Marquez prefers Bradl over Stoner for Honda test role

MotoGP champion Marc Marquez says he would prefer Honda to keep its current test rider Stefan Bradl rather than pursue Casey Stoner following the Aussie's exit from Ducati.

Marquez prefers Bradl over Stoner for Honda test role

Stoner, who won premier-class titles for both Ducati and Honda prior to his retirement from motorcycle racing in 2012, has performed testing duties for the Italian manufacturer since 2016.

Ahead of this year's season finale in Valencia, Ducati made it official that it would be splitting with Stoner, which led to speculation that the Australian could return to Honda's fold.

Marquez, however, has played down such suggestions, making it clear that he was content with the job being done by current tester – and his former Moto2 title rival – Bradl.

“Of course Casey has an incredible talent, but of course if you want to be a test rider you need to test many many days during a season, you need to be able [to test] when the factory wants you,” Marquez said.

“This was not the case [at Ducati] - or [that's] what I heard.

“Now we have a very good test rider, that is Stefan Bradl, so I would like to keep him.”

Ducati employed Michele Pirro as a test rider alongside Stoner, with the Italian carrying out the brunt of regular test work and Stoner making only intermittent appearances - and being sidelined for much of 2018 after shoulder surgery.

Back in September, the two-time MotoGP champion admitted to his frustration with his role at Ducati as he suggested the manufacturer didn't “use the data and the feedback that I give them”.

In line with Marquez's statements, it is understood that Honda – which will add current Ducati rider Jorge Lorenzo to its line-up next year - is satisfied with Bradl's work and is, as it stands, unlikely to make a move for Stoner.

Team principal Alberto Puig, however, left the door open to the possibility of a reunion between the rider and the manufacturer when queried about it in Valencia.

“You know, Casey was in the past a Honda test rider, also he was Honda world champion. We have a very good relation and memory of him," Puig said.

“But for now we have Stefan, we are happy with him - but of course we are always open to see and investigate the possibilities.

“For now we have Stefan, it [hiring Stoner] is something that we did not consider, at this moment no - but always open for it.”

Additional reporting by Oriol Puigdemont

Stefan Bradl, HRC Honda Team

Stefan Bradl, HRC Honda Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / LAT Images

shares
comments
Lorenzo's injury feels "worse than expected" in Valencia
Previous article

Lorenzo's injury feels "worse than expected" in Valencia

Next article

Why Valencia testing is the best and worst for MotoGP riders

Why Valencia testing is the best and worst for MotoGP riders
Load comments
The three factors that crowned MotoGP's newest champion at Misano Prime

The three factors that crowned MotoGP's newest champion at Misano

The prospect of Fabio Quartararo clinching the 2021 MotoGP world championship title at Misano appeared small after struggling to 15th in qualifying, while main rival Francesco Bagnaia took pole. Here's how the Yamaha rider turned it around, with help from an ill-fated Bagnaia tyre choice, to secure the crown with two races to spare

MotoGP
Oct 25, 2021
Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on Prime

Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on

Saturday 23 October marks the 10th anniversary of Marco Simoncelli's death. The one-time 250cc world champion and double MotoGP podium finisher was the ultimate maverick character with big hair, a big personality and an even bigger talent. Motorsport.com pays tribute to a much-missed figure, a decade on.

MotoGP
Oct 23, 2021
Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha in MotoGP Prime

Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha in MotoGP

Fabio Quartararo has his first match point in the 2021 MotoGP title race this weekend at Misano. While the 2021 Yamaha is a much-improved bike to its inconsistent predecessor, its the rider himself who has shown the biggest evolution this season. Oriol Puigdemont delves into Quartararo's growth.

MotoGP
Oct 19, 2021
Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider Prime

Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider

Marc Marquez's romp to victory at the Grand Prix of the Americas led many to believe the 'old' pre-injury Honda rider was close to coming back to his full powers. However, the 'old' Marquez will probably never exist again and instead he'll have to adapt to his new reality to return to title-winning ways in 2022.

MotoGP
Oct 6, 2021
Why self-preservation was key to Marquez's COTA "dream" result Prime

Why self-preservation was key to Marquez's COTA "dream" result

Marc Marquez scorched to his seventh Circuit of the Americas victory in MotoGP last Sunday with a display reminiscent of his pre-injury form. However, his path to the win across the weekend was in keeping with the current reality of his physical limitations, with self-preservation on Saturday key to his Sunday success

MotoGP
Oct 4, 2021
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Prime

How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike

His third place at Misano made Enea Bastianini the fifth different Ducati-mounted rider to score a podium in 2021. Amid a season that has seen one rider amass the bulk of Yamaha and Honda's success, the Ducati's versatility makes for a potent weapon, but the contribution of a former leading light shouldn't be forgotten

MotoGP
Sep 23, 2021
The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career Prime

The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career

Maverick Vinales’ early debut with Aprilia has been one of the most interesting plots of the recent MotoGP rounds. The results may not look standout on paper, but a closer inspection reveals just how much progress Vinales has truly made in understanding a bike that has taken him well out of his “comfort zone”.

MotoGP
Sep 22, 2021
Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future Prime

Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino GP will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP's present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia's flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021