Espargaro's five KTM MotoGP podiums in 2020 'like a dream'

KTM's Pol Espargaro admits his five podiums so far in the 2020 MotoGP season "feels like we are dreaming", after scoring third in last Sunday's Valencia Grand Prix

Espargaro's five KTM MotoGP podiums in 2020 'like a dream'

Espargaro once again guided his RC16 to a third-place finish at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit in the second Valencia race last weekend, bringing his haul for the season to five with one round to go in 2020.

The Spaniard has been with KTM from its debut season back in 2017 and helped steer the development of the bike into a package with race-winning potential.

Espargaro says the fact he's able to be a regular podium contender on the RC16 after only four years of the KTM project is "unreal".

"In nine races [I've scored] five podiums, it's not real," Espargaro, who will join Honda in 2021, said.

"Really feels like we are dreaming after that four years [from 2017] working so much for that, getting that it's just unreal.

"We feel very proud, especially in this back-to-back races where everyone can get the best out of their package, the riders get the knowledge of the track in every condition and everyone is on their very limit.

"And getting the results in back-to-back races is super-important, it means we are part of having a good package, it means we worked well and we are doing good things.

"Really, really proud of what we are achieving. Still one race to go in Portimao, which we don't really know, nobody really knows what is going to happen.

"We are set up in the championship in a good place (7th), not far from the top guys, not far from Jack [Miller] in the championship, which we will need to fight again. Really proud of what we are doing. Really happy."

Espargaro came incredibly close to being wiped out of the race at the final corner when LCR's Takaaki Nakagami crashed overtaking him on lap 19.

The KTM rider admits he "felt so lucky" having escaped the incident, though admits he lost time through disbelief.

"Yeah, that was close, very, very close," Espargaro said when asked by Autosport to explain what was going through his mind when Nakagami crashed.

"I mean during all the laps I was catching these two guys there [Franco Morbidelli and Miller] and I was really risking there [Turn 14], it was one of my strong places of the race track.

"When Taka was overtaking me inside there I was like 'okay man, show me what you can do'.

"And he went inside, he tried to keep the same line to avoid me overtaking him on the exit, even if he was very strong he was catching me so fast, but then he crashed.

"The problem was a little bit after, I lost one second in that lap because of this incident and then for sure I felt so lucky in my helmet that I couldn't still believe and I lost half a second more in the lap after by some nerves."


shares
comments
How Mir became Suzuki’s humble MotoGP hero
Previous article

How Mir became Suzuki’s humble MotoGP hero

Next article

KTM tester Kallio to replace Tech3's Lecuona at MotoGP Portugal finale

KTM tester Kallio to replace Tech3's Lecuona at MotoGP Portugal finale
Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era Plus

Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era

The once all-conquering Japanese manufacturers are going through a difficult period in MotoGP this season. With Suzuki quitting, Honda struggling to get near the podium and Yamaha only enjoying success courtesy of Fabio Quartararo, Japanese manufacturers have been left in the dust by their European counterparts. Key paddock figures explain why.

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2022
Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star? Plus

Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star?

Valentino Rossi’s protégés stole the show at Assen as Francesco Bagnaia stormed to victory to arrest a recent barren run. But it was the rider in second, on Bagnaia’s old bike, who had all eyes on him. Securing his and the VR46 team’s first MotoGP podium, Marco Bezzecchi has all the characteristics that made his mentor special

MotoGP
Jun 27, 2022
How Quartararo is evoking an absent MotoGP great in 2022 Plus

How Quartararo is evoking an absent MotoGP great in 2022

OPINION: Fabio Quartararo has seized control of the 2022 MotoGP world standings after another dominant victory as his nearest rivals faltered. And he is very much heading towards a second championship echoing how the dominator of the last decade achieved much of his success

MotoGP
Jun 20, 2022
The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence Plus

The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence

OPINION: Marc Marquez will likely sit out the remainder of the 2022 MotoGP season to undergo a fourth major operation on the right arm he badly broke in 2020. It is hoped it will return him to his brilliant best after a tough start to the season without a podium to his name. But it’s the human victory that will far outweigh any future on-track success he may go on to have

MotoGP
May 31, 2022
Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma Plus

Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma

OPINION: The French Grand Prix looks to have made Ducati’s decision on its factory team line-up simpler, as Enea Bastianini stormed to his third win of the campaign and Jorge Martin crashed out for a fifth time in 2022. But, as Ducati suggests to Autosport, it remains in the strongest position in a wild rider market

MotoGP
May 16, 2022
The seismic aftershock left by Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP Plus

The seismic aftershock left by Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP

Suzuki's sudden decision to leave the MotoGP World Championship at the end of the season has acted as a stirring element in a market that had already erupted. Autosport analyses what this means for the grid going into 2023

MotoGP
May 11, 2022
How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP’s Spanish GP Plus

How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP’s Spanish GP

Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP bike has had a tough start to life and the expected early-season title charge from Francesco Bagnaia did not materialise. But the Spanish Grand Prix signalled a turning point for both the GP22 and Bagnaia, as the 2021 runner-up belatedly got his season underway after a straight fight with Fabio Quartararo

MotoGP
May 2, 2022
How Honda's praise for its 2022 MotoGP bike has turned into doubt Plus

How Honda's praise for its 2022 MotoGP bike has turned into doubt

In a little over two months, Honda has gone from setting the pace in MotoGP testing with its new RC213V prototype to being at a crossroads - caused by the discrepancy in its riders' feedback. After a Portuguese GP that underwhelmed, serious questions are now being asked of Honda in 2022

MotoGP
Apr 26, 2022