MotoGP, Quartararo: "I could have won in Qatar. I'd even race behind closed doors."

"After the Jerez pole, everyone started looking at me differently. I hope Rossi continues. I was fast in the tests. I'm going crazy at home."


If there were a rider who was anxious to start the 2020 season, it was Fabio Quartararo. After an incredible rookie season, he anted to raise the bar and maybe aim for Marc Marquez's title. But that's not happening, at least for now, given that the current situation has forced Fabio to keep the engine of his M1 turned off.

I'm in Andorra, and I'm fine. Mine isn't a real quarantine, but I try to stay home as much as possible. I train every day here. I go out just to buy something to eat. It's hard to stay home... I'm going crazy,"  he laughed when replying to Sky's Sandro Donato Grossi.

Fabio obviously wants to start, but he doesn't predict when he can actually do it.

“I thought I was going to start in Jerez like the others, but the situation is more difficult than two weeks ago. For me, the important thing is to do as many races as possible to make the Championship valid. If we have to do fifteen races in a row, it's also okay behind closed doors, if Dorna would ask us, I will do what they say.  Regretfully for our fans who'll have to watch the races on TV, but I prefere to race with fans, of course."

The bad taste he had in his mouth about this false start still remains, especially after the excellent things he demonstrated in the pre-season tests.

“After the Qatar tests, I was really satisfied. It was when I felt my best on the Yamaha M1. We had six days with the new bike and with an engine that was not 100% new, so I thought that, at the start of the World Championship, where we all start with a pre-sealed engine with zero kilometers, I could be the star. My pace was incredible, and I could have fought for the podium. The first win? Qatar could have been the right occasion, but also Jerez, Le Mans, Barcelona, and Assen."

The French rider takes a step back for a moment, looking back at the best moments of his first season in the MotoGP.

“I remember when I showed up as a rookie at the Malaysian tests, and I wasn't even that fast to be honest. Then it was all a crescendo of interest and, when I got the pole in Jerez, I realized that both the riders and staff looked at me differently. That's when they probably started to consider me as one who could win a race, not just one for points. I have to thank my family for everything, which has always been close to me, especially in my toughest years, like 2016 and 2017."

Finally, the "Diablo" reflects on Jorge Lorenzo's situation, where there's only a two percent chance that he'll return, and also on Valentino Rossi's.

"I have a good relationship with Jorge. I'd like to see him several times on the track as a wild card, not only in Barcelona. For me, he's more of a tester who helps us in development than of an opponent in some races. I hope that Yamaha will make him do more tests, but I'd be surprised if he returned for the whole season. Rossi? It was an honor to have a season with him. I hope he stays in the MotoGP."


Translated by Leila Myftija

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