MotoGP: Quartararo says racing at Sachsenring is ‘mentally tough’ – Roadracing World Magazine

“Not more motivated – more focused”

The pre-event press conference kicks off the German GP with some quality sound bites

Ahead of the Liqui Moly Motorrad Grand Prix of Germany, the pre-event press conference saw championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™) joined by points runner-up Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing), as well as Francesco Bagnaia and Jack from the Ducati Lenovo team. Miller to take stock of recent events and prepare for the German GP.


Are you confident of fighting for the podium in each of the next two races?

Fabio Quartaro: “Especially Mugello and Barcelona were great, good pace in Barcelona all weekend – Saturday and Sunday – and Mugello was even better because I felt bad all weekend and just in the race we have I was able to do a really good race. That Sachsenring race last year was pretty good, we finished on the podium, and Assen is also a track that I really enjoy. So, of course, I’m super motivated and I hope to do well.

Fabio Quartararo, reigning MotoGP world champion. Photo courtesy of Dorna.

What challenges does the Sachsenring pose for you?

FQ20: “It’s a really short track and the race here is one of the longest, because when you do 15 laps and there are still 15 to go, it’s super long, mentally. We always turn left and feel like we’re running for two hours, but it’s the same for everyone and this trail is mentally challenging because it’s super long.

Where do you think you improved in 2022?

FQ20: “Basically I think in Austin this year…at the start of the year I wasn’t really on it, because in Qatar and Argentina especially I would say I was complaining too much and in my head there was always the fact that the top the speed is much slower than the others. But in Austin I decided to really stop with that mentality because I will have the same bike all year and I will do my best with what you have. It’s basically very similar to last year, and we could do some really great races, and I think the step that I mentally took in Austin doesn’t make me more motivated, but more focused.Since Portimao, I’ve always finished in the top five, so I think it was a good first part of the season, apart from a few races that I’m not super happy with.

Are you ready to redeem yourself after Barcelona?

Aleix Espargaro: “I’ll try to forget as soon as I’m on the bike, but this time I found it harder to forget. Sunday night I couldn’t sleep and Monday’s test was very difficult. Tuesday, Wednesday I was training on the bike, the thing I love the most, and I kept getting mad at myself. I kept thinking about the mistake and I was mad at myself because I was trying to tell myself that it’s just human error, it can happen, forget it, but I don’t. didn’t arrive. Then I decided at the last moment to take a trip to Euro Disney with my children. Forget about dieting, not training for two days and having fun and it really worked out really well. I logged off and now I’m back, I completely forgot what happened in Barcelona and you know it was just a stupid mistake but when you’re fighting for a title this year… that’s it which is bigger then hopefully I can get Germany points.”

Alex Espargaro.  Photo courtesy of Dorna.
Alex Espargaro. Photo courtesy of Dorna.

Are you aiming for a front line?

AE41: “Germany has always been a good track for Aprilia and myself. I’ve been competitive the last two or three years I’ve raced here. Last year I was fast in qualifying and was struggling in the first part of the race with Marc, but then when the rain came I lost too much time. In the end, I was two seconds off the podium, which isn’t so bad. I think with this year’s bike it can be a good weekend for us. I’m going to try to work well from EL1, then have fun in qualifying and turn off the brain to do a fast lap, and then yes, try to fight for another podium.

“I feel that these two races are very, very important. Now I have over 30 points to finish third in the Championship but Fabio has 22 more than me. I hope that in these two races I can score a good number of points to enter the summer break. Anyway, the first 10 races were like a dream for me. I will try to fight for the podium here and in Assen to have a good summer break, but I think I still deserve a good holiday!

How much are you looking to put Barcelona behind you after your misfortune?

Francesco Bagnaïa: “What I mean is that I tried to feel different, and I want to feel that Barcelona is the past. The test was good, I enjoyed it a lot, it was great to forget what happened the day before, and I want to look forward to the races to come. This track last year was quite difficult but in the race I started to be very competitive – I finished fifth and I was riding very well. So, I think it could be a good weekend for me, for us, and Assen, for sure, it will be a bit more difficult, but let’s see. Hopefully the work we are doing, which is great, will help me in these two races before the summer break.

Francesco Bagnaïa.  Photo courtesy of Dorna.
Francesco Bagnaïa. Photo courtesy of Dorna.

Why has Ducati struggled in the past and how confident are you that the GP22 will be more competitive?

FB63: “We started a different type of work last year. It was the first time me and Jack were on the factory team, and I think we helped Ducati change the mentality a bit from where we were before with the standard setting. So within a year the bike became the bike that turned more, accelerated more. So we did a great job and on this track which was a tough track for us, it was awesome. Jack was in the lead all weekend and I think we were a big help for Ducati to improve the bike which was the same as the year before. So I think at the moment we don’t have any more tracks that we are struggling on, but it’s hard to say now, but hopefully the work done will help us.

Will it be difficult to beat Quartararo in the league now?

FB63: “Yes, but if last year the mission was to win the championship, to recover 70 points in five races, this year I have 11 races. The ambition is great, I know the potential. Fabio, at the moment , is the biggest on the track, I think, because he rides his bike perfectly, I think we can be a great opponent for him, and recovering 66 points at the moment is not easy, but we still have the possibility.

So… any thoughts on KTM?

Jack Miller: “First and foremost, very happy to have done this one and to be here for another two years! You’re going to have to put up with me a little longer but no, really, really happy! Excited for what’s to come. I mean an amazing opportunity for me too to change the scenery a bit and try something different. You know, I’ve been with Ducati for a while, five years, and I’ve had an incredible experience. We did a lot of good races together, a lot of ups and a lot of downs, but you know super grateful for all that they have taught me throughout the time and to have the opportunity not only to ride at Pramac and going through that whole program there, but also getting into the factory team and being able to spend two years here. It’s been an incredible experience and yes something that I wouldn’t change at all. In the future, in waiting for another decent project and you know with a lot of hungry people so it looks good.

Jack Miller.  Photo courtesy of Dorna.
Jack Miller. Photo courtesy of Dorna.

Will it be hard to say goodbye?

JM43: “I mean it’s kinda weird because you know announce all this and I said early and then you’re still here for the end of the year so I mean you like lighting the fuse and then you wait I mean it’ll be fine, you know, before the ad comes out and stuff like that, you know I went to all the management staff and even Pecco and I just got my little words with them and basically told them what was happening and where we were at and I mean it’s been kinda emotional already I also mean wearing that Ducati red is something I’ve wanted since so long and getting it and then walking away from it is emotional but as I said we have some exciting times ahead of us and and as you say 12 more races I can still be a driver of factory Ducati for 12 more races.

And what happened at Mugello and Barcelona?

JM43: “Your guess is as good as mine on what has happened over the past few weekends. It’s not for lack of trying. Since that podium at Le Mans, we’ve struggled a bit. We’ve had a good testing on Monday in Barcelona it couldn’t have been a better timing due to all the winter and the work we’ve been doing throughout the winter I think we’ve been a bit behind and the tracks where we have had a lot or good grip, it’s ok, but then the grips went down, like with the temperature and everything in Mugello, and even in Barcelona where the grip was extremely low, I feel like I’m suffering a lot especially at the We were able to on Monday, yeah it’s a different kind of situation because there’s a lot of Michelin rubber on the ground and the tracks are really really fast, but I feel like we were able to find a bit ahead we kind of played around a lot with the geometry of the bike and its stance and I think that te Monday’s st was really successful. Normally I hate these things, but I was really glad I got this one.

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