Earlier in October 2023, we told you that Honda planned to take its CR electric motocross prototype racing for the first time before the end of the month. More specifically, Honda planned to take the bike to round eight of the D.I.D. All Japan Motocross Championship, with American Honda team advisor and 2010 AMA Pro Motocross 250 champion Trey Canard as the official rider. 

October 28 and 29, 2023 marked the race weekend, which was heled at Offroad Village Saitama in Japan—and the Honda CR electric prototype qualified, practice, and raced as planned. How did everything go? 

Qualifying went well enough on Saturday, but Sunday—race day—brought a mixed bag of results. In morning practice, Canard was second fastest overall. Surely, most teams coming in with a wild card entry on any machine would be pleased with a result like that, let alone on a prototype machine. Things were looking good for the actual race heats that were still to come later in the day. 

Gallery: Honda CR Electric Prototype - All Japan Motocross Championship Wildcard, October 2023

Excitingly enough, Heat One saw Canard ultimately finding his rhythm on board the CR prototype, eventually enabling him to finish in second place. By the end, he was a mere 0.7 seconds off the winning lap time, which is certainly not a bad result for a first effort. 

Not everything went perfectly, as Canard had an early crash in the second heat with fellow competitor Jay Wilson, which left him and the bike unable to complete that heat.

Still, Canard was able to mount back up for the third and final heat of the day, during which he took the holeshot. It was clear that the CR electric prototype was fast, but unfortunately Canard met with some of the strong ruts that had formed during the earlier heats, and crashed out of the third heat before he could complete it. 

From the start, Honda Racing Corporation planned this entry to be a learning and development experience more than a dedicated competition effort. In that regard, the weekend appears to have been a great success—although from a pure competition perspective, grabbing two out of three holeshots, coming in second place on the one heat you did finish, and pushing hard enough to crash out of the other two might also be seen as positive.  

In any case, Japanese adventure bike and dual sport YouTuber TRP Adventure was at the event, and kindly posted video of qualifying. Trey Canard is number 41, and as you can see, he and the bike went quite well. 

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