First it was Ducati Corse in Switzerland, and now it is Repsol Honda in Madrid, as the factory-backed MotoGP team debuted its 2019 team and livery. The bikes look the same, the goal hasn’t changed, but the big news from Sepang was seeing Jorge Lorenzo in Repsol orange.
Lorenzo was wrapped in bandages of course, still fresh from the surgery on his left scaphoid, which he broke while training. This meant his leathers had to be cut along the left arm so he could get in and out of them, and it will also delay some of the press photos of the 2019 Honda RC213V race bike.
As far as debuts go, that is not a great start, but it will have little effect on perhaps the biggest shakeup in the MotoGP paddock over the past few seasons.
This is because Repsol Honda is now home to the only two riders who have won the MotoGP Championship in the last seven seasons. If that doesn’t scare the rest of the paddock, then we are not sure what will.
This fact promises good results for HRC in MotoGP, but the real task will be managing two riders who are at the height of their careers and have expectations of adding to their championship tallies.
Will sparks fly on and off the track? Only time will tell. Judging from Lorenzo’s comments in the team’s press release, so far things are going well. But let’s see what happens once championship points are on the line.
“Repsol Honda are on a different level in every way,” said Jorge Lorenzo at the launch. “I could see it at the Valencia test, when I had many people around me listening to what I was saying. It is a dream for any rider to be part of this team.”
“I am very demanding on myself and always try to get the best out of each situation. I want to repay the team for all the trust they have given me with good results. I am very proud to be on a team with as many victories and as much history as Repsol Honda.”
“I like the bike a lot, it turns in very well and is very docile,” Lorenzo added. “In addition, the team gave me a very warm welcome from my first day here. My main objective for 2019 is, first of all, to recover one hundred percent and be able to demonstrate on track that we really are the Dream Team that people are talking about.”
Source: Repsol Honda