Dovizioso: Yamaha has become what Honda was

WithU Yamaha MotoGP rider Andrea Dovizioso says the 2021 MotoGP championship-winning constructor has backed into a similar corner to the one Honda previously placed themselves in with Marc Marquez, where only one rider – the defending champion and 2022 championship leader Fabio Quartararo – is now able to successfully drive his M1.

The three-time championship runner-up had a torrid start to the season as a Yamaha satellite rider, scoring just eight points in the first seven races of the year and finishing more than half of them outside the points – nowhere near his previous status as a championship contender with Ducati.

And the reason for that, he says, is simple: just like Honda, which built a bike that only suited Marquez’s strengths and punished his other riders, Yamaha built a machine perfectly suited to Quartararo’s riding style and other Yamaha riders. suffer the consequences.

“Yamaha are in a very good situation because they won last year, they are first in the championship this year, but in my opinion they are in a very similar situation to Marc and Honda for the last six years,” said explained Dovizioso. after finishing the French Grand Prix in 16th. “In a different way, because the bike is completely different, but that’s my opinion.

“I don’t know if Yamaha decided to come into this situation, but I think Honda decided to go in this direction because Marc [was dominant]. I don’t have the experience of the past four years. But the situation is similar – only one pilot is able to use the potential and make a huge gap from other pilots.

This isn’t meant to be a review of the machine, however. Undoubtedly very strong thanks to both an impressive 2021 campaign and a consistent if somewhat lackluster start to 2022 so far, this allows Quartararo to lead the title race.

And 15-time race winner Dovizioso (who is just one place ahead of rookie teammate Darryn Binder) says Quartararo’s success means Yamaha is still doing something right.

“The bike is really good in some areas because Fabio showed us that he can do amazing things,” explained Dovi, “but that’s the only way to be fast in my opinion with this bike. If you don’t ride that way, don’t do a lot of meters and don’t do a lot of speed in the middle of the turn, you can’t be fast.

“The bicycle, at the same speed as the other bicycles, does not accelerate. If you don’t speed through the middle of the corners, you can’t be fast. He [Quartararo] is really danceable on every trail, and that’s the only way to be fast with this bike.

And, perhaps worryingly for the Italian with two-thirds of the season remaining, he sees no easy solution to the problem they currently find themselves in beyond finding a way to completely rewrite his entire riding style to look more like Quartararo.

“At every track and with every setting we’ve tried, the gap is more or less the same,” he admitted, which is reflected in his race results this year.


“It’s just another confirmation that the way you have to ride is too different. We tried to change a lot of things, that’s all we can do because we don’t have different hardware, but you don’t really affect it in a good or bad way.

“The only way is to change the microchip in your head, to ride the bike in a way, I don’t have that right now. I’m trying to change it but I haven’t found it yet, and this is the moment for which on each track more or less the gap is very similar, in terms of pace and on a best lap.

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