2022 has definitely started uphill for Pecco Bagnaia. After the ninth time in qualifying, the Qatar Grand Prix weekend ended with a zero in the standings. The Ducati rider was putting a patch on a bad start, but then slipped at turn 1 in an attempt to slip into Jorge Martin, leading both to retire.
What worries the Piedmontese is not so much the race itself, which in the end saw the victory of another Ducati, the old GP21 of Enea Bastianini, but the fact that it took too long to define the package of his Desmosedici, which which forced him to chase all weekend.
“It’s strange, because all the Ducati GP22s started really badly. I lost a lot of positions and was 16th at turn 3. At that point I started pushing to try to recover as much as possible, but today we weren’t ready to fight. for the win. My pace was not bad when compared to what we did this weekend, but not such as to think big, “said Bagnaia.
“The most important thing now is to start from here and not touch anything on the bike anymore, because I need to focus on myself, on my riding style, and find the feeling and the results of last year. I know we have the possibility to win, but now I have to think only of myself and this can be the key to getting back in front, “he added.
This second part of the speech revealed some unease, which Pecco did not hide when he was asked to investigate the matter, explaining that probably the development of the new bike was not managed in the best way.
“It is normal to try new things, but evidently the others managed to optimize the work even in a few days and we did not, but because we had very different dynamics. It seems that our bike is very similar to the old one, but in reality it is not like that. Since the beginning of the tests I have never ridden the same bike for two sessions in a row, so I have never been able to work to adapt my riding style to the bike or the track. “
“We did a billion tests and unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to define the best possible package. We only managed it in FP4, but by now it was too late to settle down for the track conditions. The good thing is that we can start again. from there next time and I think it will be something that will also help the other Ducati riders. But from now on I would also like to avoid doing this type of work during a race weekend, because it is not the right time. here to be a tester, I’m here to win races “.
Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Inevitably, he was also asked to comment on the incident that led to his retirement. A maneuver that according to the Ducatista was not too risky, but that did not have the hoped-for ending.
“I didn’t exaggerate, it’s not the right word. Jorge was going pretty slower than me at the time. The problem is that I struggled to pass him straight and the same thing had already happened to me with the Yamaha too, so we have to understand a a few things that happened today. I arrived a little late to look at Martin, but the braking was not exaggerated, because he too was not breaking too hard anymore. I was on the line, I was in the right position, but I lost the front “.
“The only thing I can do is apologize to Ducati, Pramac and Jorge, but it wasn’t a crazy maneuver. It was an overtaking that didn’t go well and we need to understand the reasons well. For sure. my goal was to get ahead and I couldn’t be satisfied with a ninth place when the potential, given that I was lapping four tenths faster, overtaking was to be attempted “.
Wanting to look at the glass as half full, other big names like Marc Marquez and Fabio Quartararo haven’t collected too many points. According to Pecco, however, we must also consider who has shone today in the race for the title, including that Bastianini who uses the much loved GP21.
“The three riders who got on the podium can fight for the World Championship right now. Enea has nothing to do on the bike, because his was already perfect at the end of last year and he started from there. Today, however, it really was. very good, I don’t want the message to pass that anyone can win with that bike. “
“The others were certainly faster than us, but they didn’t get the best result. Unfortunately, we got a lot less though. The positive thing is that we finally managed to find the right place in yesterday’s FP4, so from now on I will no longer have to work and I can only think of myself. This is what I need, being a sensitive rider “, he concluded.
Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team
Photo by: MotoGP