MotoGP

Nakagami: Hard braking now my strongest point

Takaaki Nakagami clear about biggest strength as he takes the 2018 Honda to seventh place in the Argentina MotoGP.

After spending the majority of the Argentine MotoGP battling with other brands and riders on his way to seventh place, Takaaki Nakagami was left in no doubt where his current strength lies.

"During the race I saw a lot of different riders and manufacturers - Suzuki, Ducati, Yamaha. It's quite interesting. I saw their style is a little bit different, but I'm much stronger than them for the hard braking," he said.

"I'm really happy to understand that because [next time] in Texas you need really hard braking and that's now my strongest point."

The only rider still on a 2018-spec Honda, Nakagami has made an impressive start to the new season and is holding seventh in the early world championship standings.

"I'm really happy about this weekend. We are improving a lot day-by-day," he said.

"We just need maybe a few tenths. These few tenths are hard work. But I'm feeling much more confident and stronger than Qatar. So we'll keep working like this.

"We don't have any new material so it's quite simple, we just focus on my riding style and check every time the data from Cal, Marc and Jorge. This is helping a lot. And try to always do our best.

"The race was really tough. I chose the soft rear because I wanted to gain positions at the beginning of the race but unfortunately I had a different feeling from the grip of the tyre.

"After the first lap I thought 'how can I finish with this grip?' I tried to change my riding style a little bit, but it looked like everybody struggled. I know Marc is like another level. At the end of the race I had no energy to improve the lap time because the tyre was completely finished.

"Of course we need to make a step forward for Texas, but I'm really looking forward to it because it looks good for the Honda and also now I'm really confident on the hard braking. So I'm really excited."

LCR team-mate Cal Crutchlow, on the 2019 spec RC213V, finished 13th at Termas de Rio Hondo after a jump start penalty.

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