Honda Motorsports Overview 2013

Honda Motorsports Overview 2013

12.02.2013: Honda Motor Co., Ltd. announced the key features of its 2013 motorsports program, including its motorsports strategy

Honda Motor Co., Ltd. announced the key features of its 2013 motorsports program, including its motorsports strategy and initiatives for expanding the popularity of motorsports.

Since the days of its founding, Honda has always made an effort in motorsports, aiming for the world's top level. In both motorcycle and automobile racing, Honda currently competes in or provides support to more than 100 race categories around the world.

The challenging spirit that symbolizes Honda motorsports has now taken root in every region of the world through these activities. Honda will continue and enhance its involvement in motorsports on a global scale, so that it can ensure growth in ways befitting Honda and meet the expectations of even more customers worldwide while aiming to expand further joys.

1. Motorsports Strategy

    Motorcycle activities

In the MotoGP, the premier class of the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix Series, the Honda factory team of Repsol Honda Team will put forward a lineup of two riders. Joining Dani Pedrosa on the team this season will be Marc Márquez, the Moto2 class champion from last season.

Entering the MotoGP with the RC213V and its enhanced performance Honda is targeting to win all three championship titles this year ― rider’s, team’s, and constructor’s ― and will also supply machines to its satellite teams, making a total of three teams and four riders.

In the Moto2 class, Honda has been providing active support since 2010 as the sole official engine supplier, supplying an engine based on the CBR600RR unit. Now Honda has decided to serve as the official engine supplier for three more years until 2015.

With the aim of reinvigorating motorcycle racing in the Asia region, Honda will provide support to IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia, a new team joining the Moto2 class this season. The team manager will be Tadayuki Okada. Yuki Takahashi, now in his fourth season as a Moto2 class rider, will compete for this new team.

In the MFJ All-Japan Motocross Championship Series, Akira Narita, last year’s series champion, will compete again in the premier IA1 class, along with Makoto Ogata, who placed sixth in the rankings. In the IA2 class, Honda will enter Masami Tanaka, who placed third in the class last season, joining Team HRC for a total of three team riders.

Moreover, Honda aims to capture titles in series races held around the world, including the FIM Superbike World Championship Series, the FIM World Motocross Championship Series, the FIM Trial World Championship Series, and the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship Series.

This year, Honda’s factory team competed in the Dakar Rally for the first time in 24 years. Drawing on the technologies and know-how acquired through this year’s participation, Honda plans to compete in the rally once again in 2014.

    Automobile activities

Honda participated in the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) from the Japan round in October 2012. Honda will fully participate in the WTCC this season, with the factory Honda Racing Team JAS competing with two cars. Honda has further enhanced performanceof these machines, which are based on the 5-door Civic sold in the European market.

For drivers, Gabriele Tarquini will now join Tiago Monteiro, who made a podium finish by winning third place in the Macau round last season, as they go after both the drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles. Honda will also supply a machine to a private team, with the aim of further revitalizing this race category.

In the SUPER GT Series, Honda will compete in the GT500 class using the HSV-010 GT with its performance further improved, and aims to recapture its dual driver’s and team’s championship titles with its five teams and five cars. In the GT300 class, Honda will now support two private teams this year, supplying them with the CR-Z GT equipped with a racing hybrid system. Starting in the 2014 season, Honda plans to compete in the GT500 class with SUPER GT racing machines based on the NSX Concept.

In the Japanese Championship SUPER FORMULA Series, a new name for the former Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON, Honda will equip eight cars with the enhanced competitive power of the 3.4L V8 HR12E engines for four teams and will battle to win the dual titles of driver’s and team’s championships.

In North America’s premier IndyCar® Series for open-wheel racing, Honda will supply the 2.2L V6 HI13RT turbo engine to seven teams and eleven machines, as it seeks to win the engine manufacturers title. The Japanese driver Takuma Sato will compete in all races of the IndyCar® Series for his fourth season, representing A.J. Foyt Racing, as well as compete selectively in Japanese Championship SUPER FORMULA Series this season including the first race of the season.

2. Expanding the Popularity of Motorsports

Honda has actively developed programs to expand the popularity of motorsports, including a diversity of activities undertaken to communicate the appeal of motorsports to a broad spectrum of fans around the world.

These activities range from such world-class races as the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix (MotoGP) to various events that can be enjoyed in a casual setting, in addition to the company’s programs for developing motorcycle and automobile racing talent.

As a new program, Honda is now actively considering the hosting of a participatory motorsports event using the N-ONE, a mini-vehicle model gaining noted popularity across a large range of customers in Japan. In 2013, Honda plans to hold a demonstration runs and exhibition events, starting in April with “Enjoy Honda” held at Suzuka Circuit, with the aim to turn the event into a race series starting in the 2014 season.

•Mobilityland to host world premier races

Mobilityland Corporation will continue to provide a venue and a multitude of opportunities for racing fans to watch, participate in, and enjoy racing along with other mobility-oriented events. By hosting these racing events, Mobilityland will extend its contribution toward further growth of Japan’s motorsports culture.

Suzuka Circuit, which started operation in 1962 as Japan’s first full-scale racing course and marked its 50th anniversary in September 2012, has hosted a large number and wide variety of racing events.

 The circuit will host a multitude of events again in 2013, starting in March with Suzuka Circuit Motorsports Fan Appreciation Day and also covering the FIA Formula One World Championship (F1), FIM Endurance World Championship (Suzuka 8hours Endurance Road Race) and FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) races, plus the first-time addition of the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) race.

The year 2012 also marked the 15th anniversary of Twin Ring Motegi, which will host the FIM Trial World Championship Series (WCT) and FIM Road Racing World Championship Series (MotoGP) races this year. Mobilityland will continue to offer fans the opportunity to watch and experience a wealth of Japanese and international motorsports events, including these world top-class motorcycle and automobile races.

Main international races to be hosted by Mobilityland

Category     Schedule     Title     Circuit

WCT     April 27–28
(Sat. – Sun.)     2013 FIM*1 Trial World Championship Series

Round 1 Grand Prix of Japan     Twin Ring Motegi, Tochigi
EWC     July 25–28

(Thu. – Sun.)     2013 FIM Endurance World Championship Series
Round 2 Suzuka 8hours Endurance Road Race     Suzuka Circuit, Mie

ARRC     August 31 – September 1
(Sat. – Sun.)     2013 FIM Asia Road Racing Championship Series Round 4 Race of Japan     Suzuka Circuit, Mie

WTCC     September 20–22
(Fri. – Sun.)     2013 FIA World Touring Car Championship Race of Japan     Suzuka Circuit, Mie

F1     October 11–13
(Fri. – Sun.)     2013 FIA*2 Formula One World Championship Series

Round 16 Japanese Grand Prix     Suzuka Circuit, Mie
MotoGP     October 25–27

(Fri. – Sun.)     2013 FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix Series
Round 17 Grand Prix of Japan     Twin Ring Motegi, Tochigi

*1    FIM: Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme
*2    FIA: Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile

- Honda - also photo


12.02.2013 / MaP

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