MotoGP, P. Espargarò: “I respect Lorenzo but I knew I could do better in Honda”

Pol Espargaró is fully aware that he has partially disappointed the expectations of those who selected him as Marc Marquez’s wingman at Honda for the 2021/2022 biennium. The Spaniard joined HRC after an excellent season at KTM and hoped to see him fight for the podium on a permanent basis. However, the results have been mixed, partly due to a motorcycle that has suffered badly this season, except in rare cases.

In an interview with our colleagues from Marca, Pol spoke freely about the season that had just ended, which at least ended in a crescendo, where he also climbed onto the podium behind Marc Marquez in Misano and gave Honda a double, which was still at the beginning of the season it seemed like a mere pipe dream. Espargarò knows he has to take steps forward But he has full confidence to do so by returning to the level everyone expected him to be before hiring him. It must also be taken into account that in 2022, Pol risks finding himself a front runner for HRC as Marc Marquez struggles with diplopia.

“The season was strange, you can tell it went bad. It wasn’t the season we wanted – said Pol – I didn’t have high expectations from Honda because so many riders suffered on this bike, but it was definitely so. ” It wasn’t the ideal time of year I imagined to come here. No doubt I didn’t get what I wanted even if we finished where I wanted to start. I feel like I’m at the best moment of my career and I want my daughters to see me on the podium. “

In short, Espargarò is very demanding and wants to offer more in 2022.

“I ask because there is no other way. It’s true that at least I could have avoided telling the press, ‘Well, I’m happy with what I got in 10th place’, but I can’t. I’ve been in the World Cup for 15 years, I’m 30 and I started when I was 15. If I hadn’t been demanding with myself and hadn’t asked for the maximum, i.e. to win in all categories, I probably wouldn’t be here. I don’t think it’s not that difficult to get here, even if it is very difficult to be at the level of all drivers in the world championship, but I think the most difficult thing is to stay here. For example, if I hadn’t placed such high demands on myself during my time at KTM, when I knew the bike wasn’t up to date and we were at the end of the grid, I wouldn’t be wearing these HRC colors now. That is my philosophy ”.

The goals for 2022 are clear and Marc Marquez remains the benchmark.

“I think the benchmark will be set by the manufacturer’s fastest driver, namely Marc. And we’ve seen that if he’s fine, he can win. Injury, the bike wasn’t on the same level … There are some things that didn’t allow us to be as fast as we were would have liked, but I have to admit that there were a lot of weekends when Marc drove races that I wasn’t at his level. That means I have to improve, I’ll work as hard as I can this preseason to be the best version of myself when I start next year. “

In his first season with Honda, Pol Espargarò was definitely faster than Jorge Lorenzo and in his final season also as Pedrosa.

“I have a lot of respect for them. Jorge was a great driver and Dani is a great driver because he is still active. I have respect for them, as well as Álex (Márquez) who got through here and had a difficult year , but he’s world champion. The bike is of course not easy. In the end, something much bigger also works in this sense, namely ambition. I have a much greater ambition, I wanted to achieve something different with a motorcycle other than KTM and that meant standing next to the best Marc Not the easiest or most convenient option, it would probably have been more convenient to stay with KTM, but if I had that option and retired without knowing what would happen, I would never have had to myself Forgiven. My future was with Honda. With all the respect I have for the drivers who came through here and didn’t have great seasons at HRC, I felt like I am able to do better. The end of the season was good, but it wasn’t the year I wished for “.