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MotoGP, Aleix Espargarò: “My brother was lucky, it could’ve been worse”

“I talked to Pol’s doctors. He’s getting better. The blow to his head was hard that he couldn’t hear. No pressure for the victory, but Aprilia could win here. Maverick? I don’t see him as an antagonist. The only bike to beat is the Ducati.”

MotoGP: Aleix Espargarò: “My brother was lucky, it could’ve been worse”

If Aprilia’s debut in Portimão can be deemed successful – with the second step of the podium conquered by Viñales – expectations are certainly no less for Aleix Espargarò, who took his RS-GP to the highest step on the Argentine circuit last year. The Spanish rider says he’s optimistic and in line with the new evolution of his bike (the result of the ingeniousness at Noale). He also talked to us about the health conditions of his brother Pol, after he was involved in a very bad accident during the last GP.

As far as the race here in Argentina is concerned, I thought I’d be under more pressure, given the expectations.” Aleix confessed. “And, instead, I’m quite relaxed. I’ll try to have fun, not so much for last year’s result, but because I like this track, and I always enjoy racing here. When you have fun on the bike, it’s the best feeling in the world, whether you'’re first or fifth.

Compared to last year, will the speeds be the same?
I had a bad qualifying session in Portimão, but I was still very fast. The bike improved compared to the last championship, in some respects. But, in its soul, it remained ninety percent the same. I don’t want to say I’ll win the race, but I have a good chance of being competitive.”

Ducati may not be your only rival. Your garage buddy is also showing his teeth.
We all know Maverick’s speed. We have the same bike, so we can both do very well. I think Ducati is the bike to beat right now, then everyone will do their own championship. With Maverick, we have  a great relationship in the garage. His success in the last race made the entire Aprilia team happy.

In what condition did you find the asphalt? It wasn’t the best last year either.
To be honest, I’m more concerned about the weather. I would’ve liked a more relaxed Friday than Portimão, but it seems like it might be even worse. If it rains tomorrow, getting into the Q2 won’t be easy. The asphalt is in good condition. It’s quite clean. We’ll understand more by riding on it tomorrow.”

But for the Spanish rider, another source of concern is definitely his brother’s conditions after his very bad accident in Portimão.
Pol’s condition is improving. He had a very bad accident. After talking to the doctors, the idea I got is that he was really lucky. Despite one of the best helmets in the paddock, you have no idea of the blow he took to the head. At the speed he was going, on impact with the gravel, he completely broke his jaw, from mouth to ear, so much so that it pushed on his eardrums, and he couldn’t hear anything.We were very lucky! All things considered, I think my brother got off  better than expected, and I hope he gets back on track soon. The gravel conditions were really bad, and the absence of an air fence was also an incredible element of the story. Maybe something will change now, but it’s not up to me to tell them how and when.”



Translated by Leila Myftija

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