Motorcycling - Crutchlow thinks Honda still has edge

Cal Crutchlow believes that Honda has established itself as the strongest MotoGP team during 2013 pre-season testing.

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Yamaha MotoGP rider Cal Crutchlow of Britain (Reuters)

After Dani Pedrosa dominated the opening Sepang test, and Marc Marquez did likewise at Austin, Honda has topped seven of this year's 11 days of testing.

Tech 3 Yamaha rider Crutchlow, who went fastest as pre-season running concluded at Jerez, said Honda has established itself as the team to beat.

"I think it will be very difficult to beat Honda at the moment, either Dani or Marc," Crutchlow told the official MotoGP website.

"Their package I think is stronger.

"Dani didn't ride [on the final day] but if he did, I am sure he would have been near, if not at, the top.

"We know his pace and he is obviously very confident. He went home so he is happy with the bike, obviously [Honda] don't have too many problems. We are still working very hard with the Yamaha."

Crutchlow said however that he had been encouraged by his pace on the final day, particularly given Tech 3's lack of winter updates.

"We did some decent lap times and in the end ran quite consistently, so I was pleased," he said.

"I feel good. We only managed 30 dry laps [on Monday], so to be at this pace already is good. On old machinery I am very happy.

"At the end of the day we [usually] go to the pace everyone else does, but it seems they had to come to ours so I was pleased."

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