He’s currently only been nominated for the Laureus – perhaps the least understood among sports awards – as a revelation. He’s Joan Mir. But there’s no doubt that he was one in the 2020 World Championship.
The event that was created in 1999, and is backed by Mercedes-Benz, the IWC watch brand, and Mitsubishi UFI, seems to pursue notoriety more than anything else, with randomly inserted categories and without clarifying the standards… but so be it. Before him, Rossi and Marquez had won it, and it at least offered us some quotable quotes by Suzuki’s rider from Mallorca.
His rivals in 2021, without forgetting Marquez
“My top five are Rins, Morbidelli, Marc Márquez, Fabio Quartararo, and myself. As for Marc, I don’t know if he’ll be up front. After a year out, it’s difficult to be one-hundred-percent competitive. I think he’ll wait to be and, when he comes back, he will be. I expect an explosive start from the Yamaha riders. We’ll be patient.”
Valentino Rossi and 2021 innovations
“Normally, when you have a change of scenery, you get a breath of fresh air. He needed this change, that’ll help him be more competitive. He’ll fight to be it, and I hope he is competitive. He was in also seeing Pol Espargarò with the Repsol colors. I’ll be surprised if they’ll all be fast right from the first tests.”
Joan Mir and Suzuki
“I don’t consider myself the favorite because I didn’t win ten Grands Prixs last year. We won for other reasons, not because we were the fastest. But I hope I’ll be able to surprise everyone again. On paper, Suzuki is at a disadvantage being on the track with only two bikes, but better only two, than four difficult to manage.”
The importance of qualifying rounds and the crew chief
“I’m lucky to have Frankie Carchedi as crew chief. He’s someone who works until two in the morning. This year, it’ll be important to have some good qualifying rounds.”
Dreams and horizons: the importance of repeating yourself
“As a child, I dreamt of becoming world champion, but now that I am, I say that what I’ve earned, I’ve earned too quickly. I’m only twenty-three years old, and I have to try to repeat myself. If I retire now, I wouldn’t be satisfied. Pressure? I’m not under any. I’m not nervous. I’m motivated as always, and I like the pressure.”