MotoGP Japan Motegi J0 Debriefing Fabio Quartararo (Yamaha): “there is no track where we are not fast!”, etc. (Entirety)

This Thursday, September 22, 2022, Fabio Quartararo answered journalists’ questions from the Motegi circuit ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix.

The French driver, who only has a 10-point lead over Francesco Bagnaia, approaches the 16th round still slightly suffering from his spectacular crash at the Aragon Grand Prix.

As usualwe report here the words of Fabio Quartararo without any formatting, even if it is partially translated (using you for English, you for French).

Fabio, you suffered a frightening fall in Aragon and injured your chest and abdomen. First of all, how do you feel?
Fabio Quartararo : “It’s good that I was able to do my first training session and it went well. These are just abrasions. It’s a bit painful but I think it won’t be a big problem on the bike. They are first degree burns but I don’t think they will be a problem when riding the bike. »

This circuit is stop-and-go type and in theory does not suit the Yamaha very well, but you have been very strong in Austria and Aragon: does that encourage you to think that you can be competitive here in Japan ?
“In the end, we are competitive on every circuit. If you look at the Red Bull Ring and also Aragon, I’ve never been competitive there in the past, but this time I had a really good pace there. Unfortunately, my race ended very early but I think that in terms of pace there is no circuit where we are not fast. Of course, there were also some circumstances where we struggled to overtake, but I think this circuit is pretty good because I’ve been very good at it here in the past, and I can’t wait to be back because I I have very good memories here. »

The weather promises to be rainy but you were very strong in Mandalika at the start of the year in the wet. Does it give us confidence?
“Yes, and especially because in 2019 here the level of grip was very high. I remember the race with Marc and Dovi where they were super fast: the more grip there is on the track, the better it is for us! As you said, Mandalika was really good, so I think now there’s really no reason to be afraid of a wet race. Of course, I have more fun in the dry but I think it won’t be a big problem if it’s in the rain. »

With the championship more open than ever, how do you see this weekend?
“(Laughs) In the end, what can we do? I think now, when all three of us are on 17 points, I wouldn’t say it’s the start of the championship and everyone is attacking like hell, but I think all three of us, and adding Enea , we want the title. Having only 17 points between the three of us will give us the maximum, and in the end I think that’s good. »

We saw on your Instagram account that you visited the Yamaha factory: did you choose an artist name?
“(Laughs) not yet, not yet! I have to come up with a new name but since I had a 12 hour plane flight I’ve already played with the computer and I like it. It was great fun to visit, especially Yamaha Music, because I never expected it to be so big: it was great fun. »

Do you consider Enea Bastianini a title contender?
“As a pilot, he is super super super strong! Now, 5 races from the end, I think he is less of a candidate for the title than us because he is 48 points behind. But if someone makes a mistake, he won’t be far away and he had a fantastic race in Aragon, so I see him as a rival, but of course a bit further than Pecco and Aleix. »

The last time we raced at Motegi, there were no ride height devices. How does that affect racing here at a circuit where on paper they seem very useful?
“I think it will change a lot because I think we will use it more than once on this circuit. Of course, looking at the weather, it looks tricky, but let’s imagine it’s in the dry and the lap times would be much faster, above all because more or less everyone has made a lot of progress, as riders as well as the bikes. , but I think this circuit is one of the circuits where holeshot devices feel the most. But in the wet, I don’t think it will make a big difference. »

Will you change your approach to racing now that your lead has narrowed?
“To be honest, I always try to drive as much as I can. I think that’s a lesson I learned in 2020 with Johann (Zarco): every time I won a point over him, I was happy! Finally, last year, even when I was 30 or 40 points ahead, I always tried to fight for the victory I gave my maximum. So this year it’s been the same and I’ve never had a huge lead, and of course I’ll give my 100% in the last five races. But I was already giving my 100% before, so in terms of driving, I don’t think that will really change. »

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