Espargaro’s “dream” Mugello MotoGP win charge derailed by VR46 duo

Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro says his “dream” of fighting for MotoGP Italian Grand Prix victory was derailed because he “lost 15 laps” trying to overtake Valentino Rossi’s riders.

Espargaro’s “dream” Mugello MotoGP win charge derailed by VR46 duo

Espargaro started Sunday’s 23-lap Mugello race from seventh and would go on to register his fourth-straight podium in third.

But his hopes of fighting for victory on Aprilia’s home soil were scuppered by difficulties in passing VR46 Ducati riders Marco Bezzecchi and Luca Marini – with Espargaro showering praise on the duo who started on the front row.

Commenting on his race, Espargaro said: “I’m happy, satisfied. I was dreaming of fighting for the victory, but I couldn’t because I lose a lot of time with the VR46 guys.

“They did a very good job because they don’t have much experience, they made no mistakes, they were fast, I was expecting more mistakes but they didn’t.

“So, it was difficult for me to overtake them. I lost 15 laps behind them.

“So, bravo to them and when I was able to overtake them it was too late.

“But anyway, I’m very happy.

“It was a very good weekend for everybody for Aprilia.

“I knew starting from seventh place would be very difficult, but overall I’m happy. It’s my fourth podium in a row.”

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Espargaro raced a new engine at Mugello which allowed him to keep pace with the Ducatis in their slipstream.

But he says his bike had nothing to do with his victory hopes coming to nothing, instead admitting he simple “wasn’t brilliant on the overtakes”.

Read Also:

“I have to say that today the engine was not an excuse,” he added.

“The bike was fast, the bike was good. I didn’t lose any ground with the Ducatis on the straight.

“But I was not brilliant on the overtakes.

“For example, in the first part of the race I was in front of Fabio but he was able to overtake me and to overtake the Ducati guys easier.

“I was a lot of time stuck behind them. So, was not the problem of the engine, the engine was fast.”

Espargaro still holds second in the championship, but his deficit to Fabio Quartararo – who was second at Mugello – has extended to eight points heading to this weekend’s Catalan Grand Prix.

shares
comments
Rins brands Nakagami "one of the most dangerous" riders after Mugello MotoGP crash
Previous article

Rins brands Nakagami "one of the most dangerous" riders after Mugello MotoGP crash

Next article

The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence

The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence
The other Suzuki signing that could transform Honda's MotoGP form Plus

The other Suzuki signing that could transform Honda's MotoGP form

Following Suzuki's decision to quit MotoGP, both of its former riders have landed at Honda for 2023. But perhaps its biggest signing from the now-defunct team could instead be a highly-rated technical manager. Is Ken Kawauchi the right man at the right time to steer HRC back to glory?

MotoGP
Jan 26, 2023
How the MotoGP paddock has offered refuge to Suzuki's former team Plus

How the MotoGP paddock has offered refuge to Suzuki's former team

Suzuki's unexpected departure left more than 40 professionals virtually jobless for the 2023 MotoGP season. But that human drama has been successfully corrected by the paddock itself, with most former Suzuki crew-members absorbed into other operations

MotoGP
Jan 14, 2023
How one MotoGP team went from title fights to losing it all in four years Plus

How one MotoGP team went from title fights to losing it all in four years

The Petronas Sepang Racing Team came into MotoGP with a bang in 2019 as regular front-runners, with wonder rookie Fabio Quartararo mounting a title challenge in 2020. But it all went wrong for the Razlan Razali-helmed squad as the team changed hands and tumbled down the order - and RNF Racing plans to right this in 2023

MotoGP
Jan 3, 2023
Is MotoGP's comeback king ready to reclaim his throne? Plus

Is MotoGP's comeback king ready to reclaim his throne?

Marc Marquez’s sixth premier MotoGP title seems a long time ago given the injury woes he has faced in the three years since. At the end of a fraught 2022, in which he had a fourth major operation on his right arm, the Spaniard speaks exclusively to Autosport

MotoGP
Dec 23, 2022
How MotoGP’s underachiever is working to reverse its fortunes in 2023 Plus

How MotoGP’s underachiever is working to reverse its fortunes in 2023

As European manufacturers emerged as the strongest force in 2022 in a changing of the guard for MotoGP, one powerhouse couldn’t quite match the feats of Ducati and Aprilia. Its motorsport chief tells Autosport why this is and what it is doing to become a consistent frontrunner in the class of kings

MotoGP
Dec 20, 2022
How MotoGP riders are preparing for the physical stress of sprint races Plus

How MotoGP riders are preparing for the physical stress of sprint races

With the expansion of the calendar to 21 grands prix and the introduction of sprint races, the 2023 MotoGP season will take the riders to almost 1,300 kilometres of competition more than this year, a factor that forces adjustments in their physical preparations.

MotoGP
Dec 9, 2022
The Ducati rider who is much more than just the brother of a MotoGP legend Plus

The Ducati rider who is much more than just the brother of a MotoGP legend

Surname pressure is something many have had to deal with in their motorsport careers. And while Luca Marini doesn’t have that, his familial relation and the team he rides for in MotoGP have cast a brighter spotlight on his progress. But, as he has shown in 2022 – and as he reveals to Autosport – Marini is so much more than just the brother of a legend

MotoGP
Dec 6, 2022
Ranking the top 10 riders of MotoGP 2022 Plus

Ranking the top 10 riders of MotoGP 2022

The 2022 MotoGP season was another hotly contested championship, with Francesco Bagnaia emerging as the title winner after the campaign went to the wire. Autosport picks out the 10 best performers of the season

MotoGP
Nov 29, 2022