2020 is here. The Sepang tests will start in just over two weeks, and the bikes are ready to be presented. There are many unknowns in the MotoGP paddock and many questions that riders and teams will have to answer. Taking a look back at 2019, however, we can easily say that it was Marc Marquez's year (almost boring in its perfection), along with that of Lorenzo's retirement, and that of the rookies, led by Fabio Quartararo. The French rookie's progress has, on one hand, obscured all the other rookies and, on the other, has shown that the new generation can battle it out with the best in the category. Those who fully fit into this double role is Suzuki's rider, Joan Mir, who has experienced a seesawing but still important year.
“I'm a rookie, and I evaluate my first season in the MotoGP like that of a rookie. I had great performances. I was really fast on some occasions," the Spanish talent told Motomatters.com. "But then I made mistakes. I also had a bad injury. In short, lots has happened this year."
The results, however, were not that bad for Mir, who ended the season with 92 points (skipping two races) and in 12th position. The only flaw, perhaps, is his complete lack of podiums and the comparison with his teammate , Rins, who brought Suzuki home 2 wins and just over double the points.
“The year went beyond my expectations anyway. I improved a lot. My goal was the top 15 in the first races, the top 10 at the end of the year and, in 2020, I'm aiming to be among the best 5 in the class. There are many things to learn In this category, starting from managing time over the weekend and tires."
The move to the MotoGP was Mir's fourth year in the world championship. A very fast climb from the Moto3 (which he won in 2017) to the top class, even better than Quartararo, which took him five years.
“My course was really fast. I think it's a record, or we're close to it. I'll have to check. I never expected to be in the MotoGP in 4 years. I'm very happy. I would have liked to have done another year in the Moto2 to fight for the title, but I can't complain."
Did you also have any other opportunities last year?
"Yes, a couple. But I chose Suzuki because I'd like to be like Kevin Schwantz one day. Maybe we could talk about it when I've won several World Championship with this bike."
You'll be starting from the Sepang tests this year, then there's the first GP in Qatar. Do you remember how you felt last year?
“I was very nervous before the race. When I entered the World Championship in 2016, Marquez was already very strong, Lorenzo had just won the world championship, and Rossi had been a legend for some time. Racing with them seemed like a dream, but as soon as the lights went out, I only thought about riding. However, if I think back to the minutes just before that, I can say that I have never been so nervous in my life."