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Baz: “I have no idea what might happen”

Baz: “I have no idea what might happen”

The Frenchman reviews the first half of his rookie season in MotoGP™ and discusses the situation with Forward Racing.

With two victories in the Open class, Loris Baz is just five points behind Hector Barbera in the standings at the halfway point, an ideal position to fight for the Open title later in the season. Yet Baz did not think he would be able to achieve such strong results so quickly. The former WSBK rider is focused firmly on the races ahead, ignoring the stories that circulate around his Forward Racing team.

You’re second in the Open standings after the German GP, how do you feel the season has gone so far?
“My record for the season so far is satisfactory. Before the season started we were not expecting to fight for the Open title, nor to have won two races in the category. However, unlike last season, the Open class bikes are a little lower ranked. This is down to several reasons, including the level of everyone else being so high. Suzuki is much stronger, all the Ducatis are fast and everyone in the Open class is very closer together. For my part, I’m focused on the Open ranks as that makes the most sense for the team and I.”

“What is pleasing is that we have made steps with each outing, expect maybe in Sachsenring and Jerez where we had some problems. There have been two key moments, Argentina and France, which have allowed me to understand that I could fight at the top. After this we made a big step forward, especially with the settings.”

Giovanni Cuzari, owner of the Forward Racing Team, was recently arrested, what are you feelings about this event?
"I try not to think about it and remain neutral; I’m focusing on enjoying my week off. I will continue on with my weeks of training, as I would do if nothing had happened. To be quite honest, I do not know anything more than what has been said in the media. I have no idea what might happen. As we get closer to Indianapolis I’ll think about it more. I’m convinced that we will find a solution that sees us to the season’s end.”

Despite making steady progress in each race do you think there are still some points to work on?
“There are still many things that we need to work on. It’s necessary that we improve the electronics of the bike and we keep searching to improve the chassis setting and allow us to keep taking steps forward. This is a very precise bike and as soon we leave the usual setting even a little, the bike goes. We’ve found a decent basic setting but we still need to make steps forward to be more competitive.”

By looking back at your results have you changed your goals?
“My goals have been raised since I won my first Open race. Already in Argentina I was fighting for victory while I had originally thought I might only be able to do so at the midseason point. I then set myself the goal to win a race as soon as possible and I managed to do so. Looking at the standings during the mid-season, I’m not far from Hector after Sachsenring. However, it is a Championship where things can change very quickly as shown with Bradl who scored eight points in a single race. The objective will be to score as many points as possible and win more races, and then at the end of the season I will have no regrets. Against so many fast riders claiming the Open title would have great significance.”

At the start of the season you’ve had to learn many new tracks as well as a new bikes. The second half has some tracks you’re familiar with, such as Silverstone where you took two WSBK wins, is this an advantage?
“In the first part of the season there were circuits I didn’t know such as Argentina and Austin, I knew Le Mans from racing the Bol d’Or. There were still plenty of tracks where I was able to be fast while improving my riding style. After the break there will be many circuits I know and like such as Brno, Silverstone and Misano. This will allow us to be comfortable immediately and work well on the bike’s setting.”

Are you already starting to think about 2016?
“With what is happening in regards to the team’s situation, it delays things a little because my main goal is to stay with Forward in 2016. I hope that with the remainder of the season we can keep working hard and getting more solid results so hopefully I will be able to have a good bike for next season.”

MotoGP, 2015, Loris Baz, Forward Racing

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