Moto2™ World Champion Pol Espargaro commenced his MotoGP™ adventure on Monday at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia, getting his first try of the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 bike which he will ride in 2014.
The popular youngster from the outskirts of Barcelona was ecstatic after trying the Yamaha YZR-M1 and his first MotoGP outing was the perfect remedy to the disappointment of his crash in his last Moto2 race before making the move into the big time.
Espargaro was welcomed into Herve Poncharal’s Tech 3 set up by engineer Nicolas Goyon and given an introduction to how things work with a 1000cc racing prototype, before putting in 45 laps of the 4km Valencia track.
The MotoGP rookie put in a decent 1’33.187 best time on his 32nd lap, to end the day 10th on the timesheet – less than two seconds down on pace setting former World Champion Jorge Lorenzo.
He enthused, "It’s so different, the feeling. Now we are in MotoGP with a different box, everything has changed but I’m so happy. I have enjoyed the day a lot and these will be the best days of my life, to try a MotoGP machine. It’s amazing. The power and the brakes are incredible, the tyre too. I enjoyed it a lot but we have to be a lot faster because we were two seconds behind Jorge and Valentino (Rossi)."
Espargaro added, "Immediately I could feel this is a very professional and high-level team with fantastic support from Yamaha. The YZR-M1 is incredible and today I just tried to learn as much as possible. The power of the engine is something you notice immediately and today I just did as many laps as I could with the aim to get a feel for the bike."