MotoGP: Bezzecchi Reveals He’s Been Riding With An Injured Hand

MotoGP: Bezzecchi Reveals He’s Been Riding With An Injured Hand

© 2023, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc. From a press release issued By Dorna:

“I’m excited to try this track!”: riders ready for the new challenge of “beautiful” Buddh International Circuit

Hear from Bagnaia, Martin, Bezzecchi, Binder, Aleix, Quartararo, Marc Marquez, Augusto Fernandez and Morbidelli

Thursday, 21 September 2023

The IndianOil Grand Prix of India is ready to take to the track, so on Thursday there was plenty to talk about! The first Press Conference of the day comprised Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team), Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing), Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) and Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), before Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) sat down with Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™), Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), Augusto Fernandez (GASGAS Factory Rcing Tech3) and Franco Morbidelli ((Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™). Here are some quotes!

FRANCESCO BAGNAIA: “I was lucky enough not to have any problems or any delays with my Visa so that’s a positive start. Our logistics manager did an excellent job so that’s perfect. I’ve had a chance to walk around the track. I think that the layout of the track is interesting. It’s nice and it’s different compared to a lot of other tracks that we go to. I think it could be great. It will be interesting to try it tomorrow considering the run-off area in a couple of parts of the track looks a little bit too short. I walked a lap with the safety commission and they tried to explain everything to me and I think there are reasons to say that it’s okay so let’s see I think it will be really interesting to try it out.”

 

On the past with Mahindra:

“If you consider all the riders that moved from Mahindra, they’ve all done something incredible in the championship. They’ve all either won a title or being runner-up. I think it was a really great school because the bike was really good in terms of handling but was missing the engine and the power, which was clear to everyone. Put us in a situation where we had to give the maximum every time, and I think it was a really great way to learn so I’m very happy and very proud to have been part of the Mahindra family. I’ve always said that it was the best Moto3 team I was in in terms of improving myself.”

On a difficult Misano:

“Monday after the racing, was quite difficult and was quite intense. I was quite tired. We’ve worked a lot to try to arrive here at 100%. We’re not 100% because it takes time. I know where to put the leg in case I start to struggle a bit. I think I’m in a better condition compared to Misano, a lot better.”

JORGE MARTIN: “I did a lot of laps as soon as I arrived. I did some laps on my bicycle. I really like the layout. I think it will be really interesting. I’m excited to try this track. I think like Pecco said it’s a little bit different from what we used to do so yeah I’m looking forward to free practice tomorrow.”

On Mahindra:

“Yeah for sure, like Pecco said when you’re on a bike where the engine has less power, you have to do a lot more than the rest to be at the same level so it’s quite a difficult time because with situations like this it’s complicated but finally when you arrive at a really high level and your move to a more competitive bike, we were super competitive.”

On winning at Misano:

“Yeah, I feel it’s important you know. It’s like for example when Pecco won in Jerez, he won on my home soil. It’s one of those moments, one of those impulses when you win. It was my first time winning in Italy, so I was super excited, and yeah at the end of the day, it’s the place where they train and where they’re always riding. They’re always really competitive there so being really competitive was super important.”

On Franco Morbidelli joining the team next season:

“Yeah, I mean, it will be interesting to see how he will do. For sure it’s important to have a competitive rider by my side. For example, this season we’re fighting for the team world championship, and that’s because my teammate is also super strong. We are both really strong. Hopefully, we can have the same thing next season and Franco can adapt fast and be competitive straightaway.”

MARCO BEZZECCHI: “I like it a lot to be honest. Also, the paddock is very well organised and everything is very beautiful. The track after walking it looks fantastic. It’s a mix of colours that I really like. Of course, the long straight is impressive because I think it’s very very long, maybe more than Texas I don’t know but… it’s very nice. It’s really nice to see you and I can’t wait to try the bike. There’s also a long right-hand corner with banking that looks fantastic so I can’t wait.”

On Mahindra:

“As the guys said, it was fantastic because without them and without the Academy, it would’ve been very difficult for me to go into the world championship because they were really investing in young riders and they were really helping us. It was fantastic to be a part of the Mahindra family. Unfortunately, it didn’t last long but it was a big school and I learned a lot in terms of being more precise and more consistent. I was missing a little bit of power but anyway, I had fun. I had a podium and it was also the last podium for Mahindra so it was very nice!”

On recovery:

“Well, the week after Misano was tough to be honest, because during the race weekend, I put a lot of stress on my hand. Unfortunately, I have an injury inside my bones which is really slow to recover. It’s that part that’s creating me a lot of pain but anyway in Misano, I could do my best. More than this was difficult for me so because of this I’m very happy. This track looks a little bit less physical so I don’t know I will try for sure to be at the front again.”

BRAD BINDER: “So far so good. Everything has been quite cool since I arrived here early this morning. Everything is all good. Honestly, the track looks really cool. I think it’s gonna be a very fun layout for us to ride. That one that banks looks sick, so I’m excited to give that a bash it’s always exciting to come somewhere new.”

On Mahindra:

“Thinking back on it now, it was wild. Honestly, we had a lot of good days for sure and I think I rode it before these guys, and it was a mission. Like I said the things handling was incredible and you know when you’re lacking power, you need to try and figure out how to make it up elsewhere, and for me, it was one of the best steps along my career so far.”

How do you think it’s going to be at this track?

“Yeah, I think it could be good for us here. Obviously, the truck looks great for us this season. FP1 has always been a time when we need to figure things out because things are very different from previous years. I think going into it this time around it’ll be cool. We’ve got a little bit extra time to try and figure things out. Of course, we will try to put everything together. I think we’re in for a good weekend here. Let’s see what the weather does but I think it’s gonna be really hot but I think our bike works well in the heat.”

On the new chassis:

“We got to try the new chassis on Monday. I think our biggest complaint all year has been touched on, so that’s the main thing. It was a little bit better for sure. It’s difficult to say whether we’ll race it this year, I’m not too sure exactly. I reckon after what we saw there’s a bit of a hurry to try and get it so hopefully we get it soon.”

ALEIX ESPARGARO: “I’m happy to be here. I’m happy to come to such a big country like this. Hopefully, we can bring our sport to many homes and give them some fun. It looks as if the track is going to be fun. I like the layout a lot. I think they’ve done the best I can to prepare the circuit for us. I really can’t wait to try it tomorrow morning.

“It’s really difficult to understand if it’s going to favour us or not. Obviously, the long straits aren’t really the best for us but there are a lot of fast corners where I think we can take profit. In terms of grip, it’s gonna be really important. We have a couple of engineers that have been working for Ferrari in Formula 1 in the past when they raced here, and they told me that this circuit had grip more than any other track on the calendar. It looks like it isn’t really that damaged so even though it’s been a while since Formula One has been there I think after some laps the grip will be good.”

Flyaways difficult last year, extra experience this year…

“It was a complete disaster last year, all the overseas races. We tried to analyse everything and improve everything. It’s gonna be very demanding. Eight races in 10 weeks is crazy and it sounds crazy. It’s gonna be very important to try to be focused but at the same time try to be relaxed and to have some fun. It’s going to be important to have fun with your team if people can bring family and friends because it’s gonna be tough mentally.”

FABIO QUARTARARO: “Long straights. Yeah, it looks really fun, especially sectors three and four. Some walls are a little bit close. We’ll see tomorrow morning at the track which looks really fun!”

New parts?

“Yeah, we’re going to try the spoon under the swing arm and yeah that’s the only thing that we’re going to change this weekend.

“We’ve tried many things. As you know since preseason, we’ve kept everything the same as last year so finally, if we could find one small change it was something a little bit positive.”

On visiting Yamaha Motor India:

“Yeah, it was good, it was short also. It was great to see all the Indian workers from here. It was really nice. You could see the passion that they have for motorcycles so it was great. Hopefully, they can enjoy the first-ever Indian GP!”

MARC MARQUEZ: “It’s one of those circuits that on foot it looks really nice but then we’ll see how it feels on a MotoGP bike. If the grip is good then it’ll be even nicer!”

Any changes?

“No actually will race with the same bike that we raced in Misano. That’s the best feeling I’ve had this season starts true that we’ve tried a new prototype. There was some interesting things, but the performance overall was actually the same. If not a little bit worse so let’s keep riding with what we know. And yeah if I have to try a few things that they bring in the future I will try them, but at the moment I’ve just got to keep focused on what I have.”

You were fast in the race at Misano:

“Yeah, the thing is that it’s true that the Misano race was really positive for us which is really strange to say because we were back in seventh position but the pace during the race was really good. It’s true that I want to ride at that pace, but I use a lot of energy in the last laps. I was able to keep the pace but I started to feel really tired and I decided to step back and finish the race not like in Le Mans. I was exhausted but so I kept pushing, but then I crashed. Different mentality for the second part of the season but step-by-step at least during the weekend. Maybe one lap may be too late. Maybe 10 laps we show that our speed is there.”

AUGUSTO FERNANDEZ: “Looks like we’re going to have some fun. I didn’t expect that amount of banking on the corners so it looks fun and I’m looking forward to discovering it!”

Everyone is a rookie this weekend… could less experience help bridge the gap?

“Yeah, I think it will help a little bit, or at least I hope it will. I feel like every track I’m reaching the level late on Sunday. I’m not bad on a Sunday, especially with pace but as I say I need to recover a lot from the weekend away starting from 0 to this weekend. This track is new for everybody, so I hope to start closer to the top guys and at least be more competitive from Friday.”

Does talk about the future prove a distraction?

“For sure it doesn’t help. But I have my contract signed so I have the same news as everyone else. So in theory I have a ride for next year so I want to believe that and I’m focused on the job in hand and on 2023. I want to finish the year in the best possible way and bring some good results until the end of the season. Hopefully, we can get the ride again in 2024.”

FRANCO MORBIDELLI: “Yeah, I like the track. It looks nice, it looks beautiful. There are some pretty exciting spots so it’ll be interesting to go on track tomorrow!”

Meet and greet at Yamaha Motor India:

“Yeah, it was good to meet all the Yamaha India people. It was a pleasure to meet all the workers and all the people you see there are actually workers that work in the factory so if that’s a lot of people. They produce many models of Yamaha bikes that go around the world so it was interesting and it was a good experience.”

On the big news…

“Yeah, I have to thank first of all Paolo Campinoti for giving me this opportunity. Also all the Ducati people and Gianluca and VR46. We’ve been hoping for this opportunity to come and we’ve been working on this thing and finally, now we can all see it and it’s a great feeling. It’s a great feeling after two, rather complicated years. Yeah, it’s gonna be good I guess.”

All VR46 riders are on Ducatis next year, did you speak to Pecco, Marco etc?
“Yeah for sure. I had some difficult moments listening to their feedback and understanding that it was so different to my feeling on the bike. There’s been some cases where it’s been. Quite frustrating. Next year everything is gonna be the same and we’re gonna talk about the same topic!”

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