Repsol Honda Team
In the 2012 MotoGP season, Honda had hoped to repeat its 2011 performance and take all three Titles again. Twelve wins out of 18 races gave Honda the Constructors Title for the 19th time (61st, counting all GP classes). Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner did solid work for the Repsol Honda Team, appearing together on the podium eight times, and Repsol Honda had podium finishes in every race of the season to gain the Team Title again. A number of factors combined to keep the Riders Championship out of Honda hands this time, though.
The first half of the season was especially difficult for Dani as the team struggled to adapt to a last minute minimum weight rule change, followed by new tire specs. But, the story changed for him in the season’s second half after the introduction of the new bike, redesigned to meet the rule and spec changes. Dani could now use the full potential of the RC213V and start clocking up wins, but it was just too late for the title. Dani continues to improve, winning seven races last season, more than any other rider, and finishing his best MotoGP season just 18 points off Jorge Lorenzo. Casey Stoner, 2011 World Champion, had already decided to retire at the end of this season, and an unfortunate injury prevented him from reaching higher than third place overall.
Stoner’s replacement in the 2013 Repsol Honda Team will be Marc Marquez, the current Moto2 champion. Marquez’s superb performance in the November tests in Valencia and Malaysia suggest we can expect some extremely exciting racing from him this season.