After an almost eight months break from racing, apart from the Grand Prix in Qatar, we will soon be racing again. How do you feel emotionally and physically?
"Qatar now seems a bit far away because and it was a race that I was not satisfied with. It could have ended better. Now we start again from Jerez, emotionally I am very focused and confident. We hope to show what we were unable to in Qatar.”
How have you kept fit during this break?
"I took this quarantine positively. I trained differently, given the limitations, so I took the opportunity to work on muscles that in other types of training I don’t develop enough.”
This year you are one of the contenders for the Moto3™ title, who do you think will be your most competitive rivals?
"There are a few more contenders than last year. I am well prepared to face the season, there are many strong riders, I have yet to understand who will be able to start strong immediately. There will be a lot, I’ll be keeping an eye on the Petronas, Leopard and Gresini rider but they will not be the only ones. It will be all to play for.”
How did this year's bike feel compared to that of 2019?
"It’s very similar, although my body has changed and therefore my seating and position on the bike changes simply because I have become a little taller. It will be important to find the setup immediately but we already found it during the winter tests and in Qatar. The Honda definitely has a chance to do well.”
How are you preparing for Jerez?
“I am training more with the motocross bike than in previous years because it is a very complete type of training, you train a lot of muscles and you work on endurance as well as it being a lot of fun. I am pushing hard on all aspects, mentally and physically. I want to be ready for this season, get 100% ready and prove that I haven't lost anything.”
Do you think racing without an audience will affect the results? Especially if you think about the day of the race?
“I don't think this affects the results but emotionally it could make a difference. Maybe we won't be able to express ourselves as much as when the public is there to support us. But in the end the points will always be the same at the end of each race so you will have to concentrate and try to accumulate as much as possible.”
With a very compact Championship, it will be critical that you don’t make mistakes, to be consistent and to always maintain concentration. Are you ready for this new experience, which is new for all the riders?
“In Moto3 you always have to be careful. It will be very important to start in shape and that's what I'm trying to do. Get to Jerez 100% to keep the pace at all the races from there until the end of the season.”
The staff of the teams will be reduced to a minimum, do you think this will hinder your performance in the race?
“I think it could do for MotoGP ™ but in Moto3 ™, being already much more basic, I don't think it has great consequences. In my case I won't lose anyone on my team.”
Have you already made plans for 2021?
“No, but I want to go to Moto2 ™. I want to finish this season as best I can and make the category jump.”
When a rider is 20 years old, can it be said that he is already too big for Moto3?
“It depends on the path he has taken. It was my decision to stay in Moto3 ™ at the age of 20. I could have gone to Moto2 ™ before but I think it's important to take all the steps, learn 100% from each category and get to MotoGP ™ ready but without being too old.”
Can you have a private life during the season or are you just focused on competitions and training?
“I want to get to the races 200% ready. In my head there is training, the race, my sport. I'm like this, I don't care about having to give up other things to be able to get where I want.”
Photos by: Stefano Padovani