It's back to Buriram, to where Jorge Lorenzo's ordeal began exactly one year ago. It all started with a nasty crash in the 2018 free practice that ruled the Majorcan out until Valencia, where he only got back on the bike to avoid watching his two years with Ducati come to an end from his sofa.
This year, then, he essentially visits Buriram for the first time after a far from simple year. Lorenzo has since injured himself again and the results (but particularly his confidence) with the Honda are nowhere to be seen. As if that weren't enough, Jorge is having to deal with a team-mate, Marc Marquez, who may well win his eighth world championship title this weekend. And if it's true that a rider's worst enemy is his team-mate, then things are not going well for Lorenzo.
"Sharing the garage with Marquez who often wins and is about to win the title is an experience - comments Lorenzo - you can take it ni a positive or negative way, but it's still an experience. What he's doing is thanks to his talent, his work, and the risks he takes on the bike.
The title is well within his grasp, can anything distract Marc?
“He a big lead over second but it's also true that he's the only one with anything to lose. I think he has enough experience to manage the situation anyway, and he'll close this championship well, whether here, or somewhere else or even at the final Valencia race”.
Last year, you basically didn't ride here at Buriram with the Ducati, but you know the bike. Do you think Dovi can ruin the party for Marquez and Honda this weekend?
"I have very little experience at this track but I know that acceleration, top speed and hard braking are key, and the Ducati is strong in those area. I think Dovi can win the race in theory".
After the Aragon weekend, have you understood what you need to do to improve your situation?
"I've a few ideas. I want to work on the bike setting because this is the bike we have for now. I have to try and solve the biggest problem in recent races, or rather a lack of rear grip and little traction. Maybe I need to sacrifice some stability through the corners to improve in this area and be competitive in the second half of the race”.
Your injury was serious and we all knew you'd be looking at a long recovery period. How are you now?
“Each day my back improves, there's less pain and I feel better. I have to thank my team because they're really helping me”.
Audio recorded by Marc Caregnato