Francesco Bagnaia comes to Jerez with the desire to be as competitive as he was in Portugal. The Ducati rider has made a solid start to the season and Jerez could be a ‘friendly’ track for him and his Desmosedici: “The Yamahas are quick but we can do it”.

Focused for Jerez

“I think it can be a good weekend for us - said Bagnaia – and I think we can remain inside the top ten. We’re ready to win, though Yamaha is very fast. We haven’t had a win yet as I made a mistake in Qatar and then got a penalty in Portugal, but we can try here at Jerez”.

Francesco then talks about his season start and how he’s adapting to the Desmosedici: “Already in pre-season testing I was able to take steps forward. In Qatar I tried to manage the tyres and learned that I need to use them in a different way, while in race 2 I was quicker but made a mistake. Then Portimao, where I managed the bike well. I can say that we have great potential in acceleration and braking and I’ll be focusing on this at Jerez too”.

A different riding style with the Ducati

In the press conference, the Ducati rider was asked what he thinks about Ben Spies, as the former rider has posted about the Italian's riding position on Twitter: “I’ve seen Ben’s tweets, it’s always nice when former riders speak well of you, I really appreciate it. Already last year, I tried to ride the Ducati in a different way and I think I better understand how to do that. During the second part of last season I had a lot of difficulty and it was hard to accept and understand what was happening. But the work done over the winter has given me more self-confidence too”.

But does this different riding style have anything do with his training? “I think my past in Mahindra has given me extra motivation in tough situations. My style is similar to what I used to do in Moto2 and Moto3, I can ride strongly and accumulate speed. In the first MotoGP races, it wasn’t easy and I had to adapt to the bike and then try to combine the various elements. For now it works. As things stand, my style is very different to the other ducatisti, almost the opposite”.

Translated by Heather Watson

MotoGP Spain, Bagnaia for the win: can he do a Capirossi at Jerez?