Barcia Scores a Podium Finish in Texas

Nearly 54,500 fans filled AT&T Stadium—home of the Dallas Cowboys—Saturday night in Arlington, TX to watch not only the seventh round of the Supercross series, but also the opening round of the Eastern Regional 250SX class. It was an exciting night for Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Justin Barcia who landed on the podium with a solid third-place finish.

Barcia had a strong showing all day, finishing fourth overall in timed qualifying practice and battling his way to a second-place finish in his heat race. In the main event, Barcia didn’t get the greatest jump off the line but was able to slip to the inside of the first turn and come out in the top five. By the conclusion of the opening lap, Barcia had moved into third. At one point in the 20-lap race he was briefly passed, but countered back to reclaim third position.

“It was a good night of racing. Obviously I always want to win but third is great for me, especially since I haven’t had the best results so far,” explained Barcia. “Mentally this season has been a challenge so it feels really awesome to be back up on the podium. I wish I rode in the main how I did in the heat race. I felt really solid and think I could have caught James [Stewart] if there were a few more laps, but in the main I got pretty tight towards the end and was just trying not to make any mistakes. I am really looking forward to next weekend. I love Atlanta. It’s kind of like a home race for me, so I have a lot of friends and family coming, which is exciting. Hopefully I can get on the podium again.”


450 Supercross Class Overall Results Rank

1 James Stewart
2 Ryan Dungey
3 Justin Barcia

450 Supercross Class Championship Points (after 7 of 17 rounds)
1 Ryan Villopoto 144 points
2 Ken Roczen 132 points
3 James Stewart 130 points
4 Ryan Dungey 116 points
5 Justin Brayton 114 points
6 Chad Reed 111 points
7 Justin Barcia 109 points

Text/Photo: PR Honda Worldwide

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Interview Marc Marquez

 

Repsol Honda’s reigning World Champion, Marc Marquez, has started 2014 as he ended 2013: On top in MotoGP.

Marc Marquez began his preseason in the best possible fashion, preparing for his second season in MotoGP and his title defence. The Repsol Honda rider dominated all three days of the Sepang test, breaking the circuit record on the final day. His time of 1:59.533 bested Casey Stoner’s previous record, set in 2012.

You haven’t stopped this winter. Can you not stay away from racing?
“This has been a winter of two parts. The first was dedicated to events and press, and the second part to a bit more fun and things like Dirt Track racing, driving cars or karting. It is always good to keep active.”

It was supposed to be a break, but you kept on racing.
“There was time for everything. I also had some holiday time over Christmas. In January I began training and had some fun –as I hadn’t really had the chance before then.”

In December you spent a day training Trials with Dani Pedrosa, Toni Bou and Takahisa Fujinami. How was that experience?
“Very good. I had tried it once before, a long time ago, but this was the first time that I’d really trained Trials. We had a lot of fun and plenty of laughs, which is important. Now that I have had that experience, I have a taste for it and a Trials bike in my garage to practice occasionally.”

Have you trained Trials since then?
“Once -because I haven’t had more time. To have fun, my brother and I will do it again from time to time.

How is your body holding up after an intense three days? We can see that your hand is torn up.
“I’m doing pretty good. It’s normal that my hand is like this after a first test, but the truth is that I felt rather good. Every day I felt better. The first day I was a little weak, because I was recovering from the flu and was a little tired. I wasn’t in my best shape, but the test saw me feel better with every day. We also did a race simulation which went well. I just have to keep preparing and improving, but in the end the best training comes on the bike.”

What conclusions did you draw from the race simulation?
“We saw that we can improve our cornering and exiting, and also trying out the new Bridgestone tyre was very positive; they worked very well and I like them. They are similar to the previous ones, but the new ones have good grip and are very consistent from start to finish.”

Does the Honda seem just as competitive this year with the fuel limit being lowered by a litre?
“Yes, at the moment we haven’t had any problems with fuel consumption. Maybe we will have at some circuits, but right now we are ok in this regard. This change also means that we have to balance the bike, because it isn’t exactly like before and there are some small differences.”

“Last year at this test I was more nervous and had more doubts. Now I feel more relaxed”

How is Marc Marquez different today to this time last year?
“I have more experience and you can tell this a lot –both on and off the track. I remember that last year I was on the limit on every lap, and this year it is different. I am finding the best way forward more quickly when it comes to trying things out. That is important for Honda.”

How do you face the 2014 season?
“This year the first thing to do is focus on preseason. When the season starts, of course we are going to fight for the title again and try to be competitive from the start.”

Did you make any big changes in the test to find out what works?
“It depends. At the moment we have checked that our base setup is good, with the information that we had from the 2013 bike. But yes, sometimes it is good to make big changes to see if they work better or worse, because with smaller changes you always have a little doubt.”

One of the things to improve this year are your starts. Have you been practicing them?
“Yes, I made some practice starts and I have improved a little, but one thing is to do it here with no noise, and another is doing it in a race.”

This year you have some old Moto2 rivals on track with you. How are they looking?
“Pretty good. Depending on how someone does in Moto2, you can set out your expectations for them. I expected Pol to be fast and he did well on his first time here in Malaysia with the MotoGP bike. Redding looks big onboard the Honda. MotoGP is all about how you finish, not how you start, and I’m sure that during preseason and the season they will both progress. Pol, with a MotoGP factory bike, will be up at the front this year.”

Do you feel more pressure, having won the championship?
“It is different. For example, last year at this test I was more nervous and had more doubts. Now I feel more relaxed, but this is only the first test, in February. When we go racing it will be different, because there will be that pressure, although I work well under those conditions. If I place fourth, fifth, sixth… people will say that it’s a disaster, and likewise if I finish second, they will say that I could have done better. Last year I had the advantage of every result being good.”

Text/Photo: Respol Media Service

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Video: Marquez’ pre-season testing

 

The opening MotoGP preseason test, held in Sepang, Malaysia, concluded with the Repsol Honda team delighted with the information gathered –and with a new circuit record set by Marc Marquez.

Marquez undertook a total of 167 laps (927 km) at the Malaysian circuit.
Marquez will return to Sepang on February 26th, continuing with the 2014 preseason.

Please find a video of the Maylasia testing below:

Text/Photo/Video: Repsol Media Service

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Marquez remains fastest in Sepang

 

The first test of 2014 has concluded with the World Champion, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez, remaining the quickest man on track throughout the three days. Today −the final day of the three-day test− Marc broke the Sepang lap record with a time of 1’59.533 (beating Casey Stoner’s time from 2012 of 1’59.607) on lap 10 of 40.

Marc spent his final day in Sepang working on electronics and running a 20 lap race simulation. In total, he completed 167 laps over the three days of this first test.

This has been a positive start for the Repsol Honda Team and the HRC engineers, who will now return to Japan with plenty of data to prepare for the next test, scheduled in Sepang from the 26-28 February.

Marc Marquez: “I’m pretty happy with how the three days here in Sepang have gone and we have started the pre-season well. It’s true that this is only the first test and we still have work to do, but we’ve already been able to do a race simulation and it has all gone well. We have tried many setups and we have gathered a lot of data, so we will be well prepared for the next test here. We still have some things to try out, so we must make the most of the days we have remaining here this preseason.

Physically I feel good, I haven’t stopped over this past month and have had a packed schedule, but I have been able to continue training. I was a little weak here when I arrived, because I had the flu last week, but in the end I felt fine which is the most important thing. We can always improve and this test will help me to up my fitness.”

Classification
1. Marc Marquez Repsol Honda 1:59.533

2. Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1:59.727 +0.194
3. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 1:59.866 +0.333
4. Aleix Espargaro FTR Yamaha 1:59.998 +0.465
5. Stefan Bradl Honda 2:00.112 +0.579

Text/Photo: Repsol Media Service

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Marquez tops the time sheets at Sepang test

 

Marc Marquez was once again the fastest man on track today in Sepang and the only rider to record a sub-two minute lap time with 1’59.926 on lap 38 of 65.

It was a gruelling second day at the Sepang International Circuit for both riders. Marc worked on geometry settings, improving his braking stability, some general set up work and a chassis comparison which produced valuable feedback for the HRC engineers. He also spoke positively about the new hard compound Bridgestone rear tyre.

This first three-day test of 2014 will conclude on Thursday, February 6th.

Marc Marquez: “We continued with our work schedule today, with a focus on trying out parts. We carried out various tests, including a chassis comparison, and found some positive points and some negative. As for the setup, we have improved stability under braking, which is something that I have been finding a little difficult, but in the end we have found a good compromise. I hope that tomorrow we can continue in the same way, because we are consistent and fast -which is important.”

Classification
1. Marc Marquez Repsol Honda 1:59.926

2. Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda 2:00.336 +0.410
3. Stefan Bradl Honda 2:00.339 +0.413
4. Valentino Rossi Yamaha 2:00.464 +0.538
5. Aleix Espargaro FTR Yamaha 2:00.547 +0.621
6. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 2:00.573 +0.647

Text/Photo: Repsol Media Service

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Barreda closes the Dakar with another victory

 

The Rally Dakar 2014 has run its course. It was a fight to the finish for the TEAM HRC riders as the 36th edition of the world’s toughest race drew to a close. Joan Barreda finished in seventh with five stage victories under his belt.

Joan Barreda last night arrived back at the bivouac in La Serena exhausted after finishing the 349 km liaison thanks to the help of another rider who accompanied him back to the camp. Barreda had taken a heavy fall at kilometre 265 of the special, where the front end of his Honda CRF450 RALLY received some heavy damage. The rider was forced to stop and check the state of the different navigation components before hitting the road again. Nevertheless, in trying to make up for lost time, he fell again, this time causing an electrical problem, which required him to seek assistance from a fellow-rider.

Today, after the mechanics fixed up the damaged bike parts, Joan Barreda was off again, storming home to victory once more. The rider from Castellón, Spain has now chalked up a total of five victories, and finishes in seventh overall position.

Portuguese Paulo Gonçalves finished three times in the top ten over the course of the first four days, but on a dreadfully tough fifth day some dry shrubs got caught up in his exhaust and set the bike on fire in dramatic fashion. He could only watch helplessly as the flames engulfed the machine.

Joan Barreda: “Today is the last day of the Dakar. For us it feels tough because I lost a lot of time with a problem after a fall at kilometre 200 But today I was back in the saddle like a pro, and I did a really good job in the special. In the end it wasn’t the result that we were working for in the Dakar. Well, now it’s time to go home and try to get to grips with what happened, how and where we went wrong and see how we can sort them out for next year.”

Classifications Stage 13
1 Joan Barreda 01:59’44 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC

2 Olivier Pain +00’40 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
3 Helder Rodrigues +01’23 POR HONDA TEAM HRC
4 Joan Pedrero +01’35 ESP SHERCO Sherco Rally Factory
5 Cyril Despres +02’30 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing

General standings Dakar 2014
1 Marc Coma 54:50’53 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Jordi Viladoms +01:52’27 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
3 Olivier Pain +02:00’03 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
4 Cyril Despres +02:05’38 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
5 Helder Rodrigues +02:11’09 POR HONDA TEAM HRC
6 Kuba Przygonski +02:31’46 POL KTM KTM Rally Factory
7 Joan Barreda +02:54’01 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC

Text/Photo: PR Team HRC

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Bad luck for Joan Barreda

 

Joan Barreda has lost over two hours in Friday´s penultimate stage of the Rally Dakar. On his way from El Salvador to La Serena the Spaniard crashed hard in a wave section and severely damaged his bike. Barreda is not injured.

The Spaniard, who was lying second overall, went down after refuelling. He managed to nurse the bike to the finish line after stopping a few times for repair works by himself. In the overall classification Barreda dropped back to seventh place.

Today´s stage was surprisingly tough. The dunes were tricky and the heat challenged the athletes. Saturday brings the  final 500 kilometres of the race. The Dakar ends after 9,000 km in Valparaiso, Chile.

Provisional result Dakar 2014, Stage 12:
1. Cyril Despres (FRA, Yamaha) 03:58:18
2. Marc Coma (ESP, KTM) +00:02:17
3. Olivier Pain (FRA, Yamaha) +00:05:53
4. Helder Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) +00:07:21
5. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +00:09:10

Provisional overall standings:
1. Marc Coma (ESP, KTM) 52:40:16 hrs
2. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +01:59:49
3. Olivier Pain (FRA, Yamaha) +02:10:16
4. Cyril Despres (FRA, Yamaha) +02:14:01
5. Helder Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) +02:20:39
7. Joan Barreda (ESP, Honda) +03:04:54

Text/Photo: PR Speedbrain Racing

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Barreda overcomes long Dakar stage

 

After this, the eleventh and longest stage so far in this edition of the Rally Dakar 2014, Joan Barreda crossed the El Salvador finish-line in fifth and Hélder Rodrigues in sixth position.

It was Joan Barreda, who started out first today from Antofagasta, as the winner of yesterday’s stage. After completing the 144 km liaison he set of to tackle the 605 km special against the clock, the longest to date in the Dakar 2014. The eleventh stage covered a variety of terrain, hard ground, mountains, plus 120 km of sand and dunes in the Copiapo area.

Joan Barreda fell about halfway through the special in the fesh-fesh zone, damaging the navigation system of his Honda CRF450 RALLY in the process. Without the road-book, the Spaniard was forced to wait for the other riders to be able to make it to the end of the stage. Barreda finished fifth and maintains second position in the overall.

Joan Barreda: “Today was one of the most important days with a lot of timed kilometres. I really tried, pushing hard from the beginning, but about 300 km into the race I had a heavy fall in the fesh-fesh zone and I broke the navigation system. I waited for Cyril [Despres] who was about six minutes behind and I stuck with him until the end of the special. I’m happy that we’ve got this difficult stage out of the way and we are a bit closer to the end.”

Classification Stage 11
1 Marc Coma 6:36’08 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Cyril Despres +02’51 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
3 Olivier Pain +05’28 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
4 Jordi Viladoms +05’53 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
5 Joan Barreda +08’12 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC

General standings after Stage 11
1 Marc Coma 48:24’41 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Joan Barreda +52’36 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC
3 Jordi Viladoms +02:07’56 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
4 Olivier Pain +02:21’40 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
5 Helder Rodrigues +02:30’35 POR HONDA TEAM HRC

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Fourth stage win for “Bang-Bang” Barreda

 

It was a fourth stage win for Joan Barreda in the 2014 Rally Dakar, and a fifth victory for the Honda CRF450 RALLY.

The tenth stage of the epic Rally Dakar proved to be a really long but fruitful one for the Honda riders who stole the top two positions on the CRF450 RALLY. Joan Barreda dominated the Antofagasta stage with Hélder Rodrigues finishing the 688 km course behind him.

Joan Barreda had previously picked up a fifteen-minute penalty for speeding in a radar control in the special yesterday. The Sentinel alarm system that reminds the riders they are entering an obligatory reduced speed zone failed to sound, and the rider from Castellón, Spain, momentarily exceeded the limit. The penalty dropped Barreda to tenth place in the standings. From the outset today, he set about making up the lost time on Marc Coma, his direct rival, and by the end of the day had clawed back 11 minutes 26 seconds.

Hélder Rodrigues too, got off to a flying start, hotting up the pace from the previous outings as he seeks to secure a podium place. Barreda caught him up and the two crossed the finish-line together. In doing so, Rodrigues outruns his immediate rivals for the third place, and now occupies fifth overall position just 19 minutes off the podium.

Joan Barreda: “It was a real shame about yesterday. I was relying on the Iritrack alarm sounding, but by the time I realized that it hadn’t gone off, it was already too late. A shame. Today we started out from behind and I had to stay really focused because the navigation was tricky. I kept a cool head and kept upping the pace with every kilometre. I clawed back a few minutes. Let’s see how it plays out tomorrow in Copiapó.”

Classifications Stage 10
1 Joan Barreda 04:42’00 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC

2 Helder Rodrigues +08’00 POR HONDA TEAM HRC
3 Cyril Despres +09’40 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
4 Olivier Pain +11’11 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
5 Marc Coma +11’26 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory

General standings after Stage 10
1 Marc Coma 41:48’33 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Joan Barreda +44’10 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC
3 Jordi Viladoms +02:02’03 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
4 Olivier Pain +02:16’12 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
5 Helder Rodrigues +02:21’16 POR HONDA TEAM HRC

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Barreda second again

 

The Dakar saw a navigation heavy stage which passed through many kinds of terrain and put the rider’s skill at using the roadbook to the test. The stage ended in spectacular style when the race –after some 40 km of dunes- finished with the picturesque steep descent into Iquique, from where the Pacific Ocean can be seen.

TEAM HRC rider Joan Barreda set off early with a 06:47 start this morning, beginning the special some 422 km later. Sixty kilometres into the race he had caught up with Cyril Despres and once again, he made a solitary ride upfront opening the way for more than 350 km. The Spaniard really put the CRF450 RALLY through its paces finishing in second place.

Joan Barreda: “A very complicated stage today. I tried to push from the beginning upping the pace as much as possible, but Marc [Coma] fought really hard and caught up with me in the dunes. I could do no more. There are two really tough days still awaiting us, but we are going to continue following the same line. Tomorrow I’ll be opening the way again. I’m very pleased with the job done.”

Classifications Stage 9
1 Marc Coma 4:49’05 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Joan Barreda +01’41 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC
3 Cyril Despres +05’28 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing
4 Joan Pedrero +08’43 ESP SHERCO Sherco Rally Factory
5 Stefan Svitko +09’42 SLO KTM Oraving Slovnaft Team

General standings after Stage 9
1 Marc Coma 36:55’24 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
2 Joan Barreda +40’19 ESP HONDA TEAM HRC
3 Jordi Viladoms +01:38’45 ESP KTM KTM Red Bull Rally Factory
4 Jeremias Israel +02:07’06 CHL SPEEDBRAIN Team Speedbrain
5 Olivier Pain +02:16’10 FRA YAMAHA Yamaha Racing

Text/Photo: PR Team HRC

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