Dani Pedrosa & Marc Marquez Ride NSR500 Two-Stroke GP Bikes at Motegi Event

Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez attend Honda's Thanks Day event.

Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa have visited Japan to give thanks to all the MotoGP fans and colleagues in Honda, signifying the end of the 2015 season.

Proceedings began on Friday evening with an HRC dinner in the Tokyo Cerulean Tower Hotel. Alongside Marquez and Pedrosa were HRC Trials Riders Toni Bou, Takashisa Fujinami and Jaime Busto, HRC MXGP rider Evgeny Bobryshev, and MX2 World Champion Tim Gajser.

On Saturday, events moved to Motegi for some on-track action. After some test laps, the riders had Practice and Qualifying for the CBR250 Dream Cup, with Marquez first and Pedrosa second. Marc and Dani also had the opportunity to ride two classic NSR500 bikes – 1984 for Pedrosa and 1985 for Marquez. For both of them, this was the first time riding a 500cc 2 stroke machine and they were both very excited! They also drove the N-One car on-track in preparation for Sunday’s race. The day finished with them completing a few laps in the NSX Concept GT race car – with over 650bhp – which they enjoyed a lot.

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Formula 1 star Fernando Alonso test rides the RC213V MotoGP bike while Marc Marquez drives the NSX Concept GT car.©Motorcyclist

On Sunday all the riders assembled for an action packed day in front of 18,500 spectators. Marc and Dani were joined by Formula 1 star Fernando Alonso and ex-F1 pilot Takuma Sato (now Indy Car series), Toni Bou, Takashisa Fujinami, Jaime Busto, Takumi Takahashi (Suzuka 8 hours Japan Superbike Championship), Hiroshi Aoyama and Kosuke Akiyoshi (HRC Test Riders), and ten drivers from the Super GT series (GT500) National Championship Super Formula. The day began with a Kart race followed by the CBR250 Dream Cup race (8 laps), where Dani and Marc started from the back of the grid finishing respectivly 1st and 2nd! They also enjoyed the N-One Exhibition race (3 laps) this time with Marc first and Dani second, and concluding with an NSR500 demo lap and an exhibition on board of their RC213V machines.

Fernando Alonso also had the opportunity to test the RC213V MotoGP bike on the track for the very first time, together with Marquez again driving the NSX Concept GT car and exchanging their helmets at the end.

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Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez take their first ride on 500cc two-stroke GP bikes; Pedrosa on a 1984 NSR500 and Marquez on an '85.©Motorcyclist
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Honda nsr500 gp race bike
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honda nsr500 gp bike
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honda thanks day event
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Formula 1 star Fernando Alonso test rides the RC213V MotoGP bike while Marc Marquez drives the NSX Concept GT car.©Motorcyclist