Honda is going through a difficult moment and is trying to react: the latest move was to hire Ken Kawauchi, one of the engineers behind Suzuki's recent successes. The Japanese giant is suffering and Livio Suppo, who has won so much with the HRC logo on his uniform, is the first to be surprised.
“All the riders believe that the Honda isn't that good, but one year ago, in the pre-season tests and at the first race in Qatar, all the articles wrote that Honda was back, but what happened after? - said the Turin manager to motogp.com - How does a bike go from finishing on the podium in Qatar to struggling to be inside the top 10 mid-season? It’s very strange. Honestly, it's almost impossible to understand what happened last year."
Suppo doesn't know how quickly the situation can change.
"It's difficult to say, in the short term it will be very important to see how the season starts - he underlined - I think that if the results improve immediately, then the atmosphere and the motivation of the riders will grow, and everything will be easier. Otherwise, if things are complicated at the beginning, I'm not saying that everything will become impossible but much more difficult".
Livio also spoke of the contribution that Kawauchi could bring and his thought is that he will be able to help.
“Ken was Suzuki's Technical Director, which means that all the team’s technicians had to send him their reports and Ken is very good at collecting information and moving it back to the factory - he explained - Especially for the Japanese manufacturers, it's not easy getting the information from the track to the factory and vice versa and it is crucial that they have the same vision. I don't think Ken's role will be to build a new bike, but the same one as he had at Suzuki and will be help everybody at HRC. He has two big pluses: he has proved to be very good at his job and has a very good character ”.