Monster Energy Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo couldn’t quite make it two wins in a week as he settled for a still dominant second in the Spanish GP.
While Ducati’s Pecco Bagnaia controlled the 25-lap race from his blistering pole start, Quartararo was likewise on another planet in terms of pace compared tot the rest of the MotoGP field. The duo consistently lapping over half-a second quicker than the pack and crossing the finish line ten seconds clear of the final podium sitter, Aleix Espargaro.
“Yes, was difficult,” Quartararo said of competing with his 2021 rival. “My goal was to overtake Pecco in the first two/three laps but he was super fast and braking super, super good and tight so was tough. When I was behind him, my front tyre just… I had the feeling and was that front pressure, front temperature was super high and then I had to make a small gap to Pecco because I couldn’t ride behind him.
“The last laps I give my best, try to try something but was not possible to try any overtakes because he was super fast, super consistent. But I’m super happy about this race because our pace was really strong.
“Last lap I was pushing like hell!” the Frenchman admitted. “I tried to make turn 11 super fast to give a try in the last corner but I lose little bit the front in 11, I say ‘Okay, I’m going slowly, it’s two corners to go.’ Was no chance to overtake Pecco in the last corner so I was taking easy in the last two corners. I couldn’t try because Pecco on the brake, when he was alone with, let’s say he had not cool air but he was not behind any rider and is much better for the front tyre, but he works really well on the first laps to get this chance.”
With the European season now in full swing, round seven heads to France and the Le Mans Bugatti Circuit with Quartararo as both reigning MotoGP Champion and leader of the 2022 title standings.
“Yes, it’s gonna be insane,” the Frenchman said of his first race in front of his home fans as a Grand Prix Championship winner. “I’m really looking forward because I never really had a French GP with full crowd. Like a world champion, leading the championship. Already in 2019 it was crazy because I came from my first year of MotoGP, and was crazy. So I can’t imagine this year how it’s going to be!”