed Dani over the last couple of years and was top Honda again at Mugello.  

Can anybody see Lorenzo as second fiddle to Marquez? His ego struggled with Dovi being equal in status in Ducati.

Dani with Lorenzo on a Satellite Yamaha? Same ego issues with Lorenzo. He is best suited to a single rider team but Dani on a Yamaha is an interesting proposition. 

I guess it will come down to who actually owns the MarcVDS grid spot, Van Stratten or Bartholomy. If its the latter I can see a Petronas/Yamaha satellite team on the cards, if its the former then there is no space for the Malaysian petro dollars as the beer tokens will be sufficient.

So my current pundits view is....

Cal to Repsol. See above.

HRC seat at LCR. If Dani goes here in exchange for Cal its just a matter of swapping fairings and solves none of HRC quandries. Ianonne on a two year contract.  Luccio is the most sponsor savvy team owner in the paddock and an Italian on a Givi sponsored bike makes good sense. Plus it gives Luccio a year to snare the best of the hordes of young Italian riders coming through Moto2 & Moto3.

Lorenzo to Yamaha satellite bike, but with which grid spot?

And Dani? His star is fading and his unusual size mitigates against development rider status. The second seat at Aprilia? Of course the blindside move would be to Suzuki, but with Suzuki showing a prelediction for favouring fresh talent over solid results from established riders I cant see them swapping Mir for Dani, can you?

Total votes: 31

would surely be Pedrosa and Lorenzo on satellite Yamaha’s. If someone can’t build a profitable enterprise off that lil’ mash up then MotoGP is dead, and we might as well bury it now.

Seriously, if a sponsor wanted maximum air time, millions of eyes on pixels, chat in the pubs/cafeteria’s, this would be a lay down misere. I can’t think of a bigger disruptor in MotoGP. 

Alternatively, Lorenzo and Pedrosa should put their heads together and start pulling strings to make it happen themselves. Surely it would be the ultimate “In yo’ face!!!” to the doubters and dissenters. Beat the three Factory collosus’ HRC, Ducati and Yamaha on a privateer machine? If I was them (hey, dreams are free!) I’d be all over it like green on grass.

Total votes: 41

Pedrosa and Lorenzo have won over many of us with their grit. (Who has raced with the most freshly plated and pinned bones? Probabaly Lorenzo.)

Nevertheless, time marches on, and I think we are fortunate to see this era, this level of technology, effort, skill, and passion.

How often has the prediction of success for a certain rider on a certain bike been accurate? We sit back and enjoy. 93 and 99 on the same team? This sport continues to get even better! What fun for us!

Total votes: 42

Now that DP has been annointed sainthood by most media, many motomatters commentators (and maybe the pope too!) perhaps we should consider that perhaps, like most star athletes nearing the end of their careers, he has finally grown up?

Dani was the most petulent, aloof and even rude rider in the paddock 10 years ago. Maybe we are now blaming all that on his manager?

Total votes: 66

Dani grew up while Puig didn't

Total votes: 49

10 years ago was 2008. You must have missed Lorenzo's arrival in the MotoGP class. :P

Joke aside, Pedrosa really was never any of these things. He joined the world championship very young with very tight control by Puig (who clearly doesn't suffer fools gladly) and has always been incredibly shy and introverted (which might be misinterpreted as aloof) and clearly didn't know how to properly deal with the massive attention and media for many years (young riders are trained much better for that these days). I know memory is a fickle thing, especially for such a long time frame, but please don't confuse these traits with rudeness or petulance. On the contrary and as an aside, Pedrosa's image as the "quiet nice boy" in Spain already well before he joined MotoGP was exactly what Lorenzo initially built a lot of his media image on. Since Dani was winning everything and got all the coverage, Lorenzo deliberately styled himself as the bad boy "Anti-Pedrosa", i.e. loud, abrasive and strutting his stuff. This approach wouldn't have worked so well if Pedrosa had been in any way how you describe him. I think the biggest difference these days, aside from Pedrosa maturing further and opening up a bit more, is him slowly getting warmer with the English-speaking media and showing more of his humour to them, which changed the view of many people outside Spain, so it looks like there's such a big turnaround of opinion. I guess the 12 years since Estoril might also have finally cooled a few heads. Within Spain however, none of this is news.

Total votes: 36

I guess alot of people came to this website recently, including myself, praising the excellent writting skills and knowledge of racing world of Mr. David Emmett and his guests.

But for a hardcore fanatic, who remebers every single detail of every single race in the past 20yrs, i can only agree with you placing the Diminutive Dani in basket of Jorges, Rossis and bitter sour losers and reminding us how he was 10yrs ago...Fortunatelly, he has grown (unfortuantelly not in a phisical height) as a man and person, and i think the pinnacle was his well ballanced comments at 2015 eruption of the youngest volcano in racing history which was MM vs VR...

my 2cents... 

Total votes: 37

I am glad to see Lorenzo head to the Repsol team.  Would have liked to see how he could fair on the Duc once he was happy with it.  Unfortunately it won't be a full season.  I am also glad for Dani.  He wasn't getting anywhere with the RC213V and tire combo.  Maybe a different bike will suit him better.  13 years on the team is a very long time.  I hope for some great battles between the Repsol teammates in the next two years.  Hopefully it doesn't take Lorenzo beyond the preseason to get up to speed on the Honda.   

Total votes: 33

Well, I must admit to not being the biggest Dani fan---during his first year (2006) in MOTOGP, he rammed title contender Nicky Hayden for no apparent reason and nearly cost Nicky the championship---that's not how you treat teamates who are right on the edge of taking it all! Then, the entire Honda team seem obsessed with building tiny MOTOGP bikes that only fit tiny Dani while at the same time seemingly pushing Nicky off to the side eventully parking Nicky on their totally hopeless MOTOGP production racer. Dani proved sometimes fast, but mostly fragile seemingly falling off and injuring himself so many times---oh well, he certainly had his chance, but could never quite snag the biggest trophy...   

Total votes: 38

No he didn't.  He crashed and his bike took Nicky out.  It was not intentional (maybe wasn’t wise pass attempt, but it wasn't intentional). The race was wet where mistakes can be made easily.  Wasn't that Pedrosa's first year?  Was that even his first wet race (I can’t be sure, but that’s possible)?

So no.... he didn’t ram Hayden for no reason. Time to get over it I think.

You also remark that Honda pushed Nicky aside.  How quickly you seem to forget that Dani Pedrosa has a win rate higher than many of the considered greats... Nicky won only 3 races (he would have only had 1 win if they hadn’t gone to Laguna). Nicky was a great guy and a good racer, but the only marker Nicky had over Dani as a racer was a premier class championship and I'm sure I’m not the only person here who thinks he was quite fortunate to have that.

Total votes: 40

I am way over this.

But it was dry. And he JUST did the same thing to (Dovi?).
Pedro is a GREAT rider. Puig is a twat. But Dan's time has come to move on from HRC. No need to get into extraneous stuff about it, it is all just blather.

Total votes: 93

Motoshrink I agree with all of the sentiment here. Pedro is a great rider, Puig would appear to be vindictive at best. Pedro's time has come as it comes to every rider at some stage.

Estoril 2006 where Hayden and Pedro came together on lap 5 WAS dry. It was Dani's 1st season in MotoGp. He had been overtaken by Edwards on lap 3 and Hayden on lap 4. Tony Elias, who won the race by 0.002 seconds, was coming through the field and it was he who clashed with Pedro before the collision with Hayden. Dovi was still in 250 class at that stage, doing battle with Marco Simoncelli and Jorge Lorenzo.

Kenny Roberts Jnr very nearly spoilt the party for both Elias and Rossi finishing onlly 0.176 off the top step. One of the all time great races for a variety of reasons.

Total votes: 34

For some reason, i thought it was wet.  None the less, the rest of the points stand.  It wasnt intentional. He made a mistake.

Total votes: 30