Pol Espargaró: “In motorbike racing, you may not win but you cannot stop fighting”
Moto2 World Champion Pol Espargaró is disputing the MotoGP World Championship for the first time this year after winning the Moto2 competition last season. Born in Granollers (Greater Barcelona) in 1991, he climbed on his first motorcycle at just 3 years old and just a year later he started competing. He has been competing at Championship level since 2006 and in his international debut he became the youngest rider to obtain points in a Grand Prix. He competed with different teams and brands such as Derbi, Kalex and Yamaha. His eldest brother Aleix Espargaró has also competed at the highest level –MotoGP- since 2009.
Barcelona (ACN).- Pol Espargaró is a top-level Catalan motorbike rider who, for the first time this year, is disputing the World Championship after winning the Moto2 championship last season. Born in Granollers (Greater Barcelona) in 1991, he climbed on his first motorcycle at just 3 years old and just a year later he started competing. He has been competing at Championship level since 2006 and in his international debut he became the youngest rider to obtain points in a Grand Prix. He competed with different teams and brands such as Derbi, Kalex and Yamaha. His eldest brother Aleix Espargaró has also competed at the highest level –MotoGp- since 2009.
What does the race in Montmeló mean to you?
It means a lot. Especially in my first year at MotoGp. I’m looking forward to feeling the support of the public and to be close to my family and friends. Moreover it is a circuit that I know well. However, with the new motorbike maybe I will have a different experience. This Grand Prix might be like a breath of fresh air to the team.
What kind of relationship do all Catalan riders have?
We do not have enough time to see each other and talk. I do not even have time for my brother Aleix. We see each other in the Safety Meetings and our relationship is cordial enough. We always try to help each other.
Who was your motorcycling idol?
Alex Barros. I always looked up to him. Some time ago I had the opportunity to meet him and he was really nice to me
And outside motorcycling?
Gisela Pulido. I coincided with her at some sponsor events and she really surprised me. She is a hugely successful sportswoman with a lot of victories to her name yet almost no presence in the mass media. She is a major kite surf champion.
You started to compete at MotoGp level at just 15 years old. Is it complicated for a teenager to adapt to a top level international competition?
Yes, it is. Adults want you to behave like an adult, but you are not an adult. You are a kid. You want to have fun, go out, enjoy motorcycling… But you have a huge responsibility at such a young age. At this moment in time it is important to have people close to you, who keep your feet on the ground.
What you would say to young riders?
I would say to them that they must fight. In life you always have to fight. Motorcycling is hard, it is not as easy it seems on the television.
What are your goals for this season?
It is difficult to predict now. I’m learning fast, I don’t even know what I’ll to do in the next Grand Prix or at the end of the season. I want to learn as much as I can and try to be as constant as I can in this new category.
It is difficult for you to adapt to the new category?
No, no, actually it is easier now than it was in Moto2. My start there was really tough. Now I am learning step by step.
What is the most touching memory of your career?
When I won the championship in Japan. I also won the race itself and it was a perfect end to the season.
And the worst moment?
My first season at Moto2. It was really tough and I did not see the light at the end of the tunnel. Things were very complicated.
Did you think about retiring?
No, you never think about that. You wonder if you are good enough, but you never think about retiring. You know that you cannot stop fighting even if you cannot always win.
Do you have plans after MotoGp?
Well… I have a lot of proposals but I do not know what I’ll do yet. The most important thing is what I am doing now. This can decide my future.
Your brother Aleix also competes in MotoGp. Does the passion for motorcycling come from your family or was it your choice?
My father is a motorcycling fan. He competed in our town, he loves motorbikes. When he had the money, he put a motorbike under our legs.
Is it complicated to compete against your brother?
Yes, it is. I don’t like to do so, because I respect Aleix. If I have to compete against him, I am very careful. I would not like him to have problems due to my actions. But it is our profession and if we have to fight, we’ll fight.
Which people have been important in your success?
My parents and my brother. Aleix takes care of me and he also taught me how to ride the motorbikes he had driven.