America is the land of dreams, and Alex Rins reached his goal... winning in MotoGP. He did it by beating his childhood idol. Valentino Rossi.
"I'm very happy, given that this victory was reached with so many efforts and sacrifices but, above all,with hard work," he began. "When I saw that Valentino was a second and a half ahead, I said to myself: 'Come on Alex, now you have to do something spectacular.' I know he has lots of experience and, in the end, he's strong in a melee. But at two laps from the end, I made a mistake and, at that moment, I thought: 'Now he's going to get me on the straight and will pass me.'" Instead, he also made the same mistake. So, I decided to push to the end without looking back."
How long did that last lap seem?
"Very. When there were two laps to go, inside of me, I knew I had a rider as strong as Rossi behind me, but I never wanted to give up. This victory is something incredible for Suzuki. Last year, we were very competitive, and we managed to improve ourselves. So, I also hope to be on the same level in the next ones.”
Did you think you would get such a result after Friday's free practice?
"On Friday, I didn't have the confidence I was hoping for, especially in closing corners. In the race, however, I managed to do well, mainly when braking. But I had to defend myself from Rossi, especially in Turn 11, where he was fast."
Do you think this victory can boost your ambitions in the fight for the World Championship?
"I'm fighting with the strongest riders, and I feel competitive. You have to work to win, and I will do everything to be up ahead. It won't be easy because the level of the MotoGP is very high, but we're on the right path, and we must continue on it."
The holes were difficult for everyone here at the COTA. What is your opinion on this?
"I suffered a lot in Turn 2. In fact, I risked losing the front wheel and falling. We'll have to discuss this issue in the Safety Commission, but it's not easy to find a solution to the problem."
The next race will be in Spain, at Jerez. What are your expectations?
"I don't know what will happen, and I say this sincerely. I'm happy to have won here in Austin, since I also triumphed in Moto3 and Moto2. I thank all the team members for the support they've shown. What did they sing to me under the podium? It's the refrain of a Taki Taki song."
Suzuki has confirmed that it is a top bike.
"We have a very balanced bike that adapts well to the tracks. I feel strong, and the sensations are great. We were able to take a big step forward, and I honestly thought it was our time to win. It was nice to be able to reach the result on a track like this one."