MotoGP points leader Casey Stoner believes this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez will give a true indication of Honda's strength.
The 2007 MotoGP champion dominated much of winter testing and took victory in the opener in Qatar two weeks ago. But as Stoner had won three times at Losail in the past but has only taken one podium finish at Jerez, he said he was keeping calm about Honda's form until he saw how competitive he was in Spain.
"The first race was definitely something good, but as everybody knows we've had a very good record at that track and it's not something to hold for the rest of the season," said Stoner at Jerez today. "This track's going to give us more of a clear idea of how we'll go for the rest of the season at different circuits. It's a different kind of tarmac than the two we've been testing on, and the grip levels are quite different so we're definitely interested to get here.
"It was really, really exciting after last week's win and the best way to possibly start, but I'm really looking forward to the start of the European grands prix."
The Australian said his disappointing previous form at Jerez was a source of motivation, as he was keen to defy expectations at the track.
"It's definitely a circuit that we haven't gotten along with perfectly in the past," Stoner admitted. "We've had some good speed here and then I've made some mistakes, and luck just hasn't gone our way in some of the races. It's definitely never been our best one, but there's always time to turn that around.
"And that's something that motivates me every year coming here – not so much to get that monkey off our back, just to try and turn something around and do something people don't expect. It's nice to come to a track and not have any expectations, and just try and do your best at it."