Aspar Press Release Interview: Aleix Espargaro On Being Top CRT In The First Half Of The Season

The Power Electronics Aspar team issued the following press release, containing an interview with one of the most interesting riders of the moment. Aleix Espargaro has been exceptionally impressive in the first half of the 2013 season, regularly scoring top 10 finishes, and harrassing the satellite machines. In the press release, Espargaro talks about the 2013 season so far, and his hopes for the second half of the year:


After making history as the first CRT 'champion' in MotoGP last year, POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider Aleix Espargaró started the 2013 season as a strong favourite to repeat the feat. His form so far has gone far beyond that and alongside outright MotoGP title contenders Márquez, Lorenzo and Pedrosa, the Spaniard has been the standout rider of the current season; as well as leaving the rest of the CRT field trailing in his wake he has gone head to head with the factory prototypes on a regular basis. Aleix Espargaró is a man in demand and after a successful first half of the season with the POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar Team he is hoping for even more when the action resumes next month.

How do you reflect on the first half of the season?

I am much happier than I expected. Last season finished well and we were looking forward to picking up with similar results in 2013 but I don't think I or anybody else expected us to be so close to the official prototypes. So I am really satisfied and I hope we can raise our game again in the second half of the championship.

Which has been your best race?

Maybe in terms of practice it was Germany because we qualified in our best grid position but the race I enjoyed the most and finished closest to the front was in Holland.

Would you delete any race of the races from memory if you could?

I wouldn't delete any of them although I must admit I had been hoping for much more from my home race at Montmeló.

What does Aleix Espargaró need to be even better?

I have to improve in various areas. For example when the temperature is higher I don't seem to be able to run at the same pace because we lose a lot of traction on the rear. To a certain extent that's what happened to us in Barcelona. That is my only handicap, if you want to call it that, because I honestly don't think I have been giving too much away in the first half of the season.

What more do you need from the bike?

It is working perfectly, the chassis is incredible and it allows us to apply so many variables. The only way we could improve the ART is with a bit more power and better electronics.

What do you hope for from the second half of the season?

I can't ask for much more. I think if we can keep this level up until the end of the season we'd all be very satisfied. It won't be easy because we demand more of ourselves every day, we want to keep closing the gap to the factory bikes and so staying at the level we're already at would be an exceptional achievement.

What do you have planned for the holidays?

To disconnect completely for a week a long way from home in New York. I have never been before so I am sure it will be a great experience. After that I will spend a few days at the beach with friends and then get back to training and start thinking about Indianapolis.

Who has been the strongest rider so far this season?

The current situation in the championship is a little strange. I would say Marc is probably the strongest because of the fact he is leading the championship at the halfway stage and with this being his rookie season he deserves a lot of credit. You have to say that Dani is really strong this year and Jorge too, of course. It is a shame they have both been injured but I think that all three of them are performing at an outstanding level.

Of the circuits that are left, which do you most prefer?

The most favourable one for us is probably Misano, being so small. I also really like Sepang because it is fast and I love fast tracks. Phillip Island is magical too.

There are two sets of triple-header races within the space of three months after the break. Is that an advantage or disadvantage for you?

To be honest I love racing and I would do it every week if I could but anything more than two races in a row is tiring, especially outside Europe. Anyway, everything is going so well for us this season and my relationship with the team is so good that every situation we find ourselves in is that much easier to tackle.

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I really hope he can land on a prototype next year, although the chance is pretty slim. On the other hand it would be great if he can keep improving on the Aprilia.

Marc who?

Espargaro has already had his shot on a prototype, admittedly a Ducati, but he didn't do anything special on it. Likely the only prototype ride he'd have a shot at would be a Ducati somewhere. He's better off staying where he is.

They really do get along and function as a team. I was lucky enough to see it last weekend at Laguna Seca, actually I seen it before that. The Aspar team, Aleix, and his gf were staying at the same hotel I was and every morning they'd all be down eating breakfast together and laughing and just having a good time. What caught me off guard was this wasn't some 5 star hotel, it was a Comfort Inn and in Salinas not even Monterey but that seemed to matter very little to any of them.

He's undoubtedly having a great season and far and away the strongest of the CRTs.

What counts against him in terms of getting a prototype for next year [from Honda or Yamaha] is his past record in the lower classes. From 125s, 250s and Moto2 he does only have ONE podium finish ever - at Catalunya in Moto2 in 2011 for Pons - and has never finished in the top ten of any championship [yet], including when he was Jorge's teammate in 250s. That may well sound harsh, but the top teams do only really go for guys with a decent record of winning stuff and he would be a big gamble on a bike expected to win races.

The contention to that - and it could be a fair one - is that he is easily outperforming guys who have won races in the lower classes. Looking forward to seeing what he can do through the rest of the season and beyond with Aspar.