There could be no better venue for the presentation of the Sky Racing Team VR46 than Sky Italia's very own HQ in Milan. The livery was unveiled back in November, while today was all about the team. The conference opened with a video-message from Valentino Rossi: “I wish the whole team and all the riders lots of luck, and remember: full throttle”.
The Doctor sent his best wishes to the team, before handing over to Pablo Nieto: “This group is almost a family – began the team manager - we are working in the right way and to see the guys happy, that's the most important thing. I think passion is the common denominator, without which it would be hard to move forward with this project”.
Then came Guido Meda, who asked Nieto for an overview of the recent tests and new suspension elements: “We've only carried out two tests with the new fork so far. Luca only raced with Ohlins and got on well, as did Pecco. Our bike is very similar to that of 2017, so we're confident".
The team's riders listened on as their team manager spoke. There wasn't just talk of bikes though. Luca Marini was asked about the importance of school: “Aside from bikes, continuing with your studies is very important - he emphasises - luckily I completed mine and I think once you've done so you appreciate the value." Another topic is nerves before a race: “I'm always cold - comments Marini - then half an hour before the race I feel butterflies in my stomach.” A word about last season: "2017 was complicated but I learned a lot, so I'm starting out more competitive this time. I want to reach the podium”.
Alongside him is Pecco Bagnaia, who is asked about the fear a rider feels when riding the bike: “For us it's natural, we don't even think about it. Nerves? I have to say that before the race I struggle to eat and go to the toilet five times on Sunday morning”. How about the bike? “I pushed harder than anyone to move over to Ohlins suspension, there are various positives that will give us more of a margin”.
In addition to the Moto2 riders, the Moto3 guys are also on hand. The first to speak is Bulega, who had a complicated 2017 season: “There will always be difficult times. The important thing is to understand the mistakes and not repeat them. unfortunately, in November at Valencia I broke my foot and have to use the hyperbaric chamber each day as part of my treatment. Anxiety before a race? I don't eat on Sunday mornings any more (he smiles)”. He then comments on last year's issues: “unfortunately we had various difficulties, which i take the blame for. Now I'm ready and want to start in the best possible way”.
Also ready to line up on the Moto3 starting grid is new entry Dennis Foggia: “It's always exciting to race and there's a lot of adrenaline before the race starts. I always try to use everything I've learned every time I go out on track”.
The team presentation wouldn't be complete without Alessio Salucci “This is the first time I'm seeing all the guys together, it's great - commented Uccio - the months before the championship are always the most important, you need to train well, seeing as you're away from the bike for a long while. The goal? To try and run at the front in as many races as possible”.