We’ll have to wait a few more weeks to see Fabio Quartararo riding the M1 of the factory team, but the French rider took advantage of the winter break to pay a visit to Yamaha’s Italian headquarters in Gerno di Lesmo.
It was a chance to get to know what his “home” will be like for the next two years and take a dip in the history of the team. One bike impressed him most: the 2004 M1 with which Valentino won his first title with Yamaha.
“It’s the first bike you remember. It was then that I said to myself: one day I want to be a rider,” Fabio said when he was a guest on the French show, Clique.
The Doctor was Quartararo’s idol as a child, and he’ll be taking his place this year.
“It was so great when he came to congratulate me after my second win,” the French rider continued. “If they had told me that a few years ago, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
His career hasn’t been all downhill. On the contrary. In both the Moto2 and the Moto3, he had reached much less than he and many others expected. Last year, in Jerez, that MotoGP victory he dreamed of finally came true.
“Deep down, I knew it would happen someday, considering the way I’d worked,” he explained. “Three years ago, however, it didn’t seem possible to me. I was at a very complicated moment in my career. Suddenly, I thought back to all the sacrifices made during my childhood to get there, to the thousands of kilometers my father and I traveled between Nice and Spain, when I slept on the floor of the truck while he drove. These are the images that suddenly came to mind.”
Quartararo summed up what that victory meant for him.
“It freed me,” he said.
But that’s not enough for him, and Fabio had no doubts when he answered the question on how he sees himself in ten years: “As the MotoGP world champion.”