Honda prevented its MotoGP riders from speaking at a recent event in Italy because it still fears a backlash towards Marc Marquez after the controversial end to the season.
Marquez clashed with Valentino Rossi at Sepang, and was then accused of protecting Jorge Lorenzo in the championship decider at Valencia. Prior to the season finale, there was an altercation at Marquez’s house with an Italian television crew.
Team principal Livio Suppo said he instructed Marquez and teammate Dani Pedrosa not to talk at a Honda presentation in Milan this week because he is still worried about possible reactions.
“Yes, of course, we told them not to speak,” Suppo told Gazzetta dello Sport. “By now I can expect anything, the only thing missing is someone spitting on Marc.
“I don’t know if Valentino will shake the hand Marc has held out to him, and I don’t know if Marc will carry on holding it out, either. I can say that it has gone much beyond what’s acceptable. I would like people to go back using their heads.
“I admit I made a mistake in not intervening immediately after Valentino’s accusations at the Sepang press conference.”
Suppo added that Marquez’s conscience is clear over the Valencia race and suggested the riders would have behaved differently had they been trying to fix the result.
“If Marc, Dani and Jorge really wanted to fix the result at Valencia, they would have overtaken each other 300 times and then they would have given the victory to whoever they wanted. They were aware that, by doing what happened in the end, they would be buried by accusations.
“Marc has always stayed calm because his conscience is fine. Let me add, however, that after what had happened in Sepang, I don’t know how Valentino could expect any help from him.”