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Agostini: "I don't like these MotoGP bikes, power must be managed with the wrist"

VIDEO - Giacomo was special guest of our Bar Sport: "the championship is not over, Bagnaia just has to be left alone. Hailwood was a gentleman, Read attacked you on and off the track"

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Yesterday our Bar Sport had a special guest: Giacomo Agostini, who has just celebrated his 80th birthday. The 15-time world champion chatted with our very own Carlo Pernat in the episode that you can see in full above, talking about his career, with many anecdotes, but also about the present of MotoGP.

Half an hour with lots of content, you can find just a bit below.

"More awards for my 80 years than when I won the World Championships"


“My 80 years? On the one hand, I'm sad because it’s a lot, on the other, if I hadn't gotten there, it would have been worse. I didn't expect to receive so many messages, some of them brought tears to my eyes. Not even when I won the World Championships did I receive so many awards, who knows what they will do to me when I’m one hundred! (laughs) I started with black leathers and finished with coloured leathers and sponsors. I went through a period of change, especially when it came to safety. I was at the Tourist Trophy last week and I told myself I was crazy to race there, but when you are young you don't think about risk ”.

“I can’t forget when I lost the title at Suzuka, but not even my first race on the Morini”.


“The worst memory is when in 1965, in Suzuka, I could have won the title if I had won the race. I was world champion for more than half the race, until a condenser wire came off and I lost the title. It was me and 3 mechanics against all the Japanese manufacturers, Hailwood, Taveri, Read. It would have been my first title and I lost it, we cried. "

“I don't want to forget my first race with a bike bought in instalments where I finished 2nd out of 40 starters. I then won the Bologna - San Luca and Commendatore Morini offered me a motorbike and 200,000 lire a month. Then of course the 1966 title in Monza in front of 130,000 people taking me to triumph, but it was only the next day, at home, looking at the newspapers, that I realized I was world champion and I cried. Finally, the moment I left MV Agusta was a sacrifice, to go to Yamaha, I knew I had to do it if I still wanted to win. I learned to ride the 2-strokes and I won at Daytona, it was a great satisfaction because some observers, not so many fortunately, thought that I would never win again without the MV ”.

"The championship is wide-open, Bagnaia just has to be left alone"


“The most beautiful bike is the one that makes you win, as the Morini, MV, Yamaha did with me. How did I choose? Enzo Ferrari used to say that the car is beautiful when it wins and he was right. Now Ducati is doing great things, they have entered 8 bikes and none of them look bad, going against the Japanese is never easy. Then now Aprilia has arrived, I worked together with Albesiano in Cagiva. Ducati has something extra right now. Winning a World Championship is never easy, there was Marquez who dominated, but now we have Italians who are doing very well, like Bastianini and Bagnaia, and I hope Morbidelli will come back. I believe the championship is still open, there are still many races. Maybe they pushed Bagnaia too much this winter, riders need to be left on their own, without giving them responsibility ".

"I don't like the MotoGP bikes now: let's take the power away and increase the show"


"I don't like these MotoGP bikes, I'd take away a little bit of power, because that's not what gives the show and makes everything more dangerous. Not to mention that it takes away the joy of the rider to manage it with the wrist instead of relying on electronic aids. With less horsepower, accidents would be less dangerous and there would be more spectacle, the fight is also good in Moto2 and Moto3, regardless of the power because the riders make the show ”.

“My secret? I was a pain in the ass "


“You have to have the gift that Mother Nature gives you, but then you have to cultivate it. When I got the bike to win, I thought I should have been at 100% too. I was always very picky, I had my cards in which I marked everything, and this helped me to win. For example, I put a small piece of aluminium in the throttle to make it faster or covered the brake vents when it rained so that no water entered. I was a pain in the ass, but the mechanics realized it was an advantage for everyone. I studied the tracks at night by car to see each depression, to prepare for the Tourist Trophy I was there all summer to learn it ".

"Hailwood was a gentleman, Read tried to destroy you psychologically"


"Rivalry has always been there, I've never had real friends amongst my opponents, but Mike Hailwood was a true gentleman. I remember when I was leading the TT in 500 in 1967, I was managing to beat him, I had 8 seconds advantage and my chain broke. At the garage Mike hugged me and told me I was the winner and he invited me to his party. We fought on the track, but with respect. Phil Read, on the other hand, was the shrewdest, meanest one, he also attacked you psychologically. One day he came out of Count Agusta's office and showed me a bundle of money, but only the first and last banknotes were real, the rest was all paper. He wanted me to believe that he was loved more than me, but I understood and I took the stack of notes and you could see all the blank sheets of paper".



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