The SBK tests at Misano ended yesterday, led by Rinaldis Ducati ahead of Razgatlioglu and Garrett Gerloff ‘s Yamahas. The American, protagonist of a rapidly improving season in 2020, is preparing for a 2021 as a protagonist.
“I had a really good end to the season – said Garrett – and I definitely haveimportant goals for 2021, and I know it is the same with Yamaha. With my fantastic team, the goal is to just focus on ourselves and have fun all season. I hope that fight for the championship at the end of the season ”.
These are great ideas for the American who has not yet won a race in the SBK …
“I would have liked to have won a race last year, I had a chance and I fell, but this year it’s a goal. I’ve made it to the podium three times and now i have a bike, it’s like a factory bike, I just have to do my job. I feel like a completely different driver compared to a year ago. “
In fact, in 2020 Gerloff found himself in a completely different environment than MotoAmerica, where he won the Supersport championship in 2016 and 2017 and made 16 SBK podiums in 2018 and 2019.
“I suffered a lot in 2020 because it was like that It is difficult to win races in a championship to end up outside the top 10 in a world championship. I struggled to focus on my goals and the GRT team was my motivation and energy.
You are still very attached to the USA and also to Ben Spies. Did he give you any tips for this season?
“Yes, I have spoken to him, he is always ready to give me good advice. I’ve come back to the US for the winter and if I can get back before the start of the season it would be good. “
Do you find life a little strange here in Europe?
“I wouldn’t say that, it’s like an adventure and I really like adventure. Every day we write the book of our life and all we do are chapters, I want mine to be a good story and SBK contributes to that. “
It seems that you are part of an important project for Yamaha, that of young riders. Razgatlioglu, you, Nozane and Locatelli in the SBK with Quartararo, Vinales and Morbidelli in the MotoGP. All very young drivers, what do you think?
“I like that kind of philosophy. Helping young people grow as people and as drivers is a very smart thing for Yamaha “.
How were those first days on the bike in Misano?
“It was nice for me to ride the Yamaha again because I hadn’t touched a racing bike in four months. I trained a lot and from the first laps on I immediately felt comfortable with the bike, as if we hadn’t been apart for so long. It was nice to do some laps on this track that I had never seen before. It was my first time at Misano and I really enjoyed the track. I go here with a lot of good feelings ”.
Audio recording by Riccardo Guglielmetti in Misano