Double victory today on the Argentine circuit for the house of Hamamatsu. Both Suzuki home riders obtain excellent results after an uncertain start to the season and the Suzuki is catapulted to the top of the constructors’ standings by ousting KTM who had also obtained two podiums in previous races. Rins conquers the third step of the podium behind Jorge Martin, and is now fourth in the standings, with 36 points on par with Bastianini. Mir follows him closely, just off the podium and at 33 points in the standingsdemonstrating how close this championship is and how Suzuki has reached the level of the other manufacturers by keeping the race pace high and improving compared to the starting positions on the grid.
You must be satisfied with this result Alex, but I guess you also thought that with a better qualification you could have dealt with Jorge and Aleix.
“I’m happy with how I managed the race – the Spaniard intervenes – starting from the third row it was not taken for granted that I would arrive on the podium because the level of MotoGP this year is really high. I tried to retrieve them at the end of the race but the start behind definitely slowed me down. Over the past weekend the results have not arrived but I think that both the bike and I are in excellent condition to be able to do in Austin, but it won’t be easy. “
So you just lacked a good qualification?
“No, certainly the start plays an important role, but it is not the only element of a race. Today the track presented some problems, we had some grip problems, perhaps due to the track conditions or following the Moto2 race, but in any case, I think it’s a good result from which to start facing this championship in the right direction “.
This podium is all Spanish, by the way you all live in Andorra and you know each other well, what do you think of Aleix’s result?
“The mountains of Andorra are great for training! – Alex continued joking – obviously I’m very happy with his victory, Aleix is a wonderful person as well as a talented driver. When I arrived in Andorra in 2017 he had already been there for a couple of years and I remember that we immediately started training together, I have good memories with him. “
In this championship we have had nine different riders on the podium and all the manufacturers seem to be very competitive this year, does that surprise you?
“No, already from 2020 and 2021 the level was rising a lot, so I think we can expect great things during this season.”
The circuit had bumps in some places, how does a rider react to overcome this problem?
“It wasn’t easy, but in my specific case I adapted rather quickly to the track, while instead I had more problems in terms of grip and traction of the bike, it’s something we will certainly have to work on in view of the next races” .
Joan mir: I felt among the strongest on the track
An excellent result also for his teammate Joan Mir, fourth and one step away from the podium, who together with his box mate catapulted the house from Hamamatsu to the top of the constructors’ standings, bypassing the KTM which had hit two podiums in previous races.
“I am happy with the performance in this race – Joan Mir then intervened – not so much for the final position, but because for the first time since the beginning of the season I was able to find the right feeling in the race. At the start of the race I lost some time with Nakagami, then from the middle of the race I felt that the feeling was improving and that the pace was good, every lap I made up time compared to the leaders, which is a good sign considering that the grip on this track was not the best. At each lap I felt I had something more than who I was in front of, so we will have to analyze the data to understand what worked so that we can continue in this direction. I’m happy because I feel that the bike has improved and in fact the results are coming “.
Can you tell us about this different feeling compared to the previous races?
“In the first few races we had a lot of grip problems, and when you don’t have grip you can’t defend yourself from your opponents’ attacks. Grip is essential especially in the last stages of the race, and I think this race has shown that we are improving. For the first time since the beginning of the championship I felt like one of the strongest riders on the track, even if the result in itself cannot be considered a victory “.
The track conditions weren’t optimal, especially for Suzuki who need grip to be fast in the corners, did this affect?
“Usually we don’t manage to have that” stop and go “to tackle the corners at speed and get out of them again fast, but in this race we have improved in that aspect too, especially in the intermediate and final stages of the race in which the wear of the tires are starting to play an important role “.
With a better qualifying, the result would also have improved, or was finding this feeling again what you were missing and what made the difference?
“Certainly starting later would have made a certain difference. In the early stages of the race I lost a lot of time after Nakagami, so yes, with this feeling I would certainly have had more chances to compete with the leading group, even if the grip is not anyway. still at the level we would like, but we are definitely in the right direction looking at the next races “.
Did you give everything in this race? What is the next step to improve the bike?
“To be honest, at the end of the race I realized that I still had some margin on the tires, so I probably could have pushed more in the last stages, but during a race it is difficult to understand the conditions of the tires well, the drop in performance and therefore in traction can be drastic, so it is always a risk in the last laps. This is also an aspect that we will have to work on. If we manage to improve the grip of the bike even at the end of the race without worsening in other respects, we will be able to do well in the next races “.