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Puig: "The level in 250cc is stagnating"

Puig: 'The level in 250cc is stagnating'

Alberto Puig is one of the more prominent figures of the MotoGP World Championship. The ex-rider is at his most visible as mentor and right hand man to Dani Pedrosa.

Alberto Puig is one of the more prominent figures of the MotoGP World Championship. The ex-rider is at his most visible as mentor and right hand man to Dani Pedrosa, the 21 year-old undertaking his second season in MotoGP with Repsol Honda, but Puig also plays a prominent role in the talent search for young riders in both 125cc and 250cc.

Speaking to members of Repsol, who support all the riders under Puig's wing, the Spaniard this week made some controversial statements sure to provoke reaction. In particular, his analysis of the 250cc World Championship.

"I don't consider the level of 250cc to be very high. The way I see it, the category is stagnating," commented Puig, who saw Pedrosa compete with dominant World Champion Jorge Lorenzo in the quarter litre class. His current protégés in 250cc are Julian Simon and 2006 Rookie of the Year Shuhei Aoyama, who have been unable to step onto the podium so far this year.

Repsol Honda are, however, experiencing more success in 125cc. Esteve Rabat's podium finish in China was matched by a first rostrum for Bradley Smith at Le Mans, and Puig paid tribute to the talents of both the Spaniard and the Brit.

"Bradley Smith is an intelligent kid. You tell him something and he understands it first time. Esteve has an important talent and an unbelievable passion for bikes; he is pure adrenalin."

The experienced mentor has been involved with youth initiatives since 2001, and makes clear what he requires from his riders. "I ask for seriousness, riders who don't make excuses and have a passion for what they do."

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, GRAN PREMI CINZANO DE CATALUNYA

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