Opinion: How Dani Pedrosa's 8 Million Euro Suzuki Demand Is Like Brown M&Ms

With Marc Marquez already signed up for 2015 and 2016, and Valentino Rossi on the verge of penning a new deal with Yamaha for two more years, attention is turning to Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo. Will Lorenzo want to stay with Yamaha or switch to Honda? Will Pedrosa be prepared to take a pay cut or head off to a different factory? All these are thing we will learn over the coming weeks.

Pedrosa's case is particularly interesting. Some well-informed sources are starting to report on his options for the future. According to the Spanish magazine Motociclismo, Dani Pedrosa has been offered a substantial pay cut by Honda, with base salary cut from something in the region of 6 million euros a season to 1.5 million euros, with a very generous bonus scheme for winning races and the championship.

But Suzuki have also shown in interest in Pedrosa. The Japanese factory needs a winning rider to help make their new bike fully competitive, times set by Randy de Puniet so far lagging a second or more behind the factory Hondas and Yamahas. Right now, only four riders look capable of winning – in fact, since 2008, only six riders have won, with Casey Stoner, Dani Pedrosa, Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi have taken multiple wins, Ben Spies being the anomaly with a single victory at Assen. If Suzuki want a rider with a proven track record, then Dani Pedrosa is almost their only option.

It is worth remembering here that although Pedrosa has not won a MotoGP championship yet, he is still one of the most successful riders in the history of the sport. Pedrosa is eighth in the list of all-time winners, in both MotoGP and all classes, and has three titles in the junior classes to his name. He has more wins than Wayne Rainey, and has regularly beaten Marquez, Lorenzo and Rossi, as well as his former teammate Stoner. On any Sunday, Dani Pedrosa is a candidate for victory.

Pedrosa knows this, and knows that Suzuki needs him more than he needs them. According to German-language website Speedweek, Pedrosa has demanded 8 million euros to ride for the Hamamatsu factory. Given that this would be a pay rise for Pedrosa, that is a sizable sum. Especially given that Pedrosa is being outclassed by his teammate, and has yet to win a MotoGP title. Signing Pedrosa is no guarantee of success.

So is this a mark of extreme arrogance on the part of Pedrosa? Unlikely. Pedrosa has always been a surprising modest man, at least by the standards which elite athletes are measured by. Is it just Pedrosa's way of politely turning Suzuki down, knowing that they would never be willing to pay that much for his services? Possibly, though like all top riders, Pedrosa has a clear sense of direction, and what he does and does not want to do. There is perhaps another explanation for Pedrosa's salary demands, which has a particular logic to it. It needs explaining with an example from another field altogether.

Back in the early 1980s, many rock bands were known for their increasingly extravagant riders, clauses attached to their contracts dictating what food, drink and other supplies and accessories were to be present backstage at their performances. The most extreme example was said to be rock band Van Halen, who demanded that there was to be a bowl of M&Ms present in their dressing room, with all of the brown M&Ms removed. The contract explicitly specified that if they found a single brown M&M in that bowl of candy, they would be entitled to cancel the concert while still being paid in full.

At the time, this was derided as an example of the extraordinary arrogance of modern rock bands, yet Van Halen had very good reasons for putting the brown M&M clause in their contract. They were putting on massive stage shows featuring huge lighting and pyrotechnic rigs in places which had comparable bands perform. Those rigs needed very specific power and safety facilities for them to function properly, and a very thick contract was provided specifying the complete technical requirements in great detail. If the venue did not do everything right, musicians, crew and audience could all face severe and possibly fatal danger. Checking the bowl of candy was a quick way of seeing whether the contract had been read and complied with, if the band found a brown M&M, then they ran a full check of the rest of the venue. Inevitably, they would find other, dangerous breaches of the contract.

What does this have to do with Dani Pedrosa and Suzuki? The Japanese factory has had only limited success in Grand Prix racing, securing just two championships in the past 21 years: one with Kevin Schwantz in 1993, and the other with Kenny Roberts Jr in 2000. The bike has never been truly competitive, and every rider who ever raced for the factory has complained that the lack of success was down to a lack of investment. The factory stubbornly followed their own path, never spending enough to catch up to Honda and Yamaha.

Any current rider looking at a Suzuki contract should know this history, and will therefore be wary of Suzuki's claims that this time it will be different. There is no doubt that team manager Davide Brivio is being genuine that Suzuki want to invest enough to be competitive, but Brivio is not the person who makes the decisions about budget. Those are made at the highest level, in the Suzuki boardroom by the senior executives.

So how do you test whether Suzuki are willing to spend what it takes to win? As a rider, you have a simple test, if you are clever about it. By demanding a massive salary – shall we say, around the 8 million euro mark – a rider can gauge just how serious Suzuki is. If they won't spend the millions to secure a top rider, how can you be sure that they will spend the tens of millions needed to build a competitive MotoGP machine?

I have a sneaking feeling that Dani Pedrosa's 8 million euro wage demand was his version of the brown M&Ms...

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And could very well be on the money.

Thanks for sharing the industry speculation. I didn't see that one coming... but I have wondered about Pol Espargaro taking Dani's seat.

I think there's a few riders in Moto2 that are better. Namely Maverick. Then there's Jack Miller. Then the young gun from France in CEV moto3. A few years off for them all but that only makes more sense for HRC to try and sign Dani for the next few years.

Dani's already said he doesn't know how many more years he'll be racing. So for me, he'll sign another 2 year deal with HRC and retire. What will happen in those two years is anyone's guess. But HRC are confident in Marc's ability to take the title and confident that Thera no one on the grid right now that's better than Dani for the second bike.

It is ridiculous the way so many keyboard warriors claim to know the future performance of junior racers from Moto2, Moto3, even CEV. People in the paddock who actually run the teams get it wrong more than half the time. But internet experts could tell them with certainty (if only they would listen) who are the future aliens who will depose the existing aliens, who are all washed up anyway except for MM93. LOL.

We all have our opinions. And that's what I gave. Just as it's your opinion that we're "internet scouts" . Call it what you will. Simple fact is. There's no one on the grid that can step into Dani's shoes and produce the kind of results he is able to. So yea, I think Honda is eyeing the smaller classes for thier next rider. IMO <-----------

Danny is a burned rider and the proof for this fact is that there were so many races that he could not win even if the main rivals where not in the best condition.
He is addicted in second or third place and he will never get the will to do something more.
There is nothing out there to justify a 6 or 8 mills salary. Not even 3 in my opinion.
I strongly believe that with a different bike he will be just an average rider at least until he'll get to now the bike well. And that's if the bike is top...

On the other hand there is Dovi who may not have Danny's absolute lap times (some times) but lets not forget that he has never got the same chances (2yrs vs 8 on the RCV) and he has prove his speed. To be exact I believe that if he was on Danny's RCV at the moment and Danny on the Duc things would be much different on the current ranking list.
There is sth else as well. There is nothing in history of 2 riders that indicates Danny as a better rider to help develop a bike.
But the biggest advance for Dovi is that he would go to Suzuki with a lot less money. I believe 2.5 to 3 mills would be more than enough for him to leave a bike that seems that will never be competitive.
Therefore Dovi is definitely a better option for Suzy.
The thing is if Suzy will act as a serious factory to convince Dovi to come.

Suzuki should abandon the guy Repsol Honda kept for the guy Repsol Honda dropped?

Suzuki should abandon the 3 WC winner for the 1 WC winner?

Suzuki should abandon the guy who has been riding the most competitive bike on the grid to many podiums for 8 years for the guy who has been struggling to keep in front of CRT for 2?

Etc., etc.

I don't know where this anti-Pedrosa sentiment comes from. He is easily the winningest non champion of all time. He's currently second in the WC standings and 2 races ahead of Dovi in points and has finished well ahead of Dovi every season the competed in MotoGP aside from 2011 when Dani broke his collarbone (and only finished 9 points below Dovi).

Suzuki is not going to win their first year out and they know this. They need a rider that can push to a podium level maximum to help them develop the bike to get to that point. To that end, there's no better rider than the 3rd (I'm putting him ahead of Lorenzo but behind Rossi currently) best rider on the grid by a long shot. If Dovi is better than Pedrosa where's the proof?

I know right. Divi had his shot. He rode the second best bike on the grid when he rode for HRC. But yet, he could only convert that to 1 win, and that win was when half the field fell at Donnington. Kiddos for him keping it upright and but that should say all there is to say about Dovi.


You're argument there... When did Dovi win his WC? How did he do on a Repsol? Dovi is even more of a 'nearly' man than Dani.

Yes, I belive that a rider who

- won 3 WCs in 125/250
- has 25 wins and 88 podiums in MotoGP
- is currently 2nd in the championship and has finished 2nd or 3rd 7 out of 9 years in MotoGP

is a better choice for Suzuki than a rider who

- only won 1 WC in 125
- has 1 win and 23 podiums in MotoGP
- is currently 4th, has only finished as high as 3rd (the year Dani missed 4 races), and usually finishes anywhere between 4th and 8th in the MotoGP championship

Look I like Dani and Dovi both. I think they are good riders and underdogs. But Pedrosa is a much better rider than Dovi, period. I don't understand where this hate for Pedrosa is from but folks should step back and look at the facts. They are all there for free on Wikipedia and MotoGP.com if you haven't been watching.

But I think you r not familiar with the fact that numbers do not tell the entire truth. There is nothing in racing that could give credit to victories and wc's alone.
Of cource there is a difference in victories and podiums between the 2 riders but with what bikes and in which teams and in what conditions? I think I have already mention that...
So by saying ''sssssh9'' or ''ssssh3'' you can not convince all of us. Sorry.

Danny (who is undoubtedly a great rider) stands currently 2nd only because he runs one of the best bikes in one of the best teams out there. Mention that some saying that maybe he holds his saddle not only because he is fast but there some stories with kings and oil companies as well if you know what I mean. Then again maybe there just rumours.
Don't you wonder what he could do on a Duc? I am almost certain that he wouldn't do better than Dovi. Told you before why.

To the theme... Suzuki will pay some mills for a top rider. In my opinion they should pay 2 to 3 to Dovi and at least one to Randy so they can spend the extra 4-5 mills to hire a top telemetry engineer as well as a top chief engineer like Coulon. In this scenario they could easily also afford a few more wild cards with an other rider.
That is the proper way to develop a top bike from a company with Suzy's budget in my opinion.

>>But I think you r not familiar with the fact that numbers do not tell the entire truth

Usually I would agree but when the numbers are wins and WCs then those are really the only numbers that count.

>>Suzuki will pay some mills for a top rider. In my opinion they should pay 2 to 3 to Dovi and at least one to Randy so they can spend the extra 4-5 mills to hire a top telemetry engineer as well as a top chief engineer like Coulon. In this scenario they could easily also afford a few more wild cards with an other rider.

If Suzuki were able to get one of the 4 top riders on their team it would be worth any number of telemetry engineers or wildcards or 2nd tier riders. On the current grid I don't think you could be a consistent top finisher without giving good feedback to the team and having an accurate feel for when a change is an improvement or not. Pedrosa has deep knowledge of the tuning capabilities of Honda's electronics which in itself is valuable information that is near impossible to get otherwise. His race to race and year to year consistency is excellent and his only possible drawback is that his light weight may highlight problems that most other (larger) riders would not have.

>>That is the proper way to develop a top bike

You can't develop a top bike without a top rider. Dovi is good but never made the step to great. RDP is fast but inconsistent, not exactly what you want for development: is it the rider having an off day or the bike? Why do you think Honda was so happy to get Stoner doing some testing? Usually a top rider is never satisfied to merely test and test riders can't push the bike to the same limits but CS is one who is and can.


That story about Van Halen and the M&Ms always struck me as a little "post hoc", though that's of no importance here. Assuming that really is Pedrosa's strategy he perhaps ought to be a little wary. If past behavior is any indication Suzuki may decide to get the extra money for rider salary by taking it out of the R&D budget.

Van Halen didn't have removal of brown M&Ms in their contract because they were full of themselves and made outrageous demands, they put that in there to make sure that each venue they had a contract with actually READ the contract. If VH hit their dressing room and there were no brown M&Ms in the bowl, odds were very good that other details were met as well like number of points where light rigs were attached, placement of the sound board, volume of arena PA speakers, etc.

I don't think that Dani's purported 8 million Euro demand is as much a denial than it is him saying "You have an unproven project and if you want me to ride it you're going to pay me that much as proof of your commitment to the project."

Of course it's called the silly season for a reason...

Rider (theater), a set of requests or demands that a performer will set as criteria for performance

Rider (contract), an additional provision attached to a contract such as an insurance policy

Rider (theater), a set of requests or demands that a performer will set as criteria for performance

Rider (contract), an additional provision attached to a contract such as an insurance policy

of this beautifully said story, if we assume it has the slightest affinity to reality, is this: when Honda offers Pedrosa 1,5 mi. instead of 6, it means it has also the replacement rider at hand.
If the whole story Is Not Valid Now, it will be next year or at the latest in 2016, provided of course that Pedrosa will get a two year contract at the end of this current season.

.. it was just that Honda potentially needed Pedrosa in order to beat Lorenzo and Yamaha, and got out the cheque book for that reason. The way MM is riding at the moment, now they just need him as a back-up in case the other rider is injured.

At this point in his career DP seems to be losing his self-belief and motivation. No doubt he's still a highly skilled rider, but both Bradl and Bautista seem hungrier, and I suspect by next season they might both be obtaining better results from the RCV.
FWIW DP's always been #1 in the Negative Charisma World Championship - and that should count for something with the beancounters. If I was a cold-hearted Honda suit, I wouldn't hesitate to dump him, and pucker up to the German market by offering Bradl the #2 factory RCV.

In the wet. When half the field fell. Good pilot no doubt.(he wouldn't be in GP if he wasn't.) but his "win" isn't telling of his true speed.

Dani isn't requesting a huge salary as some sort of test. He's looking to make as much money as he can while he can. It's as simple as that. And as far as "regularly beating" other aliens is concerned, you're 180 degrees out. Suzuki certainly does need a top rider to have their bike competitive, but it won't be Pedrosa at the price he's asking. They can probably secure the services of Dovi or Bautista for far less. You can bet that Dovi is ready to bail off the Ducati. Too bad Ben is gone, he would have been the perfect rider for Suzuki, had his health been good.

No where. Except in the mid pack battling with Tech3. Which has always been Suzks place. Save for 91-93 and 2000.

They need to throw that money at Pedrosa. He's the only one on the grid that can tell them what they need to compete. Other than that they're stuck with being mid pack. Dovi,Bautista , they don't have that extra .5 to make the sufferance in developing the bike to run up front.

Except Dani will tell them to fit last year's chassis because he prefers it. He's a very good racer but a development rider he is not.

I don't get the logic behind that first sentence. Is every new part better than the last? No. That's why they test them. If last years chassis is better then why not use it until they come up with one that is better?

As far as Pedrosa's development skills. I'd say they are pretty high. The RCV is considered the best bike on the grid. It didn't get that way by having a rider that doesn't know how to give feedback.

There are no doubts that dani is contemplating a switch. And david you are maybe right....... I too get that feeling but have 2 more points to put forward.

Wit #93 already signed, is HRC trying to recover some of the amount what they spent on marc by offering 1.5 million to dani. They have the highest budget so why this type of conservative approach ??. Dani though may not have won but gives them 2nd and 3rd almost every year and wit #93 already there no worries for the title.

Or this is HRC's way of getting rid of #26 and getting #99 on board to make repsol honda, super repsol honda for 2015. Though this year with the size and numbers of sponsors yamaha have they can offer 10 million each to lorenzo and rossi as earlier they paid 17.2 million to rossi and lorenzo combined (according to forbes).

If JLo thinks his troubles are bad at Yamaha. IMO, he would be in a world of Sh!t at HRC. So far he hasn't been able to adapt to the bike. Something that Rossi,Marc and Dani are all capable of doing. And something we've seen over the last five years. Lorenzo is hardcore no doubt about it. But he's being shown his week side. A bike that doesn't allow him to ride the silky smooth style he likes and a teammate and competitor that plays rough. Deep on the brakes, stand you up and if we touch. So be it. Lorenzo needs to get his head around what he has to change in him because it's obviously not the bike.

Interesting article - also "has regularly beaten Marquez, Lorenzo and Pedrosa" didn't you mean " has regularly beaten Marquez, Lorenzo and ROSSI" ?

..Van Halen would have been able to tell what they were actually eating, let alone whether there were any brown M&M's considering the state they used to get into during their gigs! :)

but if I was Suzuki I would have called a certain unemployed aussie to see if he would thrash it around test tracks for the last 18 months to see if it can even be competitive. Now, it's almost too late so any of the top 4 riders could only be thinking "if I ride a completely unproven and likely uncompetitive bike then I want a lot of money".

Funnily enough, as far as Japanese road bikes go I am Suzuki loyal but as far as their MotoGP efforts go I find myself repeatedly cringing and wondering why they bothered. I would put them on the same MotoGP level as Ducati - only focusing on the wins.

Honda is being brilliant in this move and honestly I don't know why more sports teams don't offer heavily incentivized contracts. My guess is that they have offered Pedrosa as much if not more money as before, but he only EARNS it if he gets wins and the championship. This is exactly the right move for this particular rider because to me he appears perfectly content to collect his paycheck, avoid all risk and watch his teammate(s) and competition go for the glory.

Of course I am being critical to the extreme on him, particularly with the injuries he has had, but seeing Marquez and Lorenzo (and Bautista, Bradl, Smith, Espargaros,etc) put it all on the line every weekend "appears" to be more than Pedrosa has been willing to do. The only time he truly appeared to really go for it was in the second half of 2012...but even that was "too little too late" as he would have been champion if he wouldn't have been so typically cautious and missed out on points in the first half of that season.

This could backfire on Honda if they don't get JLo though...they need two championship capable riders. If Marquez goes down (still looks like he is going to crash spectacularly on every corner) and they don't have another top rider, that great bike of theirs and all the money invested in it will go to waste. Dovi appears to be the next best option but we have already seen his potential in HRC and that is not good enough.

Will be interesting to see how silly season plays out....

Yes, a big concern is Marquez injuring himself, like Mick Doohan did in 1992.
Mick had 4x wins on the trot, 2x seconds and another win, and then....

The other HRC riders weren't up to standard that year to stave off Rainey, only Mick.

Dani should rethink his bargining position:

Honda surely believes they have a lock on the 14, 15, & 16 championships w/MM. All that now matters is the manufacturer's championship. To secure that, they don't need DP.

They may believe a developing rider, like Bradl or either of the Espargaros on a full works bike would accomplish that. They could even think Dovi or Bautista could or be waiting to see who is the next MM in Rabat or Vinales.

What some here think that just because Dani is 2nd or 3rd today, thats enough. Remember, since 2006 every year (except 2012 & this) he has been their number 1 rider, so they no better than anyone, it aint gonna happen & maybe its time to think of the future.

The clock is running & I believe that if he doesn't re-sign with Honda by Germany he may find himself without a chair when the music stops & if he actually is bluffing with Suzuki, he could find himself fighting for Dovi's seat...

Pol will get that seat before his brother. A.E. Has proven he has speed in practice and by himself. He is lacking the race craft that the factories look for. So far, he hasn't shown that. His brother is doing quite well in his first year. Last race he showed the that kind of race craft fighting when he could and securing points he needed to.

Aleix's race performance has less to do with his talent and more to do with the open tires. He sets the fast times with the super soft tire, which isn't a good tire for race distance.

Why is there never talk of him going to Yamaha along with Rossi? Surely this would not be out of the question. Perhaps his weight would overcome the acceleration problems the bike has.

This could also backfire (badly), by getting what he wants, a bit like Rossi's salary at Ducati. Those millions of Euros would be better in the R&D budget.

These salaries also suck the oxygen out of the sport. There are limited funds going around, many (deserving) riders not getting paid at all, many having to pay for their rides.

Does this quandary for Suzuki hint at the lack of connection between Moto3, Moto2 and MotoGP?

In the halcyon years of 1x 2x & 4x a 125cc 2 stroke cylinder, things were easier. Both with factory involvement and the passage of riders, Lorenzo, Stoner, Rossi etc.

Suzuki can't coach/mentor/support talent thru Moto2 and then there is the vast step up in electronics/tyres in MotoGP

I fear for someone like Jack Miller, not a Spaniard/Italian, who could get lost in Moto2. We have the semi-factory involvement in Moto3, then backward to the 'garagistas' in Moto2, before going full factory in MotoGP.

Time to open up Moto2 to the factories (aka WSS+), push it out as the Global National series (inc. tyres), and allow factories to bring up talent.

It could be said the greatest disparity is not the machinery, but the riding talent and the ability to get them up to the (too) high tech world of MotoGP.

Suzuki would be mad to blow that kind of money during their first year back. As suggested several times, spend the $ on R/D instead. (Of course, doing stupid things is sort of a Suzuki tradition!)

IMO, Zook should reward RdP with a bike and also hire Dovi, Hayden (I think he's got one more good year in him), Pol (if willing), or any other competent '2nd-rank' rider for 2015. If the bike proves fast, shop for a hired gun (not sure Pedro is the man) in '16.

In the music industry, a 'rider' is the name given to the freebies bands/performers get from the company hosting them. Like in small pubs for instance, they'll get x number of free beers.

*supposed to be a reply to an earlier post. Dunno why it ended up here.

A rider is "Additional clause, document, or slip of paper that adds, alters, amends, or removes the provisions of an associated or attached agreement or contract (such as an insurance policy) or a negotiable instrument."
Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/rider.html#ixzz32v5BtxaD

The key being that it's an additional clause above and beyond the standard contract to stipulate certain other things being agreed to, like guest lists, M&M's, after-show hookers, free beers, no Celine Dion on the before show PA, accommodation, you name it......

Hey David, google Iggy Pops legendary rider - Its hilarious. As for Danni I know it counts for nothing in the cut throat world of motogp but I always thought he was the most gentlemanly of riders, always my favorite.

With the return of Suzuki and the retirement of Colin Edwards there will be 3 good seats to fill in 2015, leaving aside any shuffle of the existing riders who can step up from moto 2 or across from superbikes.

It would certainly be hilarious if Suzuki were to sign Dani for whatever sum of money and that he would ride the Suzuki to another second place overal

The big story in the above ( if it proves to be factual, which I have no doubt it will ) is Honda's strategic pay offer to Dani. If you think about it, 1.5m is a low salary for a factory rider. If I were Dani I'd translate it as an offhand way of saying that HRC could take him or leave him. And with a limited remaining career if I were him I'd go were the big bucks were. It's pretty obvious what he'll want to do.

Might well be right that Dani winds up on the Suzuki. And as a long-suffering Ducatista, I'm hoping Cal Crutchlow joins him there. I believe David has reported that Cal is pulling something over 4 million euro at Ducati... what a waste of money! Speedweek seems to be reporting 2.5 million, still way too expensive for the performances delivered so far! Some people think Cal has an "opt out clause" that would allow him to cancel the second year of the Ducati deal. I hope he does have that clause, and uses it, because his performance relative to his teammate is pretty bad, in fact embarrassing.

Other than WSS. Crutchlpws mouth has always written checks his ass couldn't cash.

8 million is a lot of cabbage for them to cough up. It seems a bit odd to me right now that riders and teams commit to one another w/o the rider getting a go on the bike. Anyone else share this question? Is it really THAT difficult to set up a test day w a few potential riders and your bike? I am sure we have some readers from parts of the world in which arranged marraiges are common, perhaps you can contribute thoughts re how it is fine that the bike and rider don't connect before they are committed to each other. Sure wish there could be a "group interview" track day for a broader spectrum of candidates shooting for a hot lap and race simulation, all circulating on a handful of a factory's bikes. At least I can dream.

Pedrosa is not a bad pick for Suzuki. I would recommend not falling into a narrow view that only a current Alien could actualize the bike's potential. With Marquez unavailable, Lorenzo likely unwilling, and Rossi starting his cool down lap into the sunset "it must be Pedrosa!" seems unwise.

What sort of rider would he a best fit now for THIS bike? Numerous folksmentioned development skills. Also hunger. Adaptive style. Aggression and racecraft. All very important things. Keep in mind too the unprecedented changes that are underway...Suzuki needs a rider for a bike w more limited electronics AND decreased grip from the Michelins in another yr. The Suzuki will be very unlike the current Honda or Yamaha. I would sure be interested in grabbing a kid about to burst on the scene over a Pedrosa. Either Espargaro for 1/3rd of the $ and a 1yr contract would be my pick.

Spending extra money to get an established top rider would be money well spent if it helped Suzuki get the bike more competitive in a shorter amount of time. Rider feedback is the key to developing the bike, plus what the engineers do with the feedback.

Why is Suzuki off the pace now in testing? Frame? Geometry? Horsepower? Motor tractability? Or is it that RdP is not an alien?

When you show up at Sepang next February with EE1/3 (Either Espargaro for 1/3 the price) and are slower than HRC and Yamaha, can you reliably pinpoint the problems? EE1/3 doesn't really have experience on race winning bikes, so would the feedback be compromised by that? How do you know whether the problem is the bike or the rider? At least with Pedrosa, you know your rider has vast experience with winning bikes, and rides them at competitive speeds.

And if you spend the next 2 years with the wrong rider circulating mid-pack, how can you think you have saved money? You can't.

Dani has been riding Hondas his whole GP career & has no experience with any other design philosophy.

Suzukis have always persued a different strategy..more handling-centric compared to Honda's "motor" focus. Perhaps "EE1/3" would be a better choice since they haven't been the beneficiaries of being on the best (most powerful) bikes throughout their careers.

LewtheShoe has hit it firmly on the head.

In terms or raw speed, how much time do you think Pedrosa has over Depuniet, or Pol? How much experience does Dani bring to the table when it comes to working with championship winning machines? How much is that knowledge worth?

I am not convinced that putting either of the Espargaro brothers on a factory Honda would make them a race winner, and frankly that is exactly what Suzuki needs at the moment. Suzuki needs the input from someone who has consistently raced and the front and has won to know exactly what needs to be done with the machine in order to be at that pointy end, and you are not going to get that from either of the Espargaro brothers, or Cal. If Suzuki cannot get Dani the next best thing for them would be Dovi, and he doesn't bring the knowledge or potential that Dani does.

Saving money on a lesser rider for development but not having the proper feedback doesn't help the development of the machine. Suzuki could have HRC development money but without the proper people in place to guide that development it's useless.

I agree w much that is being said about Pedrosa's knowledge about what a bike needs to be near the front. I disagree re how strong he is likely to be compared to a good big handful of possible riders at wringing out what is possible from the Suzuki specifically.

I also see Crutchlow in a more favorable light than this particular discussion casts. Perhaps this is part of the (hopefully and likely waning) Ducaticurse. He adapted well to a outdated Tech 3 Yamaha admirably well and showed up as a rough ridin' gunfighter in ways I haven't seen Dani since he was on 250's.

My opinion of course. Which I tend to be a fan of I know.

hi, so i was just watching the le mans race from 2012. anyway, i am watching this and pedrosa started on the front row and has slowly gone back, first taken by rossi (at his worst on a ducati) and then taken by the tech 3 team and im only 5 laps into the race. commentators reminded me that pedrosa has been dead weight for a number of years. he has never had 'the eye of the tiger' you can see when he gets overtaken by someone, for about 30 seconds he will try and look like he is gonna take the position back even though he wouldn't be able to, and then he just gives up and continues gliding. the commentators even pointed out how happy dovi would be to get passed him as dovi was booted off the honda team instead of pedrosa when stoner joined. This race pretty much sums up pedrosa's career. good qualifying, starts front row, goes backward getting overtaken by people that want it more.

it gets me thinking just how much talent has missed out on the opportunity of stardom because pedrosa has wasted a spot on one of the two best bikes on the grid. i agree with above comments, espargaro brothers could be good, or even crutchlow, maybe dovi, maybe bradly, you could go on. watching old races really shows you how it is basically yamaha and honda, (ducati died after stoner leaft them) it is 4 bikes racing, the rest is just to add colours, so why waste one of those bikes on someone like pedrosa, the guy that never looks happy ever, the guy who looks like he hates his job every time i see him, the guy that doesn't seem to have any passion to ride.

i hope he gets off that honda and i applaud honda for the salary cut because how much clearer can you make it 'pedrosa, we literally don't care about you, we are going to cut your salary by 70%, if you wanna stay, stay, if not, whatever, we only lose a 2nd or 3rd place guy, who cares when you have no. 1. Anyone who gets that bike will be a contendor at the front' if pedrosa stays after a move like that my jaw will drop. no respect for people that let themselves be treated like that.

that said, i think they have signed someone else or are getting very close to signing someone else. my gut says they have signed lorenzo, what would be a good plan b if they have signed lorenzo, it would be a very very cheap pedrosa contract. if they can't get lorenzo, then its all eyes on marquez and who cares about pedrosa. but if they can get lorenzo, yes its likely lorenzo will mop up 2nd and 3rd just like pedrosa does, but yamaha will be seriously damaged by such a move. so it makes sense to have two options, 1 get lorenzo and destroy yamaha or 2, pay pedrosa peanuts compared to previous contracts and use the money for marquez and keep the honda CFO happy for a year or 2.

You remember watching one race where Pedro had a bad setup and that makes his spot on the repsol team wasted? Dovi beat Dani in the standings AFTER Dani missed (IIRC 4) races because of an over aggressive Simoncelli. I guess our memories have faded to the point that HRC didn't really come good until mid 2010.

How many wins did Dovi achieve riding the Repsol bike? Yeah, he really set the world on fire didn't he? Dovi had his shot on the Repsol, and couldn't keep up with his teammate. Cal couldn't beat Dovi and somehow he should dethrone Dani?

While I agree that HRC doesn't really need Dani, he is still by far a guy you want on your team, and saying he wasted a seat on the Repsol ride is about as ignorant as it gets. There is no shame in losing the title to the names of Stoner, Marquez, Lorenzo and Rossi.

not sure what to do here, do i apologise for 'ignorance'? i was under the impression i was entitled to an opinion? sorry if not.

to your point at the end, based on the what has been discussed in this thread, it doesn't seem dani is someone the factories would want on their team. keeping in mind that honda and yamaha are the top teams, honda would likely take lorenzo over dani because they don't care for dani as they have shown by the pay cut. so they would have marquez and lorenzo, and if lorenzo left yamaha, i don't ever see yamaha taking dani, they would take a young blood to go with rossi not dani. ducati, suzuki are pretty much R&D departments that experiment during races and in my opinion don't really count. they may want him, but thats because the safest option/ best riders are already with the top factory teams. so where does that leave dani? unwanted by top teams and only wanted for lack of other options by other teams, and based on the rumours, a team that isn't even in motogp yet wants him, is there a more embrassing situation for a 'top rider' or is everyone wrong and dani is in fact amazing and everyone is stupid for not wanting him. or perhaps everyone grasped the reality never winning wc's or continually running 2nd or 3rd on the top bike wasn't just co-incidence? maybe he isn't a top rider, just a very good rider on a top bike? i personally don't see any reason to be a pedrosa fan, there is no fire in him, no charisma, and very predictable and boring racing from him.

(i know this is all hypothetical as none of us are the decision makers for any factories in motogp - again just my opinion)

so whilst i appreciate your point, on paper he would be good to have, but in reality i don't think the teams that matter would care, so your point was almost irrelevant ;p

But I would add a few variables to this particular debate. Dani has only ever rode the Honda whilst Dovi has experience on the Honda, Yamaha and the Ducati. Dovi would surely have a more objective viewpoint on what works and what doesn't for a developing bike regardless of his outright speed. Given Millers performance now that he's graduated from sub standard equipment in Moto3 I'd be interested to see how Dovi would perform on the Repsol Honda now that he's gained the experience of riding what the other manufacturers have to offer.

I apologize if I cannot see calling a rider with (going off the top of my head) 25 victories and 88 podiums a wasted seat anything other than ignorant. If success is only measured by a world championship than Hayden should never have been booted from HRC and should be one of the most sought after riders on the grid. That's not the reality of it though. The reality is there are only four proven race winners on the grid and HRC is putting all of their eggs in the Marquez basket and who wouldn't. The reality is if you are not HRC you want to stack your team with the best possible race winners to combat Marquez, and it doesn't matter how anyone sells it, Dani is one of those riders. The reality is HRC doesn't have to offer Jorge an insane contract to defect (if they do I will be shocked), and it surely can't be the same amount he was offered in 2012.

The only reason I see Dani's stock dropping at HRC is because of Marquez.

This is a discussion forum and I hope you understand there is no malice towards you in my comments. If I did offend you I apologize as that was not my intent.

i think even hayden would admit it was lucky he was world champion, with the sequence of events leading up to it including the elias incident. i am not sure if i am miss-communicating or you are being to literal. yes dani has always always been at the top with wins mixed in, but he has never had that killer instinct, he was never a rossi that came in to motogp and took the championship by storm, or a lorenzo that also took multiple championships by storm, or marquez who is potentially this year going to take it by an atomic, nuclear holocaust of an earth destroying, hollywood 2012 storm. so yes, i take back discrediting dani, who i assume you are a fan of, its obvious he is good, but when i say he isn't top, its because i am comparing him to legends. so yes, i see why you say its ignorant, dani is a lesser god, but a god still. i do think that dani will be a flop when not on the honda however, he's been there for so long that i can imagine him turning into a colin edwards, lots to say about whats wrong with the bike but not actually performing to a high level.

i think you could be right about there not being a huge offer to lorenzo, honda know he is having a bad time and they know they have what appears to be the best bike. i'm a yamaha fan myself, and a big jorge fan, but i would love to see him wipe that smile of marquez on the same machinery.

I don't see how anyone can view Dani's racing record with anything but respect, he may not be in the same class as Rossi or Marquez, but surely a rider whom any team would love to have. On another matter - Danis personality, he may not be the most outgoing guy in the paddock but not everyone can be a Rossi or Marquez. The one time I met him he was very polite and gracious and I for one wish him all the best for the future and if that should be as the #1 Suzuki rider I am sure he would be a great choice.