Fabio Quartararo's 2022 balance sheet is positive but not entirely. The first Frenchman to conquer the World Championship in MotoGP in 2021, the rider from Nice aimed to repeat the feat this season, in which, however, he was unable to do it, due to a Yamaha that was not up to par and a few too many mistakes. It was the Yamaha rider himself who admitted it in a chat with the French newspaper Le Monde.
“As defending champion, I had hoped to do better than second place, but it was immediately clear that I could not compete on par with the speed of the Ducatis on the straight. I didn't have any margin of safety; I've been riding really on the limit all season. Under these conditions, finishing behind Francesco Bagnaia can be considered a satisfactory result, even if I'm not happy about it - said the 23-year-old - Sometimes, my team and I stupidly lost points, due to technical problems and in particular overinflating the tyres. But it is from the difficult moments that we learnt the most."
Despite the disappointment, the rider from Nice tries to see the glass half full, concentrating on the positive aspects of the season: “This year I extended my contract with Yamaha and I'm happy about it. In the end, I think it's okay, even if I expected a lot more from my bike - he confessed - The year was full of emotions, I did my best and gained more experience. All of this is good."
Has the notoriety due to his first World Cup victory increased the pressure on El Diablo's shoulders? “It's true that people look at me differently, but I don't feel any extra pressure. The 2021 title is more of a source of motivation for me - explained Quartararo - Having started competing when I was very young, around the age of 7, allowed me to get used to the demands of the competition early. As a child, my main fear was not having a bike to race with”.
Competing at a high level, however, is both mentally and physically demanding, as demonstrated by Marc Marquez's slow recovery from his arm injury suffered in 2020. These are the risks of the trade, which Fabio doesn't want to pay too much attention to: “I'm not scared when I'm on the bike, even if I sometimes get scared when I lose front grip at almost 400 km/h. I try not to think too much about it, because the fear of crashing can make you lose hundredths of a second. The most important thing is to keep having fun, because that's how I give my best”.