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Espargaro: "It was an unbelievable race"

Espargaro: 'It was an unbelievable race'

Pol Espargaro helped to secure Yamaha their first Suzuka 8 Hour victory since 1996.

The Yamaha Factory Racing Team returned to the top step of the Suzuka 8 Hour podium, last claiming victory in 1996. With the debut of the new YZF-R1 superbike Yamaha felt that 2015 was an ideal time to return to the iconic endurance race with a three rider team including two current MotoGP™ riders. Pol Espargaro joined Monster Yamaha Tech 3 teammate Bradley Smith and Japanese Superbike legend Katsuyuki Nakasuga to spear head the effort. Prior to this Espargaro had not taken part in any series endurance races and had limited superbike experience.

Yamaha Factory Racing Team started from pole thanks to Espargaro who set a new lap record around the Suzuka circuit with a 2’06.000 during qualifying. The Spaniard’s pace throughout the race was phenomenal, easily able to lap in the 2’09s as other teams struggled to match him. Espargaro caused a 30 second stop and go penalty for his team, but they were able to quickly recover and win the 38th edition of the Suzuka 8 Hours.

Pol Espargaro: "I‘m so happy. It was an unbelievable race. I have to say sorry to my teammates because I made a mistake during the race. We had a stop and go penalty and we lost more than one minute. My teammates were impressive, they were so fast. I gave 200% when I went out on the bike to recover this gap that we lost and we did. It‘s impressive what Yamaha as a factory team and a family did after so many years and I‘m proud of Nakasuga-san that he rode out the first Suzuka8hours with us and also of Bradley, that we share a pit box in MotoGP. Normally we have many activities and we don‘t get to speak often as friends. This weekend was so good for us. I‘m happy because I found two great friends, and we got the 8 hours Suzuka race victory.”

MotoGP, 2015, Pol Espargaro, Monster Yamaha Tech 3

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