MotoGP: ‘To ride for Repsol Honda is a big challenge’ – is Joan Mir on the cusp of joining Honda?  |  MotoGP

MotoGP: ‘To ride for Repsol Honda is a big challenge’ – is Joan Mir on the cusp of joining Honda? | MotoGP

With only one race to go before the summer break, the Suzuki rider’s future is expected to be decided very soon, with all signs pointing towards him joining the most successful manufacturer in MotoGP history, Honda.

Mir, who crashed out of Sunday’s German MotoGP, has struggled for form ever since Suzuki’s announcement that it will quit MotoGP at the end of this season.

Both Mir and Alex Rins were title contenders heading into Le Mans, however, three crashes in four races have completely derailed Mir’s hopes.

Mir’s latest DNF came as a result of ‘small’ contact with Miguel Oliveira, although the consequences were far from small.

“We decided to go out with the hard rear tire instead of the medium, and it meant that in the early lapse I didn’t really have the feeling,” said Mir.

“I was expecting that feeling to come as more laps passed and the tire got up to temperature, but after a couple laps I still didn’t feel good.

“I had a close call with another rider [Oliveira] and a small touch, and then I went wide and lost the front. It’s a shame, but we won’t let this disappointment ruin our optimism or our working spirit, I feel better and better with the bike and I will continue pushing for Assen.”

Despite feeling good with his GSX-RR, Mir only has the rest of this season to enjoy riding the Suzuki.

‘Inside my heart I will always be a Suzuki rider’ – Mir

While speaking to ITV, Mir was asked about switching teams and whether it’s a situation that’s scary to him as he’s only been with the Hamamatsu-based manufacturer since joining MotoGP in 2019.

Mir added: “For sure it is. But I am sure that if we were able to find this harmony and feeling within this team, then we will find it in a different team. Inside my heart I will always be a Suzuki rider.”

Will that harmony come at Honda alongside six-time MotoGP champion Marc Marquez?

After choosing not to comment on his future for several weeks, Mir has given the biggest hint yet that he could join Repsol Honda.

On the subject of being team-mate to Marquez, the Spaniard said: “Yes, this is true [not easy to team with Marquez]. To ride for Repsol Honda is a big challenge. It is something that, for every rider in the paddock, it is such a difficult challenge. But it is not a bad option. Marc is a rider that you can learn the most from. We will see.”

Despite Honda holding the status of the most successful manufacturer in MotoGP and therefore being an attractive option for many riders, especially those in need of securing a seat, its current struggles are certainly a worry.

Without Marquez, Honda were again absolutely nowhere in Sachsenring as Pol Espargaro retired due to fitness issues, Alex Marquez suffered ride-height problems, Takaaki Nakagami crashed out and Stefan Bradl was running Moto2 lap times at the back of the field.

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