MotoGP appears in India for the first time and it must be said that Thursday calmed the tensions around the Buddh International Circuit that had accumulated in recent weeks. One of the issues that had taken center stage during the Misano weekend was linked to the alleged safety problems of the track, with a couple of walls considered too close to the asphalt surface.
Fears that were dispelled once they arrived on site, where the riders found safety standards in line with those required by MotoGP. Indeed, in the end probably the most difficult thing was reaching India, with a large part of the paddock having problems related to obtaining a visa. Which, however, did not happen to world leader Pecco Bagnaia, who joked about it during the press conference that inaugurated the weekend.
“First of all, I have to say that I was lucky because I didn’t have any problems with the visa, this was already a victory. Our logistics manager did a fantastic job in this regard,” said the Ducati rider, who then he moved on to talk about the track, implying that he had put aside his doubts about safety, even if the best test will be that of the track which will take place tomorrow.
“I did two laps of the track on foot and the layout is interesting. It’s beautiful and it seems different to me compared to the other tracks we race on. Obviously tomorrow it will be interesting to try the track on a motorbike, after I also had the opportunity to do a lap with members of the Race Direction and they explained to me that the circuit is OK from a safety point of view,” he added.
After two third places in Misano, obtained by gritting his teeth with his right leg still sore due to the terrible accident in Barcelona, in which Brad Binder’s KTM ran over him, the reigning world champion arrived in India in good condition. better physique, even if he has not yet fully recovered from the blow.
“The Monday after the race in Misano was a difficult day, I was really tired. But we worked a lot to try to get here to 100%. I’m not there yet, because it takes more time for a complete recovery, but I’m definitely better than at Misano. That’s for sure,” he explained.
Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Then in today’s conference there was a curiosity, because the top four riders in the world rankings all defended the colors of the Indian brand Mahindra in their Moto3 days, so they were asked to go down memory lane.
“If you consider all the drivers who passed through Mahindra, they are all guys who left a mark in the following years: either they won titles or they were vice-world champions. It was an excellent school: perhaps a little was missing ‘ power, but the bike was excellent. It put us in a position to always have to give our best, so I’m very proud to have been part of the Mahindra family. And I always say that it was the best Moto3 team I could have been in to grow “.
Among other things, riding the Mahindra of Team Aspar he had shared the garage, and not only that, with Jorge Martin, who today rides a Ducati like him, albeit with the colors of Prima Pramac Racing, and is his direct pursuer in the World Cup, 36 points behind.
“In Mahindra our relationship was a bit strange, we slept in the same room and played a lot of PlayStation with both F1 and MotoGP. It’s a special memory, but our relationship has always been based on respect and this is the most importantly. We know perfectly well what our potential is and this means that the fight between us will always be fair.”
Finally, the last market announcement was the one which made official Franco Morbidelli’s arrival on the Prima Pramac Racing Ducati starting from 2024. Being also a friend of his, as well as a member of the VR46 Riders Academy, inevitably Pecco was asked for his opinion on the matter.
“I don’t know if anything will change for me or for us, but Franco definitely deserves this chance. The years in Yamaha were not the best, in 2021 he had an injury, then he had to move from a very old bike to the official one, which however had some problems, so it was definitely not the best scenario. Everyone recognizes his potential, so it will be interesting to have him on the same bike and discuss it together. I’m happy for Franco, he deserved it, and we will have the same bike from the start. winter, so the competition will be tough,” he concluded.