MotoGP, Hernandez: “Two difficult years, but Marquez’s goal is the title”


Santi Hernandez and Ramon Aurin are respectively Marc Marquez’s and Pol Espargarò’s crew chiefs. They’re responsible for managing the Honda garage, and Repsol put them face-to-face in a video interview (see above), where they touched on many topics. Both are fresh from a difficult year: Santi due to Marc’s physical condition, Ramon due to Pol’s difficulty in adapting to the Honda.

Now is the time to start a new chapter, and Hernandez is almost in symbiosis with Marquez after 12 years together.

When you’re with the same rider for many years, everything becomes easier because we know each other and our work,” he explained. “But, in the end, it’s always difficult because everyone improves, and we have weaknesses. We’d like the new bike to help us overcome them.”

From this perspective, the new RC213V seems to have improved.

Stability when entering corners, more grip, and more power are what Marc wants,” Santi continued. “These were his requests, because those are the points where we struggled, especially on the straight, where you can earn tenths with a powerful engine, and it makes everything easier.

Do many expect a lot from Marquez and Hernandez?

When you come from two seasons where you haven’t been ready to fight for the title, I’d say you want to do the best you can. But honestly, working with a rider like Marc, the goal is to win the title,” Santi said, without mincing words. “We’ll see how the season goes, how the races go, and then we’ll figure out what our real goal will be. But if you ask me now, it’s about winning the title with Marc. The past two years have been different. In 2019, our worst result was a second place. It was a big change, but the most important thing for me is to believe in what you’re doing. The rider wants to win, he always wants to do his best, but you also must not think that you’re doing something wrong. Sometimes you doubt yourself but, in my case, I try to believe in what I do. The difference is the result, but the most important thing is to enjoy the moment.

Marquez is also a reference point for his teammate, and Aurin has no problem admitting that.

He knows bikes since he was eight or nine. Usually, when he gives his opinion, he’s correct. We try to follow and sometimes copy his suggestions and what he does. Even if Pol says he doesn’t feel better, we try because Marc is still the reference in Honda and in the MotoGP. He’s a great, hard worker. One of those who never gives up and is good both as a rider and as a person,” is how he described the champion from Spanish.

Espargarò’s goal is to be able to express himself on the Honda at the same level.

We had some problems last year, especially with the rear of the bike,” Ramon recalled. “As soon as the prototype arrived, we saw improvements. Pol needs more stability on the rear, more grip, and it seems that the new bike is going in this direction. It’s good for Pol, and I think for everyone. There are also some downsides, which we need to improve, and that’s what the tests are for. The engine seems slightly better.

What do you expect from this 2022?

I think everyone’s goal in the MotoGP is to win the title,” he said. “On our part, we’ll have to see what that will be and always be able to keep up with the best and fight for the championship. We’ll figure it out after a few races. It’s a big objective.”




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