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22 days ago
By MotoGP™ Podcast

Marc the man in Motegi, and Franky Says Relax!

Debriefing Japan with Hopkins and listening to MotoGP™’s Morbidelli take us through his unusual rise to Grand Prix stardom

Tags MotoGP, 2019

Episode 37 of the MotoGP™ Podcast is upon us, and it’s a belter. Regular Podcast analysist John Hopkins debriefs the Japanese GP, Simon’s Scoops is back to give us all the technical insight on why Ducati struggled and what it means now that Johann Zarco is returning with LCR Honda Idemitsu. And if that wasn’t enough, Petronas Yamaha SRT’s Franco Morbidelli shares his story from pocket bikes to World Champion.

Morbidelli chats all about his road to becoming a MotoGP™ star, from beginning to ride at just two-years-old to riding with some of the great Italian riders like Marco Simoncelli, Andrea Dovizioso, Mattia Pasini and a whole host of others.

“It’s an amazing class, it really is paradise,” says Morbidelli, about MotoGP™. “It’s fantastic to ride these bikes, it’s really powerful and it’s a strong emotion first of all and the level is so amazing and for a rider that has passion like me I think it’s one of the best things in the world. You have the chance to experiment such things on a motorbike that you never do on anything, there’s nothing like MotoGP First of all, it’s a very nice category and a very fun category!”

The Italian also tells the story of how meeting Valentino Rossi was something that just kind of happened and from there he trained and rode with him for years leading up to now. But also how Valentino has been a mentor to him, how he told him he was moving up to Moto2™ and what their relationship is like now.

Expert analysis is then on hand from former MotoGP™ star Hopkins, who mentions Jack Miller’s (Pramac Racing) race in Japan: “You know he got off to a really really good start right there in the beginning, you know he had that little bit of a tussle with Morbidelli at the beginning of the race they were going back and forth with each other. Obviously, Miller just wanted to break free, Morbidelli was wanting to break free from him, and was waving his hands in the air trying to wave to him that he had better pace than Miller.

“I think Miller thought that he had the better pace that Morbidelli, which he did, he managed to get away from him, started to break away and then from half race distance that was it, his tyre was gone. As a racer I’ve had a race just so similar to that in Barcelona, the conditions were a little different, obviously it was a hot, hot weekend, Sunday was a lot hotter than it had been all weekend long and back then with the Bridgestone tyres we could run softer compound tyres as the hotter the conditions got.”

Click here to listen to Episode 37 of the MotoGP™ Podcast! And, as always, send the Podcast team your tweets with feedback, questions or anything else you find fascinating using #MotoGPodcast.

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