2013 Honda RC213V MotoGP TestingDespite another bout of inclement weather during testing at the Twin Ring Motegi Circuit in Tochigi, Japan, two-time MotoGP Champion Casey Stoner achieved some progress aboard Honda RC213V machinery.
Wednesday’s testing sessions were canceled due to rain, but Stoner was able to get some laps in Thursday aboard the Honda RC213V works machine, which is currently used by Repsol Honda riders Dani Pedrosa and Marc Maruqez, and the “MotoGP Production Racer,” a production model based on the RC213V.Honda is developing the track-only Production Racer to enable teams and riders to race in the MotoGP class in 2014 with a reasonable budget.Honda reports Stoner, who retired at the conclusion of the 2012 MotoGP Championship, was quickly up to speeds “worthy” of the RC213V, but once again bad weather caused the testing to end.Casey Stoner says: “Unfortunately the weather played a big role in this test which was a little frustrating not to be able to share the workload over the two days.“We tried to do everything today but it was a little difficult, and we also had the threat of rain again. We started with the current model, trying to find a base setting and then work from there. We had two variations of chassis’ to try and some big modifications and improvements in my opinion. We also tried the production bike which was more impressive than I predicted. It had a similar feeling to our current bike but with less power and different feeling in engine braking and chassis.“With some small modifications I believe this bike will be competitive and I look forward to the next test with it! In general it was a good, but busy day!”Stoner reports he will not make a return to World Championship racing, but he will be on the track soon. Stoner will return to the Phillip Island with fellow Aussie World Champions Wayne Gardner and Mick Doohan for a lap of honor at the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix on Oct. 20.
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.