Rossi, Marquez not impressed with 2016 ECU

Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez have described the electronics package that will be used in 2016 as a step back in time following the first day of post-season testing in Valencia. 

All the riders were testing out the new electronics for the first time on Tuesday, and Rossi was less than impressed and even branded it as comparitable to the one he used during the 2008/09 MotoGP season. 

“I tried the new electronic for next year and it will be a big problem – I mean it is like we make a jump in the past. Like [our factory software] in 2008-2009,” he told reporters. 

Rossi, who posted the 12th-fastest time during the first day of testing, also said that the new electronics package made his bike less enjoyable to ride. 

“For me no, because in the end the higher the level of the bike then the better it is for me,” he said. “So like this is clear step back. At the beginning you are also a little bit angry on the bike because you think 'f**k! It don't work'.”

Repsol Honda rider Marc Marquez, who set the pace on the first day of testing with a time of 1:31.551, echoed Rossi’s sentiments and said that he struggled to find anything positive about the new electronics. 

“We started on the 2015 bike, then the 2015 bike fitted with the new software,” he said. “That is where we spent the most time and still we must spend a lot of time, because looks like we did like one step back [in time] because it will be difficult to arrive at the same level as before.

“But we are working, especially on the acceleration side, traction control, torque delivery is where we must improve. The connection with the gas. Then in the last runs we tried the new [2016] engine, but honestly it was difficult to give the right feedback because still we must fix the electronic software.”

Marquez even went as far as saying that the ECU is a bigger concern than the new Michelin tyres.

“For me electronics because in the end the tyres are the same for everyone," he said. "So the tyres will not be the biggest problem and I think Michelin are doing a good job. On the other side, it is only the first time we ride with the electronics and we know it takes time to set them up. 

“In Turn 13 I nearly highsided one time, but I can say the new electronics are safe. They are just not very smooth and cutting too much.”

While Rossi had mainly negative things to say about the ECU, he conceded that it could help make things more competitive. 

“But on the other side, it can be good for the racing,” he said. “Because it will be a lot more difficult to always make the same lap time. Because the bike is more difficult to ride. So can be better for the battle during the race, can be more fun about this.”

However, reigning MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo, who recorded the fifth-fastest time on Tuesday, said he would reserve judgment on the new electronics package until he tests it properly. 

“You can imagine something, you can expect something but in the moment [until] you try, you don't know what feeling you are going to have,” he said.

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