Pecco Bagnaia bets on himself in Jerez. At the end of the inaugural press conference for the Spanish GP, they asked him for his predictions regarding the weekend, so Pecco put his name in first place in all the boxes and also tried guessing his pole position time: “1'36”280, because it’s a bit warmer than last year.”
A ten-day break from his mistake in Austin did him good. The world champion had time to reflect on what happened. “Honestly, it’s been one of the best weekends since I’ve raced in the MotoGP. I was very quick both in the sprint race and on Sunday,” he said.
It could have been a triumphant GP, but it ended with a fall.
“Maybe I underestimated the track conditions at turn two, but that was the case.” He doesn’t want to think much about the past. “We have to keep what was positive, and Jerez is one of my favorite tracks. I’m confident. Here, you need an agile and effective bike when braking. The GP23 is strong in both areas. I know I have the potential to win, so I’m betting on myself.”
Pecco doesn’t want to make comparisons with his mistakes at the beginning of last year.
“The situation is completely different,” he confirms. “Ducati wasn’t competitive at the time. Now they are, and so are my sensations on the bike. It’s about working on myself. It has nothing to do with the fact that I fell when I was in the lead. I often won that way.”
Regarding the details, so as not to waste more of the important opportunities for the ranking.
“I’ve spoken a lot with my team, even in the days after the Austin GP, and I know I have to better interpret the different situations in which I find myself,” he explained. “Sometimes you have to keep a little margin, but it’s more difficult to race slower than a couple of tenths because you want that, when it’s the bike that doesn’t allow it. Like I said, I need to understand the situation I’m in and be smarter.”
He’ll also have to keep an eye on another enemy in Jerez: the heat. Summer has already arrived in Andalusia, and the conditions will be tricky for the riders.
“I remember that, in 2020, at the end of the race, my fingers were burned by the heat. It’ll be the same for everyone. The bike will definitely move more with these temperatures, but I don’t mind.”
They at least decided to postpone the regulation on the minimum tire pressure limit.
“In a circuit like this, where braking is demanding, and in this heat, it would be practically impossible to stay within the limits,” Pecco believes. “It would make the races more dangerous and boring, because it would be difficult to overtake. I think this rule wouldn't be good for either safety or the show.”