News 28 Aug 2016

HRC to debut 2017 CRF450RW at MXGP of the Americas

Bobryshev to ride all-new model in Charlotte next week.

Words: Adam Wheeler

Source: Supplied.

Source: Supplied.

Honda Racing’s Evgeny Bobryshev will make a high-profile debut with the 2017 CRF450RW at the Monster Energy Grand Prix of Americas in Charlotte next week.

Honda Motor Europe showed off the motorcycle for the first time at the 16th round of MXGP at Assen and HRC revealed that the Russian will race the bike in anger around the purpose-built facility in North Carolina.

“We’ve done some testing but our chances were limited after the disaster in Kumamoto, but we felt it was a good idea and Bobby has felt happy with the way the laps have gone,” said HRC MXGP general manager Roger Harvey, referring to the earthquake in the southern region of Japan last April.

“It is an early generation of the race bike and it will go [ahead] in steps, so what we see next year will be advanced from what we see next week.

“The chassis and engine is completely different but it has that Honda DNA and character,” he added on the model that is the firm’s first all-new CRF450R in eight years and with a claimed 11 percent increase of horsepower over the 2016 edition.

“A lot of work has been done in Japan and [Akira] Narita has been riding one and now Bobby feels good with it, so we’ll have a go.”

The omission of Gautier Paulin from the allocation and recent tests all but confirms the departure of the Frenchman from the Honda set-up after two years but the 26 year old will not be announced as a Rockstar Husqvarna athlete until early November.