2023 will open a new chapter in the career of Alex Rins, who will ride the Honda RC213V of the LCR team, after Suzuki's retirement. It will prove to be a completely different bike to the one the Spaniard was used to, and he got a first taste of what awaits him on the test day in Valencia last November.
“The truth is that it was a strange feeling, it was complicated because it is a quite different bike to the Suzuki. But I have to say that I didn't think it was such a bad bike" Rins told Autosport, commenting on his debut aboard the Honda. A test that saw the Catalan finish in 20th position, almost 1.2” off Luca Marini's best time.
“What I found most difficult was the response of the engine, the connection of the gas to the power, to the rear wheel, it's like very sweet, like it doesn't have lows and has a lot of highs – explained the 27-year-old – We were adapting it and I didn't quite get the hang of it. But I liked the bike, I was one second and two tenths behind the first, I wasn't ahead at all, but it didn't seem very physical to me, at least in Valencia, in the circumstances we were in and after the race. It seemed to me not an easy bike to ride, because all the bikes are difficult, but with enough potential.”
The Honda V4 engine surprised Alex, who is used to the GSX-RR's inline four, which he has been riding for the past six years. A wealth of experience that the Iberian doesn't think of using to try to make the Honda more similar to the Suzuki, but to try to get the most out of this new adventure.
“Adapting to a new bike takes hours. This January I'm going to go training with a Honda 1000 to several circuits, but no matter how many hours I do with that bike, it's not going to resemble a race bike. In the end there is only one MotoGP bike, and it is very difficult to replicate the work you do with it – commented Rins – I told the Honda guys that my idea is not to make their bike a copy of the Suzuki. The Honda will have its bad things, but also good things. I will always tell them how I did it at Suzuki, but not to make me a bike like that one, but to put everything on the table.”