MotoGP: Dovizioso says “The Championship is crazy” – Roadracing World Magazine

“The Championship is crazy!”: Another spectacular race weekend is imminent

The pre-event press conference gets the starting grid going for the TISSOT Grand Prix of Emilia Romagna and Rimini Riviera

Thursday, September 17th, 2020

Before the Gran Premio TISSOT dell’Emilia Romagna e della Riviera di Rimini, leader of the standings Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) was joined by fourth overall Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar), nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP). , winner last time out Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT), newly crowned premier class podium finisher Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing) and Aprilia Racing Team Gresini rider Aleix Espargaro to talk a bit about last weekend’s Misano test and take a look throwing forward our second attack on the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.

Here are the main quotes from those present, with Dovizioso leading the way:

ANDREA DOVIZIOSO: “The championship is crazy. Lots of ups and downs for everyone, so we’re very close. I’m happy to be in that position at this moment in the Championship, but we certainly need to make a step to be able to fight. I’m really happy about Tuesday’s test, we had two goals and we achieved those two goals. I’m very happy about that, my speed was really good. A lot of drivers set really good pace. The way I drove it was much better, we understood which corners I wasn’t good enough in and I could drive better, more relaxed. We changed the setup so I can help myself better and we tried something on the bike, a new piece and it was a little bit better. Overall the feeling is certainly better than on Sunday but there are a lot of really fast drivers, especially after Misano 1 – we’ll see.

“It’s always difficult for me to set a really good lap in qualifying and in MotoGP that’s very important. But that’s not the biggest problem right now. Most of the race I wasn’t fast enough, it’s very important to be stronger now than what I was doing. For example, I was with Pecco early in the race, so I still had a chance for the podium, but I didn’t have the speed. I’m very happy with the end of the test so let’s see if everything we tried applies.”

As well as the weekend ahead, he was also asked about the recent announcement that many on the grid, including Dovizioso, will be testing road bikes at Portimao to get to know the track.

“In this championship you have to give everything to be there and fight for the championship. Riding a road bike is really different and you can’t understand the tricks of the track. But you can understand it a bit and start better if we ride a MotoGP bike, so we decided to organize that.”

JOAN ME: “It’s really difficult to find something to be faster because we’ve done a lot of laps at this track and it’s not easy to find something to gain that tenth or two tenths to be more competitive but yes i am happy now i think we made a good step with my confidence on the bike. I can drive a little better, maybe not faster, but better. It’s a good improvement and I’m happy with the test. Let’s see if that can bring us more in the first laps of the race and maybe in qualifying.

And what about a recent comment from a rival saying Suzuki is the best bike?

“It’s nice that someone can say something about your bike without trying it. It’s something funny. It’s difficult for me to say what the best bike in the championship is because Fabio said so, but last week’s winner was a Yamaha so I was curious to hear!

“I think we have a great package which is important and we are competitive at most tracks. Like all areas, we have to improve, but the consistency is nice.”

VALENTINO ROSSI: “For us, last Sunday was an unforgettable day, especially for all the people who work for the academy project. We are very proud of our drivers and very happy for my brother Bez and especially for Pecco and Franco. Yes, like you said, if I could have gotten on the podium it would have been a historic moment, but unfortunately Mir passed me on the last lap. It was still a good race for me. I was able to keep a good pace from the start, but I struggled a bit towards the end. I tried everything to stay on the podium and I was able to stay in front of Rins, but when Joan got there he was too fast for me. It was a big shame because the podium is always special, Misano more, sharing with Franco and Pecco could also be special, but it is like that. It was a good day and a good race, we have another chance this weekend, I think it will be difficult for everyone because I expect the other riders and bikes to be more competitive and closer to us. So if we want to try to fight for the podium, we have to try to improve on Sunday and be stronger on Sunday.

“It was a good test on Tuesday, we worked very hard, I did a lot of laps and we had to try a few things. Some was better, some worse. I don’t think we will change much on the racing bike tomorrow. After that we’ll see at the weekend. The forecast and track conditions will also be very important.”

And did he expect to fight with drivers from his own academy?

“Sincerely, no, sincerely, no. When we started we didn’t know what would happen in the next few years, it’s a very unique program. At a certain point, when Franco won the first championship in 2017, I started thinking that at that moment I will have the strongest rivals in MotoGP from the academy. But still it’s good, we’re happy, I think if we stay together we always improve at our level and we always enjoy racing together.”

Next, the winner spoke next time – who then also missed the test on Tuesday with an upset stomach. Will that hurt his second weekend at Misano?

FRANCO MORBIDELLI: “I honestly don’t think so because the testing is in slightly different conditions and a lot of riders have had the chance to test some things to improve and improve the feel of the bike, but they have yet to confirm it at the race weekend.

“I don’t think skipping the test will affect me too much. Anyway, I hope to have a good and nice weekend like I had last weekend. It will be important to reconfirm the level we had in the last race and it will be important to increase it. If you want to stay in the same spot, you need to step up your game a bit.

“It will be important to heal a little bit more and I hope to be better over the weekend!”

Bagnaia was next and first explained how it was a little different to start with riding Rossi…

FRANCESCO BAGNAIA: “It’s normal for everyone to think of Vale, riders like us who come from Moto3 and Moto2 come to MotoGP. When you see Vale on the track it’s always something different because when you grew up with an idol and you compete against him it’s always something special and weird. Last year I wasn’t in trouble but I was thinking more at that moment because I was always thinking more when I was behind Vale. I don’t know why but it was more like that and maybe because I’m more comfortable with the bike I’m riding it this year like we’re at the ranch! you think less It’s weird, but it’s like it’s Dovi or other drivers at that moment.

And what about the exam?

“We only had to try one thing and I think it has good potential for the future. For now we’re focusing on the stock setting and I’ll let Ducati work more on that. Tuesday’s test was difficult to understand, the grip was right and the conditions were incredible. Every driver was so quick, in testing it’s hard to understand how something will be in the race. We stopped before to rest the leg. I think I’ll come into this weekend with the leg better prepared because I know we can do the race, it’s no problem. It’s definitely better to start work on Friday.”

Alex Espargaro: “Obviously you can’t be happy with 13th place, but if you analyze the race we were more than 20 seconds faster than in 2018 and 2019 and we were battling the same group of factory KTMs that have been on the podium in the last three races stood.

“And also very close to the championship leader, Andrea; who won here in 2018, so I think the performance and level of the bike is increasing. I’m happy when we compare to last season but the level of the MotoGP category is very high so unfortunately we still have to show that our bike is better by finishing in a better position but we’re doing one Step forward.”

Finally, how was test day for the Noale factory on Tuesday?

“The plan wasn’t easy to organize because I had to work on many small things to improve my level for the next GP. But Aprilia is thinking of improving the bike and understanding the direction for the 2021 bike as we are the only manufacturer who can change or improve the bike for next season. So it was a compromise, I spent many laps trying different configurations to understand the new bike, trying new elements so no big news or changes for my bike for this weekend but we understand a few things for the future .”

That’s it folks, at least from Thursday at the Emilia Romagna GP! Tune in for FP1 on Friday at 9:55am (GMT +2) before the race gets underway at 2pm on Sunday, with fans in the stands again and another spectacle just around the corner.