Honda preparing Dakar assault

Discussion in 'Racing' started by STROM-CRF450X-990SMT, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. rmhrc628

    rmhrc628 Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,733
    Location:
    The high country VIC
    That'll do.

    Nicely done Troy :)

    I do use motul in my xr, 3 crfs, 1 Fatcat and 1 trail 70;)
  2. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,274
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    I love this post - my thoughts exactly :deal :freaky

    A little birdie told me something: Seems Sam`s Fairing roadbook arrangment came loose andthe cables ended up getting snagged in the front wheel? Suspension causing sam to crash. :huh ........If this is true, its a shocking oversight on the part of someone who working on that bike, but its not a fatal flaw for the Honda bike.

    For the naysayers, I'd like to further suggest that the two crash incidents were not related at all. Top riders sometimes crash in training too. Sam crashed 15 minutes into the ride. Felipe crashed quite a bit later (The incident reminded me of Luca Manca's crash more than anything else. Im just really happy Felipe seems to be responding already. Strongs, Felipe!!). These things happen, don't forget Fretigne who crashed training for Dakar in 2010. Its why you see the KTM guys testing in October and early Nov latest, right? Its also why you hear Cyril talking about doing more gym work so that he does not get injured in the videos.

    I also dont think that riders brought in to fill a position are necessairly jinxed to fail either. The only thing that might be in question is the possible lack of physical preparation by these riders. Even so, they are still pretty fit having participated in other events etc.

    I love Helder, but it would be silly for Honda not to consider some replacements. Whether they actually fill them will depend on the strategy adopted. The question I think they will be asking is if they want to risk a strong performance on second choice riders or just some water carriers who will at least have good chance of finishing.

    STRONGS FELIPE!! :clap:clap
  3. too old

    too old Keen supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,547
    Location:
    Sandy waste
    Lot's of speculation, how is MC's shoulder doing by the way, any news on that - would be an enormous risk to even contemplate trying to entice a injury recovering rider, even an Alien - it just won't happen :lol3

    We know Sam is out for 2013, but we still don't know if Philipe has much more than a bloody bad headache at the moment - recover quick Philipe. :clap

    Personally, if Philipe is not fit then my money would be on Jaun Carlos levelling up the Honda SA numbers :clap:clap
  4. juames

    juames Have Fun, Don't Die!

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,560
    Location:
    Ottawa
    I was looking forward to seeing Sam do well.

    Wondering if HRC could lure Jonah out of retirement for one last kick at the can with a full factory ride?
  5. too old

    too old Keen supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,547
    Location:
    Sandy waste
    Sam is still only 23 - we will all see plenty of him, let's hope the wrist is good for the Desert Challenge at the end of March; onwards and upwards. :clap:clap

    More of that after Jan :lol3 :1drink

    A bit of de j'a vu on that one from last year :freaky
  6. doyle

    doyle RallyRaidReview-ing

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    23,990
    Location:
    Off Piste
    I gotcha, I misread your first statement thinking you meant 4 riders before any of this happened. Seems to me that if Zanol is out and let's face it, an induced coma to riding competitively in a month would be a pretty miraculous recovery, that HRC running only 3 riders would be a risky maneuver and sort of putting all their eggs in the Helder Rodrigues basket. Certainly JCR and Pizzolito are support riders, so a Helder hiccup could be devastating to their effort.
  7. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,274
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    Too Old, Im with you on that one Juan Carlos Salvatierra is the guy I would have chosen, him and Grabham. :deal
  8. neduro

    neduro Addict Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    12,081
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Excellent commentary, all. Most important, best wishes for Felipe and Sam!

    Having ridden the routes they were on in California, and those in Dakar (and Morocco) for reference, I can say that our US riding is generally considerably more risky and technical. As well, the roadbooks here don't have dangers marked- they are as good or better in terms of directional layout, but they make no attempt to call out dangers.

    That's a big difference for the frontrunners in Dakar- what I witnessed there was commitment beyond visibility, and total trust in the danger markings of the roadbook.

    I'm a bit stunned they would be doing testing in December- no time for recovery, and not much for fixing anything substantive on the bike.
  9. doyle

    doyle RallyRaidReview-ing

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    23,990
    Location:
    Off Piste
    Everybody's doing it... Verhoeven in Morocco, Farres in Morocco, Speedbrain is testing now in Spain, etc... Seems to me the testing should be nothing more than warm up and becoming comfortable with the bike but in Sam's case, a loose nav getting tangled up in the wheel can happen no matter how leisurely the pace. I puts Honda in a real bind.
  10. wilkinsonk

    wilkinsonk soup de grimace

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Oddometer:
    886
    Location:
    Sanford, NC
    Are you speculating or confirming the earlier "little birdie"?

    Regardless, speedy recovery to both riders involved.
  11. charapa

    charapa Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2010
    Oddometer:
    506
    Location:
    Huanuco, Peru, SA, home in Mid-Coast Maine, USA
    Everyone has been speculating race strategy in a cold and technical form as we seem to do in USA, CA, AU, and much of Europe. But there is so much more here in the bid for the SA market! And it is a market that responds as much or more to sentiment! :clap:clap

    For example... in Peru, when their futbol team loses, the fans go crazy, mob the streets and break windows. So they bring out the water canons! When their futbol team WINS .... the fans go crazy, mob the streets and break windows. So they bring out the water canons!

    Point is: Sales in South America are as much about feeling as they are about technical superiority.

    Pizolito is great, but the rest of SA considers the Argentinians a bit "especial". :norton Argentinians will circle the wagons around their guy... but the rest of SA ... not so much. For SA sales they NEED another S.American (non-Argentinian) hero!

    YES! I know they need to make a good showing to sell, but drama, heart, and "he's one of us" is just as important here south of the border! :wink: :wink:
  12. HogWild

    HogWild Scott Whitney

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,797
    Location:
    SoCal USA
    As best as I can tell, they were testing in the Stoddard Wells area, south of Barstow. There are no roadbook routes in that area as far as I know, though both Quinn and Johnny have asked me to make something there. And I'm not aware of Johnny using my roadbooks during this recent testing. So, my guess is they were not following any roadbook. Also, that area is torn up pretty well, with tons of whoops in some places. It's probably a good place to stress the bikes, which is what I thought they were doing.
  13. doyle

    doyle RallyRaidReview-ing

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    23,990
    Location:
    Off Piste
    What I find astounding is the information on the van in the back of this photo. It looks to me that HRC (assuming via EFI mapping) can dial up and down the engine power. Some interesting details as well. Look at the notation of the slimmer fairing, perhaps as a result of a different navi structure (pure speculation on my part), all interesting stuff.

    39kw, 41kw, 43kw, 45kw, interesting to see how they are testing the different settings, I suppose for durability assuming HRC has the same quick turnaround they would in MX or GP.

    I can't tell what the sheets are on the right of the van, but perhaps a short riding loop where a full roadbook is not necessary.
    [​IMG]

    Click for full size photo to see what I'm talking about...
    [​IMG]
  14. Baja Dad

    Baja Dad Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,054
    Location:
    Norco California
    I ride there all the time!!!
    I was just there last weekend!
    Get well soon boys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  15. Flood

    Flood F5lood.

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2005
    Oddometer:
    10,161
    Location:
    Austria
    Awesome.
    They're still experimenting with different rear tanks, fairing and brake setups at this stage. That's more than a little shakedown week in sunny Cali. It shouldn't be a surprise, but taking on the multi-title winning KTM RR isn't an easy task.

    One also has to put this into perspective compared to other endeavours like Bordone-Ferrari.
  16. doyle

    doyle RallyRaidReview-ing

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    23,990
    Location:
    Off Piste
    Yes, but certainly HRC is no Bordone-Ferrari. I'm surprised the usually hush-hush Honda media handlers would allow such strategic resources to be shown, even in the background. It's an amazing glimpse into the "process" of it all. That aside, the rudimentary aspect does have me a little baffled. Hand written charts, hand written "highlights" as to what has changed. That's not quite the "Honda" that I recognize.
  17. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,274
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    Brilliant observation there on the photos Doyle! :clap
  18. Flood

    Flood F5lood.

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2005
    Oddometer:
    10,161
    Location:
    Austria
    re: handwritten notes. I'd say this is just working out in the field.

    What am I looking at here? I'm guessing fuel system, 5 fuel tanks? Front top, left, right + rear left, right?

    [​IMG]

    Yes I know, I need to get a life. Sue me.
  19. HogWild

    HogWild Scott Whitney

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,797
    Location:
    SoCal USA
    The bike appears to have no roadbook holder, so no roadbook navigating!

    The three upper-right papers on the van look like Google Earth imagery of typical desert terrain. The lower-right is a map of what may be their practice course. I took that fuzzy image and re-did it below in Google Earth following existing roads in the Stoddard area. Looks pretty close! :evil

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  20. doyle

    doyle RallyRaidReview-ing

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    23,990
    Location:
    Off Piste
    The first step is admitting you have a problem... :rofl :clap :bow