Alex Marquez recently talked about the increasingly frequent incidents in the MotoGP, as well as the sanctions imposed by the Commissioners, and got carried away on some personal considerations.
“We’re getting to a point where these aren’t races. The contact between Bagnaia and Miller in Jerez... I think these are normal things in our sport,” Alex said. “The MotoGP has always been a contact sport, and it’s something we and they need to understand,” the two-time World Champion added.
A statement that was not echoed in the words of Sito Pons, two-time 250 World Champion in 1988 and 1989 and, subsequently, a successful team manager, first in the MotoGP, then currently in the Moto2.
In an interview with Manuel Pecino, Sito was outraged by this ode to aggressive riding, which doesn’t take into account the respect that must be had for an opponent.
“That’s a lie. It seems absurd to me. You have to look for space, not push a rider out to overtake him,” Pons told Pecino.
“There have to be rules and penalties for riders who aren’t clean in their riding. I think this is the main requirement. Riders who aren’t clean must be penalized, severely and rigorously. You can hit an opponent by mistake once, but if you do it repeatedly... You have to respect the rider in front of you.”
According to Pons, with the evolution of safety conditions, the risk perception of riders has decreased.
“The riders are no longer aware of the risks. For starters, the circuits and equipment are much safer, and the riders don’t feel they’re risking their lives. When we were in the race, we respected each other. Those who say that motorcycling is a contact sport, make me laugh. Where are we now? How can they say that? How does the contact work? It’s absurd. It’s not a contact at all. You go at three-hundred kilometers per hour. How can that be a contact? You have to be good enough to overtake a rider without touching him. But, if you touch him, you’re not good. That’s a lie. It seems absurd to me. You have to look for space, not push a rider out to find your place,” Sito concluded.