MotoGP 2024
Round 9

Marini leads the Hondas home in German GP Sprint

de Sachsenring

Continued improvements saw Luca Marini set the pace for the Honda RC213V riders in the Sprint race, taking his best result of the year so far. Joan Mir takes learnings into Sunday.

Marini leads the Hondas home in German GP Sprint

A weekend of positivity continued for Luca Marini, the #10 getting faster with every session and able to not only stay with the other Hondas but frequently set the pace of the quintet. Taking 18th in Qualifying, his best grid position of the year, the Italian was primed for a strong Sprint race. Leading Zarco almost immediately, Marini would comfortably finish the 15 laps in 15th and as top Honda. It’s been a confidence boosting start to the weekend for the newest Honda recruit, able to banish the bad luck of Assen and get back on course. The goal for Sunday is clear: continue this trajectory.

It was not such a straightforward day for Joan Mir whose troubles continued. Able to find only marginal gains on his Repsol Honda Team machine, the double World Champion was left frustrated with the lack of feeling and speed. From 20th on the grid, Mir finished in 21st after a complicated Sprint. Setup experimentation combined with the hot conditions of Saturday did not help the #36 to change his fortunes, but there’s still time for overnight improvements.

Both Repsol Honda Team riders are focusing on the further positives to come from Sunday’s race. 30-laps around the tight and technical Sachsenring is always a demanding affair and could produce very different results to the Sprint.

Luca Marini
Luca Marini 10
Repsol Honda Team
It has been our best race so far, I really enjoyed the whole Sprint. I spent most of it behind Fabio and Diggia and I felt like I could stay there. It was really motivating to have this speed and it confirms the way we need to be working. This is exactly what we needed after the hard weekend in Assen. I am adapting much more to the bike, and we are seeing the progress forward. Of course there’s still more to do, but it’s important to enjoy these moments and do what we can tomorrow.

Joan Mir
Joan Mir 36
Repsol Honda Team
Today, I made the save of my life at Turn One! It was incredible and I hope they can find the images. This is the positive from today. Our feeling was not really good after trying to experiment a little bit after a tough Friday but it wasn’t the way to go. We keep learning, this is really the most important thing and what we have to do in our current situation. Tonight we will check the data of the other guys and change our setup for Sunday.

Stefan Bradl 6
HRC Test Team
First I want to say sorry again to Marc. Straight after the session I went and spoke with him in person, these incidents can happen, and I hold my hand up that it was my mistake. I accept the penalty for tomorrow’s race. Today and in the Sprint we were able to get some interesting data for the engineers and stay with Joan and Taka for most of the race. The aim is to do this again tomorrow in the main race and see what happens, 30 laps here will be quite different to today.

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