Honda’s start Moto3 performer of 2021 so far is Darryn Binder (Petronas Sprinta Racing Honda NSF250RW), who started last week’s Qatar Moto3 race from pole position and finished third after 18 laps of breathtakingly close competition. At the finish he was just 0.094 seconds behind the winner.
The 23-year-old South African was happy enough with his first race on Honda’s NSF250RW – winner of the last four Moto3 Constructors World Championships – but he knows he has the speed to win this week’s race.
Binder also impressed with his strategic thinking, a vital skill in Moto3, when the first dozen or so riders are often separated by only a couple of seconds, so it’s important to know where to put yourself and when.
Fellow NSF250RW rider Gabriel Rodrigo (Team Gresini Moto3 Honda NSF250RW) also takes aim at the podium this weekend, after finishing the season-opener a strong fifth, a few tenths down, despite losing time through a collision with a rival. The 24-year-old Argentine rider has yet to win a GP but surely his time will come soon.
Three more top NSF250RW riders will be hoping for better luck in the Doha GP after being taken out of the Qatar GP by another rider. Jeremy Alcoba (Team Gresini Moto3 Honda NSF250RW), John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing Honda NSF250RW) and Andrea Migno (Rivacold Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) were the innocent victims of the early race incident and they will all be out to bounce back with their first points scores in round two.
Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW) hopes to be in better physical shape this week after struggling through the Qatar round with the after-effects of COVID-19. Eighth place was an impressive result considering that the 23-year-old from Chiba started from the back of the grid and missed preseason testing while he had the virus. He was admitted to return after a negative COVID-19 result – the entire paddock continues to work via strict protocols aimed at fully containing and defeating the virus.
Yuki Kunii (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) has high hopes of achieving his first World Championship points after missing out last Sunday by less than one tenth of a second. The 18-year-old from Setagaya is contesting his second GP season and is building his speed all the time.
Team-mate Andi Farid Izdihar (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) moved down from Moto2 to Moto3 for 2021 and is still getting used to the smaller machine. The 23-year-old Indonesian learned plenty last weekend and he aims to put all of that to good use second time out at Losail.