Because Pol Espargaró is still under contract with HRC, he was banned from speaking. But the Spaniard’s enthusiasm for returning to the Austrian MotoGP machine is already visible from afar.
Previous Repsol Honda factory rider Pol Espargaró (31) is not allowed to comment on his new team and GASGAS until December 31. But the glowing eyes of the Spaniard, who finished fifth overall in the 2020 MotoGP World Championship for Red Bull-KTM and failed to get past 16th in the 2002 Honda World Championship, spoke volumes after the first ride. Reliable witnesses said that after the first stint on Tuesday morning, when Pol returned to the pits, he said: “Damn, I love this bike!” he will run away.
In any case, his crew chief Paul Trevathan’s intention to have the Spaniard make you smile on the Austrian 1000cc V4 bike on the first day if possible was accomplished in no time. Because the 2013 Moto2 World Champion, who had not received any new material from Honda for months and started 21st on the grid in Valencia, made his first appearance after 11 hours in 13th place on the timesheets.
It then slipped off the table a bit as the new material for 2023 was already being tested for suitability.
After a longer lunch break, Pol returned to his GASGAS RC16 at 15:30 and by 15:30 he was back in 13th place with a time of 1:31.183 min.
In Saturday’s qualifying 1, he managed only 1:30.936 min with Honda.
Pol Espargaró has had a devastating second half of the season at Repsol-Honda, scoring a paltry 16 points from the last 13 races!
Word from KTM is that the daredevil who has returned to the Pierer family will again rely on Austrian quality on four wheels and will soon sell his previous KTM X-BOX sports bike (it was a wedding gift from Mattighofen) for a covered version of the GT type -XR will trade with 500 hp.