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MotoGP, Espargarò: "Vorrei fermare il tempo e godermi la vittoria per settimane"

Espargarò: "I'd like to stop time and enjoy the victory for weeks" "In the eyes of my children Max and Mia I saw mine as a child, I feel like I'm dreaming. I'm proud of Aprilia and Aprilia must be proud to have two riders like me and Vinales"

MotoGP: Espargarò:

Winning at his home track, repeating the feat the next day, giving Aprilia a one-two: Aleix Espargarò couldn't expect anything better from this weekend in Barcelona. In the short race on Saturday he had dominated, today he had to win the tug of war with his teammate Vinales, but the result was the same.

“Now I'd like to stop time and enjoy this moment for two weeks - the Spaniard smiles - It's a historic moment for Aprilia, we started from a long way to get to this result. I feel so many emotions: it's not my first victory, but it's the first at home. I'm happy because next year they will post with my success and not with my stupid mistake” he recalls last year, when he believed that the race was already over with one lap left.

To celebrate, you swapped bikes with Vinales.

“It came spontaneously, I was happy for my win but also for Maverick. It occurred to me when in Austria, 3 years ago, he was crying and I told him to come to Aprilia, even though we had finished the race one minute from the first. I had assured him that we would take our bike to the top. I've always believed in teamwork, I'm proud of Aprilia and they must be proud of us riders. This is a gift for all the men of Noale".

You were able to celebrate on the podium with your children, Max and Mia. Are they your secret?

“I've said it many times, if I'd known earlier I would have had them at 17 and won 10 titles (laughs). My family, my children and my wife Laura, give me happiness. When Max and Mia gave me the winner's trophy I saw mine in their eyes when I used to come here to cheer for Doohan and Criville. Winning at this track at 34 is unbelievable. I still don't know if I'm dreaming, it's unreal."

Vinales didn’t make your life easy.

“I am very proud of today's victory because in another circuit I would have finished second. Maverick was faster than me, today, due to the wind, I was unable to have a good cornering speed. Yesterday, in the sprint, everything was easy, today the opposite. At one point, I said to myself: either I crash or I win. He braked better than me, but I managed to pass him and block him, then I basically did qualifying for 20 minutes, I destroyed the front tyre, but it worked and this is the best day of my life".

Where can you and Vinales arrive?

“I'd like to fight for the title against my teammate, it would be a dream. Vinales pushes me and if I've already won 3 times this year it's because he takes me to the limit. Sometimes I struggle to see how I can still improve at 34. Yesterday, for the first time in my career, I managed to get away from the world champion, that makes me proud. Determination and perseverance make the difference in our work”.

You have always believed in Aprilia.

“Resilience is the right word. I crashed and cried many times at the beginning of this adventure, but I always believed in the project. The problem is that everything goes fast in this sport, we're already thinking about Misano, but we have to celebrate today because a one-two in MotoGP is very difficult to achieve. Sometimes Maverick and I push the company and there is always a quick response. We are not close rivals yet, but on tracks like these our bike is very competitive. We are continuing to work, on the clutch, on the engine, and next Monday, in the tests, we will have many things to test. It's nice to be an Aprilia rider right now."

What do you think of the two accidents at the first start?

“I saw a bike arriving very fast on my right and I decided to accelerate to avoid an accident, then saw Pecco's high-side. When Brad hit Pecco he broke the engine, I was completely covered in oil. For me, the restart after the red flag was too quick. I tried to stay calm, luckily nobody got too hurt, but the first lap I was nervous. They could have waited another 5 or 10 minutes before giving us the go: I didn't even see the Safety Car come in to make sure the cleanup work had been done correctly."

Some say the starting line is too far from the first corner.

“We riders are good enough to brake at the right moment, not to try to pass 20 riders at the first corner. The point is not where the start is, but who is riding. We have to be more relaxed in the first corner, even if it's something difficult to learn. They penalized Enea, but it should be more severe in these cases, when you involve 5 other riders, at least two long laps would be needed".

With more electronics, could Bagnaia have not crashed?

“I think he was too fast with the medium tyre not yet up to temperature. It's impossible to save yourself in those cases: when you're leaning at 65 degrees with 300 hp there's no control. If it did, the bikes would ride themselves."


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