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MotoGP, A. Espargarò: “It wasn’t the dirt or Binder’s fault but only mine”

“I felt I had the pace to win, and I saw Viñales and Martìn break away. I attacked, but I made a mistake, and I’m sorry I ruined Brad’s race. Martìn? Right now, he’s unbeatable. Never say never with Pecco.”

MotoGP: A. Espargarò: “It wasn’t the dirt or Binder’s fault but only mine”

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Aleix Espargarò is probably the fairest rider on the grid in the MotoGP. But, today, he made a mistake, and that mistake led to the end of his Sprint Race involving a guilty Brad Binder. What a pity, because the Aprilia rider seemed to have the pace to at least compete for the podium with the Ducati riders, and that would’ve been a piece of work even for Jorge Martìn in a state of grace. 

But, in his post-race statements, Aleix admitted that he made an error dictated by the desire to not lose the right direction at the start of the race, the one aimed at the podium. A lackluster start forced him to rebuild his Sprint Race, and his excitement in the early stages put an end to it well in advance. 

“Today I was really fast, and I tried not to miss the train, because I saw Maverick and Martìn immediately push very hard up front,” Aleix explained. “I thought I could’ve fought for the victory, so I pushed hard and tried to overtake Binder as soon as possible. There wasn’t much space when breaking away. I braked on dirt, and that was the problem. I feel bad for Binder and what happened. I tried to avoid it but, as I was trying not to touch him, I broke away on the dirt and lost the front.”

Was it because of poor grip?
“I don’t want to make excuses. I’m really sorry for ruining Binder’s race. It’s absolutely not his mistake, and it wasn’t because of the dirt on the track. It was my mistake. The problem is that, when you have to overtake, and there’s only one possible trajectory, the risk is very high.”

You didn’t seem so off the trajectory. 
“Falling is very easy. I didn’t think I’d lose the front like that at that point. Of course, I was braking hard, but I was about ten kilometers per hour slower than I would’ve been fast on the right trajectory, yet, I fell anyway. All you have to do is slightly go off the trajectory to fall here.”

Can you make up for it tomorrow?
“I think fighting for the victory will be possible tomorrow. I think we’re okay with the tire wear. Tomorrow I’ll try to win, without a doubt. We’re going to need to start well because, as always, it’s essential. I lost positions today at the start, and then what happened, happened. Maverick started much better than I did today, so I know I can improve.”

Do you think Martìn is beatable?
"I think I can be faster than he is in the race. I think I can overtake him and then impose my pace. Jorge was impressive today. He didn’t seem to have the pace to win, and he managed it anyway. If you want to win the MotoGP title, you have to do races like this. Everything works well for him. The overtakes, the time attacks. He’s found the right balance with everything, I’m happy for him, really.”

He’s found his place with this Ducati. 
“At the beginning of the season, Bagnaia had this perfect balance, and it lasted several months. But then he lost it and started making mistakes. The point is that, in order to win the title, even when you aren’t at your best, you have to try to finish fifth in the race and not tenth. This is the really important thing. Martìn for me now is as if he were unbeatable.”

Do you see him as being the favorite for the title at this point?
“I think they have the same chances now. They’re at fifty percent. Pecco may lose more points tomorrow, but you can expect anything from him. Then we’ll go to Australia, to Thailand. Pecco is a very fast rider and has a team of very good engineers with him. You can never say never with him.”

Translated by Leila Myftija

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