Honda Denies DCT Rumors on MotoGP Bikes
Stoner smashes lap record at pre-season test
Honda riders claimed the top four spots on the Sepang test time sheet. Repsol Honda factory rider Casey Stoner had the fastest lap with a time of 1:59.665 with teammate Dani Pedrosa second at 1:59.803. San Carlo Honda Gresini rider was next at 2:00.163 with the third Repsol Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso at 2:00.541.
To give some perspective, the official lap record at Sepang is 2:00.518 set by Valentino Rossi in 2009. The fastest non-Honda rider was Yamaha factory rider Ben Spies at 2:00.678 with fellow American and former teammate with Monster Yamaha Tech 3, Colin Edwards at 2:00.966.
Honda riders were consistently fast each day of the Feb. 22-24 test, leading to whispered accusations that Honda was using dual clutch technology from the VFR1200 sport tourer. Dual clutch technology is banned under MotoGP regulations so Honda Racing Corporation boss Shuhei Nakamoto stepped forward in a press conference to deny that his riders were using DCT. Nakamoto did however hint that Honda riders were using some kind of new technology that allowed for faster gear changes.
“Obviously HRC is not using anything illegal, but it’s true that we have something new on the transmission that currently ... allows for faster gear changes,” says Nakamoto. “We are not talking about a DCT, but I can’t tell you how it works ... because I don’t know!"