With the 2008 MotoGP season start knocking on the participant’s door this weekend in Qatar, everybody takes a deep breath and prepares for the best. But not Honda! The new RC212V had proved not so competitive in the cold last week at Losail. Traction wasn’t effective as the bike had serious grip problems.

As a result, Nicky Hayden will compete on the 2007 Honda Repsol in Qatar. The machine was flown to the Middle East from Japan and it is on what everybody puts their hopes in.

Spaniard Pedrosa has also received the 2007 bike, but isn’t yet decided on what model it will race.

Nicky Hayden will run on 2007 RC212V in the first race
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Spaniard Pedrosa

The decision came after the RC212 proved not competitive as the new pneumatic valve engine proved inefficient and unreliable during such a demanding race.

There was first the decision to ride on 2007 engines fitted on 2008 chassis, but the recipe didn’t proved efficient so Honda went the whole way and had the entire 2007 models flown in.

Nicky Hayden said: “It couldn’t have been easy to explain to the bosses that they wanted to roll out last year’s bike. I first asked about switching to the old bike after Phillip Island but they really didn’t want to take that step back. Sometimes though you got to go back to move forward,”

Let’s just hope that this weekend will cheer Honda people as the 2007 Repsol rolls down the track on decent positions.

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